Whenever someone asks me about my favorite personal finance books, I always recommend at least one of the five books below. Whether you’re brand new to the world of personal finance or already an avid reader, you’ll love the books on this list. I’ve included a good mix, from old classics to a brand new author too. All of the books below are sure to inspire you on your journey to reach financial independence. Plus, they help you get there much faster too.
The Total Money Makeover
Dave Ramsey is the author of The Total Money Makeover, which is his bestselling book (and he has many). This book is outlines his popular baby steps, which if completed correctly can help you become debt free, wealthy, and generous.
This is the perfect book for someone who wants to learn the basics of personal finance, challenge their belief systems, or try something new. In it, he explains that you first must become debt free before focusing on growing your money through investing. He also encourages you to save for your children’s college education and pay off your house early through the baby steps.
If you want to add to your Ramsey education, he hosts a radio show (and podcast) that lasts for three hours every afternoon. He answers dozens and dozens of personal finance questions every day. Most of them involve the baby steps, so he refers to this book often and the principles he teaches within it when answering radio questions.
Some personal finance experts disagree with Dave Ramsey and his teachings, but he has helped millions of people become debt free. Because of that, he also has many raving fans.
The Millionaire Next Door
When we think of the word millionaire, images of fancy cars, nice clothes, and large homes come to mind. However, in The Millionaire Next Door, Thomas Stanley shatters all of those preconceived notions. Through painstaking research, he shows that real millionaires don’t typically look the way we think.
The Millionaire Next Door is a fascinating look into the lives of real millionaires. You’ll learn what they drive, how they work, and what they purchase. You won’t think the same way about millionaires again. Plus, it might make you rethink your own habits to see how they can align with millionaire status a bit better.
Rich Dad Poor Dad
This book has changed the lives of many people since it was first published 20 years ago. In it, Robert Kiyosaki describes the differences between two dads, his own dad and the father of one of his friends. His own dad pursued traditional 9-5 work, retirement plans, and more. However, his friend’s dad, his “rich dad,” teaches him about collecting assets and investing wisely.
Robert highlights the shortcomings in financial education and reassures his readers that you really don’t need a high income to become wealthy. This book is just as relevant today as it was 20 years ago, if not so more. You can’t be a true lover of personal finance without this on your bookshelf.
Your Money or Your Life
This book is one of the best selling financial books of all time. And, it’s actually a great time to buy your own copy. The author, Vicki Robin, just released a new, updated version on the 25th anniversary of the book with a new introduction by popular frugality blogger, Mr. Money Mustache.
The book asks readers a simple question. What do you want more: money or control over your life? If you want more control over your life, then follow the 9 steps outlined in this book to help you get there. What I like about the book is that it really teaches you how to evaluate your purchases and grow your wealth. The ultimate goal Vicki hopes her readers will reach is becoming financially independent.
Meet The Frugalwoods
Written by Elizabeth Thames, the extremely popular blogger behind the blog, Frugalwoods, this book is a great personal story with many financial lessons throughout. The full name of the book is Meet the Frugalwoods: Achieving Financial Independence Through Simple Living.
It documents the author’s life, her career choices, and how she became financially independent so young. A core tenant of Liz’s life is to live frugally. That includes buying used and to trying to live without the trappings of day to day indulgences.
I know Liz personally, and I’ve been reading the Frugalwoods blog for many years. Even with that, I learned many new things about Liz by reading the book. I absolutely love her writing style. It’s incredibly personable and charming. You really feel like you get to know her. I also appreciate her honesty as she explains how she navigated the ups and downs of being a young adult.
When you finish the book, you’ll look at your belongings differently. You’ll evaluate your purchases differently, and you’ll gain a new perspective. Liz is a great example of how you can still have a wonderful life, even if you’re frugal. That’s why it’s a must read personal finance book for anyone who wants to learn more about living the simple life.
What are some other great personal finance books not on this list? Leave a comment and let me know!