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15 year or 30 year mortgage v.DaveRamsey

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    15 year or 30 year mortgage v.DaveRamsey

    Started listening to Dave Ramsey's cd again - specifically on mortgages. He recommends NEVER buying a 30 year fixed mortgage and stick only to the 15 year fixed with at least a 10% down payment and to stick to 25% of your NET income for a monthly payment.

    I was thinking about this since the idea of paying a mortgage off in 15 years is enticing and I COULD afford it, but it's not ideal as we would have to move our price range down by about $25k which knocks us out of the neighborhood that we really love at the moment. However, that extra $25k added to the mortgage, plus another 15 years would probably come out to an extra $100k in payments over the life of the loan. His argument towards extra payments with a 30 year is that not many people stick to them.

    I know that most of you have 30 year fixed, but would you have gone 15 year if you had the chance even if though it bumps your price range down?
    Last edited by project15; 03-19-2008, 03:48 PM.

    #2
    I compromised to a twenty year note that I intend to pay in 15 or less. My wife is not on board so I can't do all the things I would like to do.

    If your wife is on board with the plan, I would do it in a heart beat. You can always move up in house later and be better off when you do.

    In this market, I wouldn't be so sure you can't get the house you want if you work at it.

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      #3
      No. This is one of many places where I don't agree with Dave Ramsey. I would rather get a 30-year mortgage and pay it off in 15 than to get a 15-year mortgage and be locked into the higher payments. A 30-year gives you more leverage and more breathing room if things get tight while still giving you the opportunity to prepay if you choose to.

      Also, I'm not a big fan of prepaying the mortgage because over time (the past few months being an exception), my investments earn far more than my mortgage costs me so by keeping the mortgage as long as possible I will come out way ahead financially.
      Steve

      * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
      * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
      * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

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        #4
        Originally posted by disneysteve View Post
        No. This is one of many places where I don't agree with Dave Ramsey. I would rather get a 30-year mortgage and pay it off in 15 than to get a 15-year mortgage and be locked into the higher payments. A 30-year gives you more leverage and more breathing room if things get tight while still giving you the opportunity to prepay if you choose to.

        Also, I'm not a big fan of prepaying the mortgage because over time (the past few months being an exception), my investments earn far more than my mortgage costs me so by keeping the mortgage as long as possible I will come out way ahead financially.
        The idea is to buy a house that you would have the same payment as if you had a 30. You get a little less house, but a much better investment. The payment difference between the 15 and 30 is not that great to make it a bad investment. To say that a 30 gives more breathing room, in most cases, is not true. Most people just buy more house and still live on the edge in a worse investment.

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by maat55 View Post
          The idea is to buy a house that you would have the same payment as if you had a 30.
          That is certainly different. I was curious how that would play out so I just ran some numbers as if we were about to buy the house we live in.

          House value is 300K
          20% downpayment is 60K
          Mortgage needed is 240K
          30 years at 5.6% is $1,377/month
          15 years at 5.1% is $1,910/month, a difference of $533.

          If we wanted to buy a house with the same payment for 15 years as this house would cost for 30 years, we could only borrow 174K, so with a 20% downpayment, that would mean we could buy a house costing $217,500.

          That sounds very nice but you would have a very tough time finding a decent house around here for $217,000.
          Steve

          * Despite the high cost of living, it remains very popular.
          * Why should I pay for my daughter's education when she already knows everything?
          * There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

          Comment


            #6
            One size advice does not fit all. I disagree with Dave Ramsey.

            I bought my first house on 30 year fixed and second house on 30 year fixed. I even refinanced and extended term on current house by a year.

            Cash flow and investments need to be evaluated beyond just the period of the mortgage payment. I invest quite heavily, mortgage payment is much more than 25% of net (around 25% of gross), and I will be retiring before Dave Ramsey, I think.

            If I followed his advice, no way I could retire in 15 years.

            Comment


              #7
              Say you buy a house that you can afford on a 30 year note and pay on it for 30 years. Then say you buy a house that you can afford on a fifteen year note and pay it off, then sell and buy another house with the same payment for another 15 years, which house has the most value.

              Comment


                #8
                We have a 15 year.

                IF we buy again we will probably go for a 30. We'll likely put in as little as possible towards a down payment as well and take most of our equity and invest it. Hubster is approaching retirement age and I will (possibly) have many years to live in the downsized quarters. The lower the house payment the more of my cash flow I can keep to buy my groceries and meds with.

                Read Ric Edelman's 'The Truth About Money' for advice on keeping the money out of the house.

                This is all hard for me as emotionally I would surely love a paid for home, but financially by the numbers it will likely make better sense for my overall cash flow to go for a 30 on any subsequent purchase.

                IF we were better prepared for retirement? Ehhhh, I'd pay off the house in a heartbeat.

                Comment


                  #9
                  After you pay a house off in 15 years, you can invest your house payment for another 15 years. After 15 years on a 30 year note, your just beginning to pay down the house. If I want more house later, I can just pay cash without the interest.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by maat55 View Post
                    Say you buy a house that you can afford on a 30 year note and pay on it for 30 years. Then say you buy a house that you can afford on a fifteen year note and pay it off, then sell and buy another house with the same payment for another 15 years, which house has the most value.
                    I would think the 2nd house in that dual 15-yr situation because chances are that I would upgrade at that 15 year mark since I would have a huge down payment and probably make more.

                    If it's just one 15 year fixed vs. one 30 year fixed, the 15 year would have the most value at the end of the 30 years because I'm paying less overall on it but it's still worth a similar amount as the 30 year fixed.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by project15 View Post
                      Started listening to Dave Ramsey's cd again - specifically on mortgages. He recommends NEVER buying a 30 year fixed mortgage and stick only to the 15 year fixed with at least a 10% down payment and to stick to 25% of your NET income for a monthly payment.

                      I was thinking about this since the idea of paying a mortgage off in 15 years is enticing and I COULD afford it, but it's not ideal as we would have to move our price range down by about $25k which knocks us out of the neighborhood that we really love at the moment. However, that extra $25k added to the mortgage, plus another 15 years would probably come out to an extra $100k in payments over the life of the loan. His argument towards extra payments with a 30 year is that not many people stick to them.

                      I know that most of you have 30 year fixed, but would you have gone 15 year if you had the chance even if though it bumps your price range down?
                      project15,
                      It all depends on your overall goals. If my goal was pay off the mortgage AND live in the neighborhood of my dreams, I would sign up for the 30 year note and make additional payments.

                      Our first loan was a 30 year loan (this was back in the 1980's when the interest rates were terrible--we paid close to 10% interest). It was a no-brainer to go to a 15 yr note when the interest rates came down and we refinanced. The payments were lower AND we shortened the length of our loan. Our house is paid off now.

                      We did make additional payments every month because it was a goal to have the house paid off before we retire. It was really easy to stick with this when we set up the automatic electronic payment with the mortgage company. I would plan for how much extra we would send in for the upcoming year and set it up on the automatic electronic payment. If I had been sending in payments by mail, I think there would have been more of a temptation to not send in extra if I had a lot of expenses in a particular month.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        We did not have an option when we bought. Prices were going up, DH was underpaid, and we had to stretch a little thin on a 30 year to buy.

                        Since then, circumstances have changed and we are prepaying the 30 year (will end up paying for less than 15 years). I realize that with a lower payment of a 30 year, if something changes financially for us, making the 30 year payment is much easier than trying to make a 15 year payment- so we never refied into a 15.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          We are still debating this in my house. We will have to come up on an answer soon since we are buying sometime in the next year. Our main issue is that we want to get as cheap a house as possible so that we have less sunk into our house. We love to travel and having a huge mortgage is not conducive to that. We also want to have money free to fix the home up. No matter how expensive or cheap the home, there are always repairs and upgrades to consider.

                          Right now, leaning towards a 30 year so that we can use the difference for repairs and still have a very cheap payment and then consider extra payments after we have maxed out retirement accounts and started a taxable account.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            We are lucky to have decent salaries in an area where living is cheap. We found a beautiful house for a very reasonable price and decided to go with a 15 year note. Yes, the payments are pretty high, but I am looking forward to owning the house free and clear before my kids are out of high school. The way I see it , if the house is paid off, then if we sell then that much more can go to the down payment of the next one.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              We had 15-years on our first home. (When we were way less financially savvy). But we also had 2 incomes.

                              We refied to 30-years when we had 2 homes briefly, and kept it when we went down to one income and had our first child.

                              Anyway, we are getting back to the point where we could go back to 15-years and I have to say it is ENTICING.

                              BUT we have grown accustomed to the financial flexibility of a 30-year. The beauty of it is you can still make prepayments and pay it off sooner, but then you are not on the hook for the difference if you lose your job or go through a financial hardship.

                              Anyway, we were looking at the 15-years since interest rates had lowered for a bit and because interest rates are lower on shorter loans. We decided keeping our 30-year is best. We rather put more into our retirement for now, while we are still young and it is all tax-deferred. We didn't like the idea of adding $300/month to our fixed payments. Just too much of a stress for now. Kind of stressful.

                              But there are a lot of factors to consider here. What is the difference in the payment? How much equity do you have? How long do you plan to stay in your home? How is the cost of living? What are interest rates?

                              I would personally go for the home I want over cutting the price $25k for a 15-year-loan.

                              As far as what most people do, who cares. We want to pay off our home in our 40s and we will. I don't care that most people can't stick to a prepayment schedule. Prepayments allow far more financial flexibility. You can always refi to a 15-year down the road once you gain more traction, if rates become more favorable. I think it is something we will probably do in a few years. This would make sense as we pay off more principle, and if rates were still low, and we could accelerate payoff with the same payments. The only reason we are still considering it. Also, because we expect increased income. Overall though the 30-years makes far more sense for now.

                              In the meantime we decided we should have been funding our retirement in our 20s, not paying down our low-interest mortgage. So why I mentioned we weren't as financially savvy before. My general rule is not to pay more than the 30-year note until all of our tax-deferred investments are maxed out.
                              Last edited by MonkeyMama; 03-20-2008, 08:01 AM.

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