Monday, February 15, 2010

Total Money Makeover

Mike and I decided to read Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey by the end of February. It was one of our financial goals that we set for the year.

Right... so I know reading a book isn't making money... but you see... it kind of is.

A few years ago we took Financial Peace University by Dave Ramsey and it changed out lives. Since then we have paid off all debt and never borrowed again. We bought a van and wrote out a check for $9000 and drove it off the lot paid in full. (That felt awesome!) We have had soooo many medical bills to pay (crappy insurance = HUGE deductible) but every time a bill came we just wrote a check and were done with it.

We have never had to wonder how we were going to pay for something since first hearing about Dave Ramsey. We've been completely debt free (we rent so don't think we've gone and paid off a house yet) for over a year now. We've just had a hard time getting ahead because of medical bills and other things that have come up along the way.

But this is the year that we are going to get ahead. We decided it would be smart to read Total Money Makeover just to get things fresh in our heads and make sure we were on the right "baby step."


Reading this book was the best idea I've had in a long time. It has kicked my butt back in to the money game. We are properly budgeting and we are serious about it. I love how straight forward Ramsey is. He tells it how it is. If you have a money problem it's no one else's fault but your own and until you change your ways you will ALWAYS have a money problem.

Ramsey says, "Having been a millionaire and gone broke, I dug my way out by making a decision about looking good versus being good. Looking good is when your broke friends are impressed by what you drive, and being good is having more money than they have." I was reminded that so many people that appear to be doing well and have everything are in fact broke, living paycheck to paycheck and don't have financial peace. I may not have the coolest car and I may not own a house yet but I am far from broke and I have financial peace. I decided a long time ago that I didn't care about the Jones's (Jones'? Joneses??) and what they have now because someday they will be wondering how I have everything I have and still have no debt. :)

In the words of Dave Ramsey... "IF YOU WILL LIVE LIKE NO ONE ELSE, LATER YOU CAN LIVE LIKE NO ONE ELSE. "

That's our plan. We are currently almost done with baby step three.

The steps...
1. Have $1000 in savings for an emergency fund.
2. Pay off all debt except the house using a debt snowball.
3. Build the emergency fund up so that it can cover 3-6 months of expenses should the worst happen.

We almost have 3-6 months expenses in savings. Then we will save up for a down payment on a house. It's a good plan. It works. And Dave Ramsey will motivate your socks off and make you actually WANT to budget and sell things and save money and do things that make other people think you are crazy.

I highly recommend this book to EVERYONE! Actually if you have heard about this book and just simply won't read it you are an absolute fool and should never ever again cry about money problems because you have been introduced to a tool that can change your financial life. Borrow it! Buy it! Do whatever you have to to get this book in your hands (except for illegal things of course) and then sit down and READ IT!

Don't live in debt and financial bondage for the rest of your life. There is freedom and you can find it!

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