How to Help Out

Christy has a daughter and son-in-law who have old credit card debt. Christy and her husband can help to clear that up. Dave gives two or three things that he'd like to see before further help is given.

QUESTION: Christy in Colorado has a daughter and son-in-law who have old credit card debt that is haunting them. Christy and her husband can help to clear that up. They’ve already given some cash, but Christy wants to help further. Dave gives two or three things that he’d like to see before further help is given.

ANSWER: I’d want to know what their income is before I gave them any more money, and I’d want to see a budget for them. Otherwise, we don’t know if we’re giving a drunk a drink. If they make $80,000 a year and don’t have any bills, we don’t know where the money is going. They would need to get on a budget and cut down their lifestyle. You don’t want them having a $300 monthly cable bill while you’re settling credit cards. If you get involved, you have to be very careful that you are helping, which you probably are.

If you are going to financially participate, you need to love them thoroughly, which means you’re getting involved in the details. If you see substantial change and that they are living on a beans-and-rice budget and doing everything they can, and have the car up for sale and are having a garage sale, then that’s good. I’m going to expect them to do what I would do if I were in that situation. Then I will give them money. But not until. Then you know you’re doing good.