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Dave Says: When Should You Help Your Children in Financial Crisis?

Dave Says: When Should You Help Your Children in Financial Crisis?

Dear Dave,

Our daughter wasn’t very responsible with money until she read your books. Now, she has really started turning her life around. Recently, she learned she needs to have some expensive dental work done. Since she just started trying to manage her money well, she doesn’t have enough saved up for the procedure or dental insurance right now. Do you think we should help by loaning her the money?

Dianne

Dear Dianne,

I like what you’ve told me about your daughter. She doesn’t need to worry about dental insurance though. You almost never get back what you put into those policies. It’s the kind of stuff a good emergency fund will cover. If she has invested her time and money into what I teach, I’d say she’s pretty serious about getting her finances in order. 

If it were me, I’d make the money for dental work a gift, not a loan, for turning her financial life around. In your description you never mentioned anything about your daughter being lazy or unwilling to work. You talked about a young lady who’s just starting to build her life, and you’re rewarding smart choices. I think that’s a great idea and will have a major positive impact!

—Dave

* Dave Ramsey is America’s trusted voice on money and business. He has authored five New York Times best-selling books: Financial Peace, More Than Enough, The Total Money Makeover, EntreLeadership and Smart Money Smart Kids. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 8 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at daveramsey.com.