Homeownership can be a daunting proposition for many people – especially when it comes to finances.
However, as Andy and Nicole Hill proved, that doesn’t mean it’s outright impossible. The journey to buying a home – and paying off the mortgage – just takes discipline, planning, and, in their case, following a monthly budget.
At the end of 2013, the Hills bought a $US350,000, four-bedroom house. To make the purchase, they put down $US155,000 and took out a $US195,000 mortgage.
Andy Hill told Business Insider that for them, the journey to becoming debt-free required sticking to a strict budget that they created every month. This approach allowed them to make additional payments to the principal each month that varied in amount.
Any extra money the couple came into – whether it was a bonus at work, tax returns, or money made by selling items around the house – went straight toward the mortgage. In fact, twice a year,Andy put two full paychecks toward the principal.
The couple created a “zero-based budget,” meaning every dollar of their monthly income was assigned a purpose. Andy gave Business Insider an exclusive look at his monthly budget sheet from May 2016. On the spreadsheet, the couple divided their income across nine expense categories.
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Subscribe here to read our feature and see the breakdown of the budget sheet: A Michigan couple who paid off their $US200,000 mortgage in 4 years shares the exact budget sheet they used, and it accounts for every dollar of their monthly income
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