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Dave Says: I Wouldn't Do It That Way

FEBRUARY 27, 2023

Dear Dave,
I have an uncle who wants to gift some property to one of his sons, myself and my sister. The property is about two-and-a-half acres, and it’s probably worth around $125,000. My wife and I are trying to pay off debt in Baby Step 2 of your plan, and we’re not sure how we feel about the situation. What do you think?

Dear Dave,
If your uncle asked me if he should do this, my answer would be no. The thing is, you’ve got three different sets of people with different lives and very different situations. Not only that, but these three potential co-owners probably have differing ideas about the land and what should or shouldn’t be done with it. To me, the whole thing sounds like a big family fight just waiting to happen.

If I were in his shoes, I’d just sell the property and split the money equally between the three of you. It’d be a lot easier that way, and you’d avoid the chance of hard feelings between you and your relatives down the road. Don’t get me wrong, your uncle sounds like a kind and generous man. He’s trying to be a blessing to all three of you, but it has a very real possibility of causing unintended problems he may not see coming.

That’s the way I’d handle it, Dave. A couple of acres of dirt split between three people isn’t worth all the squabbles and bad feelings it could cause.
— Dave

* Dave Ramsey is an eight-time national bestselling author, personal finance expert and host of “The Ramsey Show.” He has appeared on “Good Morning America,” “CBS This Morning,” “Today,” Fox News, CNN, Fox Business and many more. Since 1992, Dave has helped people regain control of their money, build wealth, and enhance their lives. He also serves as CEO of Ramsey Solutions.