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Dave Says: Crowdfund real estate?

Dave Ramsey • Updated May 8, 2017 at 10:00 AM

Dear Dave,

 I’d like to get involved in real estate investing, but I don’t have a lot of cash at present. What do you think of the idea of crowdfunding as a way to invest in real estate?

Adam

Dear Adam,

I’ve got a bunch of real estate, and I love it. But I wouldn’t go the crowdfunding route as a way to get started in real estate investing. I wouldn’t give someone money to buy real estate in a crowdfunding scenario, either.

The late Beverly Sills had a great saying, “There are no shortcuts to anyplace worth going.” Investing in real estate is wonderful when you do it right. Get out of debt first, pay cash, and find great bargains. When you get in a hurry, and do dumb stuff like go into debt or get mixed up with partnerships in the process, real estate’s a horrible investment.

I admire your ambition, Adam. But I would advise you to follow my lead on this one. You’ll be glad you did.

—Dave

 

Who should execute the will?

Dear Dave,

I’ve always heard that you shouldn’t ask a family member to be the executor of your will. What are your feelings about this?

Joyce

Dear Joyce,

I don’t necessarily agree with this line of thinking. In my mind, a family member who is competent and has integrity can definitely be the executor. “Executor” just means they execute, thus the name. They’re going to execute the wishes of the will. If the family member has the business acumen and trustworthiness to execute the wishes and directives in a will, then that’s perfectly fine.

Just remember to use some common sense, too, when choosing an executor. If you have an extremely complicated estate, say 80 pieces of real estate with investments and everything, you probably don’t want your 22-year-old niece, nephew or grandchild who just graduated college in charge of things. I would advise choosing someone with a little more life experience, and maybe some success in the real world.

The people who say family shouldn’t do this are the same ones who say you shouldn’t have family in your business. You can have family in both. You just have to have good boundaries, clear roles and honest, mature people. Make sure you give clear instructions and explanations for your decisions, too. Sit down with your family, explain who the executor’s going to be, and why, along with what the will says. It’s also not a bad idea to have an initial reading of the will while you’re still alive. This communicates your wishes personally and takes some of the pressure off of the executor.

 

How late is too late?

Dear Dave,

How late is too late to get life insurance?

Anonymous

Dear Anonymous,

It’s pretty easy to get term life insurance – the only kind of life insurance I recommend – up until around age 70. Depending on your overall health situation, there are a few affordable policies available past that point. But once you get into your seventies and beyond it can be difficult to find reasonably priced coverage.

I recommend that most people have 10 to 12 times their annual income wrapped up in a good, level term life insurance policy. But honestly, you shouldn’t need life insurance at 70 or older. If you’ve been wise with your money, and saved and invested, you should be self-insured by that point. This means having plenty of cash in the bank to cover burial expenses and enough for a spouse to live on after you’re gone.

Dave Ramsey is CEO of Ramsey Solutions. He has authored seven bestselling books, including The Total Money Makeover. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 12 million listeners each week on 575 radio stations and multiple digital platforms. Follow Dave on the web at daveramsey.com and on Twitter at @DaveRamsey.

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