Ask Davehttp://www.daveramsey.com/etc/askdave/index.cfm2016-02-05T03:03:02ZDave Ramseytag:daveramsey.com,2016-02-03:131076No insurance on cell phones2016-02-03T15:27:00ZIn his response to Lisa's question, Dave explains why he thinks taking out insurance on your cell phone is a bad idea.<p><b>QUESTION:</b> Lisa is on Facebook, and she asks Dave if it’s wise or foolish to insure a smartphone. She learns that Dave’s view on insuring items like that hasn’t changed.</p><p><b>ANSWER:</b> No, I don’t insure inexpensive things like that. And if you say it’s not inexpensive, then that means you probably shouldn’t have that phone.</p><p>If a smartphone is expensive to you, then you bought a phone that’s too expensive for you. In your world, if you tear up a phone and you can’t replace the phone, well, you’ve got a phone you can’t afford. No, I don’t insure them.</p><p>And I don’t finance them!</p><p> </p>
<p><a href="http://a248.e.akamai.net/f/1611/23575/9h/dramsey.download.akamai.com/23575/audio/mp3/askdave/800_insurance/general/0800_020516_dont_insure_cell_phones.mp3">Listen to the call...</a></p>
tag:daveramsey.com,2016-02-03:131075Don't tithe with credit cards2016-02-03T15:09:25ZMelissa wants to know Dave's opinion on churches encouraging people to do e-giving with credit cards or debit cards. Dave isn't a fan of churches asking members to use a debt vehicle to pay their tithes.<p><b>QUESTION:</b> Melissa contacted Dave via Twitter to ask his opinion of churches encouraging members to do e-giving with credit or debit cards. Dave talks a little about this scenario, and he encourages people to use debit cards instead of credit cards. </p><p><b>ANSWER:</b> Well, I don’t believe in credit cards. So I’m not fond of churches telling people to use a debt vehicle to pay their tithes. Very few people distinguish between a debit card and a credit card when taking them.</p><p>I think e-giving is fine, but if I were the pastor—and we had an e-giving process—I would encourage people to use debit cards and not credit cards, that’s all. There’s nothing wrong with e-giving, like an ACH kind of thing or a draft. A lot of people do that and like the ability to give online. </p><p>I just don’t want to have a giving situation to your church turn into debt to you. And it surely can when it’s a credit card. That’s the bad part. The rest of it’s fine.</p><p> </p>
<p><a href="http://a248.e.akamai.net/f/1611/23575/9h/dramsey.download.akamai.com/23575/audio/mp3/askdave/1600_stewardship/tithing/1602_020316_dont_tithe_with_credit_cards.mp3">Listen to the call...</a></p>
tag:daveramsey.com,2016-01-28:131052Loyalty and character2016-01-28T09:36:51ZDave responds to a note from someone who says employees don't owe loyalty to their employers. If you guessed that Dave disagrees, you're right. In the process, he explains why things like loyalty and character still matter.<p><b>QUESTION:</b> Dave receives a note in which the writer says that when people work for a company, they do not owe the company loyalty. As you might imagine, Dave feels the writer has a lot to learn about things such as loyalty, character and ethics. </p><p><b>ANSWER:</b> That makes me want to be an old man and say something like, “That’s what’s wrong with this generation!” I want to say something like that to an idiot response like this. Let me give you a story. </p><p>My grandfather passed away many years ago. He worked for Alcoa Aluminum in Alcoa, Tennessee, for 38 years. Once he went into my mom and dad’s home, and my mom pulled out a roll of Reynolds Wrap—the competing aluminum foil to Alcoa aluminum foil. She bought the wrong brand. He ripped it out of her hands, threw it in the trash and said, “Never buy from the enemy!” </p><p>That’s the kind of loyalty people had in those days to the company they worked for—the company that took care of them and fed them. Now, I understand that many companies today aren’t as loyal to people as they should be. I get that part. But that’s irrelevant to how you have your ethics. Your ethics are you’re loyal to who pays you, and if you can’t be loyal to who pays you then you need to change to someone you can be loyal to. That’s called character!</p><p> </p>
<p><a href="http://a248.e.akamai.net/f/1611/23575/9h/dramsey.download.akamai.com/23575/audio/mp3/askdave/1000_career/general/1000_012816_loyalty_and_character.mp3">Listen to the call...</a></p>
tag:daveramsey.com,2016-01-21:131008Mathematically incorrect2016-01-21T10:12:36ZKen just finished reading a finance book in which the author expressed concern that the market could be adversely affected by so many Baby Boomers starting to retire and living off their investments. Dave shrugs off this supposition, and he explains to Ken in great detail why the idea is mathematically incorrect.
<p><a href="http://a248.e.akamai.net/f/1611/23575/9h/dramsey.download.akamai.com/23575/audio/mp3/askdave/1800__best_of_dave/general/1800_012116_mathematically_incorrect.mp3">Listen to the call...</a></p>
tag:daveramsey.com,2016-01-13:130986Discussion with mom and dad2016-01-13T10:55:58ZCherie calls in for her boyfriend, who is wondering if he should buy life insurance for his mom and dad. Dave says the idea is not a good long-term plan, and he gives some additional advice for this situation.<p><b>QUESTION:</b> Cherie’s boyfriend wonders if he should buy life insurance for his parents. They’re both in their seventies, and they’re no longer married to each other. His mom is disabled and remarried, and she doesn’t have any life insurance coverage. The only coverage his dad might have would be through his employer. Cherie says her boyfriend is afraid he would have to pay funeral expenses if one of them died, and apparently he’s not in good enough financial shape to do that. </p><p><b>ANSWER:</b> Yeah, if it’s furnished by his work, then when he stops working he probably won’t have life insurance anymore. If he wanted to buy a small policy, that’s fine, but it’s going to be very expensive at their age. You’d have to get them to sign off on it, and they have to be healthy enough to get the policy issued.</p><p>I wouldn’t do that as a long-term plan, though. As a long-term plan, I’d tell your boyfriend that he needs to build up his own wealth. If he had like $20,000 in savings—in his emergency fund—sadly, that’s enough to bury two people. You can do a really good funeral for $7,000 to $10,000 when you’re paying for someone else’s funeral.</p><p>The other thing I’d do is I’d have a discussion with mom as to whether or not stepdaddy has the money to bury his wife. That’s his primary responsibility, instead of her son having to pay for it. Then, he should have a discussion with his dad. If he’s got insurance through work, and the stepdad is ready to pay for his mom’s burial, then I wouldn’t buy insurance on them. They’re covered for today.</p><p>I wouldn’t do it unless they don’t have it covered. Even then, I’d prefer you just cover it with cash, because all we’re talking about then is just enough to cover burial costs. A modest, economy-type funeral is what we’re talking about, because that’s the situation we’re in. It doesn’t look like anyone’s a multimillionaire here. </p><p>Nothing needs to be elaborate—that’s my point. Not that you need to be elaborate, anyway, with this kind of thing. You really don’t.</p><p> </p>
<p><a href="http://a248.e.akamai.net/f/1611/23575/9h/dramsey.download.akamai.com/23575/audio/mp3/askdave/800_insurance/general/0800_011316_discussion_with_mom_and_dad.mp3">Listen to the call...</a></p>
tag:daveramsey.com,2016-01-06:130958Mom has no assets2016-01-06T09:51:21ZJoe's mom is a stroke victim. She's also 81, and she has no assets, but she has $15,000 in old debt. Joe asks Dave how to deal with the situation, and Dave offers advice on handling the debt and the collectors.<p><b>QUESTION:</b> Joe calls in from Phoenix, AZ, trying to help his mom. She’s 81, is a stroke victim, and has about $15,000 in old debt. She also has no assets and receives only a small pension and Social Security payments. Joe and his wife don’t have the ability to help with the debt immediately, but he thinks that he and his siblings could pull together to settle the debt. </p><p><b>ANSWER:</b> You could probably settle this at 25 cents on the dollar, give or take, if you guys want to scratch up that kind of money. You can work it through. If you keep beating on it, you can probably settle for a quarter on the dollar if you want to do it that way.</p><p>Just explain to them that she’s 81, she’s got no assets, and they’re going to get nothing if they don’t take your offer. Just explain it over and over and over again if you have to, because the people you’re going to be talking to aren’t necessarily bright.</p><p> </p>
<p><a href="http://a248.e.akamai.net/f/1611/23575/9h/dramsey.download.akamai.com/23575/audio/mp3/askdave/600_debt/general/0600_010616_has_no_assets.mp3">Listen to the call...</a></p>
tag:daveramsey.com,2015-12-18:130913It's a bad product2015-12-18T15:01:12ZRebecca is a real estate agent from Indianapolis, IN, who just attended a class on reverse mortgages. She couldn't get straight answers from the teacher to some of her questions, so she called Dave to clear things up. <p><b>QUESTION:</b> Rebecca is a real estate agent in Indianapolis, IN. She has some business experience, too, and recently attended a continuing education class on reverse mortgages. Rebecca asked the class leader several questions, and didn’t feel like she was given good answers. She also wonders why the product is being pushed on senior citizens. Dave sheds some light on reverse mortgages, and as you might guess, he’s not a fan.</p><p><b>ANSWER:</b> Well, the reason they’re pushing it is that they make a ton of money. They’re much more profitable than a traditional mortgage. The biggest problem with it is that it’s full of fees. If you think closing costs in your world are bad, they’ve got everything in this baby. And, it’s set up to be a no-lose for the mortgage company. They’re going to end up with the property, or they’re going to end up with a ton of equity to protect them.</p><p>The reason they go after senior citizens is two-fold. One, that’s the market who have their homes paid for, and it needs to be a paid for—or almost paid for—home in order to work. They’re basically turning around and borrowing their equity back out. The other reason, the less scrupulous ones go after that market because they’re vulnerable. Scams on the elderly are not unusual. This is not a scam in the sense that it’s illegal or they’re doing something criminal, but in the mathematical sense it’s criminal. It’s just a horrid, horrid product.</p><p>A good rule of thumb, and you’ve tapped into this with your common sense and your business background, is that if the investment is on cable television as a commercial between walk-in bathtubs and self-insert catheters, it’s probably not a good product. You see a lot of bad stuff from the financial world advertised on cable television.</p><p>But the technicalities of why it doesn’t work are the fees are very high, the interest rates they’re calculated at are very high and the padding of the equity is extreme. In your world you can get an 80/20 loan, with no PMI, with a Fannie Mae loan. You’re not going to get anywhere close to those kinds of ratios on a reverse mortgage. It’s just a bad product, and it’s sold with the idea that you’ve worked hard all your life and you deserve to enjoy your money, so take the money out of your house. You know I hate debt, so that’s another reason. Why would you work your whole life to get out of debt only to go back in? That seems ludicrous to me.</p><p> </p>
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tag:daveramsey.com,2015-12-16:130903Extreme measures, extreme results2015-12-16T12:10:36ZDave takes on critics of a young man who worked multiple jobs, while scrimping and saving to pay off his mortgage early. This is classic Dave addressing issues such as frugality, financial responsibility, jealousy and victim mentality.
<p><a href="http://a248.e.akamai.net/f/1611/23575/9h/dramsey.download.akamai.com/23575/audio/mp3/askdave/1800_best_of_dave/general/1800_122915_extreme_measures_extreme_results.mp3">Listen to the call...</a></p>
tag:daveramsey.com,2015-12-16:130902Thankfulness and boundaries2015-12-16T10:26:03ZEmily's future in-laws are moving a little too fast and going a bit too far in trying to do nice things for her and their son. Dave doesn't think they're bad folks, just excited about the upcoming marriage. He gives Emily some gentle advice on boundaries and relationships.<p><b>QUESTION:</b> Emily from Champagne, IL, is in grad school and her fiancé is a youth pastor. They’re getting married in May, and her soon-to-be in-laws have found an inexpensive home for them and would like to gift them the down payment. Emily isn’t sure she likes the idea under the circumstances, so Dave walks her through this reasoning and offers his advice. </p><p><b>ANSWER:</b> You need to get to know each other before you buy a house together. I always recommend that young couples rent for a year and concentrated on each other, the new marriage, cleaning up any debts you have and establishing an emergency fund. Then, a year or so from now, if something comes along and they want to help you get into a property by gifting you some money, it’s a wonderful offer if the timing is right and the property is right.</p><p>It sounds like these people are trying to do a very nice thing that they’re very comfortable with, but they kind of got out ahead of you. I don’t think they’re bad folks, but they violated some boundaries in your relationship with your fiancé. It sounds like they’re hard-driving, wide-open folks who just go do stuff. They didn’t mean to, but they stepped into your yard. They just really like you, and they’re glad you’re marrying their son, but they’re trying to help too hard. </p><p>If I were you, I’d sit down with your fiancé and say, “Honey, let’s tap the brakes and slow this thing down a bit.” Be very grateful in your language with his mom and dad, and he probably should do that. Just tell them how grateful you are, but that you two want to take a year and really get to know each other and rent something cheap. Then after a year, if you still want to help us with a down payment that would be very nice. But right now, we’re going to start a little slower.</p><p>That’s what I would suggest you do. I think it’ll be good for the boundary issue and for your finances. I would tell you to slow down, slow them down and slow everybody down. Just take your time, make sure you’re out of debt and have an emergency fund in place. And then, if they want to step up beside you and help you guys buy something, it would be very generous on their part. And, by the way, that would be a house that <i>you</i> pick out.</p><p> </p>
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tag:daveramsey.com,2015-12-07:130889Enjoy the Christmas season2015-12-07T15:22:19ZIn the middle of last week's Cyber Monday excitement, Dave took a few minutes to talk about the holidays. He asked listeners to slow down, and be thoughtful and generous, while enjoying the Christmas season.
<p><a href="http://a248.e.akamai.net/f/1611/23575/9h/dramsey.download.akamai.com/23575/audio/mp3/askdave/1800_best_of_dave/general/1800_120815_enjoy_the_season.mp3">Listen to the call...</a></p>