Thursday, December 29, 2016


Yesterday, Bern mailed in our last mortgage payment!

Somehow she (and I mean her and her alone...I don't do checks, I do taxes) paid off our 30 year mortgage in 27 years....

Only thing is, there goes our biggest tax deduction.

If you want to be angry with the government--and who doesn't these days?--consider this: tax policy for ordained ministers.

Any 'housing costs'--mortgage, utilities, taxes, paint, repairs, lawn furniture, a new mattress, toilet paper, on and on--can be deducted from an ordained minister's income and no tax is paid on them....Plus, like everyone else, ministers can also deduct the interest on mortgage, which was already deducted once in the mortgage payments....Go figure. God must be on our side....So, $1900 or so a month can no longer be deducted in tax year 2017. But that will be fine.

But it's nothing considering my father and mother's only house. He had an eighth grade education while my mother had a Master's degree in education. But when they bought their only house, the year I went off to college, they paid cash! Those two knew how to save.

It was on $28,000 but that was 1965 money.

It only took us 27 more years to pay for a house than my Mom and Dad....

And it feels so good.

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some ponderings by an aging white man who is an Episcopal priest in Connecticut. Now retired but still working and still wondering what it all means...all of it.