Eliminate Your Mortgage……We are Mortgage Payment Free!!!

This statement certainly is eye catching, who doesn’t want to eliminate their mortgage payment.  If you have been following my blog you know that I believe real estate is the investment of choice for creating wealth and is my dog sled full of Siberian Husky’s as I ride towards my own Financial Independence Gold Rush.  In the post today I’m going to reveal some of the numbers** on how I eliminated my mortgage payment.

If you read about personal finance you will inevitably hear “The Big Three” in terms of expenses.  Dividend Mantra does a fine job explaining one of the keys to financial independence in his article.  Let me provide you with a quote that sums up the Big Three:

“If you really want to retire at a young age or achieve financial independence while you’re young enough to enjoy it you need to focus your attention on “The Big Three”: Housing, Transportation and Food. Once you have these three under control the rest of your expenses will take care of themselves.”


No matter what early retirement blog you read this will ring true.  While Dividend Mantra and I have different focuses on our investments we know that the above statement rings true in our journey and if we don’t focus on controlling the Big 3 as our priority, the amount of dividends and real estate income needed to retire early just keeps going higher and higher.  Housing is of course considered the elephant in the room in terms of expenses, even those who do a great job of keeping a low housing expense, still have 25% of their income distributed to their mortgage.  It’s kind of crazy to think that you start off your financial journey with 75% of your income available.  I’m not counting credit cards, student loans, medical debt(The Other Big 3) that drag your income down even further.  So what have I done to become Mortgage Payment Free?!?!  We purchased and live in a Multi-Unit property.  For those not familiar with the term, let me give you a definition.

A building or structure that is designed to house several different families in separate housing units. The most common type of multifamily housing is an apartment building.


The idea for us was to buy a multi-unit property while obtaining a conventional residential mortgage(Properties with 4 units or less) just like you probably have with your single family home.  We bought a 3-flat building about 2 years ago, the property was a foreclosure during a down but quickly rising time.  Mrs. Even Steven and I had been on the look out for every property you can imagine and every area of Chicago as well.  Buy me a beer and I can tell you some stories and as they say it’s probably worth the price of admission.


A view from our Multi-Unit building, if the picture is bad it’s because we have plastic to cover our windows. #practicefrugal


We bought this property and had some work done to all of the units over the first year we owned the property.  We went through some saw dust on the floor and learning a few things about what we were really made of as we owned our first house together.  If you want to find out more  I have discussed some of the details behind our DIY Landlord and Property management experiences, make sure to give them a read.

The reason we are mortgage free is this, the rents we receive are equal to or greater than the mortgage. Take a look at the simple example below**.  This is why we do not have a mortgage payment, we are able to eliminate one of the Big 3 and get to financial independence sooner.  We can take that mortgage payment and double down on our mortgage payment, pay off our Florida investment property,build up our “Get out of Dodge” savings.  By eliminating your mortgage payment you can race on the Autobahn towards financial independence instead of being caught in the school zone going 15 mph.  Since I live in Chicago a better analogy is taking the train to work while others are stuck in traffic, we decided quite early we didn’t want to wait for the traffic jam to get moving.

                 1st Unit                2nd Unit              Mortgage                What We Pay
                   800.00                1,200.00                2,000.00                          0


If you want some more examples check out this article by FI Fighter that talks about what he should have done to speed up the early retirement process.  If you are looking to be mortgage payment free or at least get the Big 3 to be more like the Big 2.5, you can do things like get a roommate, rent out your basement, or even take the plunge and sell your place to buy that duplex, triplex, or four-plex.  I’m not a financial advisor, but someone paying your mortgage sounds like a good idea to me.  Do your research, who knows maybe the next time we talk you will be Mortgage Payment Free.

**The numbers are similar, if I used all of the real numbers, my wife would tell me to stop writing and I would sleep on the couch for a couple weeks, we don’t want that do we?

What are you doing to become Mortgage Payment Free?

24 Responses to “Eliminate Your Mortgage……We are Mortgage Payment Free!!!

  • Congratulations! That is certainly a great feeling to have it paid off.

    I’ve just started reading your blog and have been dipping into the back issues. Glad to see persistence pays off.

    • EvenStevenMoney
      3 years ago

      Well not exactly paid off, but mortgage payment free. Thanks for checking me out, hope you like it or love it!

  • I do have to admit I was really tempted to do this before we bought our house. And I am still considering it once we can pay down some of this other debt. Maybe we can/will buy another property in a few years. I just want to pay these student loans first or maybe I need to strategize a bit differently. Certainly food for thought, but I love the fact you got rid of your mortgage!
    Jason recently posted…Investing: Why Long Term Trends MatterMy Profile

    • EvenStevenMoney
      3 years ago

      I mean the perfect scenario is to have all your debt paid off. At the same time if you are buying a house and interested in real estate investing in any way the way to get ahead I shout this on top of a mountain, buy a multi-unit.

  • We live in the most expensive housing market in the country and I do something familiar to this. Multi family homes are highly desired in hawaii and often go for over asking. This has made my housing cost very manageable, especially here where median home prices are 719k.
    Charles@gettingarichlife.com recently posted…Pay Your Past To Save Your FutureMy Profile

    • EvenStevenMoney
      3 years ago

      It’s a great way to either lower your mortgage payment and/or cash flow to increase revenue, but either way over time it’s the way to go. 719K rather large number, Wow.

  • I hadn’t realized you were in Chicago. We’ve looked to buy a triplex there several times but have had a tough time finding the right mix of neighborhood and rent. Would love to bend your ear sometime, if you’re down.

    And congrats on being mortgage free! You’re doing it a lot smarter than we did.

    • EvenStevenMoney
      3 years ago

      Yeah I love talking about real estate and living here for the last 4 years I have become more and more familiar, shoot me an email sometime, happy to talk it through.

  • I’ve done a fairly good job of keeping my housing expenses low, but I would love to find a duplex or fourplex that I could rent the other sides out and have a 100% of my housing expenses covered. This is something I certainly plan on researching more in the near future.
    The Stoic recently posted…Projected Spending For 2015My Profile

    • EvenStevenMoney
      3 years ago

      If you are willing to make a sacrifice or two, financially it’s the way to go in my humble opinion.

  • That’s really awesome! I’ve considered real estate a couple times and hope to get into it within the next five years. It’s something I’ve always been extremely interested in and I love this concept of being mortgage payment free.
    Fig @ Figuring Money Out recently posted…Things That Do Not Affect Your Credit ScoreMy Profile

    • EvenStevenMoney
      3 years ago

      Thanks Fig! It takes some sacrifice, but I really feel like you are building in some room for error when you buy and live in a multi-unit, best of luck.

  • Keeping with the cardinal rule of real estate… Location. Location. Location. Living in Texas and now Oklahoma, multi-unit properties arent nearly as popular. We also crave space and land to spread out. We have considered investment properties, but haven’t found that the cash works in our favor the same as your situation.

    All that being said, congratulations on a killer set up!!
    Mrs. Maroon recently posted…A Glimpse Into RetirementMy Profile

    • EvenStevenMoney
      3 years ago

      My favorite quote is if it were easy everyone would do it. Of course each investment is not for everyone, but certainly should be considered carefully……..and thank you for the nice words, Killing it since 2012 😉

  • Congratulations for your freedom! I cant imagine the feeling of having cleared your mortgage. I am working hard to reach there too.
    Amos recently posted…Cases “For” & “Against”: PPI Claims – Hire A Company Or “Go It Alone”My Profile

    • EvenStevenMoney
      3 years ago

      It is the main reason we are on a faster pace to financial freedom, best of luck getting there yourself.

  • Nice!

    Sounds nice having other folks pay off your mortgage. When you do pay that off, that will be that much more cash flow for you.

    Maybe I’ll get there someday…
    James@StartingNegative recently posted…Today’s aside: Millennials – the cheapest generation?My Profile

    • EvenStevenMoney
      3 years ago

      More and more cash flow, definitely the name of the game for us.

  • This is a great way to keep housing expenses under control. That has to feel so good every month paying your housing expenses with money you get from someone else without having to do too much work at all.
    Jessica recently posted…My 2015 Shopping BanMy Profile

    • EvenStevenMoney
      3 years ago

      I preach having multiple streams of income in case of any situation and this really hits home to my philosophy, having someone pay your mortgage is nice;)

  • Steven,

    Interesting article! I’ve been looking to do something similar, but haven’t found anything in my area that closely resembles what you’ve got going. Furthermore, I don’t think it’s possible to take out a personal loan for more than one housing unit in Belgium.

    I probably have to do some more research, so in the meantime I’m happy renting at extremely low cost (17.5% of my monthly expenses) together with my roommate.

    No More Waffles recently posted…Net Worth Update: €53,274 (+7.59%)My Profile

    • EvenStevenMoney
      3 years ago

      Yeah I think in a way you are already doing a version of what I’m currently doing with having a roommate, so in practice you are a landlord. I bet the jump wouldn’t be that big of a difference for your current situation.

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