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Getting dh on board---- should we take Dave Ramsey course??

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Is there anyone out there who took DR's course?  How did your dh respond??  I am pulling my hair out w/ my dh.  We are not in cc debt, but our savings is dwindling, no 401k since having children and me not working.  He doesn't buy expensive things like new cars, but the little things do add up---eating out 4 days a week for lunch...taking the kids for new soccer shoes instead of used etc. 

He is willing to take the course, but I know he's not going to like it.  I wouldn't mind if dh used credit cards, but I lived in a budget. 

ANy suggestions??

post #2 of 14

I wold say do it.  It may be the wake up call he needs.

post #3 of 14

Can you get him to just read the book?  The class just sounds pricey and I personally would hate that class.

post #4 of 14
Thread Starter 

He listened to the book on cd.  He agrees with everything, but his follow-through is weak. 

post #5 of 14

If his follow-through is weak, taking an expensive course really isn't going to change that. Much like reading an inspiring book/article, or watching an awesome documentary, you get that immediate surge of "I am going to completely change my life!" which completely dissipates the first time your alarm goes off an hour earlier so you have time to make a healthy breakfast at home and pack your lunch instead of purchasing on-the-go options.... I know MY snooze button has seen use more than once, when faced with those options. xD


I would truly skip the class. Find something that will help his follow-through: pack his lunch for him. Pack lunches together the night before. Budget for one lunch out every week as a compromise. Go through your bank records for the last three months and find every incidence of "eating out" and tally it all up in a spreadsheet for a little shock therapy (or use a service like wesabe.com or MS Money which will do something like that for you for any number of categories). Introduce change slowly, one new habit every week, or every other week. Just whittle away at it - change is hard, and often sucks =P but you'll get there. Since you're not in a crisis about it, you can take the time to make changes in a way that can accommodate him.

post #6 of 14

DH and I took financial peace together.  We both read the Total Money Makeover and have similar financial goals.  It did help to reinforce what we read but it's by in large a summary of the book.  It revisits a lot of the concepts.  Like the PP stated, I would make out a spread sheet and go for the shock factor of what he is actually spending.

When DH and I did our first few months budgets, put our pennies to paper so-to-speak we were shocked at some of the amounts we were spending in some categories that could certainly be eliminated or cut way back.


It's worth a shot to start and maybe revisit the course once he's "more on board"

post #7 of 14

I actually found your question by googling "Should I take Dave Ramsey's counselor training?".  That should tell you where I'm going to fall on this issue, but let me tell you a little about why.


After reading your question and the other responses, I actually looked around the site a little and found it to be something that would be very useful to me as a stay at home dad, trying to fill a role traditionally filled by a mother. After I got sidetracked several times, I felt inclined to join and then searched a little to see if a man would be welcome here.  I found some evidence that dad's are welcome here, so here I am!


My wife and I went started our single and then married lives as normal people.  That is, we spent more than we made, buying things we couldn't afford, to impress people we didn't really like.  When we got married, our problem wasn't all that large - a few thousand in consumer debt each, but willing to work together and work on "doing better" with our money and getting out of debt.  After our wedding, we started getting more and more credit offers and "better" deals in the mail all the time.  Before we new it, we had two more car loans, two motorcycle loans, a second mortgage (a huge mistaken attempt to clean up our debt and get on track - that made things much worse in the end!), and a LOT of unsecured debt.  


This was all compounded by a bad business arrangement coupled with running a small business on a credit card to make the ends meet.


Somewhere in the middle of this we were told about Dave by a family member from whom we were constantly borrowing money till payday.  We read his book, started listening to his show, and were gung ho, but convinced that we didn't have enough money to fund our budget - so OF COURSE we kept spending more than we made.


Fast foreward a couple of years, we are pregnant, and my wife is put on bed rest at 22 weeks!  My wife ended up actually in the hospital for over a month.  Our problems were now slapping us in the face as we were no longer out earning our stupidity!  We started applying Dave's methodology as best as we could.  Cut spending, tried to budget, etc. We limped along, still with the help of relatives for about a year.  


About that time, my parent's church was offering FPU.  My parents offered to pay for us if we would attend with them.  We were very excited, but had no idea how much our life was about to change!  FPU is perfect for you and your DH for, in my opinion, two huge reasons.  You both know that there's a PROBLEM, and you BOTH know that there is a problem.


Don't worry about your DH not being really excited yet.  Dave will take care of that.  Go into it determined to work this out together, and determined to see it through for 13 weeks, doing what it takes.  With just a little bit of hard work (alright, maybe a lot of hard work) you guys will change your habits, be communicating better, have a little money saved, maybe some debt paid down, and be armed with a PLAN, and a ton of information about how to get where you are heading.


FPU doesn't offer a money back guarantee for a simple reason: If you do the plan, it WILL work, if your don't, it won't.  FPU teaches you alot of common sense stuff that has somehow become uncommon.  There is really no new information, it's just a great arrangement of stuff you need, presented in the right order, in an energetic and fun fashion.  Everything taught is on purpose, and there's a reason it's a thirteen week course.  It takes about three months for most of us to establish a new pattern as a lasting habit.  When the class ends, there's less of a chance of "falling off the wagon".


You can also go back to FPU as many times as you want for free.  We took the class three times, because it helped us stay on track. At least three times we have paid for others to take the class.  The other thing that makes the class worth many times the price is the class structure.  You spend the first half watching Dave teach the lesson while you follow along in a workbook, then the second half is a small group discussion time.  Think group therapy!  "My name is Matt, and I like stuff."  Getting to know a small group of people, from all different situations, and doing this thing side by side really helps to keep you motivated and keep on track.


Personally, over the last few years our income has decreased.  Through careful planning, goal setting, and application of our plan, we went from a mess to our current state.  We have made a swing of around $200,000 in three years.  That involved some strange sacrifices and decisions that have enabled us to live the last year almost on vacation.  I am able to be a stay at home dad, while my wife works as a travel nurse.  She loves new challenges every few months, and I couldn't be happier as a stay at home dad - although I am definitely ready to start contributing financially to the family again (I know that keeping us on track financially, saving money, blah blah IS contributing, but I'm ready to start putting some cash in the bank again!)  In the last year, my wife has only worked nine months.  During that time, we have paid our total debt down to a small fraction of what it was, one school loan to go, and we'll have the cash for a house in less than two years.  Yes, I said CASH for a house.  We have traveled from the east coast of the US, across Canada, spent most of the winter in northern Montana, the spring in Yuma AZ, and the fall in western MD.  We have had the opportunity to LIVE in different cities, not just visit there.  While traveling, we have been able to make extended visits to far flung relatives and not worry about our trips "coming to bite us" later. We are currently making plans to accept a great job offer in AZ, and stop traveling.


Sorry about the long post, but I am a huge fan of what FPU has done for our marriage, and our family tree.  We are finally truly financially independent of our families.  We are responsible for our own lives and know how to set and achieve goals.  With a little additional help from Rich Dad Poor Dad, 48 days and No More Mondays, The Richest Man In Babylon (my favorite book), The Wealthy Barber, and Zig Ziglar plus a few more I'm sure, our life barely resembles itself.  We finally feel like we are in control instead of along for a ride, or fighting to stay afloat.  If you want your finances and your marriage to be better than it is, FPU is a bargain.  You will get out of it everything you are willing to put into it.  So much more is covered than how to make a budget.  Dave's "sequel" to financial peace is aptly named "The Total Money Makeover".  It's really a life makeover if you want it to be.  


We are seriously considering me taking the counselor training that Dave offers, and I have no interest in starting a counseling business.  I have always wanted to help people.  That's probably why my business was good at blowing customer's expectations out of the water, but not good at making a profit.  Think about that though as a review of what FPU has done for us: Several years ago we could have lost our house.  We were one missed paycheck away from financial disaster.  We were often one flat tire away from financial disaster.  Now we are about to head across the country in a pickup truck with 200K on it and aren't worried about it breaking down, because we HAVE the funds budgeted to deal with almost anything that could go wrong.  We could afford to replace our vehicle part way across the country AND we are looking into spending almost $3000 dollars for training that will help me help other people for free.


Sorry again for the long post.  Helping people get back on track, has become a passion of mine, and, well....when I'm typing a message, I don't get the usual cues to stop.  I can't see your eyes glaze over somewhere around chapter 4 or 5, so really I am sorry for the long post.  Also, we found a really good deal on K-cups at a local amish bent and dent store, and let me tell you, dark roast definitely has MORE caffein and I should NOT have a cup in the afternoon.


So to summarize, Yes, we have done the FPU class and, Yes, it worked great for us and I think you should do it!


Good Luck!



post #8 of 14

I agree, unless your DH is the kind of guy who enjoys talking things out amongst others, I'd skip the class. The book will tell you what you need to do.  One complaint I have heard about the course is that there will be people there of many different income levels. So some may find goals easy to meet and others may struggle to have anything left over after paying the basics.

post #9 of 14
Originally Posted by jennlyn View Post

I agree, unless your DH is the kind of guy who enjoys talking things out amongst others, I'd skip the class. The book will tell you what you need to do.  One complaint I have heard about the course is that there will be people there of many different income levels. So some may find goals easy to meet and others may struggle to have anything left over after paying the basics.

I had a different experience.  I have three or four of Dave's books and I found tons of new stuff or expounded stuff in the class.  Even without that, the discussion period is the part the we found the most valuable.  I can't speak for other classes, but all  the ones that we attended absolutely had a broad range of incomes, family situations, etc and it was a huge benefit to the experience, not a drawback.  Each time we found that no matter how much, or how little, there was never "enough money".  Yes, you can learn everything you need to know from the book, but you already know everything you need to know.  Bare knowledge is not the answer, and ignorance is not the problem.  The class shows you how to apply common sense to get to where you want to be.  The group helps you sort out and apply the concepts.


We thought we didn't need any help for years, and we continued in the wrong direction even though we "knew" the right stuff to do.


The class has been worth many times the price to our marriage, our family, and our finances!  The books really had negligible impact compared to the class experience.


For me, it's like when I was trying to learn to play guitar.  I spent months with books, videos and software.  I learned tons of stuff, but didn't learn how to play guitar.  After sitting for just an hour with a friend who knew how to play guitar, I learned how to practically apply the stuff that I learned, and I learned far more new stuff than I had learned to that point on my own.  People actually need interaction with other people.  There are so many "AHA!" moments that you can't get without help from others.


Your original question was also for opinions from people experienced with the class.  Our experiences are typical of those that we've met who thought they needed a better plan and took the class.  At some point, you need to say, "If I keep doing what I've been doing, I'm going to keep getting what I've been getting."  For me, that meant reaching out and taking a class.


post #10 of 14

My husband would never read a book would occasionally take a class with me.  Also since the classes are expensive your husband might feel more obligated to stick with the program.

post #11 of 14

welcome to MDC AZStayathomedad

post #12 of 14
Thread Starter 

Well, dh started the class.  One week down.  He really liked it.  He did his homework.  I about fell over when he read the chapters.  Most of the class is couples, but since we have little children, I can't go, but it's fine bc I will follow his lead on the budget.  He did say Dave was funny and kept his attention. We don't have Dave on the radio here in our area, so this was his first exposure. 

post #13 of 14

That is awesome that things are going good.  I have done some of DR ideas but never really followed through with them.  I have my income/outgo on an excel spread sheet and I track what is going out.  But I never really "budgeted" until I started looking at the program "You Need a Budget" or YNAB.  I like it so far.  I have been using it for about 2 weeks.  Dh sold his truck so that we could pay off all of our credit cards so right now we only have our mortgage and basic living.  I am a SAHM because 1. I cannot find a job that pays more than babysitting for my son due to the are we live in and 2. I really am enjoying being with him all day. 


Good luck!


post #14 of 14

That's great that he's enjoying the course, but you need to at least listen to the cd's of the course that came along with the packet.  Keep up to speed with him so that you can share in the enthusiasm.  Each time we went through, there was childcare offered as part of the arrangement.  I think it worked out to $3 per session being our share of the cost.


I enthusiastically second the suggestion of YNAB. I also have it on my phone, and my wife has it on her ipod.  It allows you to have such easy access to all your budget info, and it's so easy to use.  It took a bit for us to get to the point where we were using this months money for next months expenses, but now we couldn't think of doing it any other way!  And Jesse Mechum, the author of the software, seems like a really great, REAL guy.


Good luck, and try to keep the enthusiasm going!  There's a real reason why the course is meant for couples, try to get a sitter or make arrangements for as many classes as you can.  One of our classes didn't have enough kids for "professional" childcare, so one of the teenage kids of a family came in and watched the younger kids in another room for a few bucks a week.  Think creatively. Our marriage got so much stronger for going through the course together.


Good luck, and keep working together!

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