Believe me, Personal Finance is not my genre of choice. It seems to me that there is a surfeit of charlatans and con artists that populate this genre and it can be exhausting to navigate. Luckily, one the lifestyle blogs I've been following for years suggested a few helpful books. No get rich quick schemes here. Just sound, honest, and sometimes feisty advice (I'm looking at you, Ramit Sethit) that will help you navigate the tumultuous sea of personal finance. These books didn't change my life, but they did change the way I looked at finances. Check back with me in 35 years to see if their advice has borne any fruit!
Plot summaries from publisher.
I Will Teach You to Be Rich
by Ramit Sethi
Probably my favorite book of the bunch. Sethi has an engaging writing style that doesn't pull any punches. His main point is that we should put systems in place that make managing our finances as automatic as possible. His section on conscious spending is a well-balanced approach to handling our money.
Buy as many lattes as you want. Choose the right accounts and investments so your money grows for you—automatically. Best of all, spend guilt-free on the things you love.
Personal finance expert Ramit Sethi has been called a “wealth wizard” by Forbes and the “new guru on the block” by Fortune. Now he’s updated and expanded his modern money classic for a new age, delivering a simple, powerful, no-BS 6-week program that just works.
I Will Teach You to Be Rich will show you:
• How to crush your debt and student loans faster than you thought possible
• How to set up no-fee, high-interest bank accounts that won’t gouge you for every penny
• How Ramit automates his finances so his money goes exactly where he wants it to—and how you can do it too
• How to talk your way out of late fees (with word-for-word scripts)
• How to save hundreds or even thousands per month (and still buy what you love)
• A set-it-and-forget-it investment strategy that’s dead simple and beats financial advisors at their own game
• How to handle buying a car or a house, paying for a wedding, having kids, and other big expenses—stress free
• The exact words to use to negotiate a big raise at work
Master your money—and then get on with your life
Cloud Library (ebook)
Get a Financial Life: Personal Finance in Your Twenties and Thirties
by Beth Kobliner
This book was an excellent starting point for a Millennial like me who was clueless about finances. Although not as laugh out loud hilarious as Sethi, Kobliner shares plenty of sound advice for the 20-30 something crowd.
More than ever before, people in their twenties and thirties need help getting their financial lives in order. And who could blame them? These so-called millennials have come of age in the wake of the worst economic crisis in memory, and are now trying to get by in its aftermath. They owe record levels of student loan debt, face sky-high rents, and struggle to live on a budget in an uncertain economy.
It’s time for them to get a financial life.
For two decades, Beth Kobliner’s bestseller has been the financial bible for people in their twenties and thirties. With her down-to-earth style, she has taught them how to get out of debt, learn to save, and invest for their futures. In this completely revised and updated edition, Kobliner shares brand-new insights and concrete, actionable advice geared to help a new generation of readers form healthy financial habits that will last a lifetime. With fresh material that reflects the changing digital world, Get a Financial Life remains an essential tool for young people learning how to manage their money.
From tackling taxes to boosting credit scores, Get a Financial Life can show those just starting out how to decrease their debt, avoid common money mistakes, and navigate the world of personal finance in today’s ever-changing landscape.
Cloud Library (ebook)
Your Money or Your Life
by Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez
This classic of Personal Finance literature certainly shows its age, but its call to avoid mindless consumption is still relevant to 2022.
For more than twenty-five years, Your Money or Your Life has been considered the go-to book for taking back your life by changing your relationship with money. Hundreds of thousands of people have followed this nine-step program, learning to live more deliberately and meaningfully with Vicki Robin’s guidance. This fully revised and updated edition with a foreword by "the Frugal Guru" (New Yorker) Mr. Money Mustache is the ultimate makeover of this bestselling classic, ensuring that its time-tested wisdom applies to people of all ages and covers modern topics like investing in index funds, managing revenue streams like side hustles and freelancing, tracking your finances online, and having difficult conversations about money.
Whether you’re just beginning your financial life or heading towards retirement, this book will show you how to:
• Get out of debt and develop savings
• Save money through mindfulness and good habits, rather than strict budgeting
• Declutter your life and live well for less
• Invest your savings and begin creating wealth
• Save the planet while saving money
• …and so much more
Overdrive/Libby (ebook and audiobook)
The Bogleheads' Guide to Investing
by Taylor Larimore, Mel Lindauer, and Michael LeBoueuf
I haven't made it all the way through, but this tome gets into the nuts and bolts of making low fee, long term investments. A great practical guide to follow once you understand the fundamentals of Personal Finance.
The Boglehead's Guide to Investing is a DIY handbook that espouses the sage investment wisdom of John C. Bogle. This witty and wonderful book offers contrarian advice that provides the first step on the road to investment success, illustrating how relying on typical common sense promoted by Wall Street is destined to leave you poorer. This updated edition includes new information on backdoor Roth IRAs and ETFs as mainstream buy and hold investments, estate taxes and gifting, plus changes to the laws regarding Traditional and Roth IRAs, and 401k and 403b retirement plans. With warnings and principles both precisely accurate and grandly counterintuitive, the Boglehead authors show how beating the market is a zero-sum game.
Investing can be simple, but it's certainly not simplistic. Over the course of twenty years, the followers of John C. Bogle have evolved from a loose association of investors to a major force with the largest and most active non-commercial financial forum on the Internet. The Boglehead's Guide to Investing brings that communication to you with comprehensive guidance to the investment prowess on display at Bogleheads.org. You'll learn how to craft your own investment strategy using the Bogle-proven methods that have worked for thousands of investors, and how to:
Choose a sound financial lifestyle and diversify your portfolio Start early, invest regularly, and know what you're buying Preserve your buying power, keeping costs and taxes low Throw out the good advice promoted by Wall Street that leads to investment failure Financial markets are essentially closed systems in which one's gain garners another's loss. Investors looking for a roadmap to successfully navigating these choppy waters long-term will find expert guidance, sound advice, and a little irreverent humor in The Boglehead's Guide to Investing.
About the Author
Patrick is a circulation clerk, high school teacher, and National Guardsman who has been working at Edwardsville Public Library since 2021. He is very much a fan of John Green's advice to "Study broadly and without fear" and so always has a book or seven on his currently reading list. When Patrick isn't working or reading he is enthusiastically planning his next great adventure.