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Part of becoming an adult is learning how to get your financial shit together.. Unless you are really lucky, nobody teaches you any of this in high school or in college. Even simple things from writing a check to opening a bank account can feel overwhelming if you have nobody to guide you, let alone applying for a mortgage or even planning for retirement.
Enter Personal Finance Books
These books help to fill the void that our secondary education and parental units failed to teach. And they managed to do it in a way that keeps you from clawing your eyes out in boredom.
Each of these books listed below have been crucial in my own financial journey and start at a beginner level of personal finance knowledge and then progressively level up into more and more advanced concepts.
The great part of each one of these books is that each author has a very prominent and well written blog. I highly encourage you to check out their blog first and then buy the book.
Broke Millennial-Stop Scraping By and Get Your Financial Life Together
If you need to start about the very basics of personal finance, this book is for you.
Written for young adults just starting out of high school or college, this book starts with talking about our mindset around money and the rest of the book can be read in any order depending on the topics you need to focus on.
Someone already in good financial shape or older than 30 probably won’t get as much out of this book. Erin writes in an enjoyable, easy to read manner but uses frequent references to dating apps, social medias concepts that Gen Zers and above may need to google to understand.
Simple Path to Wealth
I discovered JL Collins blog at a time when I was 26 year old and had just got married, moved across the country and purchased a townhouse. We had very large student loan bills ($2000+ a month!), and I felt overwhelmed on a daily basis.
I stumbled on to his website and was so captivated that I read through his stock series blog in one night. If you have ever had questions such as: why do I need to save money? is there an easy way to invest?, or how do retirement accounts work?
You need to read his stock series blog and his book.
The most important concept that he presents is F**** YOU MONEY.
F*** YOU Money is having enough money saved and invested to be able to leave any type of unsafe living situation, unethical employer, job with poor life balance, or an occupation that you just don’t enjoy. You are not “stuck” because of lack of funds to make a change. No joke, this concept alone has changed how I view my money and has lead to a complete restructure of how and why I invest my money.
Go read his blog and buy his book, you won’t regret it.
Work Optional- Retire early the Non Penny Pinching way
After you learn the basics of personal finance and are starting to create your little nest egg, you are ready for the third and final step:
What optimal goal are you saving your money for?
How can your little nest egg help to create your ideal life?
The author, Tanja, along with her husband, saved enough money in investments that they were able to stop working at ages 38 and 41 to pursue a life of service, outdoor adventure and writing at their leisure. She presents several different options for creating a work optional life including semiretirement, taking work breaks every couple of years, and full on retirement.
While these options may not be possible for everyone, her books walks through the steps that make a work optional life much more possible than you imagine.