Advice regarding mortgage, improvements, etc.
Guess like so many folks who purchased a home 2yrs. ago, I feel a little sick to my stomach when I think of what I paid for it. The good thing is, I live in an area that is doing so much better than so much of the country as far as market values, but certainly, prices have gone down here as well. The military presence is our economic salvation here. Question...let's say I overpayed $25,000. for my house 2 yrs. ago. I put 50% down & have a 15 yr. mortgage at 5.625% interest. No one has a crystal ball to gauge what will happen in another 7-18 yrs. when we might sell, but in the mean time, what is my best course of action to protect my value? Should I attempt to pay off the mort. in 10 yrs, instead of 15? Should I instead spend that money on home improvements (today carpenter is doing a home maintenance project--repairing rotting wood around windows). Know that this house will need new windows in about 5 yrs., & new heating/cooling system at any time (system original to house--20yrs. old). Those are the two biggies that I know of. Would like to upgrade the kitchen applicances, counters, etc. Have spent a fair amount on having wallpaper removed, painting, light fixtures, small handyman things. Would you stop doing home improvements until it's closer to resale time? Any observations, suggestions, thoughts, would be appreciated. Thanks!