Dear Dave,
My husband and I have seven kids. What parts of your program work best for large families?
ó Karen

Dear Karen,
My entire plan works for a large family. Larger families just have more expenses. What does change ó and you already knew this ó is that it can be a larger financial burden. This isnít criticism; itís just a mathematical fact.

When you kick things into overdrive like you folks have done, two things have happened. One, youíve extended the time that youíre going to be supporting the kids financially. Two, youíve got a lot of baby birds to feed and clothe. Unless you have an astronomical income, it slows down the process of hitting financial goals like getting out of debt, because youíve got a drain on the math side of things. Itís a wonderful drain; itís a glorious drain; but mathematically speaking where the money is concerned, itís still a drain.

You really donít have any choice but to do a budget. Having seven kids doesnít give you an excuse to live out of control or mean that living out of control without a plan is the definition of success. Youíve got to set more emergency categories aside in your budget. Youíve got to budget heavier for food, medical, transportation and things like that, because youíve got more things pulling at you ó and your money.

Commonsense calculation

Dear Dave,
I make $80,000 a year, and I was wondering if thereís an easy way to determine how much money a person would need to live comfortably after retirement.
ó John

Dear John,
A commonsense rule of thumb, if youíve got your money invested in good growth stock mutual funds, is to pull from those funds at a rate that is lower than which they are growing. Otherwise, youíll destroy them, right?

I tell folks if they want to pull off 6 to 8 percent ó Iím comfortable doing 8 percent ó then youíve got to decide exactly how much you want to live on and what that means for your nest egg. If you want to live on $80,000 a year, it means you have to have a $1 million nest egg. If you want to live on $40,000 a year, then you need a half-million dollar nest egg for what weíre talking about here.

To get into that a little bit further, I would advise going to Chris Hoganís website. Heís got a tool on there that takes just a few minutes, and it will give you exact numbers on what you need to do. Itís, and the tool is called the R:IQ ó your Retire Inspired Quotient.

You can walk through it, and in just a few minutes youíll know exactly whatís going on and what needs to happen.

ó Dave Ramsey is Americaís trusted voice on money and business, and CEO of Ramsey Solutions. He has authored seven best-selling books. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 11 million listeners each week on more than 550 radio stations and digital outlets. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at