Today I’d like to share a story involving Dave Ramsey, a man whose teachings made a massive impact on my life and team.
I first saw Dave Ramsey speak live years ago at the North Charleston Coliseum. I remember seeing him up on stage and hearing him say, “The American Way is to have credit card debt, car payments, massive house payments, to live a lifestyle beyond what you can afford—and to live paycheck to paycheck. At the time, my wife Katie and I were living paycheck to paycheck.”
At the Coliseum, I recall him putting giant chains all over his body and saying that every piece of debt is another chain. Then he described his ‘debt snowball’ method—paying off your smallest debt first, then using that money to pay off the next smallest one. If you continue to do this over time, you can eventually become debt-free. At the end, he dropped all the chains off his body.
That speech moved me so much that we went home that night all fired up I grabbed a pair of scissors and all our credits and proceeded to cut them up. We owed thousands on credit cards, but after using Dave Ramsey’s debt snowball method, we successfully got rid of a lot of our debt. We paid off both our cars and then we had more money available every single month.
Seeing Dave speak was an amazing experience for us, and it saved our company. Most people don’t know this, but back in 2012 when we opened up Matt O’Neill Real Estate, we had been under-paying payroll taxes for many years unbeknownst to us. We eventually got hit with a $180,000 tax bill! Of course, we didn’t have that kind of money lying around, but because of Dave Ramsey’s education prior to that happening, we were able to shed a lot of our debt and get a loan to pay off the tax bill, saving the company and the jobs of all those who worked here. His teachings helped us pave the path to where we are today.
Having the opportunity to meet with Dave and telling him the impact that he’s had on our company and the world was just incredible. If you’re not familiar with his work and you think that a debt-free life sounds far fetched, I highly recommend that you check out his radio show on 94.3 WSC as well as his book, “Financial Peace.” It will change your life like it did mine.
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We’d love to help you with your real estate needs.
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