October 3, 2023


New Estate

We Paid Off Our Home!

6 min read

Y’all, I’m so giddy and enthusiastic about this. Matt and I paid off our home yesterday! We personal our home outright. And since we don’t ever plan on transferring, meaning no extra mortgage funds…ever!

And that, my associates, is why nine-and-a-half years in the past, I used to be in a position to see a home that appeared like this…

And as a substitute of turning my nostril up at it, or operating away in horror, I used to be in a position to see the chance. I knew it might be become one thing stunning with a number of exhausting work and willpower, and I knew that if we purchased this home and progressively turned it into our dwelling, it may afford us a number of freedom that purchasing a model new, flip key dwelling wouldn’t.

There have been sacrifices to doing it this manner, although. It meant that we needed to dwell by years of development, which wouldn’t be sensible for many individuals. And there have been definitely instances that I puzzled if I’d ever see the sunshine on the finish of the tunnel.

And whereas on one hand, these final nine-and-a-half years appeared to crawl by whereas I used to be within the thick of it, as much as my eyeballs in previous drywall, insulation, development mud, and piles of instruments and paint cans, now trying again at it, these years appeared to go by within the blink of a watch.

Matt and I purchased this home on one acre of land in August 2013 for $83,000. Whereas we had been residing within the condominium, we had saved sufficient to place down $20,000 as a downpayment, so we solely financed $63,000. That’s the advantage of shopping for a home that was within the situation ours was in!! 😀

I bear in mind so many individuals, together with my mother and brother, pondering we had been completely out of our minds shopping for this home. (You may see the entire home on this publish the place I shared the entire footage proper after we purchased the home.) When my brother noticed it, he mentioned, “Effectively, I’m simply glad it’s you and never me.” When my mother noticed it the primary time, she checked out me with a glance of horror and concern on her face, and requested, “Kristi, are you positive?! Are you actually positive that is what you need? Are you positive you are able to do this?”

I used to be positive. I used to be assured. I used to be overly assured, however I wanted that over confidence and naivety, as a result of had I identified what I used to be truly getting myself into, I could have skipped this home and moved on to one thing else.

Our plan was to repay the home a lot quicker than we did, however we additionally didn’t have sensible expectations of simply how a lot it will value to redo the home. So whereas we didn’t finance very a lot, and we thought that we’d be making double and triple and quadruple funds every month to get it paid off in only a few years, that didn’t actually work out.

Let’s simply say that we had been so grateful for our tiny $320/month mortgage funds, as a result of that allowed us to place more cash month-to-month in the direction of reworking the home. (Attempt discovering a rental for $320/month! 😀 )

The home had nice bones, however aesthetically, it was in fairly tough form. All the rooms needed to be taken all the way down to the studs and ceiling joists, and three areas needed to be taken all the way down to ground joists as properly. It wanted a brand new roof, new HVAC system (it solely had an previous furnace and window unit air conditioners), all new electrical, all new drywall, new flooring in some rooms, all new home windows, window and door trim, new siding, and the listing goes on and on.

However from the very starting, we had been decided that we wouldn’t go into debt doing tasks on the home. It doesn’t matter what room or what undertaking I used to be engaged on, we paid for it in money as we went. That made some tasks take longer than we anticipated, however on the large tasks, it additionally made it extra doable.

The very first huge transform I did on this home was the kitchen.

I did that complete transform for $10,000. On the time, that amount of cash was an absolute fortune for us, and had we employed a contractor and needed to pay that quantity (or half that quantity) up entrance, there’s now method we may have afforded it.

However I did the entire transform myself (with some assist right here and there from relations) over the course of seven months. So spreading out $10,000 over seven months made issues type of tight for us on the time, nevertheless it was doable.

I’m not going to say that it wasn’t difficult residing by the development for thus lengthy, however as soon as I obtained the entire foremost “public” rooms of the home completed, life appeared to get an entire lot simpler and way more nice for us.

As soon as the development was solely being completed in areas that might be hidden behind closed doorways, whereas the principle areas of the home might be comfortably used and lived in, the home actually started to really feel like dwelling for us.

So trying again, these challenges paid off. Dwelling for just a few years by development, inconvenience, DIYing, and paying as we went alongside, remaining dedicated to not taking up any extra debt to repair up the home, has been price it. As a result of now, right here we’re nine-and-a-half years later, with a good looking (to us) dwelling that’s almost full on the (present) inside, and that we personal. No extra mortgage funds…EVER!!

If I needed to do it another time, I wouldn’t change a factor. I’d nonetheless purchase a budget 70-year-old fixer higher, dwell with the tiny mortgage cost, put that extra cash that might have gone into the next mortgage or hire cost in the direction of progressively fixing up that fixer higher with my very own blood, sweat and tears, make additional mortgage funds when the chance arose, and have a good looking dwelling and be mortgage free in lower than 10 years.

Now don’t get me mistaken. After I scroll by Instagram and I see these folks constructing their giant, sprawling 6000+-square-foot homes with their four-car garages with the entire newest finishes, do I discover myself eager for that? Sure, nevertheless it solely lasts just a few seconds. As a result of it solely takes just a few seconds for me to search for from my cellphone, go searching my home and what my very own two palms have created, and be grateful for my comparatively modest however stunning dwelling. And now it’s a modest however stunning dwelling that we personal. That freedom is precisely what I’ve been working so exhausting in the direction of these final nine-and-a-half years.

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