Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 09-26-2009, 07:40 AM   #21
Recycles dryer sheets
Tesaje's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Frederick
Posts: 333
Who is sorry he/she paid off the mortgage?

I'm not.
__________________

__________________
I FIREd myself at start of 2010!
Tesaje is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 09-26-2009, 12:34 PM   #22
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,017
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tesaje View Post
Who is sorry he/she paid off the mortgage?

I'm not.
NM
__________________

__________________
Meadbh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-26-2009, 12:39 PM   #23
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
haha's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Hooverville
Posts: 22,382
Quote:
Originally Posted by Meadbh View Post
If you have a variable rate mortgage and interest rates rise, how would that make you feel? Personally (and this is a very personal decision) I would make hay while the sun shines, and pay down the mortgage. Done, over, move on.
What makes a US mortgage so nice is fixed term, and fixed interest rate with no prepayment penalty.

If you mortgage does not have these characteristics, refinance.

Ha
__________________
"As a general rule, the more dangerous or inappropriate a conversation, the more interesting it is."-Scott Adams
haha is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-26-2009, 02:20 PM   #24
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 81
I do have a very definite opinion on this. You are still saving "some" for retirement whether or not your mortgage is paid. Having a paid for roof over your head is MARVELOUS.

My husband was "retired" a bit earlier than we planned. However, we live comfortably on his pension without having to take early SS or touch our investments in any way. This is possible because our overhead expenses are very low. We wondered how this was all going to work out and I can tell you that having a paid off house is a blessing and makes for good sleeping.

I know what all the tax experts say --- but beyond a certain point, if you run the numbers, you reallly aren't saving that much ala the IRS.

We had our house paid off in our early 50's and have been debt free ever since. It allowed us to save a lot more money towards retirement, and also .....made our kids college expenses not nearly as challenging.

Eventually, we will move and the $$$ from our house will be used to assist in our new purchase. If we need more $$$, we have been able to save that much more extra over the years because we didn't have the mortgage payment.

When the market is flat on its back, or in the sewer, it is wonderful to be debt free and just "let it ride".
__________________
molly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-2009, 09:59 AM   #25
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by cardude View Post
Why don't I just pay off my mortgage instead of worrying about investing the money into bond funds right now? I didn't really wannt to do that because I wanted to take advantage of paying my mortgage down with inflated dollars eventually. Plus, I really didn't want to tie that much money up in an illiquid asset (would take about 12% of my portfolio if I paid it off), but when I plug the numbers into my SWR spreadsheet my SWR rate drops from 2.8% to 2.23% if I pay it off.
Is your mortgage payment fixed? If so, be sure to model it as a non-inflation adjusted expense. This usually makes the payoff picture a little closer call in terms of SWR, since your expenses will decline in real terms. e.g. if your yearly mortgage expense is 20k, in 30 years of 3% inflation that will equivalent to an 8k expense today.

You can model this in firecalc by using a non-inflation adjusted expense to represent your mortgage, offset by a non-inflation adjusted pension of the same amount starting the year your mortgage is paid off.

Or, looking at it another way, the conventional portfolio survivability SWR targets (4%, 3%, whatever) typically assume all expenses grow inflation adjusted. For a scenario where some expenses do not increase with inflation, initial SWR can actually be higher at the same level of survivability risk.
__________________
dizzy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-2009, 10:53 AM   #26
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Gone4Good's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 5,381
The question isn't whether to be a borrower or a lender, because right now you are both. You are borrowing at ~5% and simultaneously lending at <2%. There are only a few instances where that makes sense 1) You need the liquidity 2) You're speculating on higher interest rates. Considering that you're starting your bet more than 300bp out of the money, you need a pretty sizable increase in interest rates to make this gamble pay off. How much? Here's one simple model . . .

Assume a 30yr fixed rate mortgage at 5.125% is amortized monthly with a cash balance invested at 1.75%. After 10yrs, you pay $34K more in interest than you earn per $100K of mortgage. Just to reach breakeven, short-term interest rates need to climb 78bp per year and reach 9.45% after 10 years. Not likely, in my view.
__________________
Gone4Good is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-2009, 11:24 AM   #27
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
target2019's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 3,705
The wild card is itemized deductions. How much do you benefit from the interest deduction?
__________________
target2019 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-2009, 11:56 AM   #28
Recycles dryer sheets
Tesaje's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Frederick
Posts: 333
Quote:
Originally Posted by target2019 View Post
The wild card is itemized deductions. How much do you benefit from the interest deduction?
It does reduce the effective interest rate but it is still essentially spending 2/3rds to get only 1/3 back. You won't make any money that way.
__________________
I FIREd myself at start of 2010!
Tesaje is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-2009, 11:57 AM   #29
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,017
It should be possible to input this information in a spreadsheet, allowing sensitivity analysis, no?
__________________
Meadbh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-2009, 03:50 PM   #30
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
freebird5825's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: East Nowhere, 43N Latitude, NY
Posts: 9,017
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tesaje View Post
Who is sorry he/she paid off the mortgage?

I'm not.
We paid that puppy off yeas and years ago when folks told us it would be better to put the cash saved up (originally destined for a new car) into the market because it was going up, up, up.
The year we paid it off was 1998 or 1999. I'm too lazy to go look that up.
The freed up mortgage payment money was then used to go into the market slowly and carefully, not in a lump sum.
No regrets!
__________________
"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." - Walt Disney
freebird5825 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-2009, 03:58 PM   #31
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
target2019's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 3,705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tesaje View Post
It does reduce the effective interest rate but it is still essentially spending 2/3rds to get only 1/3 back. You won't make any money that way.
Not about making money, about itemizing deductions, the big picture, tax bracket, etc.
__________________
target2019 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2009, 01:08 AM   #32
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 1,304
There are a lot of reasons to pay it off or not to pay it off.

Here is why DW and I are going to pay ours off (lining up the ducks now).
The mortgage is about 30% of our monthly 'nut'.
This will take a lot of stress off of budget (which is already pretty conservative and unstressful).
It will provide PEACE OF MIND (lots of it)

The other stuff (for us) is 'noise'.
__________________
Life is GREAT!
megacorp-firee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2009, 01:22 AM   #33
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 81
Quote:
Originally Posted by megacorp-firee View Post
There are a lot of reasons to pay it off or not to pay it off.

Here is why DW and I are going to pay ours off (lining up the ducks now).
The mortgage is about 30% of our monthly 'nut'.
This will take a lot of stress off of budget (which is already pretty conservative and unstressful).
It will provide PEACE OF MIND (lots of it)

The other stuff (for us) is 'noise'.
I have to agree with this. After all the due-diligence analysis, my conclusion was that it was a nearly statistical wash for us. In that case, paying off, and reducing the monthly nut was a clear psychological win. Plus, the less the monthly nut, the more room in the budget for all that fun discretionary stuff!
__________________
dizzy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2009, 04:23 AM   #34
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 1,012
Quote:
Originally Posted by cardude View Post
I've been agonizing for months over getting the bond side of my AA set up in this uncertain environment. I'm worried that bond funds NAVs are due to fall as rates gradually increase sometime in the future. So, a huge part of my portfolio (35%) currently sits in cash earning about 1.75% pre tax.

Why don't I just pay off my mortgage instead of worrying about investing the money into bond funds right now? I didn't really wannt to do that because I wanted to take advantage of paying my mortgage down with inflated dollars eventually. Plus, I really didn't want to tie that much money up in an illiquid asset (would take about 12% of my portfolio if I paid it off), but when I plug the numbers into my SWR spreadsheet my SWR rate drops from 2.8% to 2.23% if I pay it off.

Long term am I better off with a guaranteed 5.12 after tax return by paying off the house or should I just hold onto the cash and wait for the bond market to "correct"? What am I missing here?

My mortgage is 5.12%, I'm in the 25% federal tax bracket this year, and I'm retired but DW is working for the next couple of years. We plan on staying in this house for about 10 years until the kids get out of school.
if a 5.12% FDIC insured CD was available would you invest in it? at present the US 30yr (as are all shorter terms) bond rate is lower then that.
__________________
jdw_fire is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2009, 07:04 AM   #35
Full time employment: Posting here.
cardude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 599
Quote:
The wild card is itemized deductions. How much do you benefit from the interest deduction?
It looks like the PV of the mortgage deduction over the standard deduction, over 26 years, will be about $24000. Not that much. The FV came out to 88K, and I discounted it back to today using a 5% rate.

I'm not sure how to calculate the the inflation advantage over 30 years-- paying with inflated dollars. Not that analytical, or maybe not enough coffee yet.


Quote:
Is your mortgage payment fixed? If so, be sure to model it as a non-inflation adjusted expense. This usually makes the payoff picture a little closer call in terms of SWR, since your expenses will decline in real terms. e.g. if your yearly mortgage expense is 20k, in 30 years of 3% inflation that will equivalent to an 8k expense today.

You can model this in firecalc by using a non-inflation adjusted expense to represent your mortgage, offset by a non-inflation adjusted pension of the same amount starting the year your mortgage is paid off.

Or, looking at it another way, the conventional portfolio survivability SWR targets (4%, 3%, whatever) typically assume all expenses grow inflation adjusted. For a scenario where some expenses do not increase with inflation, initial SWR can actually be higher at the same level of survivability risk.
Ahh, good point. I was not doing that. When adjusting for this, and adjusting for the mortgage deduction, I get about a 10% difference in firecalc"s possible ending portfolio values for both the low and high side. That's 10% higher for each value by NOT paying off the fixed 30 year 5.15 mortgage.

That would seem to make the case to keep the mortgage, but of course that's if the future looks like the past. If the future turns out to be worse than the past-- more volatile, or have bigger fat tail events-- then maybe a 10% difference does not mean that much.

OK, all that didn't really tell me anything................
__________________
cardude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2009, 12:13 PM   #36
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
audreyh1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Rio Grande Valley
Posts: 16,457
Cardude - you are so way under even a very conservative SWR, I don't think you need to worry about what difference paying off the mortgage makes to your SWR.

Also, even if bond fund NAVs go down after a while, the NAVs don't usually drop that much due to the Fed raising interest rates, and the bond funds usually recover over the next year or two in terms of total return - usually because they are rolling over to higher yielding bonds thus paying out higher dividends. So it really is more of a temporary situation if you are planning to hold the bond funds for a decade or more.

Now if you are convinced that inflation will cause interest rates to go way higher (7%+) in the future, that's another matter. I'm not convinced of that outcome, but I don't know any better than the next guy does.

This article indicates that short-term bond rates may stay excessively low for quite a while. FT.com / The long view - Yield curve watchers divided over bank power . I'm still reading/mulling over this article.

Audrey
__________________
audreyh1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2009, 01:15 PM   #37
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Northern IL
Posts: 18,264
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tesaje View Post
Who is sorry he/she paid off the mortgage?

I'm not.
I don't think that a few random self-selected anecdotes lead to an informed decision. It can be a good way hear some confirmation from the choir, if that is what you are seeking.

So, a few anecdotes from the other side:

I was pre-paying my 1981 mortgage. A few years later, I wish I hadn't. It was an ARM and the rates/payment dropped each and every month, and since it was a "blend" it was below market rates, ended up being really, really cheap money, and all I did was lock it up in my house. When I moved in 1992, I took out a slightly larger mortgage on a house of ~ same cost. Which allowed me to keep more money invested throughout the 1990's boom. I don't regret the mortgage at all.

And here's one from an unlikely source:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Want2retire View Post
...

August 29th, 2005: Katrina devastated New Orleans and the Gulf Coast while Frank and I watched from a motel room in Huntsville. Being broke during an extended evacuation due to liquidating my emergency fund, in order to pay off my house, qualifies as a stupid money mistake IMO.


Quote:
Originally Posted by cardude View Post
When adjusting for this [inflation], and adjusting for the mortgage deduction, I get about a 10% difference in firecalc"s possible ending portfolio values for both the low and high side. That's 10% higher for each value by NOT paying off the fixed 30 year 5.15 mortgage.

That would seem to make the case to keep the mortgage, but of course that's if the future looks like the past. If the future turns out to be worse than the past-- more volatile, or have bigger fat tail events-- then maybe a 10% difference does not mean that much.

OK, all that didn't really tell me anything................
As I've said, I don't think it is a big deal either way. I prefer the liquidity and options available to me by holding the mortgage. Something tells me that if FIRECALC showed a 10% decline in keeping the mortgage, that you might have thought that was significant? Maye not, just a guess.

I'm not sure that I agree that a 'different' future would necessarily lessen the benefit of holding a mortgage. How can we know? It might increase the benefit, no? After all, it helped in the worst of the past years - so isn't it reasonable to think it may help if the future was a bit worse? I could understand if it helped in good years and hurt in bad years, but that is not what you discovered.

Also, while you accounted for the tax deduction, that might be offset somewhat by higher withdraws to pay the monthly mortgage (if those WDs increase your tax burden). If that is the case, it would reduce the 10% somewhat. OTOH, taxes may have been incurred during the pre-pay phase also. It really depends on individual circumstances.

I think it's good that you have run the numbers. Since it is unlikely to make a big difference either way, you can do as you please, knowing that there are probably far more important decisions for you to concentrate on. But I would definitely consider liquidity in all this.

-ERD50
__________________
ERD50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2009, 09:25 PM   #38
Full time employment: Posting here.
cardude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 599
Thanks to all for all the great responses!

After running the numbers, and since there does not seem a big reason to pay it off other than the "feel good" aspect, I've decided to just keep the mortgage for now and keep my liquidity. Even though I really don't like the current environment, I'm gritting my teeth and slowly averaging into a couple of bond funds (very, very slowly). Plus, I keep getting the strange feeling I may have the chance to put a chunk of cash to work in the near future if something happens to shock the market. That's just a WAG obviously.
__________________
cardude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2009, 06:12 PM   #39
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Gone4Good's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 5,381
Quote:
Originally Posted by cardude View Post
Ally Bank; the old GMAC bank. Very easy to set up and direct deposit..

I've got some cash at various other online banks (Capital One, FNBO) but they have recently dropped their rates to 1.6 and 1.5%, and their transfers are much slower.
What has been your experience with these various online banks (Ally in particular). I'm going to be looking at moving some cash out of 0% money market funds and these look like a good option. Discover Bank is paying 2% but I've heard horrible things about them. ING gets good reviews, but is paying 1.3%.

Any recommendations?
__________________
Gone4Good is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2009, 06:32 PM   #40
Full time employment: Posting here.
cardude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 599
The best of the bunch IMO so far has been Ally. Fastest transfers and good rates. Just opened an account at Discover for the 2pct rate but no real experience there yet.
__________________

__________________
cardude is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Prime Money Market Fund vs. Total Bond Fund two4theroad FIRE and Money 2 04-10-2008 01:46 PM
(FAQ archive) Should I pay off the mortgage or invest the money? Nords Early Retirement FAQs 0 10-15-2007 04:05 PM
Put more into 401k, fund Roth for spouse, or pay down piggyback mortgage?? CompoundInterestFan FIRE and Money 23 09-11-2007 11:26 PM
Bond Fund and Money Market Fund Tax Treatment Question terminator FIRE and Money 4 03-01-2007 07:56 AM
Question about using fund to pay mortgage Tadpole FIRE and Money 4 11-07-2004 06:58 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:16 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.