Dave Ramsey: An Introduction For New Fans

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Dave Ramsey is a household name when it comes to personal finances.  He is by far the leading financial coach in America.  And I’ll be honest I am a big Ramsey fan.  I listen to his radio show on podcast and this Christmas I gave everyone in my family the book The Total Money Makeover.  For a few week I wanted to post on some of the things I think are great about Dave Ramsey and other things I think are just plain good (or worse).

He  writes and speaks from a Christian perspective.  While Ramsey has not made his Christianity the central focus of his show he nevertheless does not hide his Christianity.

Here is why I think Dave is massively popular:

  1. Entertainer. Ramsey is first and foremost an entertainer.  His topic of choice is finances, but if he were not an entertainer there would be now show.
  2. Genuine. There is an unparalleled level of compassion and genuineness in his dealing with people.
  3. Simplicity. Dave presents financial topics in a way that are easy to understand.  Furthermore, he presents his information in procedural steps (like the baby steps).

Dave Ramsey’s Fundamental Financial Teachings:

  1. Money problems can be solved by adjusting one (or both) of two parts of an equation: income or spending.  When you are in debt you need to either cut your spending or make more money.
  2. The accumulation of stuff can really weigh us down.  Often financial struggles can be resolved by amputating things we have accumulated.
  3. Credit cards have absolutely no place in the pocket of a financially contentious person.
  4. People who are winning financially keep a budget.
  5. A home should only be purchased when you have at least 20% down (thought Dave himself only buys homes 100% down) with your payments (including insurance and utilities) no more than 25% of your take home income.
  6. All people should be saving 15% of their income towards retirement.

There is a lot more to Ramsey, but this at least gives you a taste of his financial stance.

Ways To Follow Dave Ramsey’s Teachings

Dave R. Radio

Radio Show

The Dave Ramsey Show airs live from 2-5 p.m. Eastern time each weekday.  It is aired on more than 450 stations to an audience of 4.5 million.  In addition to catching the show on your local radio station you can listen to the show on XM Satellite Radio (talk Radio Channel 165 – M-F, 12-3pm EST; America’s Talk Channel 158 – M-F, 3-6pm EST) Sirius Satellite Radio
(Channel 161 – M-F, 9pm-Midnight EST).  If you prefer you can also download one hour of the show commercial free in an MP3 format.  Members of www.TotalMoneyMakeover.com can list to all three hours of the show commercial free.

On the radio show he takes calls about “your life and your money”.  Ramsey fields calls for most of every show.  He often fields calls on credit card debt, bankruptcy, mortgages, vehicle purchases, investments, personal finances and other related financial issues.

Television Show

The Dave Ramsey Show (TV Version) plays on the Fox Business network.  Click here to get a channel listing in your area.  The Show times are as follows: EST: 8pm, midnight I CST: 7pm, 11pm I MST: 6pm, 10pm I PST: 5pm, 9pm.

The TV show is much like the radio show only with the added visual media.  There is the every popular Plasectomies along with calls and email questions.  Again topics range from credit card debt, bankruptcy, mortgages, vehicle purchases, investments, personal finances and other related financial issues.

Live Events

There are four live events conducted by Ramsey.  These include Wealth Coach, Entre Leadership One Day, Entre Leadership (3 1/2 day event) and the Total Money Makeover.  Since the Total Money Makeover is his most attended event I will introduce the live events.

During the live event you have the opportunity over a five hour period to see Dave at his energetic and dynamic best.  He walks the audience through the Total Money Makeover Seven Baby Step procedure.  By the end of the event you walks away energized and motivated to get your debt and finances under control.  If you click here you can be notified when The Total Money Makeover Live Event is coming to your hometown.

Website

The Dave Ramsey official website has as information about all his related products, events and shows.  In addition there is a bunch of free articles and resources available to the public.  Much of the material is promotional in nature, but there is some free resources available.

The site also provides links to ELP (Endorsed Local Providers). These are people who financial advisors who provide advice on Investing, Real Estate, Tax services, and Insurance (depending on their specialty).

Books

You can see the complete library of Ramsey books and DVDs here.  His three most popular books.

TotalMoney_thumb1

The Total Money Makeover The Total Money Makeover was selected #3 on a list of the 88 top recommended books by personal finance bloggers.  You can read a review of The Total Money Makeover here.

Financial Peace Revisited You can read a review of Financial Peace Revisited here.

More Than Enough: You can read a review of More Than Enough Part I and Part II.

Financial Peace University

Financial Peace University is a class where Dave Ramsey teaches all the in’s and outs of personal management.  Pete at Bible Money Matters has one of the most comprehensive sites on all things Dave Ramsey (I’m assuming he is a fan!).  He has a detailed introduction to each of the classes in the 13 week Financial Peace University program.  You can view those articles here.

Dave R FPU
Facebook

Become a fan on Face book and join the 2,400 others.  Just search for Dave Ramsey from your Facebook homepage.

Twitter

The two most popular Ramsey related Twitter accounts are:

  1. DaveRamseyLIVE Dave Ramsey.  Living like no one else – Dave Ramsey and his Live Events Team are LIVE! on Twitter.  21,582 followers
  2. ramseyshow The Dave Ramsey Show.  The official Twitter page of The Dave Ramsey Show.  16,223 followers.

    One of Ramsey’s Most successful ideas is his 7 Baby Steps (The Content of The Total Money Makeover):

None of the ideas are original with Ramsey, however, he packaged all the concepts in an easy to follow and organized format.  The longer term goal that Dave Ramsey is promoting is the ability to live like no one else.  The seven steps are the small goals along the way that allow you to reach that ultimate goal.

Dave Ramsey Seven Baby Steps

  1. Get $1,000 to start an emergency fund
  2. Pay off all your debt.  Dave suggests a method called the Debt Snowball.
  3. Fully fund your emergency fund of 3-6 months worth of expenses
  4. Invest 15% of your household income towards retirement
  5. Fund college for your children
  6. Pay off the home early
  7. Build wealth and give!

Over the next few weeks I am going to be posting once a week on a Dave Ramsey related topic.

Are you a fan?  What is your favorite method for keeping up with his teachings?  What is your favorite book or material of his?

Comments

  1. says

    Craig,

    As a Dave Ramsey Certified Counselor I am always curious about what others say about him. I appreciate this post and am looking forward to the upcoming ones…especially what you find “good (or worse)”.

    A minor nit pick: Point 6 of his fundamental financial teaching … all people should be saving 15% of their income for retirement. This is true, but only after completing the first three Baby Steps, which actually means a lot of people are not yet in position to be saving for retirement.

    • Craig says

      @Joe – Thanks for clarifying about #6 (15%). That’s right. I am interested in hearing some of your thoughts on these topics.

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