Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Don't laugh, it's paid for!

I know a lot of people would cringe at the thought of moving into a trailer, much less a trailer from the 1970s, but we are positively giddy.

Yes, it's small. Yes, it's old and ugly. Yes, the move crimped a wire somewhere so the bathroom lights won't work (we're rewiring it today), but this is ours. All ours. 100% ours. This P.O.J. isn't partially owned by the bank. This bit of land isn't mortgaged. The guys working to get us up and running are under our employ. We're paying them with a check from money we saved and earned and finagled. There's nothing quite like it.

In three years, if all goes according to plan (we actually plan to have the money saved by the end of two years, but we are factoring in the unexpected) we should be moving into our dream house that we planned and built with cash!

The long and the short of it is, we're willing to think outside the box in order to meet our goal of living without the mortgage. We're also willing to put up with a few years of inconvenience and a bit of crowding. Delayed gratification is not something the American culture has been used to, but it is something to think about. Here's some of the creative thinking that we came up with in order to find our particular plan (maybe one of these ideas will spark something for you):
  • Move into a cheap, utilities-included apartment, put money from the sale of the house into savings. Sell extra belongings and all lawn and garden equipment at a yard sale, save like crazy.
  • Rent out the current home (if a sale is not possible and if the going rents will cover the mortgage plus repairs) and rent a cheap apartment. Sell extra belongings and save like crazy.
  • Put a cheap trailer on current land and rent out either it or the mortgaged home. Sell extra belongings and save like crazy.
Other people have thought up better and more creative ways to make life mortgage free. Just google it and see. Now that the big expense is taken care of, we've got to be sure that the little expenses don't start adding up to eat our savings. We'll still be buying cards for the pay as you go phone, living without cable or satellite TV, eating at home (or picnicking), and keeping the wardrobe to a minimum (new stuff is more often "nused"). We don't get to the movies much, but we can play a mean game of Yahtzee!

I think I may stick one of these on the side of the ugly yellow trailer. Who cares if the yellows clash?


  1. Don't kid yourself, you are living the American dream. You just want to do it debt free. *clap clap clap* go YOU!!!

  2. Cool looks just like the trailer we lived in for 2 years after our house burned down. Memories... However, we did not get out of it mortgage free. unfortunately. Good for you guys!!!

  3. woooohooooo!!!! You guys rawk! My husband and I have been talking about doing the exact. same. thing. No joke. I'm so envious. But I'm also so very excited for you! It would be tough going with our large brood (8 kids), but I think we would be sooo much happier in the end.

    God bless you for being such an inspiration!

  4. oh Christie, this is a fantastic idea. I am clapping right along with Tamara.

  5. That's awesome, Christie! Congratulations!

    When I think of how many doctors I know who are close to going bankrupt, it's ridiculous. Wealth is not a matter of your earning power; it's a matter of your savings power and your spending responsibility.

    You're a great model for your kids!

    Sheila from To Love, Honor and Vacuum

  6. Kelly, I can understand that having 8 kids would be hard in the trailer we are squeezing into. If it helps, we took our inspiration from a family with 7 who bought a little house on some land with a personal loan (years ago) that they paid off in 5 years.

    As for us, after praying and discerning and tossing ideas around for about a year or so, we started looking with the idea that it never hurts to just look. Suddenly, things started falling into place. This plan looks very, very different than the plan we originally concocted, but the final product is the same.

    We are more than willing to "pray it forward"! You guys can do it, too!

  7. @Sheila, you are so right. Just like good discipline is a matter of being 5 seconds more stubborn than your kids, staying afloat is a matter of spending 5% less than you earn. We're still learning how to manage both of those nifty tricks!