Friday, December 19, 2014

Extravagant giving, foolish spending?

Author and radio talk show host Dave Ramsey.
Author and radio talk show host Dave Ramsey.

Dear Dave,

My husband and I are debt-free, and we have several hundred thousand dollars in savings. We pay for our children and grandchildren to visit during Christmas each year, but my mother thinks this is foolish spending. What do you think?

-Linda

Dear Linda,

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  • I'm sure your mom loves you guys a lot, but she's wrong twice on this one. First, she should mind her own business. Second, you guys have obviously worked hard and been extremely smart and disciplined with your finances. For someone in your situation, bringing your family together for one of the most important days of the year isn't foolish on any level. I think it's awful that you're even having this conversation with her.

    One of my great dreams years ago was to have the ability to do things like that for my family. When I was 22, I worked for a real estate guy who would bring his entire family in from all over the country once a year to go skiing for a week. He and his wife would pay for everything. They would rent a nice chalet, and spend that time having fun as a family and growing closer together. I sort of borrowed that idea a while back. Once a year we'll take all our kids and their spouses on a nice vacation. We pay for everything, and it's just one of our gifts to them because we love them.

    So, I think your mom is completely wrong. There are three things you can do with money: spend, save and give. Trust me, giving is the most fun of all!

    -Dave

    Dave Ramsey is America's trusted voice on money and business. He's authored four New York Times best-selling books: Financial Peace, More Than Enough, The Total Money Makeover and EntreLeadership. His newest book, written with his daughter Rachel Cruze, is titled Smart Money Smart Kids. It will be released April 22nd. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 6 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at daveramsey.com.

    Dave Ramsey Syndicated Columnist
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