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My Two Cents on Dave Ramsey

May 27, 2014

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Today’s post is brought to you by Bre from The Weight of Debt. She is a radio follower of Dave Ramsey and has recently read his book cover to cover and is willing to share her opinion of his program. We are having a blog swap today, so be sure to check out my post about Decluttering over at her blog!

Even if you are new to the personal finance blogosphere, you have probably heard the name Dave Ramsey. He is a very well-known for helping people get out of debt. When asked to write about my opinions on Dave, having recently finished reading his book “Financial Peace” and as an avid listener to his radio talk show, I had to sit down and really contemplate what I would talk about. Dave and his financial advice always seem to strike a certain chord in people’s conversations.

It Is All In Your Perspective

“Please take this video with a grain of salt”, is the disclaimer I always put before I show a YouTube clip by Dave Ramsey in the Lecture I do on student loans. I received quite a bit of heat from a co-worker about the video I chose to end my lecture with previously, which is the reason for the disclaimer. In the heated conversation I heard words like “sexist” and “bigot” for portions of a video that I perceived as passionate and energized. It was a big eye opener to how two different people can hear the same exact words but perceive them entirely different. Thus I now choose to preface this video with a small explanation of other people’s opinions of Dave and I request they don’t take offense to the more opinionated things that he says.

This is also the exact reason why I choose to not discuss religion or politics at work or in most social situations. It is also the reason I choose to not do so in my blog also. When you discuss things of such a personal or opinionated matter it is instant grounds for arguments and unsolicited hate.

I Look For The Math

For all of my personal financial choices, I always will do the math before making any huge decisions. With our current debt repayment plan we have adapted many things, from many different people and from a ton of research. Some things we took from Dave’s program and some things from other PF bloggers opinions and methods. I don’t believe there is one cookie cutter program that fits all personal finance plans.

For example Dave’s first step is to save up a $1,000 emergency fund. Which is what we have done but we are both employed and have no children. In my opinion, a family of 5 should have a way differently styled emergency fund than a couple with no children. That goes for all other steps in Dave Ramsey’s plan too. Everyone’s finances are different so the numbers will always be different. However, there are true facts. To get out of debt you have to repay it. If you want to be debt free sooner you have to pay more. You can always spend more than you make. You have to budget. These things and more stand true, no matter who says them.

It Is What It Is

Most people take what Dave Ramsey says in a few different fashions. Some will take it entirely on merit and agree to join the cookie cutter group and may or may not be successful. Some take his program with a grain of salt and appreciate the good advice for what it is. Some call him a whacko and stress to not listen to a word he says. I think I stand somewhere in between the cookie cutters and the grain of salt people. I will always stress to anyone to seek professional advice on huge financial decisions and to always put what is best for yourself, your family, and your loved ones first and foremost before agreeing to any sort of program or debt repayment plan. Overall, I think Dave’s books and show are worth looking into as long as you can separate personal beliefs from financial advice or keep them together without being offended!

What are your opinions on Dave Ramsey’s Financial Program?

Bre blogs at The Weight Of Debt, about her journey to make and save extra money to become Debt Free by 2017!

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11 responses to “My Two Cents on Dave Ramsey

  1. I have honestly never looked into his work, but that is mostly because I’ve never found myself in need of financial guidance. I completely agree that there is no one concrete solution for everyone. We’re all in different places along our journey, and I think it’s a good thing to incorporate different methods of either saving or paying off debt. Only we know what is best for us.

    1. These are great points EM! I am reading his book now, but am not finished. I agree with some of what he says, but I’m going about it in my own way too.

  2. I only know a bit about him and never had the opportunity to listen to him. His approach has helped a lot of people, so that’s a good thing. It’s hard to be one size fits all. I follow Gail Vaz-Oxlade and she’s pretty opinionated, so not sure if she rubs people the wrong way or not.

  3. IMO, he’s extremely addictive! I want to pick and choose at his advice but almost find it hard to on many occassions. He’s just such a smooth southern talker! Haha.

    But anyway, I love the article but I wonder why you didn’t touch on his (crazy?) views on investing..

    Twitter brought me here, btw! 🙂

    1. He really is fun to listen to! Some of his segments crack me up!

      I didn’t touch on it because I’m not at that point in my life yet. Investing is something I’m still learning about and haven’t put into practice. I try to not give opinions or advice on subjects I don’t know much about! 🙂

  4. A lot of people have strong opinions about Dave. I view Dave, Suze, Gail etc as a force of good even if I don’t agree with them. My mentality toward these PF experts is the same as how I feel about the Twilight series and the Teen books lately. They aren’t the best literature, but if they get kids reading, then I’m all for it. Dave has gotten so many people out of debt. Even if they did it in an order I don’t think is best, they still got out of debt and that’s awesome.

    1. Kate, that’s a great way to look at it. I never thought about it that way before. Thanks for sharing your opinion with us 🙂

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