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How to pay off a mortgage early
It's simple to pay off a mortgage earlier. But should you? That's a complicated question.
For many people, their mortgage carries an interest rate that's lower than they could average in retirement or investment accounts. And that means the "extra" money you could throw at a mortgage might actually earn you a lot more elsewhere.
With a low mortgage interest rate, homeowners are "so much better off putting that money in a Roth IRA," says Jill Gianola, CFP professional, author of "The Young Couple's Guide to Growing Rich Together."
Other financial pros agree. And if you have extra money and an employer that offers matching retirement contributions, that option might give you a higher return for your money than paying off a low-rate mortgage, says Eric Tyson, author of "Personal Finance for Dummies."
Start by using Bankrate's mortgage calculator.
Then there's the college aid factor. If you're applying for need-based aid for your kids, that home equity could count against you with some colleges, he says, because some institutions view equity as money in the bank.
If, after those caveats, you want to pay off your mortgage early, here are 4 ways to make it happen.
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