Should We Sell Our Dream Home?

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“Should We Sell Our Dream Home?” Liahona, Aug. 2011, 41

Should We Sell Our Dream Home?

Sullivan Richardson, Nevada, USA

In 1998 the Spirit was nudging me to sell our dream home, which we had completed and moved into just four years earlier. As our older children were beginning to graduate from high school and leave home, it became apparent that our house was larger and more costly than we needed. I had just gone through a job change that showed me how vulnerable my income was to possible disruption.

When I attended the priesthood session of general conference that October, I was struck by the words of President Gordon B. Hinckley (1910–2008). Speaking of our finances, he told priesthood holders, “The time has come to get our houses in order.” Then he warned, “There is a portent of stormy weather ahead to which we had better give heed.”

Later in the talk he said: “It may be necessary to borrow to get a home, of course. But let us buy a home that we can afford and thus ease the payments which will constantly hang over our heads without mercy or respite for as long as 30 years.”1

I told my wife about President Hinckley’s counsel, adding that I felt we should sell our house. To my surprise, she agreed.

Over the ensuing months, we prepared to sell our house and buy another one. It was a long, drawn-out process that involved much prayer and a family fast. Finally, a year later we moved into our new home, which had a much lower monthly payment.

President Hinckley’s words did indeed prove prophetic. The following year the U.S. stock market peaked as the dot-com bubble burst. Several years of low interest rates then followed, which we used to our advantage to pay down our mortgage debt.

Now a new economic crisis is upon many countries throughout the world. President Hinckley’s words are just as true today as they were in 1998.

How happy we are that we followed the counsel of the prophet and the promptings of the Spirit. We no longer have any mortgage debt, and we are happy to see our children living within their means.

We look forward each general conference to the counsel of our Church leaders. We know that we will be blessed if we heed their direction.