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The Total Money Makeover: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness Hardcover – February 6, 2007
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About the Author
Dave Ramsey is America’s trusted voice on money and business. His four New York Times best-selling books –Financial Peace, More Than Enough, The Total Money Makeover and EntreLeadership – have sold more than 7 million copies combined. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 6 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations and iHeartRadio.
Top customer reviews
Who is this book for? Everyone can benefit from it, but it is great for married couples and those in their late 20s, 30s, and early 40s. Young adults could benefit tremendously from it, but I'm worried it might not be exciting or fun enough to hold their attention. It's not really meant for retirees.
--- The Good ---
* He says financial freedom is 80% behavior and 20% knowledge which is so important, and he emphasizes this by pointing out there are a lot of broke finance professors.
* There are many real-life success stories of real people which shows his method works, and they also provide inspiration.
* He lays out his seven Baby Steps and makes them simple to understand. He points out that living right financially is not complicated. It may be difficult, but it's not complicated.
* I really liked the quote, "If you worked for a company called YOU Inc. and you managed money at YOU Inc. the way you manage your own money now, would you fire you?"
* The book includes helpful budget forms and worksheet in the back of the book.
* He isn't all gloom and doom. He wants you to have fun and even approves of buying a $30,000 watch, but only after you reach step seven and can afford it.
--- The Not-So-Good ---
* He doesn't go into a lot of detail on how to increase your income. Dave Ramsey is rich because he is a business owner who can make money from his radio show, books, seminars, programs, etc. It would have been great to get his advice on that, but he probably didn't want to overwhelm the reader with too many topics.
* I feel his previous bad experience with debt (he was over-leveraged with his real estate investments) has made him overly zealous on not having any debt. College loans can be very appropriate for some people, business loans can be great in the right situation, and his statement that you should put money toward paying down debt rather than getting the company 401(k) match seemed too extreme to me.
* The book wasn't super entertaining. I found a few parts to be a little dry and repetitive. While it certainly wasn't boring, I wish more money management books would be like the new personal finance adventure novel, but I guess that isn't this book's purpose. Still, there were a couple parts that made me chuckle and he did have some interesting stories.
* He stressed putting 100% of your investments in stock-related mutual funds. First, I feel ETFs are probably better than mutual funds because they are cheaper and won't underperform the market. Second, recommending a 100% stock portfolio to everyone regardless of age, financial goals, or risk tolerance seems risky to me. Plus you wouldn't experience the diversification benefit of owning non-correlated asset classes.
* He doesn't talk about the benefits of setting S.M.A.R.T. goals or having an accountability partner, which have been shown to greatly help people achieve all kinds of dreams.
--- Conclusion ---
Overall it is a very good book with a lot of good advice and inspirational case studies. You certainly won't regret reading it.
The book covers the whole baby step process but contains lots of additional useful and encouraging information.
If you like his advice. Also check out Automatic Millionaire: http://amzn.to/2eWhL18
It's not a magic book. It does not tell you what stock is going to gain you a fortune. It will not make your debt disappear in a week. What it will do is give you guidance and realistic goals for getting YOURSELF out of a bad situation. It sheds light on all of the money myths we have been sold over the years. It will cause you to rethink using that credit card to pay for your gas because you might need the twenty in your pocket for something later.
The baby steps are easy to understand and it is clear the work will be hard. We knew before reading this book that we were looking for a way to gain control of our finances. We knew it would take a long time to undo the damage we had created with our credit cards. We needed someone to tell us where to start and that is what this book did for us.
I gave this book a five star rating because it is easy to read. It will fire you up and motivate you. It also clearly states throughout the book that YOU are the one who can make a difference in your financial life and that if you follow the baby steps you will be able to do this in a positive way. I also love that you can start your total money makeover at any age (sooner the better), with any amount of debt, and see the light at the end of the tunnel even if it is a really long tunnel.
Most recent customer reviews
There are 7 steps to follow and it all seems very logical.