Just getting started on working your way toward financial freedom?
These are the best personal finance books to start with.
They cover everything from figuring out how to budget, creating a debt payoff plan, stopping the paycheck-to-paycheck cycle, getting clear on your ‘why' for financial freedom, overcoming spending issues, shifting your mindset from scarcity to abundance, and much more.
You'll be ready to start building wealth in no time after reading these books.
Your Money or Your Life: 9 Steps to Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Achieving Financial Independence: Fully Revised and Updated for 2018
This is one of the most widely recommended personal finance books. It’s great for beginners who are struggling with the motivation to manage their money because it provides a painless framework to operate from. There’s nothing about restrictive budgeting or pinching pennies. Instead, Robin and Dominguez prompt readers to think in terms of how to equate life energy to your spending so you can take control of your financial situation and lead a more fulfilling life.
I’ve had J.D. as a guest on the podcast, and he and I tend to think very similarly when it comes to personal finance basics, as well as financial independence and money mindset. That’s where this book shines. It’s great for beginners, but it’s also a good read for anyone struggling to tie money management to a goal. J.D. brings elements of psychology into the book to discuss happiness, and why it matters in relation to money.
Jeff is an army veteran and CFP, and he wrote this book as a ‘basic training’ for personal finance. It’s an excellent read for beginners, and you don’t need a military background to appreciate the no-nonsense advice found within. If you’re just starting out financially, Jeff gives you the knowledge you need to get to the next level.
If you’ve ever heard of the 50/20/30 budgeting rule-of-thumb, it comes from this book. It’s built on the premise that you should spend 50% of your income on must-haves (bills), 30% on wants (fun things), and save the other 20%. It’s a good rule-of-thumb for starters, but I would argue that you should save far more than 20% if your goal is financial freedom. Read this book if you want to take control of your money.
Zweig offers a new take on why we invest the way we do (and why we make so many mistakes) by combining concepts of psychology, economics, and neuroscience. If you’ve read about decision making before, you’ll know that humans tend to be overconfident and irrational in their choices, although we don’t recognize that at the point of decision. This book is all about exploring why, in the context of investing. It’s an interesting read for any investor – new or old – who is interested in neuroeconomics.
Most of us start with an unhealthy relationship with money in some way or another. This book will help you improve it. Drs. Ted and Brad Klontz work in the field of financial psychology, and they strongly believe that you need to have a healthy relationship with money to form a good financial situation. They review 12 common ‘financial disorders’ and how to overcome them.
Building a business is one of the most proven paths to becoming a millionaire (and subsequently, financially free). Jaime, a successful business coach for entrepreneurs, interviewed over 100 millionaires (including yours truly) and shares their insights in this book. She also includes worksheets and checklists to make the tips given more actionable.
According to Richards, he “coined the term ‘behavior gap’ to label the gap between investor returns and investment returns.” He begins by citing studies done by Dalbar and Morningstar that show that investors severely underperform the market. Why that is and how we can make better investment choices is what Richards explores in the book. (Note: I don’t necessarily agree with his investment methods, but the psychology behind how we invest is important to understand.)
This book is good for absolute beginners who haven’t received any financial education, those in debt, or those who are living paycheck-to-paycheck. From students to retirees on extremely tight budgets, Wecks provides tips and examples of how to start managing your money while keeping your spending in check. It’s a big-picture look at how to control your money.
Siegel originally created this book to pass down valuable personal finance wisdom to his five children. Thankfully, he decided to make these tips public knowledge for others. This book makes a great gift to high school and college students, but it’s suitable for anyone who needs a basic primer on personal finance.
As you might guess by the title, Hallam is a millionaire…yes, on a teacher’s salary. Many people don’t think wealth is attainable if they work a “regular” job with a middle-of-the-road salary, but it is. Hallam shares the 9 principles he used to reach his financial freedom goal in this book.
More Recommended Reading Lists By Topic:
- Wealth Creation Books – Habitudes of The Wealthy
- Beginner Investing Books – Foundation & Asset Allocation
- Advanced Investing Books – Quantitative Investment Strategy
- Market History and Bubbles
- Copywriting & Marketing Books
- Early Retirement Books
- Business & Entrepreneur Books
- Productivity Books
- Real Estate Investing Books
- Writing Books