This is our home. It is paid for. We don’t carry a mortgage on it since we were brought up in the days that told us to carry no debt into retirement. We heeded that advice despite constant advertisements over the years urging us to “refinance” to get “ready cash” to spend on “whatever you want.” A number of people we know who are our age(65-70) did just that. They “took money out of their house” to buy boats, vacation homes, trips and plastic surgery.
But of course, there is no “money in your house.” There is only the wonderful opportunity to once again carry a mortgage. And apparently not enough people, most especially us, have not jumped at the chance. Every week we receive offers to refinance. When I go into our bank to deposit money, the lovely young woman offers me a chance to refinance. I am encouraged that with a refinance my interest rate could go down. I carefully explain that since I have no mortgage, my current interest rate is 0%. Hard to beat that.
I was able to research the dismal statistics of borrowing at our age. 47% of people aged 65 owe more mortgage debt than they did in 2003. They bought into the fantasy that their home equaled “ready cash.” We just wanted to have a house to retire into. I guess I should just wear a button to the bank that says “Don’t ask me if I want to refinance.”