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The Wealthy Barber: The Common Sense Guide to Successful Financial Planning

4.03  ·  Rating details ·  8,811 ratings  ·  435 reviews
The Wealthy Barber takes the form of a novel, though it wouldn't win many awards for plot, setting, or characterization. The narrator, Dave, a 28-year-old school teacher and expectant father, his 30-year-old sister, Cathy, who runs a small business, and his buddy, Tom, who works in a refinery, sit around a barber shop in Sarnia, Ontario, and listen as Ray Miller, the well- ...more
Paperback, 197 pages
Published February 1st 2002 by Stoddart Pub (first published 1989)
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Wyatt The 2nd one is definitely more relevant to today, but the 1st is what got me excited about personal finance. (I'm 21)…moreThe 2nd one is definitely more relevant to today, but the 1st is what got me excited about personal finance. (I'm 21)(less)

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Matthew Quann
I like to think I'm a halfway intelligent human being, but an understanding of the financial world has evaded me for longer than I would have liked. I cringe at government paperwork, nod and agree with suggestions at bank meetings, and hand over bank statements to my more money-savvy wife. My brother, an accountant, has tried to break down some key facts for me, but it's always come out as too jargon-filled or has made it seem like excessive effort would be required. The eldritch and arcane worl ...more
This one might have been better in book (versus audiobook) form. The framing device of an ongoing conversation about financial matters between (obnoxious, faux humorous) people in a barber shop was excruciating. Suddenly, Stephen King's admonitions against adverbs in On Writing made a WHOLE LOT OF SENSE. And the narrator's self-description at the beginning makes him sound like a total jerk--I didn't WANT this guy to be financially successful! However, buried in the dialogue is really good, strai ...more
Sep 08, 2010 rated it really liked it
This is the first personal finance book I've ever read, and I'm really, really happy to have done it. By presenting a boring topic in a conversational format--including lots of baseball chiding--Chilton makes personal finance accessible to anyone and everyone.

He presents a really simple system that anyone can follow, starting today, to get your finances in order. Put 10% into a "I'm going to be rich someday" fund. Put another 10%+ into retirement. Do whatever you want with the rest (essentially)
remi d
Nov 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A must read for any friend, it approaches personal finance in a nonchalant, meaningful, practical and funny way which makes the read a breeze. I wanted to read the book for its content on personal finances, but I ended up being caught in the story and enjoying it for its storytelling.
Oct 23, 2011 rated it really liked it
This book has a cult-following amongst Canadians, and now that I've read it, I know why. It was first published in 1989, and is written like a "novel", except with more dialogue than any book I've ever read.

Here's the set-up: 3 twenty-somethings go to a barber for financial advice. They go eight times (there are each time is a chapter), and have seven lessons with the Wealthy Barber, Ron, who gives them financial advice.

1. Save 10% of your income for long-term growth. Pay yourself first. He talk
David Albert
Apr 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
There is some very good, general information here that just about anyone can benefit from. I did, however, hate the presentation. It's all presented in a painfully cheesy conversation between a barber, 3 30-somethings in need of knowledge, and a couple of old farts who live in the barber's shop. It made me want to slap someone.

Still, I must recommend the book for there was good information inside. It's fairly well rounded, providing value to just about anyone.
Maya Man
Jan 17, 2016 rated it it was ok
finally got around to this one after much gentle, yet consistent urging of my father, The Wealthy Barber is a thinly veiled lesson in personal finance. aside from a few witty remarks from characters in between the barber's lectures, the book is plainly an essential guide to simply and properly managing your money. a very important read, but honestly not an engaging one. would recommend for educational purposes only, not enjoyment. ...more
John Matsui
Aug 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I was among the first to read and review this book for the finance section of an Ontario newspaper when it was first released back in 1989.
David Chilton lived in a nearby city and was pushing hard to get reviews.
I loved it because it took the dry lessons of personal finance and turned them into a parable about a barber who knew the secret to financial success.
I knew the book would be a hit and said so. The rest is history.
Elizabeth Mirr Wysocki
Dec 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Such great advice on becoming financially literate AND a quick read
Sep 20, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2020-to-read
This was recommended to me when I said "I know nothing about finances or investing and I want to learn" but I'm honestly not sure why because it's SO dated. Even I know the maximum annual contribution to an IRA has changed since 1998.

But being dated is not the worst part. You know those employee training videos from the 90s where they hire a friend with nice hair and a former frat boy who took drama in college and force them to convey a point through stilted dialogue peppered with dreadful jokes
Oct 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: finance
“Wealth beyond your wildest dreams is possible if you follow the golden rule: Invest 10% of all you make for long-term growth. If you follow that one simple guideline, someday you’ll be a very rich man."

The Wealthy Barber is a financial planning book franchise by Canadian author David Chilton. The first book in the series was in the business fable genre, using the story of fictional characters to convey financial advice.

My Take:
Although the Wealthy Barber was originall
Seth Lippert
Jan 26, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018
This book’s greatest strength also happens to be somewhat of a weakness. Chilton’s financial tips, framed within dialogue, are easily digestible and accessible, but because they are framed in dialogue, what could be summarized easily in a page takes a whole chapter.

As a financial novice, I found this book quite helpful and practical, despite the often unnecessarily protracted dialogue. As a lover of quality literature, I found this book quite horrendous. But I won’t be so petty as to go on and o
Ariel Rezin
May 21, 2018 rated it liked it
As a book given to me as a gift by my mother, I had relatively low expectations. That was a good thing. This book is essentially a financial self-help book thinly veiled in multiple conversations multiple people have with, you guessed it, a wealthy barber. The financial advice is, in fact, useful. However, the content is relatively dry and could be shared with the reader much more efficiently through a different means than this book. Saying that, I'd recommend this book to those who need some co ...more
Dalton Chamberlain
Feb 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: finance
One of the better financial strategy books I’ve read. It provides clear cut examples for setting yourself up well with a prosperous financial future. Clearly the no-BS way to long term success.

Forced Savings, Dollar-Cost Averaging & Compound Interest are truly the secrets to financial freedom.

I specifically loved Chilton’s view and perspective on Renting versus Owning. It was a very valuable discussion that I have truly been needing. Excellent. Highly Recommend to anyone looking to buy a home
Tyler Dyck
Feb 26, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was a great jumping off point to help me begin to understand finance and investment. Written in the format of a novel, it has lots of great advice that makes taking control of your finances a manageable and undaunting task for all. Written in 1989, it is definitely quite dated - especially in chapters dealing with purchasing a house for $75,000 - however most of the advice on long-term investment and compounding interest is still applicable 30 years later. In it's time, a 5/5. Reading ...more
Meredith Koehler
Apr 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
A good introduction to saving money - both short term and long term. My goal was to demystify all the finance lingo. This book didn't necessarily do that but it's a good spring board into the finance world. ...more
Shahab Y-achille
Nov 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book is phenomenal, It’s really your go-to guide on financial planning, organization and beginner level investing. It really prepares you for life. Written in a novel format, the reader is provided with an easy to understand explanation on topics such as: insurance’s,tfsa ,RRSP, mutual funds , stocks , mortgages and so on. I highly recommend this book to anyone new to the world of personal finance
Lauren McDonald
Mar 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
If you wanna live the gooooood life and your parents aren't willing to give you a small loan of a million dollars..... READ. THIS. BOOK. ...more
Laura Kemp
Feb 23, 2021 rated it really liked it
2.5 ⭐️ for the writing, 5 ⭐️ for the advice.

Wish I read this years ago.
Laila Anne
Jan 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book is a good simplistic guide to financial planning at any age. Some of the topics include saving strategies, leveraged financing and dollar-cost averaging. Being written in the US, some of the verbiage and laws surrounding investment vehicles are different than what we have here, but overall the themes are relevant.

4/5 because the presentation was pretty cheesy. Lots of awful one-liners and drawn out banter about nonsense.
Jun 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The wealthy Barber has become a classic of Canadian financial literature for the average Joe, and for good reason. The Wealthy Barber is not your everyday boring financial planning book which instructs you on how to budget and predict the stock market. The wealthy barber does not even cover those topics as viable paths to financial prosperity as everyone who has tried a personal budget knows how hard it is to follow. Same with the stock market, it is ridiculous to believe that millions will easi ...more
Greg Talbot
Jan 01, 2016 rated it really liked it
Thank you to Brian Preston and Bo Hanson ("The Money Guys" podcast) and their "on point" podcast about the key financial books you have to read. This is a primer, an easy read, a well-meaning story about getting financial advice that isn't going to overwhelm you. The human element seems to be what separates a great finance book from a typical pressing of finance information.

The story revolves around a young naive man Tom who goes to his local barber known for the best money tips and haircut snip
Dec 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
While some information is dated, the essential points in Chilton’s book are timeless wisdom for realizing financial success. The 10% rule is probably the key lesson. Chilling also has a great view on budgeting that will probably simplify that daunting idea for those who recoil at even the thought of a budget.

I tired of the story format pretty quickly, but found that it was easy enough to ‘skip the small talk’ and find the financial advice without difficulty. But it probably makes the topic more
Dec 01, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was kind of "meh" when this book won our book club vote, but I'm actually really glad I read it. Even though my first thoughts were around how chauvinistic and sexist some peoples were and how I wanted to punch them in the face, I did find that it moved very well and was entertaining in a stereotypical dubbed down, must be accessible all-American-boy way. And the writing terrible.

But that's not really the point here. The advice in this book is sound. I'm giving it points because
Jan 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is my second time through the book. I reread it since I am recommending it to a couple of younger fellows; thus, I am needing to be up to speed on it for our future discussions. It is readable, enjoyable, and has a number of profitable ideas. The case he makes for mutual funds is ok for many, but some will prefer to own particular stocks. While he advocates not using credit cards, their convenience combined with self discipline makes them a useful tool. Of course, they are like fire, a usef ...more
David Alexanderpantz
The 'My Dinner with Andre' of Canada-specific financial planning ...more
Anna K. Lindegren
Oct 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
Originally published

It is nicely written, and with a sense of humor. The Canadian author gives it away with the title—it does not matter what you do and how much money you earn, you have the same chances of being wealthy as anybody else. Most importantly, follow your financial plan no matter what.
David Chilton is not only a writer; he is also a successful investor. He can be seen making investment decisions at the Dragons’ Den Canada show (from 2012-prese
Robert Koyich
I liked The Wealthy Barber. It got me thinking about my financial future and how to achieve a higher level of financial freedom. I also liked how the book was written with dialogue and story that was quite well written. Even though the book was written about two decades ago, much of the wisdom holds true. I think that each person who wants to either retire or achieve longterm financial freedom should know the ideas and principles held within The Wealthy Barber's pages. One critical point is that ...more
Dec 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2013
Bad jokes and good financial advice go a long way to making me enjoy a book and this had both. By now the book is probably a little dated for some of the advice but really there are important principles that are timeless, the first being that I should have started investing ten years ago. Ah well. Really this book is a nice short read and serves well as an entertaining primer to financial planning. Probably much of the advice is common knowledge and the toughest thing is making the first step to ...more
Nov 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Mary by: my mother
this original is probably outdated now but it still has quite a lot to offer. I read this at 21 (my mother forced me to read it). It is one of, if not the very first book that opened my eyes to the world of investments, esp. real estate. It was instrumental in helping me purchase my first home at 23, then my first investment property at 25. There are a lot of books in finance, but this one was my first real teacher. I talked about it a lot with my clients and when I spoke at seminars.

A great boo
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