We paid off our house early. In fact, eleven years early on a fifteen year loan! For a time we put everything extra we had each month towards the house. During some of this time we put none into retirement accounts. Was this a smart move?
I recently read this well-written article, Should You Invest in Your 401k or Pay Down Your Mortgage? Some interesting numerical examples are given to compare these two strategies.
Depending on the economy and your mortgage details, you may be money ahead to put extra funds into retirement and not the house. But there is increased risk in doing this. Read the article for a great explanation. If you want to minimize your risk, then paying off the house early may be better because you can’t predict the economy or your job situation.