Originally Posted by bclover
? Why? serious question. what do you mean "living too close to the edge"?
If something catastrophic happens, what will owning do?? I owned my home in NJ, lol. My property taxes were still 1000 a month so if I was living close to the edge and lost my job, I would still have been SOL.
I do hear your sentiment often, and always try to understand. I'm retiring early next year (hopefully), I'll still have a mortgage, I don't feel any less secure, I guess than if it was paid off.
I am thinking a lot about my mom. After my father died unexpectedly in his 50s, she was left alone, with two kids and no savings, tried to go to work, after being a housewife and homemaker while we were kids, but collapsed due to a medical condition and couldn't continue. She was left with a really small amount from VA and SS for her being disabled and having dependent kids, My sister was still in high school, I was in community college. There was no savings, but when they bought the house, they had purchased mortgage insurance, so when my dad died, the house was paid off. In our state, property taxes are reduced (I don't remember the exact laws now) for those in certain situations and being a home owner she was eligible for various home improvement grants that came up. She got her windows replaced for no cost for example.
Later I applied for and got a scholarship and worked for part of my way to finish my college, my sister worked and went to school and soon got married. I think of what our life would have been life on that meager income without owning our home. We were still able to be middle class, still live in the same area with our friends and neighbors. We didn't have a lot extra to spend, but it was enough and we never had to worry about being homeless. It was a tough period, but not as tough as if we had to pay rent, or were at the mercy of landlords.
My parents, working class, were never able, for whatever reason, to save anything. My father was so generous that if he had anything extra he would give it to someone less fortunate. He never sold anything he didn't need he would give it away to someone.
Of course other situations could be much different, probably most of those on this forum who have saved and have sufficient assets. But this was my thinking with the "living too close to the edge" comment. It was the difference between maintaining a middle class existence, with kids still able to to to college, and maybe something much darker.