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September 29 2006
I do not have a sucess story yet but just wait I will one day. I read your article on Yahoo Finance today, Sept. 14th, 2006. The 5 steps I read fit my horrible living situation with my job to a T!! I am only now reading your site and trying to learn how I should go about changing my life. I just really want to thank you for opening my eyes. Don't know how many people say things like that but Thank you so much for saving my life..

- Kevin Meyer
South Carolina


September 29 2006
Hey David.

I just completed and started your book last night. I couldn't put it down! Because I'm not the age of your average reader, the information didn't change my life... yet. Why? I'm only 18 years-old.

After graduating high school last June I started a career as a performer. I had a really successful summer and put away money basically because I was making way more then I could spend. It just happened to slowly pile. However as my expenses increase I will no longer have this luxury and therefore am grateful for the information in "The Automatic Millionaire".

Due to my age I've decided to invest in my future by putting away 10% for a condo instead of investing directly into a retirement.

Your book taught me more about finances in the last five hours than high school taught me about the subject in the last 5 years.

Thanks Again!

- Daniel Zindler
Vancouver, Canada


September 29 2006
I was in USA for three weeks and on my way back home(at Raleigh/Durham airport) I decided to buy a book to read on my long way back home to Africa (Malawi). I picked Smart Somen Finish Rich as I have always wanted to be more organised in my finances. I did not make a mistake! It applies to each end everyone and I could relate with the book straight away. I have finished reading it and have already made some important decisions in my life such as: increasing my pension contributions and buying a disability insurance cover. I have re-organised my finances to start saving for our two children who are already in high school and to save for my dreams. All over a sudden I have the feeling of being financially secure despite not having saved much. Its the belief that I have in my future that is making all the difference!

I have to admit that some of the sections in the book do not apply to my country as they are USA specific but that has not stopped me from doing the things that I can do here. I would like to share this knowledge with my friends and relatives, but to my disappointment, I am not able to get these books in our bookshops here. I will however try to find means to get them and share so that more women can benefit.

- Estelle Nuka
Malawi, Africa


September 29 2006
I was browsing in the local Staples and your book jumped out among several other financial advice books.

I could see leafing through it how you can get to the simple yet important issues that resonate with the reasons for procrastination and ways to overcome them.

Before I saw your book (I didn't know about your TV appearances as I don't have a TV)I had done an assessment of how much I spend. I put my one and only debit card in the file drawer, withdrew the amount of cash I figured I needed for the month. I put the weeks allowance for almost everything in envelopes: grocery, gas, household, meals out and movies, etc. It helps and I was surprised that you recommend this. It's back to basics. Your "Smart Women Finish Rich" is exactly what I needed to fine tune my efforts and to keep me on track and motivated, with a plan. It has especially helped me organize my important papers. That was worth the price of the book 100 times over. I feel that I can really master the complicated world of finances with your help. Your instructions on how to file are priceless. I've never worked in an office or had any experience filing. When I would try organizing things my mind would go in 20 directions and I would get so confused I'd give up in a worse mess than I started with. Now all the papers I need to work with to help me control that part of my life are where I can easily find them and I can work with them. You can't imagine what a pleasure it is to have this much control in an area that was total confusion.

Thank you very much for you help.
By-the-way, I'm 74 y.young and going strong. I don't have a picture of myself yet but will get one.

- Maria Darlington

September 29 2006
I have read your book, "Start Late, Finish Rich" and have been diligently trying to reduce my "Latte Factor" over the last 6 months. In one of your recent e-newsletters, you had an article in there on 10 ways to reduce your car insurance. Well, I decided to follow the tip on shopping on-line and comparing the rates of several companies - to my surprise, I not only was I able to reduce my monthly payments by $100 per month, but I actually got double the coverage than what I previously had! I was so surprise by the rate quote I received from Progressive. com compared to other companies, I call them twice just to confirm that what I was reading was true! Not only were their rates very competitive but their customer service was superb! Your newsletter came right in time, because I did not know I how I could reduce my monthly expenses no more than I already had. Thank you for providing your readers with practical advice they can use to meet their financial goals!

Sincerely,

Keisha Cutler

- Keisha Cutler

September 29 2006
Here is a tip that many couples may find useful. Our second car is always a "beater." By this I mean a used car with high milage that costs little enough (in my case, less than $1500) to justify not carrying collision insurance. This results in an insurance cost of less than $40 per month and NO CAR PAYMENT. I drive the beater to work and my wife drives the "family car," currently a Chevy Equinox. The money we save by not having a second car payment and the corresponding high insurance payment goes into our vacation fund (we put away $300 a month this way - certainly a conservative figure.) By adding the money we would normally spend during the time we are on vacation (food, fuel, entertainment, etc.) we can spend $5000 per year on vacation without incurring any additional debt (we DON'T borrow money for vacation expenses.) We have been able to take 3 to 5 weeks of vacation each year for the last 30+ years using this method.

- John Geda

September 28 2006
Hi all,

I thought I would share our story/plan for Starting late, In Debt and finishing rich.

Me and my wife in the last year and a half have went from $45,000 in Credit Card and consumer debt to investing to now investing in $2500/month in our Roth and 401K.

We setup a weekly spend plan with our weekly reoccurring expenses at the top of the spreadsheet and monthly expenses divided up as equally as we could for our two week pay cycle. Our columns would be like- Food, Gas, Church, Utilities, Car Insurance, Phone etc. Each budget item was somewhat higher than expected so that at the end of each week we totaled up any savings to be added to our debt snowball.

Starting in December of 2004 our Snowball was only around $900 however, we kept rewarding our snowball anytime the gas, food utilities would come in lower than budgeted. This way each week was not something that we dreaded so much it was a reward for good behavior.

Long story short, as the Credit cards fell and the spending below our means increased by the time we paid of this 45K of debt our snowball grew to $2600/month.

Here is what we did in May with our Debt repayment snowball. We wanted to give most of it two our retirements savings and a portion of it to start paying of our 30K HELOC. To start with we divided the budget up $1000/month for HELOC, $800/month Roth and $800/month 401K.

We did not want to just stop there. What we have done is keep track of how much our monthly expenses decrease and apply that budget savings to increasing our 401K, each time we find another 1% of savings we increase our 401K by a percent. Actually I only need to find around 0.8% from our spending to give us a full 1% pretax savings.

We now stand at retirement savings of $2500/month or around 30K/year. I wanted to share a point that controlling spending is not only a good get out of debt tool. We are finding that it’s a great way to find more money relatively painless for enhancing retirement funding.

Food for thought, Instead of waiting around for a pay increase to bump up savings. Looking for the cash 1% at a time is far less difficult. Oh and yes we do everything automatic. We are in our mid forties and In December 2004 we had only 15K in retirement funds, Now we have 37K even if we were so just stay at 30K/year retirement savings we should be in great shape by retirement.

We will continue to work down our expenses and go after the first mortgage as soon as the HELOC is gone, so that we can have a good retirement and be debt free around the same time.

Thanks Dave Bach for your great books, We are now saving above 25% of our income, as long as we keep lowing our expense we will keep splitting the savings between debt and savings 1% at a time.

Roy

- Roy Rose

September 28 2006
not really a success story but just a thank you....I just began a real estate salesperson career and was given "Automatic Millionaire Homeowner" by the in-house broker. I shelved it for the meantime....then, I saw today's featured article on the Yahoo homepage "One Loss Shouldn't Lead to Another." That article spoke to me because I am a year into being divorced then I realized it is from the same author who's book is on my shelf! Of course that prompts me to "un-shelf" it and read it! But about the article...thank you so much for acknowledging what I was feeling, confused and scared about finances. I put my home on the market immediately and spent money foolishly. I was in no state to be making such decisions and am still a year later, traumatized and apprehensive. Thank you for speaking to me (and countless others.) This also got your book off my shelf and great recommendations will follow to my clients!

- Denise Josue

September 28 2006
Dear David,
A couple of years ago after one year of marriage I noticed that my husband and I had very different thoughts and values about finances. I got your smart couples finish rich book. My values were for a happy marriage, financial security and peace of mind. I started saving 10% in my 401k and got a raise at work. I also went back to school. I really curbed my latte factor as well. My husbands only goal was to buy a kayak on my credit card and continue to buy 3 extra large coffees and a $7 luch everyday. We are now divorced, I got your smart women finish rich book and I'm going to see a finacial planner this week. It helped to open my eyes to what a destructive relationship we really had, I am so much happier now. I am greatful to people like yourself who care enough to help other succeed.
-AnnMarie Lally

- AnnMarie Lally

September 28 2006
Hi David, I am new to your series and just picked up "The Automatic Millionaire Homeowner". I started with "Smart Women Finish Rich" and loved it. I felt compeled to share how my husband and I were able to buy our first house (and before we even knew about the Latte Factor!). When we first started dating I was renting a one bedroom apartment in Fremont. We determined it wasn't enough room so we found a house to rent on the other side of town. We signed a two year lease which locked us into a "fixed" payment. Once the lease was up the landlord decided we had to renew every year with of course an increase in rent. Speaking with family and friends, who were home owners, we realized our rent was that of most mortgages ($1850 a month at the time). Three years of living in the house we had gotten married. I was determined to buy after calculating what we had given in rent so we took on a roommate. We had already been making the rent payment so I made their payment our automatic savings. I deposited it into my credit union account that had great interest rates and two years later we were able to buy our first house in Brentwood (No Cal). And our mortgage payment was lower than our rent! This was five years ago. Taking on a roommate was the hardest two years of our relationship mainly over the lack of privacy but looking back, it was worth it. We are now looking to purchase our second property and have turned to your books for guidence. I am so thankful for finding your series. I didn't realize I was doing the right thing. It is becoming so clear now. I can't read them fast enough. Keep them coming!

- Rebecca Wheatley

September 8 2006
Dave,
We're a moderate success story thus far. We have been AUTOMATIC since January 2006 and we have reached our savings goals "effortlessly" without much thought. We're now reading the "Automatic Millionaire Homeowner" edition. We're excited to buy another property soon! Although we feel we're starting a little late, your advice has inspired us to get started. Ironically, our parents have created wealth just like you described. So we know what you describe is on the $$$$. We attached a picture of our newborn Son because he is our inspiration to become Automatic Millionaires. This time next year, we will own our investment proprerty! Thanks for your advice.

- Fred Johnson

September 8 2006
Daivd, I was one of those women who were considered smart, but in reality I wasn't very smart at all.. I was a stay-at-home Mom and was married 11 years to a younger man whom I totally depended on to manage our finances, and in the end I was left with a business/personal bankruptcy in my name only, and 2 little kids to take care of... So at age 40 I was starting all over again... Once I got over the self loathing & pity stage, I vowed to myself that I would learn from this, and that I would never make this mistake again. Instead, I would educate myself financially as my ex did with his MBA... So I started with your book, "Smart Women Finish Rich". From there I took community college courses in Simply Accounting & Basic Bookkeeping as you suggested. To this day I still dislike paper work, but I do it because I know that to let anyone else manage my money 100% is a recipe for disaster... In 3 short years, I got through my bankruptcy, and started to build my own credit back. I bought an older house with a second mortgage of $60K @ 16.9% which I paid off in my first year of working again. And since then, I've bought two more properties for additional revenue. Without your book, I don't know where I would be today? Probably renting, with no plan or dream for the future… Thank you so much for your wisdom and guidance... It's changed my life... Carrie (The picture is of me in front of my brand new 1/2 duplex that I had just bought all on my own with my own credit!)

- Carrie K

September 2 2006
David,

I just don’t know where to start. I read your books “Start Late, Finish Rich” and “ The Automatic Millionaire Homeowner” and they both really opened my eyes. Although we don’t follow your teachings to a tee, we take what we feel will work best for us and use it to its fullest. After reading your book, I set up a bi-weekly payment for our mortgage. It would have been just as easy to make one extra payment a year, but this way we make it automatic. We paid off my wife’s car, and we reinvested the money into a mutual fund. We wanted to “pay ourselves first”. Our hope is to be able to buy a nice used car for cash in a few years and never have a car payment again. Instead of borrowing from a bank, we will “borrow” from ourselves. We have been living a debt free life for the past 3 yrs now. If we could not pay cash for it, then we did not buy it (except real estate). We took your advice and got pre-approved for our dream house; we then took the first step and purchased some land out in the Hill Country. Everywhere we looked they wanted us to purchase and build right away. It was my wife’s idea to look at a place that would let us buy and build on our own timeline. We won’t be building our dream house for another 18-24 months. Since we are debt free, we hope to be able to save a majority of our income to put toward our new house. Our hope is to be able to save enough on our own and have enough equity in our current house to be able to put a big enough down payment so our new house does not cost us too much more then our current mortgage. Something else that we do is using an envelope system. Every week we get paid we put a certain amount in different envelopes (vacation, clothing, etc). By doing this we have been able to pay for our last 2 vacations for cash. One was to Jamaica and the other was on a 7-day cruise to St. Thomas, Puerto Rico and the Bahamas. This picture is from that cruise. Becoming rich is not hard, but it does require some discipline and being able to say no when the kids in us want to say yes.

Alex & Monique Pugh

- Alex Pugh

September 2 2006
I am a 28 year old Canadian and I picked up "Smart Women Finsh Rich" at the library. When I read that women should be saving 12% of what they make, I thought that's impossible! No way can I save that much and have enough left over to live on! I started contributing to my company's group RRSP when I was 22. I didn't really know what an RRSP was, but when I found out that my company would match the amount I put in, I knew I had to take part. How could I pass up free money? Last year, my company switched over to a Pension program. My company puts in 5% of my salary and it comes out of their pocket! Free Money! I am still contributing to my RRSP and topping up my Pension too. I also take part in my employee stock purchase program. I knew I was saving automatically each month, but I didn't know how much. I took a good look at my pay stub and worked out the numbers. I am totally shocked. I am saving 11.9% of what I make and I didn't even notice! The best part is, my employer contributes towards my Pension and Stock plan too, so with what they are putting in, I am saving 18.5% of what I make. I am going to be a Millionaire and I didn't even know it.
I just bought "Start Late, Finish Rich" and I am going to give it to my mom. She is 52 and doesn't have any money saved for retirement, but it is never too late to start!.

Erin Knighton
Canada

- Erin Knighton

July 17 2006
David, Thank you.

You book has change my life. I was on a recent trip to Florida and on the way back while waiting for my flight I stopped at the book store in the terminal to get something to read during my flight. I bought you book and WOW!. I could not stop reading it. Your advice and instructions work, they really work.

Since I have finished your book I have increased my 401K contributions, started paying the more on the credit card with the highest interest rate. Now I can see a reduction in the balances. I have estimated that I will pay these off in 3 years and 9 months. Also, I no longer buy my lunch, I bag it. The only problem- I was not able to get a lower interest rate from any of the credit card companies, however I will keep trying.

I can’t say thank you enough for the inspiration this book has given us.

- Surrendra Gowcaran

July 17 2006
Aloha David,

My name is Kaipo. I'm from Hawaii and I have to tell you thank you for doing what you do. I finally got to see part of your show on Oprah. I have to tell you that your book is the only book that I have read fully from the first to the last page and I am determined to read it again with a notepad to help guide me to financial freedom! Since I have read your book it has lead me to start looking ahead to my future. I started to "Make It Automatic" with my savings and I started my 401k. I am only 21 years old and I am already thinking of purchasing a house in the near future. I would also like to thank my aunt Cherise for advising me to read your book. Everywhere I go I hear talk about saving money and money problems, but now I will help spread the word and advise other people to read your book. Maybe, hopefully, I can get a chance to speak with you someday and share with you what keeps running through my head. Thank You again David and continue doing a great job.

Mahalos

Kaipo

- Kaipo Cabral

July 17 2006
Dear David,

While I don't spend my money at Starbucks, my "latte factor" is going out to eat w/friends, plus my phone and cable bill. I have cut down on my cable service, and I will save $156.00 a year, and I changed my phone package to a simpler plan, I will save $432 a year on that, and I only go out on special occasions, so when I don't eat out, I put that money that I would have spent on eating in an "envelope marked as 'eating out' money; so when I do want to eat out, I'll have it. Another thing, I never valued quarters so much as I do now that I have to do my laundry in the building where I live; so I spend around $7.00 in laundry money around every two weeks, because when I can wash by hand I do, and I drop those quarters in a can. It adds up.

Thanks,

- Mary Alice Medina

July 17 2006
David,

Thanks for helping us to see a light at the end of the tunnel. Although we are still working to pay off our debt, so we started paying ourselves first, and that has really helped. We've been able to put away around $5000 in savings bonds, CDs and savings since 2003. I also started contributing to my retirement account at work in 2004 and last year doubled the amount I contribute. I also had my husband up his percentage. We refinanced our house to get a better fixed interest rate. We are making bi-weekly payments and rounding up to the nearest dollar amount, so our 20 year mortgage will be paid in about 15 years. We've started eating in more, and when we do eat out, we've started ordering water instead of soda. That saves an average of $5-$6 per meal after tax and tip are figured in.
We still have a long way to go to pay off everything, but thanks to you, we are finally starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel-and we're feeling much less stressed as we journey toward that light!

Thanks,

- Dawn Hershberger

July 17 2006
I was browsing in Borders about a month ago and came across your book "The Automatic Millionaire".  Believe it or not, I had never heard of David Bach before that day!  The book looked interesting so I bought it.  As soon as I got home, I started reading and was amazed at the practical advice and common sense approach to saving!  The Latte Factor was the most enlightening concept which fired me into taking action.

I immediately got on the Internet, moved my 401K deduction from 6% to 10%, opened a savings account that pays 5% interest and setup an automatic transfer which will deposit 5% of my salary every two weeks.  Also, I've decided to contribute at least 10% to my church.  Thank you for an awesome book and I look forward to becoming an automatic millionaire!

- T Williams

July 12 2006
Our latte factor was saving around $400 per month by not buying soft drinks and snacks three times a day. Instead we brought our own soft drinks and snacks to work and pocketed the extra money! Works great and has helped our savings go up! Plus, my husband and I have been applying your information and have started buying and selling residence and rentals.

I read your book in less than 3 days! Thanks for the advice.

- Jody Lautenbach

July 12 2006
David,

Using the simple principles you laid out so clearly in The Automatic Millionaire Homeowner, Start Late Finish Rich and Smart Couples Finish Rich, my fiancee and I are turning our financial lives around. We're nearly debt free, we've increased our automatic deposits into our retirement plans and we're looking to invest in a second property. Thank you for shining a light on the dangers of credit cards and chronic consumerism, and for explaining the basics of sound financial wellness. This essential knowledge should be taught in every high school in America, In fact, we hope your next book is directed toward teens, who will be spared a lot of life's painful financial lessons if they embrace your simple truths early-on. In fact, if you publish a book for teens, we'll work to put one in the hands of every high school senior in Rochester, Minn. the year it's published. Who knows, maybe it will start a grassroots movement! Thanks again David for giving people the tools to change their lives for the better.

Regards,

- Dave Kolbert

July 12 2006
June 19, 2006 I entered into a contract for my FIRST home. I have never been so psyched and excited and thrilled as I am right now. What a feeling, I wish I would have been this smart 40 years ago.

My sister (my coach) started me last year by making me apply for credit. I raised my scores to 688 from about 630 in February 2006 when I was approved for a mortgage. I owe nothing but I also have nothing. I do have a superior pension from Unisys for my retirement. Debt: Three cards are active for a total debt of $1,600. (not like on Oprah hey?) I was in Barnes and Noble yesterday and read your Automatic Millionaire Homeowner in a couple hours. (latte factor-don't buy books.) But I went back to purchase the book. You are worth it.

I have been renting since I was 18 and never considered a home, I thought it was too constraining. So sad, because now I want to buy a few properties because it isn't as frightening as people think.

- Norma Blanco

July 12 2006
Hello David:

Your book "The Automatic Millionaire" really opened my eyes.
Just wanted to say how important it is to pay more than the minimum amount on your credit card balance. I knew I had to do something about this, as I owed $1000, plus I also had MasterCard payments as well. I then concentrated on paying the department store card as it had the highest interest rate. Three months later I was successful at paying the card off, and then I just cancelled my account so I could never use it again. It makes a difference now that the only payment I make per month is on my other credit card- average $100/mo.

Thank you for the valuable information that urged me to get ahead and start transforming my debt into wealth.

- Lory Beyer

July 12 2006
David,

I saw an article about you and your book "Automatic Millionaire Homeowner" online and decided to buy the book. I was one of your textbook cases who thought I would never be able to buy a home. I knew I had good credit so, the next day, I thought, "what the hell, I'm going to see how much of a pre-approval for a mortgage I can get." I filled out some applications online and within the hour I was receiving phone calls from mortgage bankers. I told them what I wanted for a monthly payment and received pre-approvals for 100% (80/20) financing that same day. I had a real estate agent by Wednesday who sent me to about 150 listings to review. I picked out 13 properties that I was interested in and we went to look immediately. That evening I decided on a Condo in a development that was being completely rehabbed, and went back on Sunday and signed a contract on a unit. All this happened within one week. The best part is my monthly payments will be less than I had thought. I'll be closing on my new condo at the end of August once construction is finished. I never dreamed it would be so easy. I definitely now have the bug to get into real estate investing.

Thank you for your book. It was written in an easy to read and understandable way. Like so many people before me have said, you've changed my life and my attitude toward owning real estate.

Best regards,

- Kenneth Wolff

July 11 2006
Hi David,

I just finished your book and I am truly inspired. After each chapter I did what you advised- changed the percentage on the 401(k) up to 6%- (it was at 3%) with a plan to increase every other month until it is up to 12%. The light bulb went on when you discussed the Latte Factor which really was a no brainier but to pack a lunch takes some planning which I have set a goal of 4 days a week to start with. My spouse and I have a 30 yr mortgage, so I will be looking into setting up bi- weekly payments soon.

I just wanted to tell you that before I picked this book up I dreamed of winning the lottery- it was my only hope to stop living pay check to pay check. If we had only started sooner! I can't change what I did yesterday but I sure am changing what I can do tomorrow.

Thanks again for writing this book- for me.

- Diana Simms

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The views expressed herein are solely those of David Bach and FinishRich Media, LLC., and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Edelman Financial Group or any of its affiliates. Neither theinformation herein nor any opinion expressed herein constitutes or is intended to constitute investment advice or an offer to sell or solicit any person to purchase any security. FinishRich is a trademarked brand used by David Bach and FinishRich Media LLC. and none of David Bach, FinishRich Media LLC. [or The Edelman Financial Group or any of their affiliates] guarantee any financial results or a positive outcome to your personal situation.