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Topic: Best book for paying off debt

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Subject: Best book for paying off debt
Date Posted: 12/21/2008 3:08 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2005
Posts: 446
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I love my internship and it has turned into a permanent position. However, working for pennies for 10 months has left me with some credit card debt that I would like to blast through in the next year.

What book would you recommend? I have a fairly good idea of what I need to do and am optimistic that I can have it all paid off by January 1st, 2010 but I am sure there are ideas that I have not thought of.

Subject: Total Money Makeover
Date Posted: 12/21/2008 7:36 PM ET
Member Since: 12/18/2008
Posts: 1
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I highly recommend the Total Money Makeover, by Dave Ramsey.  His talk show on the radio & on TV give some of the real life applications of his concepts, but seeing them on paper is great to get the whole picture. Its an easy read.

Basically he explains that you need an emergency fund to start, then beging paying off all your credit cards one by one, smallest first to get the momentum going.   Its a mix of practical ideas & success stories to get you ready & able to see the reality that the finish line is there, if not easy to see.  I'm working on paying off my debt now & the potential of changing jobs soon worries me.  He makes it feel realistic.

Good luck in finding what works for you!  (& congrats on the internship, hope a raise soon follows!)


Date Posted: 12/22/2008 7:42 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2007
Posts: 594
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I'll 2nd the Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey.  You can also listen to him online at daveramsey.com.  Also check out the forums on llnoe.com

Date Posted: 12/23/2008 10:10 AM ET
Member Since: 9/26/2008
Posts: 6
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I was going to suggest Dave Ramsey's book too.  It is a great way to get organized and pay debt off.

Date Posted: 12/23/2008 10:26 AM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2005
Posts: 10,741
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Free and Clear by Howard Dayton is also good. Plus the Crown Money Map at www.crown.org.

Date Posted: 12/23/2008 4:42 PM ET
Member Since: 12/18/2007
Posts: 6
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Another vote for Dave Ramsey!! 


He did have his books on sale for $10 on his website (if you want to buy new).

Date Posted: 12/27/2008 11:25 AM ET
Member Since: 7/22/2006
Posts: 2
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Another vote for Dave Ramsey!

Date Posted: 12/27/2008 5:41 PM ET
Member Since: 1/29/2006
Posts: 706
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I also love Dave Ramsey's book.   And there is another one which has helped me an aful lot here lately:   How to Get out of Debt, Stay out of Debt & Live prosperously (based on the proven principles and techniques of debtors anonymous).    by Jerrold Mundis.

He has some great ideas and I have done better and better since taking some of his suggestions.

Subject: Best debt reduction book
Date Posted: 12/31/2008 11:00 AM ET
Member Since: 12/31/2005
Posts: 12
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My favorite is less known than Dave R: How to Get out of Debt, Stay out of Debt, and Live Prosperously. Best of all, I just checked and it's available on PBS! 


I will be reviewing this on my new blog soon. Check out my frugality blog: www.frugalscholar.blogspot.com


Good luck!



Date Posted: 1/2/2009 10:02 AM ET
Member Since: 6/21/2007
Posts: 2,015
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Last Edited on: 2/3/15 1:55 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 1/2/2009 10:14 AM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2006
Posts: 14,634
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I read a book a while back called 'girl get your money straight'..not sure how 'up to date' it is but it was an overall nice read woman to woman so to speak. not sure if it dealt specifically with how to get out of debt...for me I just try not to spend much and pay the credit cards first then work on saving...I also like the 'for dummies'b ooks by eric tyson though his personal finance for dummies is mainly pay it off then save save save without so many tips as 'how' to do so...

Date Posted: 1/6/2009 7:04 AM ET
Member Since: 9/29/2007
Posts: 1
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I havent read the other suggested books here, but Dave Ramsey's "Total Money Makeover" is very good. We applied his suggestions and have been living debt free for many years. It's not hard to do.

You can watch Dave's show on Hulu.com


Last Edited on: 1/6/09 7:06 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Subject: Dave Ramsey
Date Posted: 1/18/2009 8:43 PM ET
Member Since: 2/15/2006
Posts: 214
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Dave Ramsey and his Financial Peace University are good.

He talks about the need to save, to get out of debt. Starting the process, you need a Emergency Fund: a decent amount of money to use for emeergencies, such as the car breaking down. Oh! Keep track of what you spend where, to help you deternmine where you can cut back. Set up a simple budget and keep to it. Include a savings category, for the EF. Use the envelope system, and when the envelope for that area, such as eating out, is empty, don't do it any more that pay period. Take your debts and pay as much as you can on the smallest, while paying the minimum on the others. Then, when the first is payed off, add that amount to what you are paying on what is now the smallest, and pay it off as soon as possible. Continue this all the way up, remembering to put money in savings. This is using the Snowball effect.

Dave does talk about ways to save money, to earn extra money to pay off bills, how to not get bills to begin with (cut up your credit cards!), and so on.

I checked the books out from the library, and I was able to get alot of the info he talked about without having to spend money to buy the books. I then got the books here, for my family to reaad. THey didn't, they refused to, and I have since placed them back in the system. Yet, I've been able to somewhat get my family to do the process. We have been trying to keep track of what we spend,. although we don't yet have a budget. We have paid off all bills except the mortgage. Don't worry - it's big a bad and scarey :-/ We are also using some of his ideas for saving money/not spending money/etc. We aren't using the envelope system, as we have a "thief" in the house, who already took my starting EF, but we are working on getting out of debt.

THere are some other books that are similar, I just don't know the names.

Date Posted: 1/29/2009 3:37 PM ET
Member Since: 4/3/2007
Posts: 699
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I'm just agreeing with the Dave Ramsey recommendations.  He has a wide variety of good resources.   One of his "specials" is a set specifically for recent graduates.  I got it for my daughter and she really likes it.  

Date Posted: 1/29/2009 8:25 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 798
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It's not a book, but check out the Women In Red, a community where women are paying off debt & saving money. The journalist who heads the whole thing is excellent :)


Subject: tightwad gazette
Date Posted: 11/17/2011 9:42 AM ET
Member Since: 3/15/2006
Posts: 119
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1000s of ways to save on groceries & things you think you cannot do without  allows you more capital to put towards Dave Ramsey or Larry Burkette or whoevers plan,available on swap & amazon, even the older editions pay for themselves