Saturday, January 28, 2012

"Debt Free for Life" by David Bach - Book Review

Debt Free for Life: The Finish-Rich Plan for Financial Freedom provides a series of actionable steps for debtors to reclaim their finances by eliminating their debt, in addition to conveying a wealth of information about common forms of debt. I prefer to write book reviews from an objective and factual standpoint, but this book has done so much for me personally that this review may inevitably sound like a testimonial.

In Debt Free for Life, author David Bach makes it clear that there is no "magic pill" to take away consumer debt, student debt, mortgages, auto loans or any debt that causes people to struggle. He takes a hard-nosed approach to laying out the facts in a clear and concise manner, showing that debt can only be eliminated through proper planning, hard work and dedication. However, in addition to being realistic about the difficulty of working one's way out of debt, Bach provides a clear roadmap to success, guiding readers through the process of creating a custom-tailored plan to systematically reduce their debt while avoiding unnecessary expenses.

The first step to financial freedom presented in Debt Free for Life is to truly know your enemy, which means knowing (and writing down) everything about your debt. After reading the early chapters, I created a spreadsheet laying out exactly who I owe money to, the exact balance of each debt, the individual interest rates and minimum payments, as well as creating a schedule of due dates to ensure I am no longer hit with late-payment penalties. After guiding readers through this exercise, author Bach outlines his famous system for creating a plan to eliminate one debt at a time while never falling behind on any others.

In addition to the action steps presented in Debt Free for Life, David Bach calls upon his years of experience as a debt coach and author of such titles as The Automatic Millionaire and Start Late, Finish Rich to explain the intricate details of the most common forms of debt, including the advantages and disadvantages of each and common pitfalls experienced by debtors in each area. After finishing this book, I understand my debt on a fundamental level, and I can personally attest to the power of Bach's DOLP method of debt-reduction, as I'm watching my own debts shrink each month without being replaced by new ones.

“What can be added to the happiness of a man who is in health, out of debt, and has a clear conscience?”
-Adam Smith

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