Five months ago, we paid off our home mortgage. Coming from our background, this is a big deal. Enlisted in the Air Force, my dad didn't make much money to take care of a family of seven. So, we lived on-base housing or in rental homes.
TP was poor and raised in the rural south. When he was young, the only running water he had was running down to the creek and scooping up a bucket of water. With no indoor plumbing, they used the outhouse for a toilet until he was eleven.
In my teen years, I'd walk past beautiful homes on my way to high school. I'd dream about what it would be like to live in one. I just knew that the people who lived there were rich.
I had no money when I left home for college. But I knew that education was my ticket out of the home life I didn't want to go back to.
My college was paid for by student loans, grants, and scholarship money. There were times I went hungry because I didn't have enough money to buy food.
After college, we got married and then settled in Killeen, TX. We rented a small apartment near our jobs on Ft. Hood.
One day my Sergeant Major said, "You and your husband make too much money just to rent. You guys need to buy a home." He was working in Real Estate, building up his side business for retirement.
After talking it over with TP, we agreed to go out with the realtor to preview homes. It never dawned on me to buy a home because it wasn’t modeled for me.
We bought our first home for $46,000 at a 16% interest rate. Yes, rates were that high!
I remember the excitement and anxiety when I signed my name on that 30-year mortgage. Yet, I felt like a queen living in that 1,600 sq ft. 3 BR 2 BA home.
I have so many beautiful memories decorating the nursery and bringing our first child into the world and across the threshold of our new home. When it was time to move three years later, we sold the house and made a $12,000 profit.
To be continued...