I totally agree with you when it comes to investing. The compounded interest can do wonders.
However, the part about mortgage is controversial. You can be enslaved by a mortgage for 30–40 years and lose a ton of money in interest; OR you can use it as a way for you to become financially independent and retire early. I recently posted an article about my plan to acquire real estate and pay off each mortgage in 7 years instead or 20, 30 or 40. I’m also hoping to retire at 45, because, you know, you may not have any energy left to spend that half a million of dollars when you turn 65.
If you make smart financial decisions, educate yourself, get a financial advice from a professional and plan properly, you can pay off your mortgage really fast with as little interest paid to the bank as possible. And then it becomes a passive income source for the rest of your life, not to mention the life of your kids and possibly even grandkids. So, instead of becoming enslaved for 40 years, we should see it as a way to get enslaved just for 7–10 years, and then make that investment bring you money every month for 100+ years.
I’m not promoting myself, but if you’re curious about how to do it, here’s the plan I crafted for myself: