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1. The Only Investment Guide You'll
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2. How to Get Out of Debt, Stay Out
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3. The Budget Kit : The Common Cents
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4. The Pocket Idiot's Guide to Living
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5. Talk Your Way Out of Credit Card
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6. The Motley Fool You Have More
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8. The Smart Mom's Guide to Staying
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20. Let's Get Financial Savvy! From

1. The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need
by Andrew Tobias
list price: $14.00
our price: $10.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0156029634
Catlog: Book (2005-01-03)
Publisher: Harvest Books
Sales Rank: 37059
Average Customer Review: 4.62 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

For more than twenty-five years, The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need has been America's favorite finance guide, winning the allegiance of more than a million readers across the country. Now this indispensable book has been fully revised and updated-covering all the new tax laws-and reorganized with a new user-friendly design. Concise, witty, and truly understandable, Andrew Tobias shows you how to use your money to your best advantage-no matter how much or how little you have.
o How to spend smarter-and save $1,000 or more
o When to invest in stocks, and how
o The ins and outs of investing on the Internet
o Tax strategies, from tuition to retirement
o Whom-if anyone-you can trust to manage your money
and much, much more

How to spend smarter--and save $1,000 or more
When to invest in stocks, and how
The ins and outs of investing on the Internet
Tax strategies, from tuition to retirement
The basics of life insurance
Who--if anyone--you can trust to manage your money
The inside skinny on annuities, real estate, and Social Security

and much, much more
... Read more

Reviews (58)

5-0 out of 5 stars Financial Freedom
I read this book several times in the early 1980s. I read it until it fell apart. Since then I've been through dozens (more like hundreds) of other investment books, but this is the one that taught me first principles and taught them the best. Basically this guy is a really fine writer who happens to write about investments and personal finance. He's witty, entertaining, and right on target.

As for the content, the basics of investing and frugality are covered. When you get right down to it the basics are all you need, and you can fit them on a 3 by 5 card. Almost all of my investing mistakes in the past 20 years have been a result of trying to make things too complicated. Tobias keeps his message simple, and that's one of this book's strengths.

Like other reviewers, I've given this book as a gift over the years. However, there's another good writer out there in recent years -- Jason Kelly, author of "The Neatest Little Guide..." series.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Best One-Stop-Shop for Investment and Financial Informat
Not only does Andrew Tobias suggest that readers save and invest, but also shows real ways that people can spend less (through conservation, stocking up on essentials at warehouse prices, saving money on insurance (auto, life, etc), paying yourself first, etc). Additionally, he explains investment vehicles in simple layman terms while divulging his personal opinions. All of this is done in a humorous, witty and quick read...a pleasant surprise to those of us picking up Investment Guides. Tobias truly covers it all, from savings accounts, to options and everything in between such as treasuries and annuities. He also discusses the merits of self-directed investing. It is telling that he dedicated the book "To my broker -- even if he has, from time to time, made me just that." This is a must read for those seeking entry-level knowledge of the ins and outs of investing or simply a witty read on the topic.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good book, but not the only guide needed.
Although in my opinion this isn't the only investment guide you need, it is a great book that really sheds light on some of the more boring aspects of personal finance.

This entertaining book gives you a good understanding of personal finance, saving, investing, and various strategies to boost your net worth.

I highly recommend getting a copy of this book for yourself and one for a friend, believe me if they follow the tips they'll be thanking you later.

Here's what different national publications have to say about the author:

"Andrew Tobias is one of the financial community's pithily perceptive observers." Forbs

"So full of tips and angles that only a booby or a billionaire could not benefit." The New York Times

"The only investment guide many will indeed ever need." Barron's

Reed Floren

5-0 out of 5 stars Great book to learn more about finance
It is really the only investment book you will ever need. It covers lots of basic materials. When I first read the book, I thought it lacked details. However, it gave you enough information so that you can dive deeper into other topics on your own. If you are a beginner to investment, that is the best book you will find. Another comparable book would be "The Motley Fool Investment Guide : How The Fool Beats Wall Streets Wise Men And How You Can Too"

5-0 out of 5 stars Not the Only Investment Book You'll Need, But a Good Start
I read this book more than ten years ago, when I saved enough money from my first job to start dabbling in the stock market. The new edition also has information on Roth IRA's and still offers good advice. For example, selling life insurance to a single person is like selling ice to an eskimo is a mantra that is still ingrained in my mind. Another is that discount brokers are better than full brokers. The book is easy to read and understand. It complements, Engel and Hecht's "How to Buy Stocks." ... Read more

2. How to Get Out of Debt, Stay Out of Debt, and Live Prosperously
list price: $7.50
our price: $7.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0553283960
Catlog: Book (1990-03-01)
Publisher: Bantam
Sales Rank: 8108
Average Customer Review: 4.53 out of 5 stars
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Millions of consumers have become trapped in a spiral of debt, but there is hope. If you wants to free yourself from the shackles of debt, this book is for you--it can help you "get out of debt, stay out of debt, and live prosperously." Jerrold Mundis writes in a friendly, engaging style, urging readers to stop the cycle of spending. Mundis knows what he's talking about--he, too, was once thousands of dollars in debt and didn't know where to turn. Anecdotes from Debtors Anonymous folks, plus multiple examples from the writer's own life and ledgers, make How to Get Out of Debt an encouraging read, not a condescending one. Once you start your program, you may want to periodically reread some chapters for inspiration--and fun. ... Read more

Reviews (40)

5-0 out of 5 stars Worth at least 100 times the price
I first read this book almost by accident in September of 1997. I was browsing through a bookstore out of town, and there it was. I thought $7 couldn't hurt. I've tried everything else. Why not this book?

Well, 2 1/2 years later, I've been able to pay off more debt than I care to mention. ($20,000+ comes to mind as a fairly accurate figure). I have often wondered what makes a self-help book really helpful. There are several things about this book that I really liked.

The first is that it is not a book about investments and how to get rich quick. It's not about depriving yourself either. It really doesn't give any specific financial advice which is why I liked it so much. There are other books for stuff like that.

Probably the single most important lesson in this book, and one which has changed my life immensely, is stop borrowing money. Just stop. Do it one day at a time. When I started on my debt repayment plan, I didn't worry so much about paying off my debt as much as not taking on any new debt. If that sounds simplistic, well it is. That's the whole point of this book. It's simple. It's not easy. If you want to heal, stop the bleeding. People who are in the rat race of juggling credit cards are bleeding cash every month. Stop the bleeding first, and then you start to heal.

Another lesson I learned is the monthly spending record. My friends howl when I suggest this. Keep track of every penny, yes every penny, that comes into your life and out of your life. I can say with conviction that that suggestion alone, coupled with not taking on new debt, will make your life so much different, you'll wonder in amazement. The author suggests keeping a weekly spending record and transferring it to a monthly record. I keep just a monthly record. It takes up very little time. It's also very eye opening how much money flows right out the expense column every month. The benefit of this is it allows you to make adjustments and find out where you are bleeding. It's not enough to guess. Until you write down everything, you will never fully understand where your money problems are. You can use a computer spreadsheet or you can do what I do which is write it down on old fashioned paper.

Another lesson this book taught me is that you don't need a credit card. Now there's a revolutionary concept. If you really think about it, how many people in your life including yourself say, "I need a credit card for emergencies." Hogwash! I've had two genuine emergencies in my life where I needed money and needed it fast. Well guess what? I had two choices, I could pay with a credit card or I could pay with cash. I paid with cash. Funny how many people accept cash as a payment these days. If you want to get out of debt, get out of the credit card habit. Use a debit card. I use my Visa debit card for all my purchases, and it works beautifully. Same as cash.

One more thing, if you use credit cards and you pay interest every month, do you realize you're making the bank rich? Do you realize you're working for the bank? Whether you like it or not, that's true. Here's another lesson. Look over your credit card balances right now and ask yourself out of all the money you owe, how much stuff do you have to show for it?

Why do I give this book 5 stars? Well, I can divide my life into two time periods. The first time period was everything that happened up until september 14, 1997 which is the day I bought the book, and everything that has happened since then. I have no credit card debt at all since reading that book. I do have a credit card (okay, I cheat) with a $350 limit only to rebuild my credit. I pay it off every month. One word of caution, reading this book can be frustrating at times because you will come to the full realization that your attitude about money is completely wrong and that you are overwhelmed with debt that will take a long time to pay off. Relax. Once you start paying off your debt, it's all downhill. It picks up speed as you go along. I know, I've done it. Thanks Jerrold Mundis for writing this book. I've saved thousands of dollars in interest because of it.

5-0 out of 5 stars Hope and Help for anyone struggling with debt.
Mundis has been where you are. He's struggled with massive debt, considered bankruptcy, felt despair over low income and climbing credit card balances.

After years of struggle, he found the way out. His method is based on the principles of Debtor's Anonymous, and the keys to the method are these three steps:

1) One day at a time, you don't incur any new debt.
2) You keep an accurate daily spending record.
3) You stick to your spending plan.

Notice I didn't say "three EASY steps." People struggling with debt often find the steps difficult, maybe even impossible, to implement. Why? Lots of reasons, it turns out. The good news is, Mundis helps you understand what those reasons are, and then he shows you ways to find the resolve to stick with the steps.

He offers hope and then some practical help. Truly, I think this is one of the best books I've read on beating debt. I think it will feel like a Godsend to anyone who knows the hopelessness that accompanies crushing debt.

Mundis also has a website. Get the book first, though. If you're a debtor/spender this book is a WORTHWHILE place to spend a bit of cash.

Reviewer: Linda Painchaud

5-0 out of 5 stars this book is a must have to stop the madness!
this book is a must have if you are tired of passing out all of your money to everyone else but you. If you have bill collectors calling your home and job you need this book. If the student loan people are calling your relatives cause you refuse to answer your phone.... you need this book. If you toss all of your bills and "pink" bills into a corner and never open them you need this book. If you are tired of living paycheck to paycheck get this book. If you keep asking yourself where did my money go? get this book. if you find yourself at the bank right before opening to deposit a check to cover for a check you wrote that might bounce. getting this book is a good idea. oh and one more if you have relatives that never seem to have enough money and you think to your self hey these are my parents i should be borrowing from them not visa versa... get them this book. I liked it so much im going to a debtors anonymous meeting today.

4-0 out of 5 stars great book!
This book is great. It gives you a chance to look at your spending humerously. and it helps you realize that you really don't have to be in debt if you don't want to be. I was encouraged and as a back up im going to attend my first debtors anonymous meeting. I have been hiding away all of my bills and late payment notices for months Yesterday i finally had the courage to calculate how much i owe. (normally this would through me into a state of depression) and i owed 36,000 more than what i kept telling my self i owed. And believe it or not im not depressed. If i had not read this book i would be at work this weekend trying to make overtime and crying the next week because i didn't have enough money. If you have bill collectors calling you and you are tired of waking up in the middle of the night trying to figure out how to pay your bills get this book.

5-0 out of 5 stars I laughed, I, really, I did!!
In deep debt and in the dark about what to do? Buy this tape! I've just begun my climb out of the mire of debt but I feel rejuvinated, hopeful and confident that this -- my third time -- will be the last time I let my debt quietly creep up to unmanageable amounts. If you're ready to "surrender" to the fact that you have a problem and want help, the narrator provides it in a way that is non-judgemental and without condemnation. I was genuinely touched by the sincerity, clarity and compassion of the narrative. I was emotionally moved by the fact that the guidance I really needed had arrived. On the other hand, the author, at times, is hilarious as he takes you down a very entertaining and extremely helpful path toward solvency. Thanks to this tape, I'm on my way out, and done with debt for good! ... Read more

3. The Budget Kit : The Common Cents Money Management Workbook
by Judy Lawrence
list price: $18.95
our price: $12.89
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 079318794X
Catlog: Book (2004-03-01)
Publisher: Dearborn Trade, a Kaplan Professional Company
Sales Rank: 17442
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Get your spending under control and create a budget that will get you on the road to financial freedom.In an age of information overload, many simply don't have the time,knowledge or organizational skills to create a simple, functional system for managing personal finances.Now in its fourth edition, The Budget Kit: The Common Cents Money Management Workbook is a best-selling classic that has helped hundreds of thousands of people across America develop effective budgets and gain financial freedom.Even if you are using a financial software program, you will find the concepts in The Budget Kit to be essential to your understanding of budgeting.

In the completely revised and updated fourth edition, Lawrence tackles the unique challenges faced in the digital society in which we live.The increased use of debitcards, automatic withdrawals, direct paycheck deposits and online bill payment systems have distanced us from our money like never before.Lawrence guides you through theelectronic shift to a cashless society, and keeps you connected to your money.This new and updated edition also comes with budgeting starter software to help you achieve your financial goals. ... Read more

Reviews (13)

5-0 out of 5 stars A Must Have Book for ALL Households
After using the third edition of The Budget Kit, I anxiously awaited the 4th edition and was not disappointed! The Budget Kit is a fantastic resource for helping to get your finances in order. It's a great way to track where your money is going or has gone in the past so that you can stay on top of your financial situation. Of course, this means stepping out of your comfort zone and facing your financial situation in the face. However, The Budget Kit is the best way I've found to do just that without leaving you discouraged at the end of the process. In fact, once you've gone through the relevant pages in this book you will be in control of your finances, not controlled by them. The handy perforated sheets make it easy to put what you need together and the Mvelopes program is a perfect companion to the book.

5-0 out of 5 stars A simple tool that can make a tremendous difference.
Careful budgeting can be a crucial tool for managing your money and getting out of debt -- and this easy-to-use workbook can help you gain control of your spending and organize your records once and for all! The comprehensive worksheets and charts allow you to set financial goals, plan and monitor your spending. It even helps you organize for tax time. Inspiring stories from people who have used The Budget Kit to change their financial lives for the better will keep you motivated.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best Book on Budgeting
I am a veteran Certified Financial Planner professional and personal finance author. I've looked for years to find a practical and useful budgeting book to recommend to clients and consumers. Judy Lawrence wrote the best book on budgeting I've seen by far. Most similar products are painfully boring. This book is worth the money and implementing this workbook is absolutely worth your time! It's all about cash flow. Know where you are. Begin managing your cash flow with this workbook and you'll get where you want to be.

5-0 out of 5 stars A first-rate household tool
Ms. Lawrence has compiled a simple, no-nonsense approach to understanding and managing one's financial life. Her recommendations and examples are superb, and she communicates the "big picture" effectively. The book is a complete kit by itself, and the associated website offers more outstanding advice and useful tools. Largely due to this book, my wife and I finally understand our household's cash flow, and, more importantly, each other's perspective of money management. I am recommending this book to friends, family, and associates.

5-0 out of 5 stars I got myself out of debt with this book
When I first tried to make a budget using this book I spent a week crying. How could I possibly accomplish my goal to get out of debt and have any kind of fun? Once I actually starting living with the budget I found it very freeing.

The first year that the holiday season came around and my money for gifts and travel was sitting there waiting for me I was thrilled.

3 years later I am out of debt and that initially "impossible" amount of money that was going into credit card payments is now going into savings account :-)

Last year I REALLY wanted a photo printer mid year. Did I pull out a credit card and buy it? Nope. I went to my handy 12 month plan of occasional expensesm and thought about it. Did I really want the printer more than a hair cut, my next clothing allowance and a bit off of vaction budget? Yup. There was the money for my printer. No guilt. No credit cards.

This book is a great tool to get rid of that awful out of control feeling and come up with a plan. My book for year number 4 is going into my shoping cart now. ... Read more

4. The Pocket Idiot's Guide to Living on a Budget (Pocket Idiot's Guide)
by Jennifer Sander, Peter Sander, Peter J. Sander
list price: $9.95
our price: $8.96
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 002863389X
Catlog: Book (1999-04-26)
Publisher: Alpha Books
Sales Rank: 14385
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Realistic, Simple Budget Help
This books sets out very simple ideas, strategies and help for any person interested in watching their money. It is a simple planning book for budgeting that any [body] could use. Humor and straight-forwardness are the backbone of the book's help in money problem areas. It is a MUST READ!

5-0 out of 5 stars Realistic Budgeting!
I am horrid at managing my money, and I found this book very helpful. First of all, it is very short and to the point, which is great for those of us with a limited attention span when it comes to financial issues! Second, I like that they recommended budgeting a lump sum for personal "pocket" money and other similar categories, rather that suggesting I track every soda or pack of gum I buy during the month.

5-0 out of 5 stars This Book Opens Your Eyes
The book is great! The first chapter just really opens your eyes to how much money you are waisting or Frittering, is what they call it. There is a lot of tips and savvy saver tips, as well resources. There concept of budgeting is great. It has everything that you need learn and to budget your living with out being deprived. I will recommend this book anyone who is thinking or just wants to know more about beig on a budget. ... Read more

5. Talk Your Way Out of Credit Card Debt!: Phone Calls to Banks That Saved More Than $43,000 in Interest Charges and Fees
by Scott Bilker
list price: $19.95
our price: $16.96
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0964840154
Catlog: Book (2003-03-01)
Publisher: Press One Pub
Sales Rank: 87792
Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Learning how to talk your way out of credit card debt is the quickest, easiest, and most efficient way to start saving money!

It's true! You can call your credit card banks to negotiate a better interest rate and have fees waived! However, it may not be as easy as picking up the phone and asking. That's because bank representatives are trained to deter you from pursuing the deals you deserve. Overcoming their tactics can be difficult when you don't know what to expect.

Scott Bilker, author of Talk Your Way Out of Credit Card Debt, and creator of, has spent 10+ years making banks compete for his business. Now, he's sharing his personal phone calls to banks that saved more than $43,000 for himself, his family, and friends! These 52 phone calls, out of the hundreds he has made, demonstrate exactly what worked, what didn't, and why. In each call transcript, for anonymity, banks have been renamed as dog breeds and their reps as bugs.:)

In this book you will discover proven negotiation strategies, and build your confidence, while learning how to: (1) get annual fees waived; (2) lower your current interest rates; (3) shop for the best credit card deals; (4) get late-payment, overlimit, and cash-advance fees waived; (5) compare loan options and calculate savings; (6) dispute charges and get all your refunds; (7) negotiate account settlements; and much more! ... Read more

Reviews (10)

5-0 out of 5 stars the best book there is on the topic
I unexpectedly run into high debt. So far, I just got this book 2 days ago. I made three phone calls, saved $85 dollars fee for a credit card and about $3,000 in interest charges on one credit card. And this is just the beginning. Extremely helpful book. I honestly recommend it to people like myself because there is always a solution and this book gives me hope

5-0 out of 5 stars Details taking charge of your credit card debt
"Talk Your Way Out of Credit Card Debt" provides solid advice on getting your rate reduced, annual fees waived, removing a late payment fee, handling disputes, and many other common problems when dealing with credit card companies. More than just advice, it is a collection of detailed examples of phone calls including complete transcripts. Each transcript demonstrates how the author handled a particular issue and the results of the call. Not content to just give one example of getting an interest rate lowered or removing over limit fees, each type of problem has several transcripts so you can get a good feel for what to expect and how to handle it. Most people are not aware of how much power they have when dealing with a credit card company and how to get things changed. This book walks the reader through the process from beginning to end and is a recommended read for anyone looking to gain control of his or her credit card situation.

2-0 out of 5 stars Not to bad
My boss bought this book for me to read as I am an accountant. This book is probably very good for people who do not have a clue about their own finances. Otherwise, most of this is just common sense if you think about it.

Each person can individually call their credit card company and negoiate lower rates, late fees, dues, over credit limit fees, and interest rates instead of using the rip off companies of debt management you hear adverstised on all the air ways.

The book offers the novice "scripts" to follow. However, you must be willing to be agressive enough to call, then ASK for what you want. And if you do not get want you want, you must have the capability of moving your debt to another credit card, otherwise, you are stuck.

The reason I gave the book 2 stars was because in all of the examples, I never say the interest rates negoiated more than 3% (i.e. from 21.9% to a whopping 18.8%) Per the book, you do do better when you wait for the credit card companies to send you a letter to transfer balances at rates which are usually very low.

Again, if you are a novice, this is a good book for you. It is a quick read. You should use to book as continuing education of your own finances.

5-0 out of 5 stars A valuable book from day one
I was shopping for a book that would help me with the credit card debt I have accumulated. I chose this book. It has proven to be very bemeficial to me. It contains a large amount of information your banks don't want you to know. My first night of reading the book, I got up to about page 70 and made my first phone call, with the intent of gaining information about the account and possibly getting a fee reversed. I ended up getting a $50 credit to the account, relatively easily. I cannot praise this book enough! If you need to reduce your credit card debt, this book may very well be your solution.

I had the same problem most of you reading this have. But after reading this book from cover to cover, I was awashed with a new vigor and confidence to launch a strategic war of words with the credit card telephone handlers. As you read thru the transcripts of the author's actual calls, picture yourself talking on the phone with the same savvy as he. Then close the book, put up your over charged, over penalized, and over interest rated bill and MAKE CALLS! Show them that you are taking CONTROL of your finances and relish the experience of sticking up for yourself. ... Read more

6. The Motley Fool You Have More Than You Think : The Foolish Guide To Personal Finance
by David Gardner, Tom Gardner, Inc Motley Fool
list price: $14.00
our price: $11.20
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0743201744
Catlog: Book (2001-01-02)
Publisher: Fireside
Sales Rank: 22962
Average Customer Review: 3.86 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

The Completely Revised and Expanded Edition of the New York Times Bestseller That Focuses on Personal Finance for Every Budget -- and Every Stage of Life

Taking control of your personal finances is the first -- and most important
-- step toward successful investing and a secure future. The Motley Fool You Have More Than You Think, now fully updated and expanded, provides guidance for anyone trying to balance lifestyle aspirations and financial realities. The latest edition of this Motley Fool bestseller covers topics such as:

  • Getting out of debt...and into the stock market
  • Turning your bank account into a moneymaker
  • Using and the Internet to learn about all things financial -- from buying a home to getting the best deal on a car
  • Saving enough to send your children to the colleges of their dreams
... Read more

Reviews (14)

4-0 out of 5 stars They got me excited about investing
The Motley Fool- You Have More Than You Think- is full of sound advice that really got me interested in finaces and investing. The book basically presents two key things- fundamental concepts of investing and saving your money, and information on the best ways to go about doing that, when you don't have the slightest idea on how to do it. The key information in this book could probably be very much compressed down, but it's really not too difficult to make it through the 300 pages. In fact, pretty much each chapter presents one main idea and expands upon it, it's a very easy read. David and Tom Gardner, when not relentlessly plugging their website,, set out to make the book actually funny and interesting to read, and I think they managed to do it. I never want to have a credit card after reading this book. The biggest strength of the book are definately the step-by-step instructions on how to save money whilst making big-ticket item purchases like cars, homes, and college tuitions. It's a great resource for students and parents.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great personal finance book
On the cover of this national bestseller it claims to be "The Foolish Guide to Personal Finance," I would have to agree the Gardner brothers have made the subject of personal finances an enjoyable and witty read.

I recommend reading the following chapters of this book:

"And a Bunch of People Want What You Have"

This chapter discusses why casinos, sports betting, lotteries, and credit card debt are hazordous to your wealth. I think this should be required reading for every young adult in america. This chapter needs to discuss smoking, drinking, and drugs as well, but the investment guide for teens already covered that.

"You Can Get and Keep More Than You Think"

This chapter discusses some banking basics, how to get a good deal on a car (well worth the price of this book), how to save money when purchasing a house, insurance information, and funding for college.

"When not to invest" is also a good chapter since it tells us in common sense when we should and shouldn't be in the market.

"The Ten Most Common Investing Mistakes" are highlighted mistakes with good examples which a lot of people do.

"The Fourteen Things You've Learned Here" is an excellent summary of the book, if are considering this book I suggest reading this chapter and the others mentioned above.

In short I think this is a great book especially if you listen to and follow what these brothers recommend.

Reed Floren

5-0 out of 5 stars A Common Sense Approach
It's amazing that I have owned this book for such a long time and NOT reviewed it. What an oversight as it certainly is one of my most highly acclaimed books regardless of category.

Much of the information still sticks with me today. Whereas the book is about investing your money wisely, it just does not talk about the stock market. Most important of all, David and Tom Gardner (The Two Motley Fools) discuss how to keep more of the money you earn. This can be done by avoiding excessive gambling and overindulgence in your State Lotteries. Also this can be done by failing to pay yourself first as illustrated in the chapter entitled The Ten Most Common Financial Mistakes. Gosh the example of the multiple uses of one's shirt is hilarious.

Although the Gardner's have their biases when discussing investment vehicles, the humor shines through as well as some common sense. Truthfully, Mutual Funds do have their purposes for some people in some scenarios. However, the reasons against Mutual Funds are certainly noteworthy. The approach to constantly research and adjust one's portfolio is strongly encouraged here which a big plus is.

Most important of all, the tone of the book is not filled with heavy jargon. The handy glossary in the back of the book smoothes out any questions that a reader might have. And the light hearted humorous approach makes this book FUN! Therefore, run down to your book store and pick up this gem immediately.

4-0 out of 5 stars Makes personal finance easy to grasp.
This book is very easy to read and is entertaining to boot. It's full of practical advise on how to invest, handle debt and even buy a car. I used their method of buying a car with great sucess.

5-0 out of 5 stars You Have More Than You
I found it very helpful and humorous at times. They certainly try to keep learning about your own personal finances informative and proactive. ... Read more

7. Quick and Easy Budget Book: A Practical Workbook for Balancing Your Household Budget
by Dianna Barra
list price: $15.98
our price: $15.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0971137048
Catlog: Book (2002-12-04)
Publisher: Idea Designs
Sales Rank: 222375
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

This is an easy, yet complete book for balancing your budget.You are introduced to a method of record keeping that is very flexible and yet at the same time thorough. It walks you through the easy steps of determining your past income and spending history. Then it guides you in planning for the next year. Space is included for recording your monthly budget and actual income and expenditures. Makes tax time a snap. ... Read more

Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars This book helped me get my finances in order!
This book is so simple to use. The instructions were clear and concise and before I knew it, I had developed a budget I can live with. What a life saver. If you ever wanted to start keeping track of your budget, this is the book you need. ... Read more

8. The Smart Mom's Guide to Staying Home : 65 Simple Ways to Thrive, Not Deprive, on One Income
by ChristineWalker
list price: $15.95
our price: $15.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1412007607
Catlog: Book (2004-06-04)
Publisher: Trafford Publishing
Sales Rank: 185363
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9. 50 Simple Things You Can Do to Improve Your Personal Finances: How to Spend Less, Save More, and Make the Most of What You Have
list price: $14.00
our price: $10.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0812927427
Catlog: Book (2001-05-22)
Publisher: Three Rivers Press
Sales Rank: 41481
Average Customer Review: 3.12 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Everything you need to know about personal finance -- whether you're just starting out or starting over.

The hardest part of attaining personal financial freedom is getting started. Ilyce R. Glink makes it a snap. The smart, simple strategies presented in 50 Simple Things You Can Do to Improve Your Personal Finances let you take immediate control of your money. With her trademark wit, friendly style, and crystal-clear examples, Ilyce Glink helps you set financial goals and reach them. Topics include:

* Starting Out * Budgets and Savings * Credit, Credit Reports, and Debt * Investing Yourself in Investments * Big Purchases * The Ins and Outs of Insurance * Taxes * Marriage, Partnerships, Children * Planning for Your Retirement
... Read more

Reviews (8)

2-0 out of 5 stars You Deserve Better
Perhaps standing alone this book would be good even recommendable, but there are so many better volumes out there. This book is very basic and not especially informative. I would recommend The Richest Man in Babylon or Finance On a Low Budget in place of this.

5-0 out of 5 stars Quick Read, Everlasting Tips
In the process of reading this book I found that my prevalent fears of anything economic and financial were greatly dissolved. The "50 simple things" truly live to their namesake; chapters averaging 3-4 pages are concise, yet full of information without droning on and losing my interest. I found that my favorite part about the whole book was that as a teenager, I could use this book as a basis for my financial questions in my next 40-50 years alive. It starts out with simple advice like organization and saving pocket change, moves on to future issues like wedding costs and car leasing, and then even goes as far as talking about retirement funds. I'm greatly considering purchasing this book to keep with me as I progress financially in my years to come. Being a complete idiot when it comes to financial terminology, I found this book helped explain a lot of new items (i.e. Roth IRA), and expand well in an attention-keeping number of pages. So, while this book may not satisfy the economic genius or corporate mogul, it lives true to it's title by simply delivering truly helpful tips to the novice in financial handling (like me).

4-0 out of 5 stars Restating the obvious but ...
Most money matters are fundamentally simple (dont overspend, buy low - sell high etc. ) and so this book re-states the obvious and simple things in simple words. People looking for a formula for financial success will be grossly disappointed with this book (manifested by some opinions here). Its a book that has some good to follow common sense tips.

There is not a single tip in this book that hasn't been stated in another book or can't be found on a plethora of web sites. But it collects them and states them in simple words - like a book of quotations. Also - it is not and does not claim to be the "only personal finance book you'll ever need" - I hate those ...

A good book to read on a flight or a slow afternoon.

I think its a bit overpriced at [the money] (hence the 1 * deduction), buying it used [for less money] and it will be worth it.

4-0 out of 5 stars Financial Advice 101
Like a 101 course in college, this book does live up to its title. For someone who is just beginning to take the steps toward financial planning, these simple things will help. Most seem like common sense, but often the obvious is overlooked. Glink gives the reader good examples and down to earth advice. She actually talks to the reader, not down to or over his head. Glink explains how simple habits can cost you money, and how paying a little extra will cost you a lot less. Depending on your personal level of financial understanding, this book can either be a tool to help with the basics or can serve as a refresher course.

1-0 out of 5 stars WASTE OF MONEY

10. I'm in Debt, Over 40, with No Retirement Savings. HELP!
by John L. White
list price: $14.95
our price: $12.71
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0974068748
Catlog: Book (2003-08-01)
Publisher: Everlove & Bohannon Pub
Sales Rank: 80501
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

How would you like to be debt free? Do you wish you had some money set aside for retirement? Instead of just wishing about it, you can make it happen. At the age of 40, John White was in debt - credit cards, the worst kind of debt - and had no retirement savings. Today he has no credit card debt and a positive net worth.

Unlike most financial books, this one is based on real life experience, not just some financial advisor's theories. All of the strategies are from the author's real life experiences, and they are guaranteed to work - even if you're not over 40. ... Read more

Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars Written by a real life survivor who climbed out of debt
Written by a real life survivor who climbed out of debt to credit card companies to re-establish positive net worth, John L. White's I'm In Debt, Over 40, With No Retirement Savings. Help! is a very practical survival guide to improving an otherwise bleak financial situation. From breaking bad spending habits; to keeping expensive teenagers in check; to saving money on the family car; to buying an affordable mortgage; developing a mind set conducive to savings; and so much more, I'm In Debt, Over 40, With No Retirement Savings. Help! is an easy-to-understand, "must-read", for anyone approaching middle age or older who finds themselves ill prepared for a financially comfortable retirement.

5-0 out of 5 stars Inspiring and Enlightening
The moment I started reading this book I could not put it down! It was a very easy and entertaining read. What I found inspiring and enlightening was the personal desire to improve ones financial well-being, and the lessons that were learned when it was realized.

Initially spending habits remained pretty much the same, except with one troubling exception. Instead of running out of pocket cash and with it the ability to buy anything, now your improved financial income earned you the privilege to buy with credit and your buying power was only limited by the card's credit limit! The more you bought on credit and paid each month, the more your credit limit increased, along with your credit rating, which attracted other credit card institutions to give you their pre-approved credit card which added to your overall credit limit. Can you see where this is going?

But this book has a happy ending.

The book begins to take you through the simple and everyday things that you either ignore or take for granted. Just by applying a few easy money saving and earning techniques, you can accumulate a significant amount of money over time. We're not talking about a get rich quick scheme, rather a disciplined approach to spending with tips that can save you hundreds to thousands of dollars when you have to part with your hard earned dollars.

This book speaks in simple and clear terms. No dictionary or financial consultants are needed to understand and use its straightfoward tips. Buy this book today and it will pay for itself on your next trip to the grocery store!

5-0 out of 5 stars If I knew this at 20 I'd be retired now at 49.
I've never finished a novel but have always been interested in finance and technical articles. When I purchased this book to read I never thought I would finish it but bam I'm done! This book was so easy to read and follow and just full of common sense tips about how to keep your butt out of debt. Whew! Get this book for you and your kids! It's never too late to start living right and being able to sleep at night knowing that what you have is yours and nobody can take it away from you. Now that's what I call the American DREAM! This would make a great Christmas stocking stuffer that they will keep their pockets full of Christmas cheer the whole year through! ... Read more

11. You Don't Have to Be Rich: Comfort, Happiness, and Financial Security on Your Own Terms
by Jean Sherman Chatzky
list price: $23.95
our price: $16.29
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1591840120
Catlog: Book (2003-10-01)
Publisher: Portfolio
Sales Rank: 12515
Average Customer Review: 4.76 out of 5 stars
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Money can't make you happy, but it can make you miserable, explains money maven Jean Chatzky in You Don't Have to Be Rich: Comfort, Happiness, and Financial Security on Your Own Terms. Her premise is provocative: the financial habits of people who believe that money equals happiness will stand in the way of achieving that happiness. Chatzey, a financial editor for the Today show and a columnist for Money magazine, leverages money smart habits of mind from her research with 1,500 Americans and their wallets.

She begins with short and savvy history of how Americans turned from market observers to "in the game all the time participants." Then, she focuses on how to use market down turns as an opportunity "to take back our money by living within our means." Chatzky's down to earth advice is practical and confronts the reader head-on witha non-nonsense approach: "five steps to wanting less," "Feng Shui finance to simplify," "advice for the organizationally dyslexic," "non-gaseous goal setting," or "how to stop digging a financial hole and spotting unconscious spending."

Chatzky illustrates with clear examples and includes survey questions so readers can assess their own money matters. Although some of the advice will sound familiar, (pay your bills when they come in), this is a priceless blueprint for balancing your checkbook along with your outlook. --Barbara Mackoff ... Read more

Reviews (17)

5-0 out of 5 stars Life is better!
Jean Chatzky's new book on personal finance is unlike any that has come before. I know becaue I've read dozens of books on personal finance and getting rich. Chatzky's book includes an abundance of valuable advice and information necessary to manage your money in today's economy but what makes this book unique is the 'bigger picture' approach Ms. Chatzky takes on money's relevance to the whole of your life. After reading the book and doing the exercises I have a new awarness of my perceptions about money, its value and place in my life and I'm taking steps to do more of what brings me satisfaction instead of obsessing about how much money I have, what my investments are doing and so on. As if all that is ever going to make me happy. I'm spending more time with my family and friends and enjoying life more. And my money is doing just fine.

5-0 out of 5 stars She's right...
Once again, Jean provides practical advice that we can all use. I have watched her on the Today Show for years and am struck by her uncanny ability to keep it simple. Here, Jean offers a path to happiness that everyone can follow. Her suggestions make sense, and the anecdotal examples make this a fast read that's well worth the investment.

The only problem for me is that the Roper research is based on a national survey. For those of us living in New York City, it's hard to swallow that $50,000 is the threshold amount that a person might need to be happy, unless she means "after taxes." I have friends who pay that much in yearly rent.

Still, if you can imagine the audience for this book is wider than those of us stuck in the most expensive city in the world, her points all make sense. Her thoughts about controlling spending by examining your real needs could have come from a psychologist, not an expert on money. The step-by-step advice is applicable to everyone, no matter how much you have in the bank.

It's a far reaching book that can help anyone become happier with what they have.

5-0 out of 5 stars What Do You REALLY Want?
There are dozens of books which address many of the same topics and issues and this is one of the best because it was written primarily for non-experts such as I who seek "comfort, happiness, and financial security on [our] terms," of course, and need guidance to make appropriate decisions. Answers to questions such as these are more difficult to formulate now than at any prior time that I recall:

• What are the significant differences between standard of living and quality of life?
• Are they mutually exclusive?
• How can -- and should -- "wealth" be measured?
• To what extent (if any) is there a correlation between personal happiness and net worth?
• What do the happiest people seem to share in common?
• What are the most damaging misconceptions many people have when formulating a financial plan?
• Which strategies and tactics are most effective to achieve financial security? Why?
• What are "The Ten Commandments of Financial Happiness"?

Chatzky address these and countless other questions which many of us may have but feel embarrassed to ask. Of course, we can retain highly reputable financial planners whose services are worth every dollar they cost. However, my own experience suggests that a financial planner's best client is a well-informed client. More specifically, financial planners are most valuable once a client has carefully completed exercises such as those which Chatzky includes in her book. Invoking direct address, what do you REALLY want in life? Being rich and being happy are NOT mutually-exclusive. Many people are unhappy because they are essentially insolvent, if not destitute. No savings, credit unworthy, deeply in debt, in danger of foreclosure or eviction, etc. Many others are just as unhappy because of their affluence. They yearn to possess what money can't buy: physical health, peace of mind, friendship worthy of the name, etc.

Caveat: Do NOT purchase this book or any other such book unless and until you are wholeheartedly committed to doing the "homework" required and then to following through on whatever decisions you make. I think that Chapter 6 (all by itself) is worth far more than the cost of the book. However, do you REALLY understand the requirements as well as the benefits of living within your means? Tough decisions may need to be made. (I mean TOUGH.) Do you have what it takes to make them? More importantly, do you have what it takes to stick with those decisions no matter what? Years ago, the actor Rod Steiger was asked if young people ever requested career advice. "Oh yeah, sure, all the time. I look them right in the eye and ask 'Do you want to be an actor or do you HAVE to be an actor?' The longer it takes them to answer, the less likely they'll ever make it." If you HAVE to have financial security, Jean Chatzky can help you to achieve it. Otherwise....

3-0 out of 5 stars Book Summary
Jean Chatzky believes that the economic bust of the late 1990s caused many investors to question their previously held beliefs. People questioned the role money played in their lives and what exactly constitutes happiness. To investigate these questions Chatzky hired RoperASW to conduct research into the habits, attitudes, and behaviors of people who are happy and unhappy. The working definition of happiness that the author uses belongs to psychology researcher Ed Diener who defined happiness as "the process of enjoying what you're doing" (22).

RoperASW found that money was only one of several factors that affected overall happiness. In addition to your genetic disposition toward happiness, the most crucial factors listed in order of importance include relationships, self-esteem, job satisfaction, health, and money. According to Chatzky these distinctions are important, "...when we chase money, we lose the opportunity to focus on the [other factors] that could reward us with a huge upward swing in happiness" (20).

Money seems to have a much higher potential downside than upside relative to happiness. The research shows that an individual's overall happiness is significantly affected by money only when that individual's income jumps from $25,000 to $50,000 per year. There exists little improvement in overall happiness when comparing different income groups who make $50,000 per year or more.

Chatzky downplays the role that money plays in achieving happiness by relating the law of diminishing returns, "Once you've achieved life's basic comforts and necessities, more money doesn't necessarily buy more happiness" (15). The rest of the book studies the financial habits of happy people in regards to financial organization, bill paying, record keeping, saving, spending, and setting goals.

Communication and organization serve as the key toward achieving overall happiness. Chatzky recommends investing in mutual funds, and protecting yourself and your family with adequate insurance coverage. She prefers you invest in either index funds or exchange-traded funds (EFTs), such as the "SPY" (S&P 500) and "VPI" (Wilshire 5000) that trade on the American Stock Exchange, depending on how much money you have to invest. Finally, concerning insurance, Chatzky believes that if you have a family you must have life insurance, and if you are single you must purchase "own-occupation" disability insurance.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book!
I found the surveys very interesting, how people feel about money and happiness. More importantly, what habits happy people have regarding money. This book has some very practical advice. I liked this book so much, I'm giving it to each of my three adult children for Christmas. ... Read more

12. Become Totally Debt-Free in Five Years or Less
by Gwendolyn D. Gabriel, Raphael Elizalde, Chandra Sparks Taylor, Diana Kennedy
list price: $14.95
our price: $12.71
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0970302207
Catlog: Book (2000-11-15)
Publisher: Brown Bag Press
Sales Rank: 114520
Average Customer Review: 4.14 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

This self-help book about personal finance provides hundreds of motivational and inspirational messages and common-sense and creative money-management ideas and techniques to help readers get out of debt.The book has 30 chapters.Of the 30 chapters, the first four are filled with motivational messages, the next 26 are packed with money-saving ideas.At the beginning of each chapter is an eye-catching illustration and at the end of each chapter is an affirmation.There are also six worksheets and three self-evaluations throughout the book to further assist readers in becoming totally debt-free. ... Read more

Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Book - I refer to it daily!!!
I purchased this book a little over two years ago when I first saw the author on television. Since then, my husband and I have referred to it daily to find ways to save money. If we keep it up, we should be out of debt in two more years. So, we both think that this is the best book that we have ever read about getting out of debt. If this author puts out a second edition, we hope to be the first to buy it. Thank you author for writing such a wonderful book!!!

1-0 out of 5 stars Start saving by not buying this book!
I have read a lot of books about debt recovery, personal finances, budgeting, and saving, and this book has been by far the worst. To begin with, regardless of how the title sounds, the author doesn't actually give any tips for how to organize or budget in order to reduce the debt that you currently have. The book is basically a list of money saving tips, which would be fine if the tips were useful and applicable to ones daily life. Unfortunately those that Ms. Gabriel shares are neither.

Her tips range from ultra-restrictive suggestions such as never go into a mall or retail store again to tips that would only apply to specific and seldom occuring (at least I hope) situations such as decide not to get tattoos or don't throw lavish funerals for your loved ones to just down right impractical suggestions such as move in with family or friends for a year and rent out your house so that you can double what you are paying on your mortgage. If you are looking for a book of practical, manageable money saving tips that you can apply to your everyday life then this is definitely not that book.

5-0 out of 5 stars What Ever Person Should Read
America is known as the land of plenty. We should say the land of "plenty of debt". This book has practical solutions for living debt free that readers can apply to their individual lives. Living and Living "Debt Free" are two different states of mind. In a time of economic uncertainty these basic principles are a path to opening economic success for all who read, comprehend and apply this time tested information. This book should only be read if the reader makes a committment to become debt free.

3-0 out of 5 stars Interesting
This book offered many interesting tips. Although I didn't agree with some of them, I think the author did a nice job.

5-0 out of 5 stars For anyone seeking to emancipate themselves from debt
Become Totally Debt-Free In Five Years Or Less: Pay Off Your Mortgage, Car, Credit Cards, And More! is a compendium of practical, effective, coherent, "user friendly" advice for anyone seeking to emancipate themselves from the burden of debt and former money-management mistakes. Gwendolyn Gabriel shows how to determine if you are a candidate for bankruptcy debt relief; how to end the credit-card cycle; turn your house into a money-maker; lower your utility bills; cut eating expenses in half; resolve financially incompatible marital woes, divorce inexpensively, save money during holidays, prepare your own will, save on planned vacations, and much, much more. If you want to be debt free and no longer bleeding your earnings through interest payments, late fees, and financial waste -- begin with a thoroughly reading of Gwendolyn Gabriel's Become Totally Debt-Free In Five Years Or Less. ... Read more

13. Making It in the City: A Girl's Guide to Starting Life on Your Own in a Ridiculously Expensive City You Can't Afford
by Adina Kalish Neufeld
list price: $12.95
our price: $10.36
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1590770846
Catlog: Book (2005-04-25)
Publisher: M. Evans and Company, Inc.
Sales Rank: 114149
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

This practical, yet fun, guide provides young women with everything they need to adapt to life on their own, including managing money. ... Read more

Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Love This Book!
I just moved to New York and have been struggling to make ends meet while also trying to meet people and have a social life!This book gave me a ton of great ideas and resources.I would recommend it to anyone who is starting out or moving to a new city. ... Read more

14. The Cutting Edge in Financial Services
by Bob Veres
list price: $39.95
our price: $39.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0872186229
Catlog: Book (2003-01-01)
Publisher: National Underwriter Company
Sales Rank: 198167
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars All Financial Advisors need to read this book
This book is exceptional! It summarizes everything that is happening in our business, what's coming next, who's doing what and what the resources are. I consider myself fairly in touch with what is going on in the profession, and I am learning something new on every page. It's applicable to running the business and to being a better financial planner. I hope Bob will rewrite it every few years to take into account changes as they occur. (And no, I'm not getting any kickbacks from Bob )

5-0 out of 5 stars Insightful!!!
As we have come to expect from Veres' shorter writing formats, his first tome on financial planning is full of insight. I heard insight once defined as: the ability to see beyond the obvious, which is a perfect description of what Veres' shares with us in his new book.

Anyone who is serious about being successful as a planner, would do themselves a favor by reading this book.

5-0 out of 5 stars What's this book about, anyway?
I'm the author of The Cutting Edge, so I thought it might be helpful to let you know what the book does--and doesn't--have in it.

I'm a writer/publisher in the financial services world, and I write exclusively for financial services professionals. If you're a consumer, this is probably not the book for you. If you're in the profession, as a financial planner, insurance or investment professional, or as a representative of a mutual fund or other organization and want a quick, comprehensive read about what's going on with the professionals you work with, then you'll almost certainly find this book useful.

The Cutting Edge is a very compehensive review of the changes that the financial services profession is going through, what new services are being offered and how, new trends in managing a practice, shifts in the accepted wisdom about portfolio building and investments, and a section on how to get yourself out of the box and unlock your personal potential in a very demanding and competitive business.

Who am I? I run an interactive information service called Inside Information, which has about 2,000 participants. Every week, I discuss what we think we know about an important topic, and invite feedback. 95% of the participants WON'T respond, but those 5% who do (it's different every week) will have thought deeply about the subject, and will respond with thoughts, ideas and suggestions that I, frankly, would never have thought of. I capture this information, send it back to the membership, and suddenly we all know a LOT more than we did before. In a week!

I think this is the way all journalism will be practiced someday, as information is delivered through the interactive medium of the Web, rather than the one-way media of TV or print.

This book is an organized collection of the best thoughts and ideas and wisdom that has come through our Inside Information discussions over the past two years. It's the best guide you'll find to where the whole world of financial services is going, and I can say that with all due modesty, because all the credit (literally) goes to 2,000 great thinkers and successful professionals.

Thanks for browsing. ... Read more

15. 10 Steps to Home Ownership : A Workbook for First-Time Buyers
list price: $15.00
our price: $10.20
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0812925319
Catlog: Book (1996-12-24)
Publisher: Three Rivers Press
Sales Rank: 42019
Average Customer Review: 4.56 out of 5 stars
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First-time homebuyers have a guide specifically tailored to their needs in 10 Steps to Home Ownership. Author Ilyce R. Glink writes reassuringly for those who are new to the often-confusing world of real estate. Her book is full of worksheets, allowing readers to pencil out solutions to home buying's many riddles: How big a mortgage can you qualify for? How much money will you need at closing? This book, 10 Steps to Home Ownership, can help readers who find themselves dreaming of home ownership but are too bewildered to take the first steps. --Barry Mitzman ... Read more

Reviews (9)

5-0 out of 5 stars A nice aid to figuring out how to buy that first house...
I bought this book about a year before I started looking for my first house (when I knew ABSOLUTELY nothing beyond the fact I wanted to buy) and I found this book to be an indespensible aid. The real beauty of it, for me at least, is Ms. Glink's ability to get you thinking about all the myriad issues involved in buying a home (including the biggie - do you even want to do it) in a constructive way with language that is easy to understand. I love that she includes the emotional issues (that are so often overlooked) alongside the financial, legal and practical issues. The breakdowns of real-estate language and the worksheets are nice touches, too. I have recommended this book to everyone I know who utters that magic phrase, "I'd love to buy a house someday...".

5-0 out of 5 stars A must have for the new homebuyer
I am a 25 year old looking into buying a condo in Chicago. I just finished the book and it taught me so much about what to expect going into this major purchase. The author explains what you can reasonably assume a bank will loan you, different financing techniques and important emotional and financial issues you will have to resolve before choosing a home. Its easy to read and engaging. I usually have a short attention span for manuals, but I read this cover to cover in a week. I never lost interest. If you're a renter and at the point where you're starting to think you want to buy, read this book for some great tips and advice so you don't fall into any "gotchas" ahead.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good for buying homes, but not apartments...
This book is an invaluable resource for someone looking to buy their first home: Glink takes the reader through the home buying process step by step, and the amortization tables in the appendix definitely come in handy. However, I wouldn't necessarily recommend it for someone looking to buy a co-op or a condo. When I was looking to buy a co-op apartment in the city, I found the CO-OP BIBLE to be much more helpful--it was the book I turned to when I needed help with every aspect of that process.

4-0 out of 5 stars Valuable Read for the First-Time Buyer
I recently read Ilyce Glink's "10 Steps to Home-Ownership" and came away impressed. She has great worksheets, and an objective, no-nonsense approach to the home ownership process. I recently closed on a home in the Southern California area and used "10 Steps" to prepare me for the process. I found myself referring to Eric Tyson's "Home Buying for Dummies" more than this book once I activeley looked for a home. However, I felt "10 Steps" was a good starter for the process and the worksheets made me comfortable with what I wanted and how much I can afford. One small complaint: she includes 70 pages of interest rate amortization tables which could be easily translated on one page.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great 'starter' book
This is a great book for when you just begin to considere the purchase of a home. The book contained a lot of information and clearified may issues of the real estate industry. I found it was very informative but sometimes too simple. Overall it is great way to get your start in the home buying experience. I would recomend this to every first time buyer. ... Read more

16. The Complete Cheapskate: How to Get Out of Debt, Stay Out, and Break Free from Money Worries Forever
by Mary E. Hunt, Mary Hunt
list price: $12.95
our price: $9.71
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0312316046
Catlog: Book (2003-08-01)
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Sales Rank: 54948
Average Customer Review: 4.17 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

In need of a Money Makeover?

Let America's most popular cheapskate show you how to go from financial chaos to freedom and security--painlessly and in less time than you ever imagined.

Mary Hunt has helped thousands live a debt-free life with her popular newsletter, "The Cheapskate Monthly." In The Complete Cheapskate, Mary puts all the very best money advice she has in one place. Becoming a classy, dignified cheapskate is not all that difficult, and Mary shows how with her user-friendly principles of saving, restraint, and living debt-free.

This book will teach you how to:
- Create--and stick to--a monthly spending plan
- Live well off 80% of your income
- Climb out--and stay out--of debt's hole
- Stretch every dollar to its absolute maximum
- Manage savings and investments
- Lower bills on clothes, food, and gifts without lowering living standards
- Live within a financial plan that includes a margin for fun and spontaneity

With hundreds of tips on cutting expenses, The Complete Cheapskate is the indispensable guide for people ready to regain control of their finances, relieve the stress money has created, and prepare for their future.
... Read more

Reviews (12)

5-0 out of 5 stars Mary Hunt's the Complete Cheapskate : How to Get Out of Debt
I found out about this book through a friend of mine. Five years ago, she was in debt, driving a 9 yr old car, and having some problems with finances. Last year, after paying off her new car with cash, she purchased a condo. I asked how she changed so dramatically. She told me about this book.

Last year, I sent this book to my sister who was 20K in debt. She was worrying about her finances every time we talked. Within a week of reading this book, her whole attitude changed and her worry was gone. She started the system in the book. Today, her debt is reduced to 14K and she is very confident in eliminating her debt in the near future. The results I have witnessed have been phenomenal!

I have always been a saver but have always wanted to help my sister who was troubled with her finances. I tried to help her but the only result was more frustration. Sending this book to my sister was the best thing I have done for her. And I won't hesitate to send it to anyone else in my life that needs this type of help.

5-0 out of 5 stars This book is right on target for those in debt
I was unfamiliar with Mary's work prior to purchasing this book. Her thoughts on debt and money management hit me right between the eyes. We are giving ourselves a money makeover using Mary's ideas to get out of credit card debt.

This is an easy and enjoyable read (despite the subject matter). Mary has conquered a personal debt of $100,000 without declaring bankruptcy and it is nice to hear from someone who has "been there, done that". Her tone is non-judgemental, her ideas practical and her approach non-threatening even for financial novices.

I highly recommend this book!

1-0 out of 5 stars Moneysaving Tip #1: Don't Buy This Book
I cannot believe this book exists.

First of all, she spends a good half of the book with this weird, overkill, convoluted little accounting system where basically you hide your own money from yourself but later get to find it again. Frankly, anybody who can't get a grip on their cash flow and spend within their means is NEVER going to be able to do the bookeeping needed to apply this "system". So half the book is a waste of money right there.

The rest of the book is just this littany of Betty homemaker moneysaving tips, most of which are either already obvious to even a dilettante moneysaver or you could probably find by Googling for a couple hours on the subject matter of your choice.

It is also bespeckled with patronizing little pieces of advice that are just-plain off-topic. For instance: stay out of the fast lane when you're driving because it's dangerous.

So like I said, your 1st step toward a cheapskate lifestyle involves not buying this book.

There. I just saved you $10. :)

5-0 out of 5 stars Ingenious way of approaching common-sense money management.
Simply put: this book changed my life. I couldn't put it down once I started it. I have since begun my money makeover and things are looking better than they have in years. The book is a Godsend for those like me who found money disappearing every month. She uses common sense techniques, but the key is the way that they all work together. Also, don't discount this book if you're not a religious person. Even though she emphasizes God and tithing, you can give your money to ANY charitable organization and still follow her program.

This book is not perfect, and although my complaints are minor, I do have a few.

1. My main complaint was that she ignores past-due debt when doing the money makeover. I had MANY past due bills and they just didn't fit into the makeover anywhere. My solution was to postpone opening my Freedom account for 3 months, and use that money to pay off as many past due accounts as I could. I also started my savings & giving at a lower percentage at first. It will work, just be VERY careful not to let total outgoing money exceed total income. Open your Freedom account as soon as possible, it is wonderful and essential to keeping on track.

2. She recommends dealing with cash. I found that dealing with cash was one of the reasons my money kept disappearing. I am electing to deal with as LITTLE cash as possible, so it's much easier for me to keep track of where I'm spending my money.

Even with complaints, I still rate this book 5 stars because of the radical positive impact it had on my finances when I followed her program. I highly recommend it.

2-0 out of 5 stars A Bit Disappointing
I guess if you are really unable to handle your money, this book may help you. But most of the stuff is plain common sense you'll figure out in ten minutes if you just sit at a table with a pen and a paper and start counting your income and outcome and think about how should you use your money.

There are three aspects about this book that I'll consider:

1. The advice on how to get out of debt is adequate. But it is not as sound and clear as that in Your Money Or Your Life. Hey, you can even get similar results by just reading The Richest Man In Babylon and doing everything it suggests and you won't be let too far behind. What I found disappointing was that this book is only well applicable by an american. It is not impossible to transfer the advice to other countries, but you'll have to rethink most of the math and tables yourself.

2. The end has some advice on how to live cheaper than in the past. There are some good tips here, but about half of it is just plain common sense like "buy in bulk and freeze it", "strecth your juices", "buy a used car", "shop second hand if possible", "if you need desperate money, sell something"...

3. I believe in God and all, but c'mon I didn't buy this book to read a lecture on God and charity. There is _way_ too much stuff about faith, religion, worshiping god, "giving the tenth", the Bible and such stuff. It is also not that good stuff. The same stuff is better told in The Power Of Your Subconscious by Murphy. ... Read more

17. How to Raise a Family on Less Than Two Incomes : The Complete Guide to Managing Your Money Better So You Can Spend More Time withYour Kids
list price: $12.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0767905652
Catlog: Book (2001-02-06)
Publisher: Broadway
Sales Rank: 131040
Average Customer Review: 4.22 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (9)

1-0 out of 5 stars A good book for yuppie moms w/ babies& toddlers
This is a good book if you have a toddler or younger child.
and also it is good if you have NO experience being frugal and have never heard of discounts, etc...
I suspect the author is married to a guy with a good job and he makes a lot more money than my husband does, I also suspect that they own a nice home, and aren't struggling to come up with a downpayment on a home.
Its easy to be a stay at home mom when Dad earns a lot.
maybe her idea of cutting back means on the dinner parties and expensive jewelry
a good book for the yuppie set.

I really read this book, unlike the authors friends who posted here and clogged up the true review space with false praise

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Book - Practical Advice
I really like this book - it gives you the knowledge you need to know to make changes in your budget, expectations, etc. Topolnicki really knows her stuff, and delivers the message in a user-friendly manner. I recommend this book to all parents who want to cut back to one income.

4-0 out of 5 stars Managing your Money and Time
The purpose of this very readable book is to allow a parent to spend more time with their children. The author used her experience in financial journalism to calculate expenses. After surveying more than 100 mothers, she then wrote this book to help other families with young children survive on one income. Most mothers are at home when their children are young. Whatever your reason, this book can help you to spend less on living expenses without pain.

This book has four parts. One) to help you analyze your present financial situation and plan for the future. Two) has hundreds of tips to help you cut spending. Three) shows how to save more while earning less. Four) tells you about work: quitting & keeping benefits, part-time work, and how to resume full-time work.

5-0 out of 5 stars Real-Life Strategies for Cutting Back One Income
I've been doing a lot of research on whether or not it will be feasible for me to either quit my job or cut back to part-time. And while I truly appreciate all the books out there about how to clip coupons and make my own granola, this book is different. Ms. Topolnicki gives financial advice on cutting back from two incomes, starting with tax savings and going all the way through to saving on groceries and entertainment. This is serious, real-life stuff. Her chapter on investing alone is worth the price of the book. Taxes, investments, savings, insurance, groceries, vacations, entertainment -- they're all covered and MORE! This is the first book I've read on the subject that gives me REAL hope that I can plan a budget on less than the two incomes we've gotten used to in the past ten years. I can't say enough about this book and the strategies that are outlined therein. Buy it, or borrow it from the library today.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great, practical advice
Denise has hit the nail on the head. Although everyone will find much they already knew (but might have forgotten), almost everyone will find new insights as well. Denise's straightforward and personal writing style communicates that she's not just making this up, she's telling what she knows from experience. Few people are as well qualified to discuss this subject. If this topic is even slightly of interest to you, you'll want to read this book. ... Read more

18. Credit Card Debt: : Reduce Your Financial Burden In Three Easy Steps
by Alexander Daskaloff
list price: $5.99
our price: $5.39
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0380807009
Catlog: Book (1999-04-06)
Publisher: Avon
Sales Rank: 21453
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Leave Home Without It...

Membership has its privileges, but it also has a huge share of disadvantages. Without the proper know-how and guidance, you could find yourself buried beneath an avalanche of credit card debt. Millions of Americans are just like you and are currently attempting to pay off $450 billion to credit card companies. It's in a credit card company's best interest to keep you in debt-after all that's how they make their real money. Even by following their rules, you can quickly be put at a disadvantage. It seems as if there is no light at the end of the tunnel- that is, until now.

And All That Goes With It

Whether you are overwhelmed by credit card debt or trying to prevent it altogether, Credit Card Debt has the answers. The author's basic three-step program provides the information you need to reduce interest rates, eliminate fees, and negotiate with credit card companies to keep your credit report clean. Uniquely designed to help you organize, analyze and reduce your debt, this book helps you understand how credit card companies make their money, how credit cards work, and how to use them responsibly. ... Read more

Reviews (12)

5-0 out of 5 stars This book is credit card specific!
Of all the books I have looked into, this is probably the one the credit card companies hated to see the most. I have looked into many books regarding personal finances, this is the only one I found that is specificaly about, and only about, credit cards. Alexander Daskaloff has done a great job of informing the consumer of what they can do and say when dealing with credit card companies. If you are looking or help in dealing with your credit cards on matters such as, finance charges, interest rates, late fees, annual fees,ect.; this is the place to get it. This book works both as a source of information and as a project workbook for getting your cards in order. I highly recommend this book, wether you're trying to get yourself out from under your credit card's control, or if you just want to stay one step a head.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great Book, it will help you get out of debt!
What was nice about this book is the fact that the author provides step by step instructions on how to organize and reduce your credit card debt. It is very easy to follow, however, if you want the books tricks to work for you, you'll need to have more than one credit card, I had three cards. I especially liked the quotes he provides - what you can tell your creditors so that they lower your interest rates. Oh anf if you are the unorganized type (like me) you will find his charts very very useful, I know I did. Also, the author answered my question within a few days by email. You can't go wrong with this book!

3-0 out of 5 stars good information
All right, here is my review: I think this book is not bad at all. It gives some very useful information about credit cards and credit card issuers. It is always very useful to have this info in your mind, although some of them are really straightforward and clear. Sometimes you need to read it in someonewelse's words even you know it. By the way, if you really don't know how to organize your finances like writing down your balance and credit limit on a piece of paper, you should really read this book!

Ok, that was the good part about the book. What about the rest? Don't we all know how to try to get lower interest from issuer and high interest rate induces high interest on top of your balance in every billing cycle? We know what a transfer balance with promotional rate is etc. and how to use it in our advantage. If you don't, Read this book.

Do you know what is the magical trick behind all of this credit card debt reduction techniques! I'll tell you that. PAY YOUR BALANCES. From no book you cannot get any information about how to reduce your debt without paying money. So, don't spend much, but try to pay as much as you can. Booom, you reduce your credit card debt. That simple.

Last words, this book covers some useful info you might not have known at all. Maybe it should be called "credit cards for dummies". Aren't we all little bit dummy in this field?

3-0 out of 5 stars Only helps people who are in good shape
I am deep in credit card debt, and I am being hounded by credit card companies, bill collecters, etc. I thought that this book would really help me with my alternatives for debt consolidation, give me guidelines about when to file for bankrupcty, and offer some advice about how to work with professionals. Instead, it seems like this book is written for the average person who isn't too deeply in trouble. I will keep looking for a book that evaluates the various debt consolidation agencies, talks about making settlement offers with the credit card companies, and provides information about how my credit report will be affected by the various alternatives. At this point, would it better to just file for bankruptcy? Would it be worse for my long-term credit to file Chapter 7 as opposed to making 50% settlements with my creditors? How can I find answers to these questions?

5-0 out of 5 stars And the winner is . . .
This book ROCKS! If you want to win the fight against credit card debt you MUST have this book in your corner. You can't lose. ... Read more

19. Money Is My Friend For The New Millenium
by Phil Laut
list price: $14.95
our price: $10.17
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0972415106
Catlog: Book (2003-03-31)
Publisher: Empower You Now Publishing LLC
Sales Rank: 164733
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20. Let's Get Financial Savvy! From Debt-Free to Investing With Ease
by Lois Center-Shabazz
list price: $16.95
our price: $14.41
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0971979502
Catlog: Book (2002-10-01)
Publisher: Cennet Systems
Sales Rank: 156397
Average Customer Review: 4.73 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Think you need an MBA to understand the often-overwhelming world of finance?Do the words "mutual fund" and "investment brokerage" scare you to inaction?According to Dr. Lois Center-Shabazz, author of the new book, Let’s Get Financial Savvy! we’re all capable of running our own investments and personal finances with savvy and success, and it’s not as difficult as you might think.

In conjunction with her acclaimed website, Let’s Get Financial Savvy! breaks down the once "locked doors" of investing, debt-free, and creative budgeting. The author reveals simple ways "ordinary" people can achieve and sustain wealth.

Let’s Get Financial Savvy! Covers a wide range of topics, such as:

· How to persevere and overcome any major financial crisis.
· 5 super-simple budgeting tips.
· How to start a thorough investment program in stocks, mutual funds, bonds and more.
· How to bullet-proof yourself from consumer fraud.
· The 7 deadly sins of mortgage shopping?
· How to find the right online investment account, and much more. ... Read more

Reviews (11)

5-0 out of 5 stars A superbly organized and presented "how to" guide
Let's Get Financial Savvy!: From Debt-free To Investing With Ease by Lois Center-Shabazz (founder and editor-in-chief of the personal finance website is a superbly organized and presented "how to" guide to managing personal finances. Ranging from simple matters like balancing a personal checkbook, to evaluating good debt versus bad debt, types of health insurance coverage and retirement planning, familiarity with the stock and bond markets (as well as mutual funds), tax-free accounts, home buying, and a great deal more, Let's Get Financial Savvy! is an easy-to-read primer that explains money management matters in plain and direct terms. Let's Get Financial Savvy! is an absolute "must-have" instructional reference, especially for young people just starting out on their own.

3-0 out of 5 stars Great for Beginners!
Dr. Center-Shabazz explains the notion of financial savviness in her book, Let's Get Financial Savvy!, using this adage, "You can take a million dollars from a rich man and chances are he will regain it within a year. You can give a million dollars to a poor man and chances are he will lose it within a year." The difference between the two is financial savvy. Concisely, financial savvy comes from knowledge and knowledge is power. The purpose of the book is to empower others to claim and retain their "savviness".

I think this book is an excellent resource for beginners who desire an understanding of financial concepts because it is not a comprehensive "how-to" guide. The author provides some budgeting formulas and worksheets that are largely self-explanatory and rudimentary. She does a great job dissecting complex topics and restating them in layman's terms to ensure thorough comprehension. She also covers the basics by featuring numerous financial topics ranging from budgeting (cash flow and debt management) to retirement and investment planning. Simply stated, she tells the reader what should be done without all the details on how to make it happen. This approach may be too elementary for the experienced investor who may be looking for advanced strategies and tactics. For example, on the subject of mutual funds, she discusses the benefits, types, and other fund aspects and then instructs the reader to "read a lot of mutual fund reports" without providing an example of how to analyze such a report to understand the terminology, indicators, or components of such reports. This reviewer is of the opinion that advice like this is akin to a parent briefing their teenager on the benefits of car ownership and then handing them the manuals to the GM models to read on their own.

Nonetheless, the author's enthusiasm and dedication toward personal enrichment shines through in the book. Her "can do" attitude, illustrated in her "How I Came To Be MSFINANCIALSAVVY" chapter at the beginning of the book, resonates throughout to demonstrate that personal change is possible one step at a time.

APOOO BookClub

5-0 out of 5 stars The author persevered through a financial crisis
Those new to personal finance concepts, such as young adults newly out of college, (as will many an adult in need of a financial mangement refresher) will find Let's Get Financial Savvy! by Lois Center-Shabazz to be an important and effective guide. The author persevered through a financial crisis and here imparts personal experienced based tips on how to invest, handle money, and protect against risky ventures. From online investments to mortgages, as will many an adult comes packed with charts and calculations.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great BOOK and a Great INTERVIEW
We are living in tumultuous times in which retirement pensions can disappear, lay-offs come suddenly, college costs have skyrocketed, and credit card debt quickly leads to bankruptcy. Financial ruin is all but certain for the uneducated and unaware.

Lois Center-Shabazz says that for those of us who take the time to become financially educated, wealth can be achieved, protected, and even increased with little or no extra work. Once you acquire financial savvy, you can acquire large sums of money and be able to enjoy more of what life has to offer.

I interviewed Lois Center-Shabazz on "The Inside Success Show" and she provided a treasure chest of infomration on how to get, keep, and enjoy more money.

Here's some other things I learned from Lois

** How Lois Center-Shabazz got out of debt and became wealthy in just a few year.
** What 3 essential investments must be in your financial plan
** Why people spend more than they should and how you can stop that bad habit right now
** How to get your investments up to a higher rate of return
** What common mistakes people make that you can easily avoid if you know what they are

If you are the average hard-working person struggling to get ahead and you want to turn that around, then investing your money and time in buying and reading this book will be one of the best investments you'll make.

Randy (Dr. Proactive) Gilbert, Host of The Inside Success Show ( and best-selling author of "Success Bound"

5-0 out of 5 stars This is a must read for everyone!
Dr. Shabazz, has mastered the art of "money!" She has focused on very important money issues but has explained retirement, ira's, cd and mutual funds in a way that a beginning investor can begin to invest and an experienced investor can take tips from her to make their portfolio larger. This was an excellent and informative book. ... Read more

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