|Financial Peace Revisited
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Dave Ramsey knows what it's like to have it all. By age twenty-six, he had established a four-million-dollar real estate portfolio, only to lose it by age thirty. He has since rebuilt his financial life and, through his workshops and his New York Times business bestsellers Financial Peace and More than Enough, he has helped hundreds of thousands of people to understand the forces behind their financial distress and how to set things right-financially, emotionally, and spiritually.
In this new edition of Financial Peace, Ramsey has updated his tactics and philosophy to show even more readers:
* how to get out of debt and stay out
* the KISS rule of investing-"Keep It Simple, Stupid"
* how to use the principle of contentment to guide financial decision making
* how the flow of money can revolutionize relationships
With practical and easy to follow methods and personal anecdotes, Financial Peace is the road map to personal control, financial security, a new, vital family dynamic, and lifetime peace.
- It's what that's missing that makes this a poor read....
My family have been dealing with some real tough times these last few years and most of them are the result of lack of steady of employment and the sudden increase of inflation. There are five of us, so I long ago decided to swallow my pride and make some drastic changes in our lifestyles to get things under control. My MBA notwithstanding, I saw a major adjustment to my income and basically changed my whole pride-equation. (Accepting hand-outs, shopping at Goodwill, etc.)
So, I suppose I should be thankful to have received this book as a gift. However, I was seemed to get more and more upset after each chapter. There are many things wrong with the premise and delivery of the message in the book but wanted to point three important problems the text. Of course, there are many more.
Not all of us live in Atlanta! I surmised that Dave Ramsey is a radio personality and my relative (the gift-giver) lives there. But, the recommendations and anecdotes are really not designed for someone not living in that environment. In Atlanta, materialism is encouraged...heavily. So, the whole book assumes that the reader has the same problem with keeping up appearances. But, this is a local phenomenon. What about other people that abandoned primping and focus on saving but stlll can't make ends meet? Even here in Silicon Valley, most are quite unapologetic about humility. We have many multimillionaires here but even the most wealthy drive old cars and inexpensive clothes. There is no drive to keep up with them.
A single paragraph on annuities is almost criminal. Most that will read this book don't have a formal financial education. So, they won't see what's wrong here. But, Mr. Ramsey tries to explain the most well-known financial instruments and mentions then discourages the use of annuities. But, he doesn't explain why an annuity is a great tool to make sure you have a steady income after you get a inheritance or lottery winning (for instance). He compounds the crime further to explain the details of mutual funds for 3 -4 pages. Not once does he mention ETFs (Exchange Traded Funds)! Clearly, he is pitching to have readers buy into HIS fund. It's a poor sales job and, I'm not buying it.
Finally, no cake but plenty of frosting. The book is broken into sections where his wife comments on their own experience(s) . But never once does he detail the exact problems and solutions. The book is chock full of anecdotes but it's all just crap. These are the extreme cases. I'll take Suze Orman ANY DAY over this guy because within a few minutes she explains exactly what's happened, what's going on and what will happen if you don't get it in gear.
Seriously. Avoid this title....more info
- Well intended, but for the most part misguided
Ramsey offers some good thoughts, but the examples offered are at best questionable. First, I agree that debt is a burden when used incorrectly, but Ramsey seems to tag debt itself as an immoral product of lenders. Debt does not have a moral character; debt is a tool, much like a pick or shovel, when used correctly it has benefits, when incorrectly it can create problems. Ramsey offers this advice when buying a car without cash to purchase. Buy a '$5700' car to arrange for payments of $100, rather than a new $23,000 car with payments of $300. Invest the difference, $200, for seven years to save for the next car. Ramsey uses an investment return rate of 10%. I can't think of any reasonable investments that will yield an average of 10% a year for seven years, especially with an initial investment of $200. Nearly all cars in a recent search of AutoTrader.com in such a price range had well in excess of 100k miles and many were nearly 10 years old. Maintaining a car with age or mileage such as these would be an expense that would likely exceed the savings of $200 per month, unless you are good at car repair. Nor does Ramsey comment on the fact that lenders charge much higher rates on older used cars, rates of 18% (or more) are likely. A much better alternative would be a newer used car, especially one without the bells and whistles, that would have factory warranty remaining. Accelerate the payments, if the payment is $350, pay $450 in order to retire the debt with as little cost as possible, when the loan is repaid, direct that payment to savings. Take care of the car and keep it until repairs exceed the value of the vehicle.
Ramsey recommends investing in mutual funds as a primary investment vehicle. He then gives examples of the poor return when investing in the NYSE, stating that a dart board approach for picking stocks is nearly as effective as professional investors (he is right about this, because of the short time frame allocated the investment). I don't know who he thinks invests the money placed in mutual funds or what they invest in, but he again assigns the NYSE almost a moral character. Mutual funds usually have expensive 'loads' and have ongoing fees assessed against your investment. If you don't have the time to investigate your investments with some detail, mutual funds are okay, but a better approach is investing your money in the market based on YOUR research. There are many resources to help you do this that doesn't require a great deal of technical knowledge. Investing in anything requires your due diligence and on going follow up. Stock in solid firms that pay a dividend offer the opportunity for a good reward for long term investors.
Buy 'The Richest Man in Babylon' and a good investment book, you will be better served....more info
- very accessible, to the point reading
Financial Peace is above all common sense--something most of us could use a lot more of, or at least I can, when it comes to money. I had confidence that Ramsey was hitting the topics I should think about, regardless of where I am at in my journey with finances. The Christian aspect of his teachings was a challenge now and then, but basically I decided: if that faith or any faith helps people live more peaceful, productive and happy lives, this is a good thing. The very last chapter gets a little proselytizing but I got the feeling the husband and wife Ramsey team were just doing what they felt they should. All in all, a good read, simple yet contemplative....more info
- A MUST read for evey high school senior
Every parent should make this a must read book for their child before he or she goes off to college or graduates high school. It will save them from many problems that face so many in this economy....more info
- Life Changing Advice
Sometimes the obvious is right in front of you, but it takes someone else to point it out. Dave Ramsey does just that in this great book. His advice is sound and doable. By following his baby steps and starting my own debt snowball, I have changed the way my family and I look at our finaces and provided for a much better future....more info
- Get out of debt and stay out of debt
Want to get out of debt? Looking for simple money answers to get your personal finances back on track? This is the book to do it. For years, Dave Ramsey has taught people how to get out of debt, save, and spend in a reasonable fashion. While "The Total Money Makeover" tells you how to get out of debt and stay that way, "Financial Peace" tells you why you should do it.
I read this while attending my Financial Peace University class as a component of the course, and while I've worked Dave Ramsey's baby steps for several years now, it's always refreshing to study the material again....more info
- Required Reading!
I checked this book out from my local library. It has changed my life and finances for the better. I am in far better financial shape now than when I was addicted to debt. I bought Dave's other book for my brother and I am now buying this one for my neice's wedding. I just wish that someone gave me this book 22 years ago when I got married!
I approach is simple. Get out and stay out of debt using his baby steps. I recommend listening to his radio show to help reinforce the principles of the book and provide encouragement.
- Ames, your review is ridiculous...
Ames, your review of Financial Peace is so full of jealousy and resentment it is truly sad.
"When Dave Ramsey can live off of $24,000.00 a year, and have a family, then perhaps I can listen to him." He's actually had to live off less than that in the past and even went bankrupt before he got his act together. So he's walked in your shoes, didn't like how they fit, and decided to DO something about it.
"However, I believe in putting my family first. That does not include getting two or three jobs to pay off debt, and make my family suffer; no way!" Great job, Ames! Way to use your family as an excuse to be lazy and mediocre! By getting out of debt as soon as possible, you ARE putting your family first! Have you ever heard of the notion of "short-term suffering for long-term gain"? Obviously not. Dave isn't saying go get three jobs for the rest of your life and neglect your family. He's saying if you have to get three jobs for six months or a year or two to get out of debt, so be it. So what if you miss out on some time with your kids? Your wife should be their primary caregiver anyway! As the man and head of your household, your primary role is PROVIDER, not loving caregiver. By getting your family out of debt, budgeting, investing, and giving, you're giving your kids an example to follow for the rest of their lives - something far more important than "playtime".
"Dave claims to be a religious man, and if that were the case, he would realize that the Bible says that family comes before the love of money (as well as a few other things)" No, he claims to be a Christian, and all of his ideas and attitudes about money are Biblically sound. Nothing about Dave's plan advocates the love of money. It advocates the responsible stewardship of what God has given us, caring enough about our families to not be broke, and generous giving.
"And finally, the man makes hundreds of thousands a year. I just can't follow the words of someone who does that and expects normal people to live." No, he makes millions a year and he deserves every cent. So you must only follow the advice of "normal" people, right? If two people at the same level just keep taking one another's advice, they'll both stay exactly where they are. An intelligent person finds those who have done better than himself and follows their example. But you just go ahead and keep following the advice of "normal" people - I'm sure you'll keep raking in that $24K a year - hope you're satisfied with that. Nothing about Dave's plan involves being normal or average. Normal people use credit cards. Normal people don't have a clue what discipline and restraint are. Normal people fight about money and get divorced. Sounds great to me, let's all be normal! No thanks, I'd rather live like no one else so that later I can live like no one else!
What it comes down to Ames, is that you don't have the discipline, desire, or sense of responsibility necessary to do anything different from what the average American does. So stay mired in the muck of mediocrity with all the other normal people - I'll be sure to wave to you on my way up to something better for me and my family.
Financial Peace gets 5 stars, Ames' review gets the goose egg....more info
- Overall Financial Peace View
This book is a good first step towards Financial Peace. This book explains an overview of Dave's history, and how to find Financial Peace. Ramsey's next book "Total Money Makeover" explains in more detail HOW to find Financial Peace.
This book is written as a high-level primer on how you'll proceed towards a debt-free life. It's not needed if you visit www.daveramsey.com or listen to Dave's radio show, but serves it's purpose....more info
- Helpful, if less than spectacular...
I like Dave Ramsey. He has a lot of helpful financial information and presents that information in ways that regular people can digest, understand, and apply (and even enjoy!!). So, if you've never learned from Dave Ramsey, and this book is your chance to do so, I'd encourage you to go for it.
I read this book while my wife and I were going through the entire Financial Peace University program, so I gave this book three stars because I think, quite frankly, that Dave Ramsey is a much better speaker than writer. As much as I enjoy his DVD teaching, the book seemed rather amateurish and simplistic. Though it does serve the purpose of reiterating what he teaches in the DVDs, it does little to add to that information. I found Sharon's contributions at the end of each chapter to add little value, and I found the "Peace Puppies" at the end of each chapter to be cheesy and unnecessarily repetitive.
Having offered a few critiques, I am still a fan of Dave Ramsey. If you have a chance to listen to or watch him, do it. If you have the chance to fully participate in FPU, do it. And if you have the chance to become acquainted with Ramsey only through reading this book, do it. With huge print and lots of white space, I read the whole book in two days. I just think that the book only offers a taste and would encourage you to figure out how to more wholeheartedly invest in what he has to teach. I am excited to continue to apply some more of the ideas that we have learned as we have moved closer to fully experiencing "financial peace." ...more info
- easy to understand
This book is very informative, and easy terms for anyone to understand....more info
- We are starting to experience peace
This is an excellent book on finances with very down to earth and simple advice. The core principle is don't borrow money.
I especially appreciated the section on "baby steps" which help you get a handle on your finances by prioritizing how to go about paying off debt, saving for a rainy day, saving for retirement, and so on....more info
- Why do I feel like a idiot reading this book?
Maybe I feel like a idiot because Ramsey showed me that financially I am and have been an idiot. Ramsey's emphasis on debt elimination instead of debt management is a challenge to the very system we have bought into and if widely accepted would blow a hole in the banking industry's profits.
Perhaps the most valuable tool in the book is the concept of the debt snowball. Most of us want to attack our big debts, but Ramsey suggests putting those in a holding pattern and paying smaller debts. As each of these pay off, attack the next debt on the list until paid. The funny thing is it makes so much sense, you first wonder why you didn't think of it and secondly how could you be so stupid.
This book might be the best wedding present a parent could give their child....more info
- Dave Ramsey's advice is completely unrealized
When Dave Ramsey can live off of $24,000.00 a year, and have a family, then perhaps I can listen to him. His advice of paying for everything in cash starts off great.
However, I believe in putting my family first. That does not include getting two or three jobs to pay off debt, and make my family suffer; no way! Dave claims to be a religious man, and if that were the case, he would realize that the Bible says that family comes before the love of money (as well as a few other things)
And finally, the man makes hundreds of thousands a year. I just can't follow the words of someone who does that and expects normal people to live. ...more info
- Great advice
This is a great book for getting out of debt and learning how to be a good steward of your money. It's simply written and you don't have to be an accountant or tax lawyer to understand it. I am using the principles to get my financial situation in order. It also has both male and female perspectives along with some humor. ...more info
- Even good for financially responsible
I always thought I was pretty responsible with my finances, but this book lays it out! He has such simple ideas, but sooo true. We have made some changes to the way we rule our money and it makes me feel so much more secure. Awesome DAVE!...more info
- good financial medicine
Ramsey does not pull any punches. If you are serious about getting your financial house in order this is the right medicine. Although sometimes hard to swallow....more info
- This Book will Help you . .
I have read 4 of Dave's books. I would rank this # 2 behind The Total Money Makeover or the Workbook version of the same title. The concepts are similar to the Total Money makeover but less examples of how to do things and how to put into practice versus The total Money makeover. On that basis, I would recommend reading the Total money makeover first, then this one for other insights. This book does still give you the groundwork of how to do it (get out of debt) and put into practice healthy habits that will make you rich over time. ...more info
- My favorite personal finance book
The original edition of this book was the first book I read on personal finance and I still think it's the best one out there. Dave's personal story of how he lived the "rich lifestyle" and then lost it all really speaks to the myth of "having it all". He makes the point that we don't have to "have it all" (or "own it all") to be happy. That said, he offers a very solid and straight-forward plan on how to break out of the debt cycle and save for the future. The book includes a number of ways to change your thinking and your habits to make you more financially secure.
Since reading this book, I have put many of his ideas into practice. There is nothing that has added to my personal happiness and security more than knowing I have an emergency fund to cover expenses if something unexpected happens. I am also almost debt-free and have money saved for retirement.
I have recommended this book to others and have even bought a copy (I originally read this at the library) just so I can read it again and lend it to friends. Everyone needs to read this book!...more info
- Everyone should read this book!
He keeps things simple, easy to read and GREAT advice on how to get out and stay out of debt. Trying our best to follow all his helpful steps...more info
- Excellent and highly recommended!
This book has revolutionized how I view my finances! As a recent college graduate, the practical advice was tremendous. Even though I was good at managing my money and did not have much school debt or any credit card debt, my money (or lack of) was controlling me, not the other way around. The suggestions in this book are easily implemented and followed. I plan on purchasing a copy of this book for my brother when he graduates from college....more info
- Light at the end of the tunnel
This is a great book. I only wish I'd found it years ago. This is one of the books that I'll be giving as Christmas presents to those I care most about. The chapters on handling money in marriage are especially insightful....more info
- I wish I would have known this a long time ago. But still helpful now!
Dave Ramsey makes everything so simple. I just wish I would have had this information in my 20s or even younger. It is changing my life. It gives me hope and promise....more info
- Dave will Change your Life
I've been following Dave's plan for 2 years and am now just about debt free. Practical and common sense advice for everyone at every point of life. ...more info
- Awesome book! Get it. Read it. Do it.
In Dave's Financial Peace Revisited, he tells the story of how he got rich then went broke and what he learned from it. Then, Dave tells how he took a long, hard look at our society and how totally "stupid" he was (and most Americans still are) in terms of how he viewed debt and money. Dave then relates how he re-started his own climb to financial independence in a totally different way than he did the first time. This book doesn't have a bunch of conceptual, theoretical junk. It gives you PRACTICAL, immediately implementable steps that anyone can take to get their financial house in order and tells you exactly how to go about it. If you are handling your money well, this book will help you get better. If you're struggling with your money or your relationship with your spouse due to money troubles, this book may change your life. Learn how to manage your money instead of having it manage you. I've been buying copies of this book online and giving them to the people in my life that I care about most. I couldn't recommend it higher. Good luck and may God bless you....more info
- This book can help you...
I've read a couple of Ramseys' books and used to listen to his talk show daily a few years ago. This book is, like a lot of books in this genre, are laden with common sense thinking which we need to hear every once in a while. In fact, we probably need it more than that as media is constantly trying to pry us away from our money.
Good book overall especially if you caught in the spend credit rat race.
However, I highly recommend The Richest Man in Babylon before reading ANY other personal finance book! ...more info
- Stuffitis and Big Big Bargains
First, I feel that most of Dave's advice is perfectly solid, and almost guaranteed to get anybody out of debt. The debt snowball and gazelle methods are right on. You have to be extremely motivated to get ahead financially, especially if you are tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars in the hole. His worksheets for budgeting, managing debt etc are simple, straightforward and will get the job done. Nevertheless, I have no choice but to ding the rating on this book, and give it only 3 stars because of one chapter that I find completely unfocused and potentially very damaging: the "Only Buy Big, Big Bargains" chapter. Here's the thing: I've never been in the kind of debt Dave and his listeners have experienced. Never. The reason being: I come from a frugal Scots-Irish family and materialism was always discouraged in my family. Frugality was always praised and rewarded. These are lessons I absorbed in my baby formula. My father's two uncles were bachelor farmers who accumulated a legendary FORTUNE by living simply, frugally and not letting themselves get sucked into the acquisitive, materialist mindset that started taking over this country from the 1950s and onward. Since they were the only rich people I ever met personally, I have based my own financial decisions on their example and folk/inherited wisdom. The number one thing they (and I) would NEVER DO is pay even a cent more than we have to for any type of depreciating asset. The chapter on Big Bargains in Dave's book rambles on for pages on how to get a great deal on a luxury car (that you would STILL end up paying 5 figures for!), implying that you don't *really* have to make any sacrifices to make his system work. This is just like telling a room full of alcoholics that they can still have an occasional beer, as long as they water it down with some ginger ale first. ABSURD. I have to tell Dave's readers that if you want to be wealthy, and teach your children to be wealthy, you MUST adhere strictly to the "Rich Dad Poor Dad" principle of investing in ASSETS, not LIABILITIES. Spend the least amount possible on a depreciating asset like a car, without actually buying a lemon. There aren't many individuals or families that couldn't get by with a secondhand Toyota Corolla, and you can probably get one with about 20 to 30 thousand miles on it for under 10K. NEVER spend more than FOUR digits on a car. That should be GOSPEL. My great uncles drove their pickup truck until it rusted and fell apart and they had no choice but to buy another one, to run the farm. They paid cash for a new truck at that point, although the dealer sneered at their ragged overalls and thought they weren't customers worth his time. Boy was he ever wrong! They were without a doubt the richest people he probably ever met in his pitiful life. You can get rich too, but NOT BY PURCHASING DEPRECIATING ASSETS. If you like "nice things" the way Dave does, then learn to like "nice things" that typically APPRECIATE IN VALUE: paintings, antiques, fine oriental rugs -- NOT CARS. Buy only barely enough car to meet your transportation needs. That's it. Ignore Dave when he gushes about a luxury care he got such a great deal on. He is totally brain farting on this one....more info
- Mutual funds do not guarantee financial peace
One of the authors failed at a real estate business (even though he came from a real estate family). He is living proof that not everyone can be Donald Trump. And that is a good thing for people to be aware of.
The essence of the advice this book is offering can be found on page 133: "Disciplined savings will outpace any investment scheme." Next the question is, what do you do with your savings? Their answer is mainly mutual funds. The risk in buying individual stocks, they claim, is astronomical. If the stock market continues to be relatively stable, "financial peace," I think, can be achieved by following the authors' formula, but not if there is an extraordinary financial crisis. If an unusually large stock market crash did occur, a lot of mutual funds would start to look like "investment schemes." Financial peace for many people would be shattered.
I deduct one star because the authors place too much faith in mutual funds. Mutual funds, after all, do invest in individual stocks that are traded on the stock market....more info
- Great Book for Rich Morons
This book is a life saver for all those rich idiots out there that have plenty of money but are just stupid with it. It will give them a small bit of common sense so that they will finally get out of debt like they should have been all along. If you are a rich idiot, buy this book! On the other hand, if you actually have some common sense, you will be able to figure these things out for yourself and are probably in debt because you actually have some real problems, like you need a better job. But hey, I bet you could just write a crappy book and make plenty of money like this guy....more info
- You'll never regret getting your finances in order
I took the Financial Peace University class and received this book along with the class materials. Dave Ramsey is a special financial adviser in the way that his advice focuses on changing financial management behavior first and then getting into the more in-depth details later.
There are a lot of reviews and descriptions here, so I'll keep my thoughts on this simple: check out the book, take the program, and you will not regret it. This works if you apply it from my experience and the experiences of those I know who took the class. This isn't a quick fix: it'll take you a couple months to get the hang of things and some time after that to get your finances in order.
If you're serious about changing your financial future, you should really take the class, too. It's cheap and they are conducted throughout the country....more info