What you Absolutely Need in Homeowners Insurance

  When we set out to buy our home, we knew we needed homeowners insurance (because our lender told us so). But we had no idea what level of coverage we needed or what coverage was vital and what we could do without. I could navigate the hurdles of changing interest rates when we refinanced our mortgage, but when it came to coverage, I was lost. So today I’m stoked to share this post – homeowners insurance coverage explained.   With the ease of a sharp knife cutting through warm butter, I’ve made financial mistakes surrounding our mortgage… Like paying the mortgage twice in December (by accident) and waking up to a “Bank Overdraft” alert after paying our mortgage (among other things).   And because I’m still learning in the homeowners insurance department, I’ve enlisted the help of some of my friends at Consumers Advocate to help us all better […]

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Was it a Terrible Time for a Mortgage Refinance??

Was it a Terrible Time for a Mortgage Refinance?? #economics #mortgage #refinance #personfinance

  Well, slap me twice and call me ‘Mikey’, because I went and out-thought myself again – (just like when I lost 66% of our net worth). I got a little too cute, played a little fast and loose, and lost sight of the bigger picture. Or did I…? In December, 2018, I thought it was the perfect time for a mortgage refinance. Was I right, was I wrong, and is my wife still talking to me?   All this and more – below!     (Photo courtesy of Al Emmert)   First, the mortgage refinance “before” details so we can set up the “after picture” you’re all waiting for   In 2015, we purchased our home on a 7 year ARM (Adjustable Rate Mortgage) at a 4.15% interest rate. (Translation: We were locked into the 4.15% interest rate for 7 years, then our rate would have the ability to […]

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When you Accidentally Pay the Mortgage Twice in December

“…But if you paid the mortgage twice, we’d be out of money in our checking account…?” Was Monica’s inquisitive statement.   “Exactly.” – My response     Let me briefly set the “I double paid the mortgage” table here…   We’re in the heart of December now. Christmas gifts, travel plans, party preparations, and a whole heap of other activities were on the mind (and the budget). Add that to the regular bills and responsibilities… I’m probably preaching to the choir here – we’re all busy, right? ’Tis the season!   I’m crying a bit to write this, but our student loan and mortgage payments only differ by a few cents. We take advantage of the automatic withdrawal functions for both but a recent refinancing of the student loans (blog post to follow next year) was done through a new lender, and hence a new website.   The combination of a hectic season […]

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Wins and Losses Series: Mark from The Retirement Spot – “I was actually helping the company eliminate my job”

Wins and Losses Series: Mark from The Retirement Spot - "I was actually helping the company eliminate my job"

Hi, Team!   Welcome to another edition of MikedUp Blog’s Wins and Losses Series, where we interview a generous participant about 4 of the best and worst moments of their life. The point? To learn from the past so that we can improve in the future!   If you’re interested in participating in the Wins and Losses Series, please send me a note here (you don’t have to be a blogger to participate!).   Check out the complete Wins and Losses Series Here   (Photo courtesy of Kevin Newton)   This week we have: Mark from The Retirement Spot!   Spoiler alert – Mark crushed this post and it’s full of knowledge gems. Take out your notebook… I know I did. Take it away, Mark!       I read some of MikedUp Blog’s series on Wins and Losses, and I said: “Oh yes I want to participate in this”.  What […]

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Are you missing the ‘Golden Era’ for an opportunity to refinance?

Short answer: Current market and personal conditions are leading Monica and me to consider refinancing right now.   Long answer: This decision depends on many variables that are unique to you.   First off, I’ll give you the background of our situation and the reasons for our decision to say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to refinancing, then I’ll cover the important factors to evaluate when considering a mortgage refinance of your own.   Where we’re at   We bought our house in March of 2015 with an ARM (Adjustable Rate Mortgage). Initially, this option sounded great for where we were financially. The rate was incredibly low, 3.875%, and would remain fixed for 7 years. This would’ve kept us at 3.875% until March 2022, and then we’d have a significantly smaller balance and only 23 years left on the term of the loan.   The downside   That whole “Adjustable Rate” thing had me concerned. […]

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Eliminate ‘bad debt’ (financial pillar #4)

Check out the complete list of Financial Pillars Here   Excessive use, or misuse, of debt is 1 of the top 5 reasons people go bankrupt. Bad debt can also be the harsh instrument by which your paycheck’s take-home, for example, goes from $1,200 to $500 (car payment, credit card balance, a monthly payment on furniture, …). The #1 way to fix your problems with bad debt is to NEVER, under any circumstances, let it into your life.   For some of us, unfortunately, bad debt is already in and roaming around our homes, apartments, and vehicles. What we’ll do here then, is this:   -Review how to distinguish bad debt from good (yes, there is such a thing), -Evaluate ways to eliminate any bad debt already accumulated, and -Make certain we have a plan in place to keep bad debt out of our lives for good.   What separates bad […]

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