You’ve been granted free access to this subscribers only article.
Get the brother-in-law out
Financial Straight-TalkAugust 22, 2012 | 1,443 views | Post a comment
My 27-year-old brother-in-law moved in with us some time ago. He doesn’t have a job or contribute anything in terms of helping around the house or with bills. I think he needs to move out, but my wife isn’t so sure. She complains about the situation to me, but if I say anything, it makes me the bad guy with her family. How can I convince her?
I think you need to sit down with your wife, not all the other players, and gently explain to her that you’re just enabling his bad behavior by allowing things to continue this way. Responsible adults don’t behave like bums, and I don’t give a flip what the rest of the family thinks. It’s your house, and this issue is between you and her. You two are the only ones having to deal with this, so it’s really easy for others to chime in about what should happen. But hey, if they’re so concerned with the guy having a place to stay, maybe one of them should take him in. I’ll bet that idea would shut them up in a heartbeat!
I’m not advising you to just kick the guy out, but maybe you could formulate a plan that will give him a little time to get back on his feet. Have a loving talk with him about the situation, but let him know things can’t continue on the same path. Let him know that within 30 days he has to have a job, and 30 days after that he has to move into his own place. Write it down on the calendar, if it will help, but make sure he understands why you’re doing this and the date he has to move out.
I know these kinds of things can be difficult, but sometimes you have to take the bull by the horns and make something happen. There’s no reason it has to become an ugly situation, as long as you and your wife get on the same page and you do things in a helpful and kind way.
My husband and I just finished Baby Step 1, and we have our $1,000 in the bank for an emergency fund. Our daughter may have to have kidney surgery in the near future. Should we beef up our emergency fund, or move to Baby Step 2 and the debt snowball?
I know I’m the “get out of debt” guy. I want everyone to experience what life can be like when they’re debt-free and don’t have to send their paychecks out the door to creditors every month. But this little girl may need the kind of help only doctors and hospitals can provide. So, for now, let’s push the pause button on your Total Money Makeover.
If I were in your situation, I’d pile up as much cash as possible. Live on a budget that’s tighter than tight and scrape together every penny you can find. Hopefully, your baby won’t need surgery. But if that kind of thing is a possibility, the only smart thing to do is prepare for the accompanying financial hit your family will experience.
Don’t feel bad about this either, Noel. If the surgery is necessary, you guys can jump right back in and start your debt snowball after your little girl is healed. But right now, baby comes first. And if you’ve already got $1,000 saved, you’re off to a good start when it comes to handling things!
Dave Ramsey is a best-selling author of The Total Money Makeover and the nationally syndicated host of “The Dave Ramsey Show,” which airs locally on radio station 550 KTSA. View column archives at www.daveramsey.org. Questioners’ identities have not been verified by the Dave $ays column or this newspaper.
Your Opinions and Comments
Be the first to comment on this story!
You must be logged in to post a comment.
Section A: General News Archives
Corner Store grand opening is set for July 2 (July 1, 2015)
Court Update (July 1, 2015)
Crouch Memorial Bull Riding (July 1, 2015)
Dan Patrick weighs in on same-sex marriage decision (July 1, 2015)
Disabled veteran license plates available for widows (July 1, 2015)
Does the EPA control your stock tank? (July 1, 2015)
East Central ISD decisions will save taxpayers millions (July 1, 2015)
Editorial: Changing the past to fundamentally transform America (July 1, 2015)
Editorial: Donald Trump tries to put his brand on GOP (July 1, 2015)
Editorial: Hillary and history: Best-known is not the same as best-qualified (July 1, 2015)
Event highlights seniors, vets, services July 17 (July 1, 2015)
FELPS aims to improve reliability systemwide (July 1, 2015)
Floresville ISD adopts $39M budget (July 1, 2015)
Floresville keeps city manager, 'extravaganza' (July 1, 2015)
Free July training for business owners (July 1, 2015)
Guadalupe deputies hunt fugitive after bar fight near Seguin (July 1, 2015)
H-E-B recalls burger buns (July 1, 2015)
La Vernia approves $26M-plus budget (July 1, 2015)
Letter: Frightened aging bones (July 1, 2015)
Meeting Watch: Falls City City Council (July 1, 2015)
Miles Svoboda earns saddle in chute dogging event (July 1, 2015)
New battalion commander recalls Floresville roots (July 1, 2015)
Nixon residents respond to shooting with prayer (July 1, 2015)
Parkside Homes wins planning and zoning approval (July 1, 2015)
Scam email: Pay up or die (July 1, 2015)
Skloss retires after four decades with Karnes Electric (July 1, 2015)
Tanker, tow truck crash on U.S. 181 (July 1, 2015)
Tour vintage aircraft at Stinson Municipal Airport (July 1, 2015)
Traps to avoid after graduation (July 1, 2015)