Anthony, nice setup! To your question about the rental mortgages, you haven’t said what interest rate you are paying. As a start, if you are paying more than the risk free rate (Treasury bills) which you probably are, then a true apples to apples comparison would be yes, pay off the mortgage. But, if you are comfortable taking more risk, you have other options to invest in which you *hope* will yield you more over the coming years. You also didn’t say whether the rentals generate net income and if so, how much? What is the implied rate of return on the equity you have invested in them? If you pay the mortgages off, you’ll have even more equity tied up, will the extra net income make that worthwhile? Maybe you should use the money to buy more rentals instead, if purchase opportunities still exist in your town. … this is less of an answer than a framework to analyze the decision, hope it is helpful.
Most of us think of investment income as just the cash flow we get from bank interest, bonds, share dividends and property rents, some of which comes via a super pension. But a more complete view is to also consider how growing the value of your investments can add to your spending potential. This total return approach generates income from both income and growth to optimise spending from your portfolio across all market cycles, aligning cheap and expensive investments to your goals.