I Just Wrote a Check for $8,700

Yep, you read that right. I just wrote a check for $8,700….and it hurt….a little.  Luckily, it wasn’t for a used Ford Focus or a set of breast implants.  The check I wrote was toward our mortgage, and I think it is the biggest payment we have ever made.  We usually can’t pay anywhere near $8,700. However, this month was special.  We finally took a big chunk of our online income out of the bank and did something with it.  It felt weird and exciting all at the same time!

 

We also set up an awesome mortgage spreadsheet to track our progress to the penny (and to make sure that the mortgage company isn’t messing up any of our prepayments).

 

Mortgage

 

BAM! How do you like them apples?

 

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About Holly

Holly Johnson is a wife, mother of two, and frugal lifestyle enthusiast. She is the co-founder of Club Thrifty and a staff writer at Get Rich Slowly, Frugal Travel Guy, and U.S. News and World Report's "My Money Blog." Holly has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Kiplinger Personal Finance, Fox Business, and Daily Finance.

Comments

  1. Keep writing checks like that and you will certainly have murdered your mortgage in no time.
    My Financial Independence Journey recently posted..A Brief Primer on Options: Part 1 (What are options?)My Profile

  2. Haha, “Mortgage Murder Spreadsheet”! Always good to bring a little humor into our personal finances. I love it. Very cool to actually use your online income for something. Sounds like a big step. Good work!

  3. That’s great progress — and love the “Mortgage Murder Spreadsheet”. Very clever!
    JW_Umbrella Treasury recently posted..Why Interest Rates MatterMy Profile

  4. I don’t know which is better: the post and contents or the amazing spreadsheet. The pic of the spreadsheet made me laugh out loud. I think I need to change my headings for our early house payoff!

    • Feel free to borrow it! I will even send you my spreadsheet so that you can modify it to your needs…if you want! Just send me an email!

  5. Congrats on taking a big chunk out of your mortgage! For my online income I have been taking it out in small transfers. It’s really helped 1) keep me motivated to keep at it and keep working hard and 2) has helped with some unexpected expenses we’ve been hit with this year. Hope you guys have a great weekend!
    DC @ Young Adult Money recently posted..Friday Giveaway Roundup – 103 GiveawaysMy Profile

    • This is the first time that we have ever spent any of it. But we had to first figure out how we were going to be taxes on our earnings. We decided to change our deductions at work and pay our taxes via payroll instead of paying quarterly on online income. So, anyway, now that we know how much money is actually “ours” we felt comfortable spending some of it!

  6. Thanks for the mention guys! I’d definitely say with an $8,700 payment, that you are indeed killing it! It should be paid off in no time at that rate :)

    Hope you have an awesome weekend :)
    Lance @ Money Life and More recently posted..Having Cash Reserves Pays Off When You Find Sick DealsMy Profile

  7. Congrats on the pre-payment. If it makes you happier than buying those breast implants, then go for it! =)
    Mrs. Pop @ Planting Our Pennies recently posted..PoP Balance Sheet – March 2013My Profile

  8. Now that we’ve saved $10,000 into our emergency fund, I’ve been thinking about pulling it out and doing the same thing, or investing it, or something more productive than sitting in a .82% savings account. I know this eliminates the point of an emergency fund, but our jobs are secure (for now), we have very few things that can “break” and cause us to have to dip into it, etc.

    I can’t stand the thought of that money just sitting there barely working for us! Dilemmas…
    Mike recently posted..Ah, the Difference a Year Makes!My Profile

    • Don’t do it! An emergency fund is for the things you can’t foresee, not the things you can. It’s a big accomplishment saving $10,000, and I definitely understand the frustration with low interest rates, but sit tight. It’s like insurance. It may not be fun but you’ll be so happy you have it when you need it.
      Matt Becker recently posted..The Philosophy Behind Keeping a BudgetMy Profile

    • I have to have an emergency fund because I would go crazy if I didn’t. Plus, we have rental properties which means we have multiple furnaces, air conditioners, etc that could go out. My emergency fund is what keeps me insane. However, it also makes me crazy that it is just sitting there not accumulating much.

      I do know that some other people don’t think an emergency fund is necessary if your income is high enough. I personally don’t subscribe to that philosophy because I really like having cash in the bank. But, do what works for you! Maybe you could use half of it and keep the rest in your fund???

  9. Wow. That is terrific. And you secured a terrific rate on your mortgage. Congratulations on everything
    @pfinMario recently posted..Milestone alert: Just paid off $10,000 in debt three months into the new yearMy Profile

  10. Wow, that’s awesome guys! I love the spreadsheet, it’s right up my alley! Have a great weekend!
    John S @ Frugal Rules recently posted..Frugal Friday: Missing From a Wal-Mart Near You EditionMy Profile

  11. Haha I love the title of your spreadsheet. You guys are doing awesome!
    Michelle recently posted..Couponing Like A ProMy Profile

  12. Holy crap! That’s HUGE! The amount of money and the step forward. Was this for the house or one of the rental properties? And to think that all came from taking something up on the side as a hobby. By the time the girls are going to college you and Greg will have the house paid off, most likely the rentals being paid off AND have their 529′s in order and it won’t cost you a thing for their education. That is what’s awesome. Great job guys!
    Jeremy @ My Financial Road recently posted..Was March Cold To You?My Profile

    • Hey, thanks!

      The big prepayment was on our house. I think we are about 24 payments away from being mortgage free and I’m so excited! We will still owe on our rentals, but our tenants pay them so it is more of a business debt than anything. Thanks for your support!

  13. $8700?! Congratulations that’s huge! Someday…someday.

    Have a great weekend!
    Jacob@CashCowCouple recently posted..Adventures in Crazy Town – Easter at the Mall EditionMy Profile

  14. That is amazing. I was hoping that the further I read I would have seen my name on the check but I guess paying your mortgage is more understandable. I would love to be able to do that towards any of our debt right now.
    Alan@escapingmydebt recently posted..Financial Respite for Single MomsMy Profile

  15. That’s awesome, congratulations! Hopefully, in the near future, I’ll be writing some large checks towards a few credit cards. Stay tuned, more to come!
    Jose recently posted..Investing in Stocks and Technical Analysis – An IntroductionMy Profile

  16. Awesome! It is hard writing those big checks.
    Marie at Family Money Values recently posted..Paying of Debt For Your FamilyMy Profile

  17. That’s fun!

    I use the GRS amortization spreadsheet for ours. Funnily, Wells Fargo sometimes does screw us over by a penny. I’m fairly sure they always round in their favor. So far I haven’t complained and occasionally readjust the spreadsheet.
    nicoleandmaggie recently posted..Ask the grumpies: When is a school good/awesome enough?My Profile

    • Also: still haven’t decided where to put our extra income. :\ Maxing out your retirement first doesn’t make sense when you could put 110K into retirement each year (if you had 110K free, which we don’t) and you’ll need some of that money before you’re old enough to access it! You’re probably right that we can’t make a bad decision, but it still bothers me that we haven’t decided yet.
      nicoleandmaggie recently posted..April Mortgage Update: Still wrestling with next year’s money goalsMy Profile

      • I know what you mean! We’re only 33 and I don’t want to put everything away for retirement since we will (hopefully) retire before we are legally able to tap our retirement funds. And it’s hard to know how much to save for college when you don’t even know if your kids are going to college, let alone where!
        But, we are making good decisions overall. My goal is to do a little bit of everything (saving for college, 401k, Roth IRA, real estate, other investments) and hope that I’ve got it all covered!

  18. That’s too bad you couldn’t put it on credit card for some rewards points. That’s how I look at these big purchases now…an opportunity to get something back! Thanks for the blog mention!
    Budget and the Beach recently posted..Link Love/Week in Review 4/5/13My Profile

  19. That’s awesome guys! I bet it feels great to pay down a chunk of your mortgage. However I plan to pay down my house a bit differently. I plan to save all the extra cash to pay off the house in a separate savings account and once I’ve reached the full balance I plan to pay it off in one big check.

    The reason I chose this route is that if I extra pay towards the mortgage company all the time it will make me more vulnerable if a huge financial issue were to arise, and if I were not able to make my mortgage payments for several months I could lose everything including all the extra cash I paid down on my mortgage.

    The only downsides to this plan is, one you could end up splurging the money on something else, and two you will end up paying more interest towards your loan, but with the extra cash in my pocket it will eliminate that risk.

    Have good weekend.

    • Totally understand. We have a separate emergency fund so we don’t have the same concerns but I see why you would do it that way!

  20. Seems like you had a killer month! Great links, and enjoy your weekend.

  21. I have use online income to invest! Maybe not as much fun as just spending it, but I feel better about it.
    krantcents recently posted..Why You Should Think Twice about Paying Off Debt!My Profile

  22. Wow, that’s an amazing amount – a huge congrats!!! Mortgage murder on :)
    anna recently posted..DIY home treatmentsMy Profile

  23. Financial Black Sheep says:

    Seriously, you made me snort a little when I saw your spreadsheet! Not only is that awesome that you paid extra to your mortgage, but the name is killer too. It reminds me of something I would do.
    Financial Black Sheep recently posted..Live Without Money. Could you Do It?My Profile

  24. congrats guys, that is huge!!
    pauline recently posted..Friday recap, a fire and rich snippetsMy Profile

  25. Wow, that`s great! Good for you! I can understand the contrasting feelings about it, but I think you really made a good decision! Have a nice weekend:-)
    The Norwegian Girl recently posted..Budget Friendly Cooking; Bolognese sauceMy Profile

  26. That’s awesome! You guys are definitely killin’ it!!
    Mackenzie recently posted..Investing In Your HealthMy Profile

  27. BOOM! That is how you kill it. Nice work guys. I appreciate the mention and I hope you have a murder free weekend!
    Grayson @ Debt RoundUp recently posted..Feeling Good Friday: I’m Gaining SteamMy Profile

  28. Very nice! I can’t wait till I am able to really kill our mortgage. It wasn’t too long ago that we were like 3 months behind on our mortgage when we were really broke so we are in a much better place. Congrats on that!
    Debt and the Girl recently posted..Thinking of Retirement….No, Not MineMy Profile

  29. That’s awesome! I have a date marked on my calendar of when my mortgage should be down to $20,000, and I can pay it off in one lump sum. It’ll be awhile, but I can’t wait!
    My Shiny Pennies recently posted..The Old Reader: A ReviewMy Profile

  30. Congrats on murdering a chunk of your mortgage! Bet it felt great! :) I’d say it’s a better investment than breast implants, but I live in LA and honestly some can rightfully claim otherwise. ;) Have a wonderful weekend!
    Shannon @ The Heavy Purse recently posted..Blog Round-Up: Week of April 1, 2013My Profile

  31. Wow that’s awesome! Yay for paying down debt!
    Mo’ Money Mo’ Houses recently posted..Money Lessons I Learned from Drinking & TweetingMy Profile

  32. This is awesome~ I don’t have a mortgage, but I know I’d feel incredible to pay down any debt by that much.
    Michelle’s Finance Journal recently posted..You Paid That Much for Being a Bridesmaid?My Profile

  33. Awesome!! The biggest single pre-payment I’ve made on mine is a little over $9,000, from a bonus. The biggest month pre-payment was in that month, for almost $15,000! I’ll doubt I’ll ever pre-pay $15,000 in one month again, but the $9,000 month is a little more do-able. Right now, I’m paying an extra $2,000/month on average.

    My mortgage payoff spreadsheet isn’t as colorful or funny as yours, but it does have a lot of math and charts in it, which is what I enjoy! :D I think my favorite is the one that shows that more of my regular payment each month is going to principal than to interest!
    Leigh recently posted..March 2013 net worth update (+3.0%)My Profile

  34. Wow, congrats! that is a huge payment and it must have been awesome to see it go on your mortgage. I love your spreadsheet :)
    CT – Cashtastrophe recently posted..Volunteer During College to Help You Land a Job After CollegeMy Profile

  35. That is quite a lot of money. But at least you are using it for a wonderful purpose.
    Felix Lee recently posted..How to Settle with Debt CollectorsMy Profile

  36. Well done! I wish I could take a chunk out of our mortgage, but at the moment I’m too close to the bone to risk not having some liquid assets handy. Have you calculated what you are saving in the long run by paying off that much more this month? That would be interesting, I bet…!
    Family Fandango recently posted..YWCA Stand Against Racism 2013 campaign begins April 26!My Profile

  37. Well done, good for you using blog money to pay down your mortgage. I can only imagine the money I’m missing out on now ;-) In no time at all you will be having the mortgage burning ceremony. I know when you said it hurt , I understood.. we just paid over $32k on the mortgage last week. I’ll be blogging more about it later… but you know what.. it’s just a great feeling!! Keep up the awesome work you two! Mr.CBB
    Canadianbudgetbinder recently posted..Net Worth Update March 2013 + 1.61% Mortgage Pre-Payment UpdateMy Profile

  38. Woohoo!!!! SO excited for you guys! You’ll have that thing paid off in no time!
    Laurie @thefrugalfarmer recently posted..Out on the Town: Good Reads for the Week Ending 4/5/13My Profile

  39. I agree it’s so hard to pay those big amounts, but having the debt gone will be amazing. It must make your really happy that you started Club Thrifty and stuck with it. You’ll be a serial killer before you know it at this rate.
    Kim@Eyesonthedollar recently posted..Back from Spring BreakMy Profile

  40. Man Holly, that hurts to think about, but at least you are paying down the principal which is always a good thing! Congrats to all the hard work on the blog that afforded that online income, KUDOS!!!!
    Jim recently posted..Children and Money: What Kids Learn from their ParentsMy Profile

  41. Holy crap this is awesome…WELL DONE! :)
    The Happy Homeowner recently posted..Where My Goals At: 2013 Q1 RecapMy Profile

  42. That’s awesome! You’re fucking killing it! Haha!
    Mr. Bonner recently posted..The finer things in lifeMy Profile

  43. wow…!!! This is fantastic. It has to feel great being able to write a big fat check, like that, towards your mortgage. Congratulations! Please send me a copy of your spread sheet. I’d love to use it for my mortgage.

  44. Um, can I say how much I absolutely love that murder picture up there? That’s way more awesome than colouring in little squares and stuff. I want. We’re super, super close to killing our mortgage. This summer. Die f***er, die!
    Anne @ Unique Gifter recently posted..Cooking and SuchMy Profile

  45. Whoa, I’m late on this train, but congrats!! That’s a hefty chunk of change. You are doing great! How nice will it be to not have mortgage payments one day?
    Do or Debt recently posted..Weakness WednesdayMy Profile

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Thrifty – I Just Wrote a Check for $8,700 – Greg and Holly are on a mission. Mission “Obliterate Our Mortgage”, and they [...]

  2. [...] this month, Holly made a post about how she wrote a check for $8,700 so that they could pay down their mortgage a little more quickly. Most people were extremely happy [...]

  3. […] Thrifty also made a big payment to their mortgage – $8700 worth! Great job […]

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