“You can’t cure what you don’t face.” David Bach
I was asked by David Bach’s representative to review Chapter 5, The DOLP Method: How to Pay Down Your Debt in Record Time from his newest book, Debt Free For Life.
Debt, like dieting begins with confronting reality. In the beginning you must step on the scale and face up to your weight. The same tenet holds true with debt, if you don’t know where your debts are and how much you owe, you cannot begin to eradicate them!
I’m a bit of book review junkie. I love reading and reviewing books. This is my first pass at reviewing only one chapter. I liked it, this chapter had so much meat that if you don’t read any more of his book (which I don’t recommend) you will walk away with usable knowledge. In fact, I may have received the “best” chapter to review :).
Organize Debt-The DOLP Way
DONE ON LAST PAYMENT (DOLP) reduces your number of credit cards and gets them paid off fast.
I won’t kid you, this part is scary. Bach lays out a format to capture ALL OF YOUR DEBT. He stresses that the whole process of organizing and calculating your debt due can be completed in less than one hour.
Face Your Debt Reality
After tracking all of your debt, you need to add it all up. He shared a story of a couple who was shocked after adding up their debt. They guesstimated their total debt burden at $40,000 and after organizing and adding it up……they found their debt due was $70,000. Have the “tums” handy for this part!
Build Debt Payoff Momentum
After confronting the truth, Bach teaches you how to build momentum while paying it off. Have you ever started a difficult project and found that once you get going, you just want to keep at it until completion? Well, that’s how the DOLP system works.
The cornerstone of the process is The DOLP Worksheet and its important DOLP ranking number. Being highly analytical, I loved the DOLP NUMBER; so simple yet powerful.
The Dolp Worksheet looks like this, and can be downloaded for free:
|ACCOUNT||OUTSTANDING BALANCE||MINIMUM MONTHLY PAYMENT||PAYMENT DUE DATE||DOLP NUMBER||DOLP RANKING|
The worksheet provides all the information to pay off your debt on one sheet and helps you avoid missing due dates.
Easily calculate the DOLP number by dividing the outstanding balance on the card by the minimum monthly payment. If you owe $600.00 on your Visa and your minimum monthly payment is $50.00 then your DOLP NUMBER = 600/50 = 12. The 12 means it will take you 12 months to pay off the $600.00 (not counting interest) if you made the minimum payment.
Bach instructs the reader in a system whereby you pay the minimum on all cards except the one with the lowest DOLP number, where you pay at least two times the minimum! His system promises good feelings as each card is paid off in full.
The DOLP Debt Payoff Method – What’s the Downside
If this isn’t your first foray into personal finance, you will recognize the idea of paying off the smallest debt first from another “debt reduction maven,” Dave Ramsey, with his debt snowball. Although Bach promises the set up is quick and easy, it still requires a certain amount of discipline and determination. To his credit, he informs the reader that debt reduction is difficult and time consuming. And if you are facing a pile of credit cards and a mess of statements, getting started may be tougher than Bach suggests.
The DOLP Payoff Method is Easy to Do
As systems go, the DOLP method is fairly straight forward. Bach states that he has helped thousands with this approach. As one who likes things clear cut and easy to implement, I think he hit the mark on this one. Based on Chapter 5, I recommend this guide if you want to be DEBT FREE FOR LIFE. It’s an easy read with additional on line resources. And of course, don’t forget to obtain your credit score.
What are your debt reduction suggestions?