If you have a financial goal, books offer the perfect way to find inspiration, guidance, and useful tips to help you make that dream come true. The best finance books mix instruction with examples to give practical information. You can use a book as your template to achieve financial health or pursue a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
To find some of the best resources for common financial goals, we asked Norene Ruggiero, circulation desk supervisor at Western Allegheny Community Library, for her recommendations. She suggested books for all levels of financial knowledge below. Happy reading!
General Adult Personal Finance Books
Understanding personal finance can help you work toward several important goals, from saving money to establishing a budget. It’s easier than ever to accomplish these goals with digital banking at your fingertips, but first, you need to learn how to use these tools.
In “Financially Forward: How to Use Today’s Digital Tools to Earn More, Save Better, and Spend Smarter,” author Alexa Von Tobel instructs readers on how to employ the tools on their smartphone to achieve financial goals. She explains why using mobile apps to pay for purchases at stores works more efficiently than carrying cash. She also details why automating your savings each month means you won’t forget about your IRA.
Home Buying, Selling, and Refinancing Books
Everyone from first-time homeowners to retirees can benefit from learning more about how to find a mortgage and refinancing. Even if you’ve been through the buying process before, there’s always more to learn.
Educate yourself with a book from the editors of Kiplinger’s Finance. “Buying & Selling a Home: Your All-In-One Guide For Success From America’s Leading Personal Finance Authority” is a classic in the field of residential real estate, ideal for those who need an overview of residential real estate financing. It includes detailed breakdowns of all types of loans, discussions about fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgages, and instructions on how to apply for and use a home equity loan.
Retirement Investing Books
You can find many sources about investing for retirement and what that timeline should look like. But you’ll find fewer that address how to save when you’re nearing or already in retirement. “Invest During Retirement: The Vanguard Guide to Managing Your Retirement Assets,” written by the staff at Vanguard Group of Investment Companies, offers actionable tips for managing your investments as you approach 65 and beyond. The book explains how to maximize Social Security and how to raise retirement income without increasing risk.
Home Improvement Books
When you tackle a home improvement project, you want your home to look better, but you also want to reap the financial benefits of investing in your space. If you decide to sell down the road, knowing where to put your money when it comes to a remodel can help you get the offer you’re looking for. In “Home Makeovers That Sell: Quick and Easy Ways to Get the Highest Possible Price,” real estate broker Sid Davis identifies the most cost-effective upgrades and how they can bring in more money for your home.
College Savings Books
If you’re a parent, whether your child is one or 17, you probably have college finances on your mind. Paying for college requires planning and financial know-how, which you can obtain from college savings books.
“1001 Ways to Pay for College: Practical Strategies to Make Any College Affordable 5th Edition,” a how-to bible by Gen and Kelly Tanabe, addresses everything from scholarships and requesting greater financial aid to maximizing your educational tax breaks.
Another resource that’s been updated with the very latest information is Peterson’s “How to Get Money for College 2021.” It explores need-based and non-need-based packages for financial aid provided by colleges and universities to complement federal aid packages.
Youth Finance Books
We believe the best way to teach kids financial responsibility is to start early. Elaine Scott’s delightful guide for children, “Dollars & $ense: A Kid’s Guide to Using — Not Losing — Money,” gives them a simple introduction to what money is, how it came to be, and how to use it responsibly.
Many people worry about getting taken advantage of by a car or motorcycle dealer when they walk in the showroom or contact a seller. Doing your homework beforehand can ensure a good experience when you buy your next vehicle. In “Don’t Get Taken Every Time: The Ultimate Guide to Buying or Leasing a Car, in the Showroom or on the Internet,” Remar Sutton explains the tricks car sellers use to get you to spend more than you should on a car.
Credit Card and Loan Books
Many teens get their first experience with credit when they go to college. But you’re never too old to learn valuable information about credit cards and loans. “Cash and Credit Information for Teens” by Kathryn R. Deering offers a guide to consumer rights when borrowing money, as well as outlines how to find the best credit card offers.
With the help of these books, you can learn more about strategies to help you achieve your financial goals. For more tips on money management, visit our WalletWorks page.