Dave Ramsey’s 7 Baby Steps That Will Change Your Life

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Dave Ramsey is a personal finance expert. He has his own website DaveRamsey.com and radio show ‘The Dave Ramsey Show’.

What’s different about Dave is that he isn’t an expert that tells you how to get rich quick, but simply how to eventually become financially free. Dave has made mistakes in his life just like you and me.  In fact, at one point he was in a whole lot of debt, but recovered and is now financially at peace.  Now he makes his living by sharing what he learned from experience.

Here are Dave Ramsey’s 7 Baby Steps to Begin Your Journey to Financial Peace:

  1. $1,000 to start an Emergency Fund
  2. Pay off all debt using the Debt Snowball
  3. 3 to 6 months of expenses in savings
  4. Invest 15% of household income into Roth IRAs and pre-tax retirement
  5. College funding for children
  6. Pay off home early
  7. Build wealth and give!
    Invest in mutual funds and real estate

Printable version can be found here

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Programs to Help You Create a Budget

calcDon’t spend more than you make! This very simple concept is overlooked in our society by a lot of people. This is why debt happens; people spend more money than they earn.

The first step you need to take to start saving and/or pay off debt is to create a budget.

A budget is good for many reasons:

  1. Shows how much money you have
  2. Shows how much money is being spent
  3. Shows what its being spent on
  4. Helps you to control spending
  5. Helps you find extra money

There are many, many software programs available for personal budgeting. Some of them are online-based, which means you need an internet connection to use them. A benefit to having an online budget is you can check your finances and budget anywhere that has an internet connection.

Others are downloaded and used offline. The benefits for an offline budget is you can access it if you don’t have an internet connection and your information is stored on your computer, not on a server.

Here is a list of FREE programs and tools that will help you get started with making your budget:

Excel Budget Planner – This is a very detailed Excel spreadsheet that is downloaded on to your computer and used offline.

Printable Budget Worksheet – Print it out and fill it in the old-fashioned way, with a pen or pencil.

Mint.com – Online budgeting program that automatically imports bank transactions from your bank accounts.

Quicken Online – Online budgeting program that automatically imports bank transactions from your bank, but also gives you the control to manually enter transactions.

SimpleD Budget – Offline budget software

AceMoney Lite – Downloadable budget software that works offline but you can download and import transactions from your bank online.

For a bigger list of Budgeting Programs click here.

Once you set up your budget, STICK TO IT! This is the biggest problem people run in to, I know from personal experience. The difference in the amount I spend when I’m sticking to my budget and when I’m not is incredible. Stick to your budget!