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The Total Money Makeover

A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness
Written by: Dave Ramsey
Narrated by: Dave Ramsey
Length: 3 hrs and 41 mins
5 out of 5 stars (202 ratings)
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Publisher's Summary

Okay, folks, do you want to turn those fat and flabby expenses into a well-toned budget? Do you want to transform your sad and skinny little bank account into a bulked-up cash machine? Then get with the program, people. There's one sure way to whip your finances into shape, and that's with The Total Money Makeover. It's the simplest, most straight-forward game plan for completely making over your money habits. And it's based on results, not pie-in-the-sky fantasies.

Where Financial Peace gave you the solid saving and investing principles, this book puts those principles into practice. You'll be exercising your financial strength every day and quickly freeing yourself of worry, stress, and debt. And that's a beautiful feeling.

©2003 Dave Ramsey (P)2003 Thomas Nelson Publishers

What the critics say

"The strength of this book is that it is a straightforward motivational tool. He provides the brutally direct truth about the hard work it takes to become free of debt, and his directness is a great part of the book's charm." (Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Changed my life

First read book 3 years ago. Eversince i have paid off car and credit cards worth 60K ... After also emegency funds savings and investing i will be paying off my mortgage in 4 years.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Great! funny! and brutally honest

I love dave. he is very brutally honest but not in an offensive way. makes total sense and easy to follow plan.

I'm excited to get started on my money makeover.

I've done it for years paying of debt. then life happens and end up back where I started

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Great teaching, highly recommended.

I wish I could have received these teachings 30 years ago. But I thank God I got them now.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

This audio book Is a game changer

This is a great audio book and it is very real and motivating. it gives you a plan with a light at the end of the tunnel.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Good behavior modifications based on biblical prin

worth to buy it.. will never regret but will be thankful to God and Dave.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Buy the BOOK!

I never have time for reading so I ended up buying this book on audio. The problem with this is that it does not come with a PDF of the extra pages. It is a REALLY GOOD LISTEN, and has fantastic advice! But I ended up buying the book as well so I could have the extra pages that you don't get when listening to this book.

May I suggest to the audio team to add a pdf to this download? Please?

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Know how to budget!

i liked this book but because it's a bit older the facts about mutual funds are outdated. The principal of the book though is still valid. Even if it isn't for everyone it certainly has me thinking of how i want my future to be. i would recommend this book to people starting out but that have some knowledge of how to do a budget. if you have never made a pen to paper budget you should probably start there.

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Very motivational

I personally feel this book is really helpful even for people who do not have a debt. It gives you an opportunity to learn different aspect of wealth. Don’t just make make but be stress free and be a give as well. We came empty in this world and we are gonna leave empty with all the wealth behind.

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Opened my eyes to the dangers of debt.

Live like no one else, so later you can live like no one else! Great book on personal finances, live and self control. Really enjoyed it. A simple plan, not easy but simple. Live the fact that Dave is the one who narrate the book which for people like me whk follow his show find ot very entertaining. If you are struggling with debt please do yourself a favor and get this book!

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Simply amazing

thank you Dave. I would begin my journey today. Knowledge is truely power. thanks again.

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  • Alexandra
  • 2014-02-11

This guy makes sense

I have business degrees from Wharton (BS) and Stanford (MBA), but like most Americans from middle class backgrounds, I never got much training in personal finance and always felt bewildered by it. I recently listed to The Total Money Makeover for the third time and it clicked. The first two times, I was still in school and had no income, so felt powerless to act on its lessons. Now, with a steady income (and some monstrous student loans) the lessons are relevant, actionable, and empowering.

Before, I always felt at a loss when it came to budgeting. After re-listening to The Total Money Makeover, I got a second savings account to hold my emergency fund and long-term savings, making it easier to separate between current accounts and short-term savings. Now, I have an Excel spreadsheet with a separate column for each upcoming pay check. I know how much of each paycheck will get immediately transferred into long-term savings (e.g. for a wedding in the fall), how much will go to short-term savings (e.g. for next month's rent), and how much disposable income I have in my current checking account.

Furthermore, I have a better plan for paying down my debts. If I were to approach this according to the pure net present value financial principles taught in school, I would start with my big student loan (highest interest rate), then my smaller student loan, then my car loan (lowest interest rate). After listening to Ramsey, I'm going to do it in the opposite order. Although that will cost me some in NPV, it means I can pay off my car loan in a few months (freeing up $250 per month in cash flow), and can pay off my smaller student loan in a few years. My larger student loan is the size and duration of a mortgage, and I'll treat it like it's one. If I tried to pay it off first, I wouldn't see any impact on my cash flow for probably 14 years, making it discouraging to try to find extra dollars to put towards paying down debt. Trying this the Ramsey way, I already feel like I'm making progress and am motivated to do more.

Dave Ramsey is an inspiring speaker. Although his message may come across as simple, in my opinion it does a far better job taking into account human nature than any of the sophisticated financial and economic models I spent so much money learning. I can't recommend this book enough.

217 of 228 people found this review helpful

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  • Robert
  • 2012-07-15

Short and Easy Steps

Where does The Total Money Makeover rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I would give a B-. Gets to the point, gives good metaphors and easy to follow.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Total Money Makeover?

Metaphors used to describe steps or missteps are very memorable and applicable to most people.

What about Dave Ramsey’s performance did you like?

Voice and diction were probably best compared to what I have listened. Would expect good performance from professional speaker. Have heard some "funny" start/stops or paragraph breaks on other books. Probably start of new session or after break. Did not hear in Ramsey's performance, however this book is shorter than most. 3+ hours

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

No crying, definitely a few laughs. Mostly found myself quoting excerpts to others.

Any additional comments?

Religious overtones and bible quotes throughout book. However quotes in nature of "Saving" money and neither borrowing or lending; giving money OK. People describe me as Agnostic and this did not bother me. All in all good book, great performance. Enjoy

62 of 68 people found this review helpful

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  • BushidoBryan
  • 2012-07-16

maybe the best self help book ever

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I have. I am a financial advisor and every high school kid, anyone who wants to be out of debt, and anyone without 6 months savings should read this book. It teaches real money mangement.

What did you like best about this story?

The step by step process to financial stability.

What about Dave Ramsey’s performance did you like?

He is truly passionate about what he does and is a motivating leader. I do not always agree with him, but he is right when it comes to managing money.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes.

Any additional comments?

this is a must read and top ten book of all time for me.

24 of 26 people found this review helpful

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  • Leala
  • 2017-04-02

Information available online

Total Money Makeover doesn't give any information that isn't already available on Ramsey's website. it just adds anecdotes about people succeeding with the method.

25 of 28 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2012-04-23

Thank you

What made the experience of listening to The Total Money Makeover the most enjoyable?

I appreciate the insight offered in this book. The steps outlined are easy to understand. The scenarios offered were helpful.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • K. More
  • 2017-05-31

Probably good for beginners

The book is very basic and for beginners who are in high debt. Looking at the rating I was expecting some more knowledge out of it. Also the authors tone/pitch if his voice is very fluctuating.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

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  • Jason
  • 2012-05-25

Life changing!!!!

Listened 10 times an will listen again and again in future and so will you!!!

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Matthew
  • 2005-03-25

Brash? Yes. Honest? Absolutely.

Some people have remarked that they don't like the tone of this book. If the author seems a bit "brash", it's only because he's attempting to highlight the level of insanity with which most people approach personal finance. Take a look around you. The guy you work with who just bought a new Hummer. Your sisters' friend who just moved into a $800,000 home. They must be doing great, right? WRONG.

The truth is, they're most likely broke. They're high-income, low-net-worth people who are teetering on the edge of complete financial ruin. Rich people, don't do these things!! Well, that is unless they're really really rich.

This book will change the way you think about money. When I see the guy in the new Mercedes now, I think, "Man, that guy has nothing in the bank". This book will make you proud of your old jalopy. After all, it's better to ACTUALLY BE RICH.

Most Americans WISH for financial security and DO everything they can to make sure it NEVER happens. I think this is a level of insanity that warrants a brash tone.

If your ready to get real about your finances, this is the only book you need to read.

67 of 83 people found this review helpful

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  • avoidthelloyd
  • 2011-12-30

Very Motivational...

Even if you might not adhere to Dave's plan exactly, the idea of slavery to debt and freedom from it are very motivational. I feel like the examples he uses are real life people and he doesn't use terms or language that is reserved for finance professionals. It really is a good, practical plan for getting out of debt via hard work and perseverance. Even though his plan is not the best "mathematically", the point of getting some quick wins by paying off the lowest balance without regard to interest rate is a legitimate point. Honestly, you can hear most of the content of this book in his daily podcasts. I do recommend this book to people.

33 of 42 people found this review helpful

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  • Christopher Collett
  • 2009-05-23

Very good, wish it was available unabridged.

This book is for those who realize that there is no "magic" in getting on top of finances. It is very practical in its approach. I'm done with the books, theories, and thinking that suggest that there are quick fixes to wealth. God, and much less, "the Universe" will not save you from your financial woes. Only hard work, serious budgeting, and self-control will.

14 of 18 people found this review helpful

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  • Ayanful Fred Kwame
  • 2018-03-08

Pas complet

Pour des raisons que j’ignore ce livre est la version super allégée du livre u même titre.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • jina
  • 2018-05-26

Excellent

Excellent livre.Je recommande à toute personne qui souhaite sortir des problèmes financiers. vous ne regretterez pas votre achat.

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  • Jalil H.
  • 2018-05-07

Helps clearing/ understanding money problems

Helps clearing/ understanding money problems
You should give it a read .
Dave is good guy ! You can trust him (15 words done )

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  • dyanna7
  • 2017-09-15

Très bon livre

Narré par Dave lui même ! Excellent guide sur comment gérer une vie financière, quoi faire avec l'argent et comment vivre une vie financière en paix !