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Life or Debt: A One-Week Plan for a Lifetime of Financial Freedom Hardcover – December 26, 2001


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; 1 edition (December 26, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345452135
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345452139
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.2 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,430,087 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

Freeing yourself from debt is easier than you think! Take it from Stacy Johnson. As creator of the hugely successful Money Talks television news series, Johnson has helped millions of people get out of debt, achieve enduring financial freedom, and earn big from wise investments. Now it's your turn. In this focused, practical, and inspiring new book, Johnson shares the secrets of his amazing program that will win you financial freedom in just seven days.

Strange but true, financial freedom has almost nothing to do with how much you make or what you know about high finance. It all comes down to three basic principles: get rid of the debt that is shackling you, learn to live below your means, and start investing sensibly and consistently. In Life or Debt, Johnson spells out exactly how to accomplish these goals in a step-by-step plan that covers

* How to calculate what you really earn, where your money goes, and how you can quickly convert debts to investments
* How to quit "working" for credit card companies and mortgage holders by reducing (or eliminating) your debt now
* Why you're actually paying three times the sale price of the items you buy --and how to stop
* How to work out a simple budget that provides ample money for what you need and cuts out unnecessary expenses
* How to melt away that mountain of debt by prioritizing which debts should be paid off first and at what rate
* The secrets of investing wisely and with minimum risk
* 205 ways to save money--it really does add up!

Destroying debt does not mean radically changing your lifestyle or giving up the things you love. It does mean taking charge of your financial freedom and making sure the money you earn goes to the things you care about. The power to live without debt is yours--let Stacy Johnson and this revolutionary new book help you unleash it now!

About the Author

Stacy Johnson, fascinated all his life by the power of money, has worked as an accountant, a stockbroker for E. F. Hutton, and a vice president and branch manager for Prudential Securities, advising hundreds of people on financial security. In 1991, Johnson began producing, writing, and starring in the highly successful television news series Money Talks.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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See all 15 customer reviews
Stacy Johnson really knows his stuff.
Jason D. Turner
Mr. Johnson's book will be recommended by our financial planning practice to clients ready to start taking control of their financial lives.
Kim Joseph Onisko
This is required information that is missing in most high school and college curriculum.
Jayne Shaffer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

41 of 42 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 16, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I recommend this book. My finances are a disaster, but candidly, I'm more than fed up with the preachy, condescending literature on how the heck to get out of this pickle. Today, though, is a new day. This work is a very approachable, light, yet immensely insightful roadmap to "the other side." A week after receiving this book, FINALLY, I'm on that path. And to my surprise, I'm actually having fun with it. This book probably contributes little "new" to the subject, and probably told me little that I didn't already know, down deep. However, because of the author's approach, and encouragement, it contributed... and continues to contribute...greatly to my life. Thanks, Mr. Johnson.
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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful By Bruce Gilliz on October 30, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Stacy Johnson gives us a decent first work in "Life or Debt". I have come across many personal finance books - some bad, some good. This one ranks somewhere squarely in the middle.

To be frank, I was able to conclude within a chapter or so, that the book was written by the proposed author as opposed to a professional writer. The language used throughout the book seemed to be "dumbed down", either intentionally or not (not necessarily a bad thing).

If you've read quite a few books related to personal finance, then you are by now familiar with the basic concepts used to accumulate wealth and beat down debt, ie., save a tenth of every paycheck to invest, pay off the highest interest debt first, consult with professional third parties if needed, etc. A lot of this information by now is getting totally redundant. Only a complete novice will receive insight from these age-old tips.

Now that the critical stuff is out of the way, I will praise this book for the things it does right. The chapter devoted to saving money entitled, "205 Ways to Save" is excellent. The majority of the tips are first rate money savers. Some of the tips may be familiar to seasoned readers and others will seem like common sense, but there are also some genuine money-saving winners among the selections. I feel that if the reader used even a small portion of the tips a substantial savings will be realized, especially if used on a regular basis. The author even offers up an informative chapter on how to deal with the big, bad credit bureaus.

Stacy Johnson gives us a solid, but far from perfect, first effort involving the world of personal finance and all the follies that can go with it. He offers insightful tips and hope to many people who are fighting to better their financial situation. It can only get better from here.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Day Traitor on February 11, 2002
Format: Hardcover
This is my first book review, but I have to take the time to highly recommend this book. I saw Mr. Johnson on a local talk show (Northwest Afternoon here in Seattle) and I was inspired to buy his book. What this book essentially is adovcating is hapiness through financial freedom, which is accomplished by paying off all debts and then turning these debt payments into wealth. The way that Mr. Johnson sets this up is simple and self-supporting, and I personally am setting out on his recommended path. I especially love the section on how to make money off of telemarketers through the use of "do not call" policies. I have already used it on American Express, who kept calling me about credit insurance, and it promptly shut them up (apparently "I'm not interested" doesn't work, but "I will sue you" does). This book will pay for itself and is worth the time for anyone who is tired of working for everyone else.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Jayne Shaffer on December 29, 2001
Format: Hardcover
This is required information that is missing in most high school and college curriculum. Armed with this type of information there would be fewer individuals finding themselves mired in debt before they realize what happened.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Jason D. Turner on February 17, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I recieved an advance copy of this wonderful book from the author. I have to say that reading this book is like having a close friend come over to your house and share the financial facts of your life. Stacy Johnson really knows his stuff. His experience on finances is second to none. This book provides an amazing "Blue Print" on getting your financial house in order.
Freeing yourself from debt is easier than you think after you read this book. As you probably know Stacy is the creator of very successful Money Talks television news series. He has been a Godsend to millions of people who need advice on getting out of debt, achieving financial freedom, and earning handsome profits from smart investment decisions. This book will inspire you take take charge of your Financial life!!!
You must give this book a try. It will be one of the smartest investment decisions you'll ever make.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Kim Joseph Onisko on January 2, 2002
Format: Hardcover
A concise, readable treatment of the rudiments of creating wealth. Following the simple program outlined by Mr. Johnson will allow a family the ability to develop an estate and save for retirement. As a CPA and financial planner with over 25 years experience in the capital markets, I heartily recommend this book. Mr. Johnson's book will be recommended by our financial planning practice to clients ready to start taking control of their financial lives.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 13, 2003
Format: Hardcover
I'm so glad I ran across this book in an airport! By reading this, I realized by trying to keep up with the Joneses, I was placing myself in a serious financial crisis. By using the techniques in the book, I hope to have all my debts paid off in a couple of years.
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