Getting control of your finances is one of the best yet most overwhelming things you can do for yourself. It’s easy to not know where to begin, whether you’re struggling to keep your head above water with debt, having trouble managing a grocery budgetor trying to invest in your future and retirement. While it’s a daunting task, taking the first step toward financial freedom—or at least a sense of control over your money—is worth its weight in gold (and stocks, bonds, and dollar bills). Our roundup of the 10 best personal finance books to get you out of debt, get your investments in order, and ease the mental and emotional stress that money matters can bring, as well as help to kickstart your journey to financial security and wealth.
10 Best Personal Finance Books
1. Cary Siegel, Why Didn’t They Teach Me This In School? 99 Personal Money Management Tips to Live By
Most elementary, middle, and high schools don’t teach kids how to manage money at all—and that, plus often predatory student loans, can result in a lot of broke and struggling college students and adults. In Why Didn’t They Teach Me This In School? 99 Personal Money Management Tips to Live By, cary siegel teaches all the financial basics that primary schooling may have bypassed—and it’s great for grownups who need to get their money situation together, too.
2.Chelsea Fagan, The Financial Diet: A Total Beginner’s Guide to Getting Good With Money
Chelsea Fagan is #goals today, but she is open about how she was a money mess before going on what she called a “financial diet”—and she’s documented her progress and shared her wisdom. In The Financial Diet: A Total Beginner’s Guide to Getting Good With Money, Fagan imparts not only her own learned experiences but also interviews with experts in various fields. The book has the added bonus of fun illustrations and a layout designed by longtime TFD partner Lauren Ver Hage.
In addition to the book, The Financial Diet YouTube channel is a must-subscribe, complete with advice on everything from budgeting to career growth and compassionate explainers on how sociopolitical conditions that attribute to millennial financial struggles—and how to navigate your way around them until a necessary revolution finally happens.
Related: Brace Yourselves—10 Huge Money Mistakes Millennials Are Making
3. Erin Lowry, Broke Millennial Takes On Investing: A Beginner’s Guide to Leveling Up Your Money
broken millennial Erin Lowry doesn’t want broke millennials to exist. If you’ve always wanted to dip your toe into investing but weren’t sure how—or if you could even afford to do so—this is the book for you. Broke Millennial Takes On Investing: A Beginner’s Guide to Leveling Up Your Money explains investing in ways the newest of newbies can understand, helping to eliminate some of the financial industry’s gatekeeping jargon that intimidates many away from even trying to grow their wealth.
Four. Shari Greco Reiches, Maximize Your Return On Life: Invest Your Time and Money In What You Value Most
Wealth manager, investment advisor, and behavioral finance expert Shari Greco Reiches is a master at making you prioritize your life and make your money work within those parameters. In Maximize Your Return On Life: Invest Your Time and Money In What You Value Most, Greco Reiches approaches readers like their smart, savvy, cool aunt, presenting wisdom without judgment and helping you determine what’s important and how to achieve it. One particularly brilliant mantra: “You can have anything you want, not everything you want.”
5. Tiffany “The Budgetnista” Aliche, Get Good With Money: 10 Simple Steps to Becoming Financially Whole
Tiffany “The Budgetnista” Aliche helps keep finances simple and manageable with Get Good With Money: 10 Simple Steps to Becoming Financially Whole. The financial educator provides readers with tools like worksheets, checklists, and other resources to assess your needs and develop a budget and long-term plan that works for you, even as markets and the economy can get rocky. to bonus? She even boasts an endorsement from Broken Millennial Erin Lowry!
Related: Get Your Money Right With These 50 Money-Saving Tips From the Experts
6. JL Collins, The Simple Plan to Wealth: Your Road Map to Financial Independence and a Rich, Free Life
Initially written as a series of letters to his daughter, JL Collins‘ The Simple Plan to Wealth: Your Road Map to Financial Independence and a Rich, Free Life provides insight for those readers who want to be secure in their money but do not spend their entire lives thinking about it. Collins explains the importance of “F-you money” (amen!), investing, how to avoid debt, and more in easily digestible and often quite warm ways.
7.Carl Richards, The One-Page Financial Plan: A Simple Way to Be Smart About Your Money
Short on time or patience when it comes to mastering your money? We feel you, and so does certified financial plannercolumnist, and author Carl Richards. The One-Page Financial Plan: A Simple Way to Be Smart About Your Money streamlines and simplifies financial, budgeting, and investment advice into a brief, breezy read that will empower you to start planning ASAP.
8. Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein, Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness
Nobel Prize-winning economist Richard H Thaler and Harvard Law School professor Cass R Sunstein dive into decades of behavioral science research to help determine why we spend and save the way that we do, even if it’s not in our own best interests—and also provide tools and lessons on how to change our thinking around money so we can change our behavior along with it.
9. Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez, Your Money or Your Life: 9 Steps to Transforming Your Relationship With Money and Achieving Financial Independence
Want to get your finances in order and also just live a better life? They’re not mutually exclusive. In Your Money or Your Life: 9 Steps to Transforming Your Relationship With Money and Achieving Financial Independence, Vicky Robin and Joe Dominguez teach how to get and stay out of debt, develop good spending and saving habits without stringent rules, invest to build wealth, manage side hustles and freelancing, and how to go green and make green at the same time.
10. Thomas J. Stanley, Ph.D., and William D. Danko, Ph.D., The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America’s Wealthy
While social media may make you assume that millionaires drive expensive cars, jet-set all around the world in designer clothes, and lounge poolside in their mansions, as it turns out, most millionaires are actually pretty modest and discreet. In The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America’s Wealthy, Thomas J. Stanley, Ph.D.and William D. Danko, Ph.D. reveal not just how millionaires became millionaires, but also how they remain millionaires. (Because really, how many post-lottery or MC Hammer horror stories have you heard? Probably a lot!)
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