Question:  My mortgage is down to $27,000, which I can pay off after topping off my cash reserve (1 year of expenses). Is there any reason not to do this? My interest rate is 4 3/8 percent. I'm getting about 1 percent in my money market account. I have no other debt, and my 401(k) and IRA are maxed out. Ken, Portland, OR

Answer: You're in good financial shape. You've set aside a year's worth of savings. You have no debt other than your mortgage. You max out your retirement savings. I'd pay off the mortgage, own your home free and clear and live debt free.

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