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Personal Finance for Dummies (For Dummies)

3.70  ·  Rating Details  ·  828 Ratings  ·  83 Reviews
Guiding readers on the road to financial independence by giving them the tools they need to create and achieve their financial goals in the face of an uncertain economy, this book explains the fundamental habits which can lead to improved financial health.
Paperback, 458 pages
Published November 1st 2009 by Wiley Publishing (first published 1994)
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(showing 1-30 of 2,048)
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Eleanor
Jan 05, 2013 Eleanor rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm about half way through here and this has been a great read. I never thought I'd be so absorbed by a book like this but when you're in that weird transitional state between student and independent adult, a book like this can feel empowering. I can't believe this stuff isn't required education for public schools or even expensive colleges (perhaps those institutions would rather their students not fully understand loans and big money...). I went from having a very basic, very vague sense of bu ...more
Abigail
Aug 29, 2014 Abigail rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I picked up this book after reading Pound Foolish: Exposing the Dark Side of the Personal Finance Industry. In that book, the author exposes a lot of the conflict of interest and hypocrisy that are inherent to much of the personal finance industry (financial planners, most of whom are actually broker/dealers, as well as popular gurus), but she recommended Personal Finance for Dummies as legitimate good advice. Eric Tyson, the author, has a lot of experience as a financial counselor, helping peop ...more
Leonardo Jr
Nov 29, 2011 Leonardo Jr rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: financial
Thank you for REMINDING AND HITTING me on the head! A VERY GOOD BOOK! three thumbs up!!!

"Another problem with seeking to amass wealth is that tomorrow might not come. Even if all goes acccording to plan, will you know how to be happy when you're not working if you spend your entire life making money? More importantly, who will be around to share your leisure time? One of the costs of an intense career is time spent away from friends and family. You may indeed realize your goal of retiring early,
...more
Dina
Jan 30, 2010 Dina rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I give this book only 2 stars because most of it doesn't apply to be. I'm not a homeowner and so don't need advice on mortgages, I'm in no financial position to play the stock market, etc. For a mid-twenty-something, the useful information I gleaned from this book could just as easily come from Wikipedia or better yet, my dad! Not to mention making any sort of investment right now (CD, bond, long term savings plan) has such little pay off it's almost not worth it to think about. Maybe when I'm r ...more
Ian Hrabe
Aug 13, 2015 Ian Hrabe rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What have I become? I used to be cool! I majored in film and writing because I was going to be the next Orson Wells AND write the next Great American Novel! WHAT HAPPENED?! Alas, dreams give way to reality, which is much richer than you would expect. Unless you read "richer" as "having actual dollar dollar bills ya'll," in which case um, no. I have a beautiful wife and daughter, but we live with her folks out in the country. I spent the first 26 years of my life with absolutely no concept of per ...more
Ellen
Jun 13, 2008 Ellen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: college students, yuppies, 1st time homebuyers
Recommended to Ellen by: Dave
this book is very well-written. Very accessible by the layman or laywoman. I have read a few financial texts in my life and have invested in mutual funds and 401Ks for a while, so I am not a complete novice, but this was a good refresher on the differences between investing in stocks and bonds, the difference between taxable and non-taxable securities, what you should/should not invest in through a 401K compared to what you should/should not invest in through a directly purchased investment such ...more
Mark
Aug 14, 2010 Mark rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, money
"For someone who has their personal finances in order, this will be a boring and basic book. For someone who is just figuring out how to manage their finances, this is a great book. I read this book when I was feeling weighed down by our finances and debt. This book helped me think systematically about what we were doing with our finances, helped refine a plan to retire all our debt, and convinced me the need to save and invest for the future. Since I read this book, I have read a number of othe ...more
Christopher
Mar 10, 2015 Christopher rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
100% recommend reading this for sensible adults who want to invest "right".
Dania
Aug 22, 2015 Dania rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The investing parts of this book were not very good. The information was very outdated and did not discuss TFSAs properly. I think if you're interested in investing, just read "The Millionaire Teacher".

However, obviously this book was meant as a sort of encompassing resource for personal finance. If you are a complete novice and beginner who needs someone to tell you brands aren't worth the money - this will provide you with a ton of helpful information. If you're not - well it's pretty long so
...more
Doreen
Jun 07, 2015 Doreen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have read this book several times since my late twenties. I am now 50 and the book is still very useful to me. It is not a get rich quick scheme and the advice may seem boring to young people, but the basic message is that you must live within your means, save for the future, and avoid people who are selling you bad financial products. Is it a sexy message for a 20 something? No, of course it isn't. But it is an important message that they really need to hear.

Like I said, I got a lot out of t
...more
Wes
Jan 16, 2014 Wes rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dummies books just do not disappoint. There is a good chunk of this book that is a lot of common sense, but it is really nice to have it all laid out and put together.

I took a lot of little things out of this book and am really happy I read it. It will be great tool for helping to reorganize my finances going forward. I would say this is an essential read for everyone just because people in general are very uneducated when it comes to managing their own money, and even understanding money and c
...more
Kate Dutton
Feb 20, 2014 Kate Dutton rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of my goals for 2014 was to learn more about personal finance, taxes, investments, etc. Admittedly, math is not one of my fortes (there's a reason I'm a writer), but maybe because of that, I'd gotten the stupid idea in my head that I just couldn't learn about "that stuff".

If you, too, identify with Greg Focker when asked about your "portfolio", do yourself a favor and read this book. Tyson covers a broad swath of topics, but with enough detail to feel that I now have working knowledge about
...more
Travis
Mar 01, 2013 Travis rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
I got this book on the recommendation of a financial adviser at work. He said he made all his new hires read this book before starting. I hope anyone starting a finance job would already understand everything in this book because a large part of it even I was already familiar with.

The first two parts are the real "for dummies" parts. The topics include determining your financial net worth, establishing goals, dealing with debt, and setting a budget. I actually took a long break from the book aft
...more
Laura Hughes
Sep 21, 2013 Laura Hughes rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ahhh, objectivity. This is actually kind of a breath of fresh air after the dubious manifestos from unqualified gurus that I like to read. Tyson has an approachable but not condescending tone. Actually, all the Dummies books I've read have been pretty good--informative, apparently accurate, easy-to-read but not overly simplistic.

This is a solid compendium of reliable PF advice. It covers a wide variety of topics from the basics of budgeting and debt management to investing, buying a house, insu
...more
David
Oct 01, 2014 David rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
This book is pretty sweet. It gives a good overview of personal finances, including budgeting, investing and insurance. It doesn't all apply to me right now, I'm not going to be buying a house or buying stocks anytime soon, but having read it I have a pretty good idea of what my long term goals and plans will be, and that's really comforting.

Only thing is that obviously all the tax stuff pertains to the American tax system. I will be on the lookout for a Canadian analog to this text
Zahreen
Jun 10, 2008 Zahreen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: college grads and people trying to understand investment and retirement planning
As I left college, diploma in hand, and went into that limbo period before entering the real world, I found myself a complete idiot when it came to personal finance. I didn't know what a 401(k) plan exactly is (I knew it was for retirement), what pensions are (also something for retirement), or how to invest in stocks and bonds (totally clueless about this!).

Because of this, I thought it would be helpful to pick up a couple of basic books on personal finance (this one and the wall street journa
...more
J
Mar 15, 2015 J rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really appreciate this book. It’s a straightforward guide that explains the different facets of personal finance and helps readers plan for overall financial well-being. It emphasizes setting goals and planning for the future.

A few reviewers have mentioned that some of the recommendations are obvious, but I don’t think that’s a bad thing. The book provides down-to-earth, usable advice for managing money; it isn’t a get-rich-quick scheme filled with alleged industry secrets. For example, not ra
...more
JimZ
Jan 27, 2016 JimZ rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: economics
This is the book that I recommend to my friends, family and students as a first primer on household finance. It's comprehensive, I agree with its viewpoints on all major issues, and it's entertaining. Tyson has other books on investing, mutual finds, etc. as well.
giselayvonne
Dec 08, 2015 giselayvonne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This finance book is amazing, but it is not for someone who doesn't have investment income, or does have heaps of debt. I might pick it up again when I start getting on top of things. So far, I am trying to practice when he discusses in the first few sections with regards to tax deductions and insurance reductions.

Given my newby-knowledge, he was way above me but I see the value of this book.
Kel
Sep 23, 2013 Kel rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Confession: I didn't read the whole book. I used it more like a car manual, flipping to different sections as needed. Still, the sections I did read were straightforward and informative. As someone who's never dug into money matters before, especially investing, this was invaluable.

My one complaint is that I didn't read this before nearly stepping in a few financial holes, but that's hardly the book's fault. More importantly, it confirmed and expanded on my suspicions in time to backpedal, so cr
...more
Nate McHugh
Apr 13, 2015 Nate McHugh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good place to start when considering your financial future. There was a lot of this book that I already knew, but there was also a lot of advice which I haven't taken seriously until now.
Megan
Apr 17, 2011 Megan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another in my personal finance reading for the year. There are common messages in many of these books: #1 - get out of debt as soon as possible, #2 - cut your expenses, #3 - have at least 6 months of living expenses in the bank. They say it over and over!

This book also talks a lot about investing for retirement and what that should look like. He writes simply and clearly and explains everything well. He definitely has opinions, so you should examine them to see if they fit into your own life.

Bi
...more
Julia
Mar 07, 2015 Julia rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
While I hate the 'for dummies' theme (needing info doesn't mean you're stupid!), they continue to be very helpful and understandable.
Juliana
Jan 05, 2016 Juliana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own-ebook
Very helpful information! As a recent college grad I was nervous about having no clue about investing and how to manage my finances. This book was a great introduction to the topic.
Liliana Nunez
Aug 30, 2014 Liliana Nunez rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved it! Everyone should read this and keep it a hardcover as a reference guide for life changes!!!
Miêu Tặc
Mar 28, 2014 Miêu Tặc rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Financial foundation for everyone. You will learn about a wide variety of aspects of personal finance.
Karen
Good broad coverage. Some of it went over my head, but I'm positive I learned a few things.
Alesia
Sep 20, 2014 Alesia rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Had a lot of the same financial stuff I hear all the time!
Spencer Wischerth
Good reference book for sure, it just seems to be aimed for a much older audience (I'm 25 when writing this). Too bad I didn't know about the Personal Finance for Your 20's version before I started reading this one!
Mjlibrary NDSCS
332.024 T988

Some of the concepts you will find in this guide include: the best ways to reduce and eliminate debt; using credit to qualify for the best loan terms; the dangers of “free” online advice; new and pending changes in tax laws; tips on buying insurance; strategies for investing; and making sense of financial resources. There is concrete guidance for tracking your expenditures, saving for the future, and surviving life’s changes and challenges. Tyson is an author, columnist, and speaker,
...more
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“Some people argue that teaching children financial basics is the parents’ job. However, this well-meant sentiment is what we’re relying on now, and for all too many, it isn’t working. In some families, financial illiteracy is passed on from generation to generation. Education takes place in the home, on the streets, and in the schools. Therefore, schools must bear some responsibility for teaching this skill. However, if you’re raising children, remember that no one cares as much as you do or has as much ability to teach the important life skill of personal money management.” 1 likes
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