A television personal finance expert was left aghast after a viewer in their 70s called into his show and admitted she has no retirement savings.
David Ramsey, who hosts The Ramsey Show in the US, took a call from Janice, 71, who shared she and her husband do not have any money set aside, reports The Daily Express US.
According to Credit Klarna, some 27 percent of Americans aged 59 or older in 2023 are in a similar situation. The couple do have $25,000 cash but need $27,000 to pay off on a $250,000 home.
They also owe $11,000 on a car but Janice and her husband are at odds on how to best use the $25,000.
READ MORE: Martin Lewis urges savers to check if they need to move money from bank accounts right now
The caller said: “My husband wants to take the money that we have and pay off the car, and then take those $350-per-month car payments and pay off the house. My problem is I’m so stressed I at least want to have a house to live in… so I need some help here.”
Janice told David the pair receive $2,000 monthly in Social Security benefits while she makes another $2,000 a month from her job as a home cleaner. According to the caller, the pair have financial issues due to medical bills and “bad cash investments”.
When David asked about the car, the viewer admitted they actually had three, one beiong a roadster worth $10,000.
He was quick to respond: “I’m sorry but the roadster is gone. I’m sure that’s going to break his heart but I’m sorry. It’s gone.”
The finance expert told Janice to pay off the car, while also suggesting she keeps a $15,000 emergency fund and put the rest of the money towards the house.
He said she will likely have to work for the next 18 months to pay off the rest of their home.
Dave Ramsey explained: “If you want to keep this house you’re going to start living like you’re completely bankrupt. Because you have to clean this mess up. You do not have wiggle room here.”
Once the home is paid for, he recommended they “end up selling… and buy a condo for $100,000 and have a $100,000 slush fund to live on and have a life. Now you can go ahead and do that if you want. That’s your retirement home.”