The best books on money can teach you how to be a saver, an investor, and even how to build your wealth. With the countless personal finance books available today, it can seem like an overwhelming task to find the few that are truly worth reading. Luckily, we’ve done that work for you. In this article, we present you with what we believe are the top five books on money that have ever been written.
Book 1 - Increase your income
This book will teach you how to negotiate a higher salary or wage. You’ll learn how to talk with your boss about pay raises, bonuses, promotions and more. If your company doesn’t give raises or bonuses - or if it does but you feel like you still aren’t paid what you deserve - then use these negotiation skills. You can also negotiate for more time off work, flexible working hours so that you can have time for other things in life (children etc.), school support so that you can study part-time/full-time at University as well as get a promotion/raise. That promotion at work won't be just handed over on a plate!
Book 2 - Cut your expenses
One of your best tools for building wealth is knowing how much you’re spending—and cutting unnecessary expenses is a great way to find hidden money. Start by adding up what you spend every month; you may be surprised by how many of those expenses are not crucial. Take a look at your current cell phone plan. Do you need unlimited data? Are all of your family members still on your plan? Can you negotiate for better prices with any vendors? Cutting unnecessary expenses can often provide more than enough extra cash to build wealth over time.
Book 3 - Start saving early
Ideally, you should start saving for retirement in your 20s. Twenty-somethings who begin putting away $500 per year will end up with about $175,000 at age 65. If you wait until your 30s to start saving that same amount—and adjust for inflation—you’ll have only about $107,000 at retirement. Wait until your 40s? You’ll have just $47,000 by age 65 (excluding any interest earned along the way). The sooner you start saving—the more time you give yourself to invest and compound returns—the better off you’ll be in retirement.
Book 4 - Consider investing in real estate
Once you have your emergency fund in place, consider investing some of your money through real estate. The idea behind real estate investment is that a property’s value increases by more than just inflation—and it actually goes up over time. Because of that, it provides a more stable foundation for saving than your traditional savings account. With home prices rising every year and population increasing constantly, you can be confident there will always be people who need a place to live.
Book 5 - Get out of debt
The debt snowball method is a way to pay off your credit card bills without focusing all of your attention (and money) on one at a time. Instead, you make minimum payments on all of your cards except for one. This card is your snowball and gets all of your attention. Every time you get some extra cash, whether it's from a raise or a tax refund or even spare change from going out to eat too much, that money goes into paying down debt. Once you’ve paid off all but one of your debts—the snowball—you repeat with another card until they're all gone. The main benefit?
Book 6 - Enjoy life!
No book list would be complete without a little fun. After all, money isn’t everything. As Michael Lewis points out in The Big Short: Money is only a tool. It will take you wherever you wish, but it will not replace you as the driver. So whether your goal is financial independence or simply having enough money to retire early or spend more time with your family—read some books that help make life better (not just ones about finance). Here are my top picks for spending time on a beach instead of at your desk after achieving financial success.
Building wealth is difficult, but it’s possible. After all, millions of people do it every day. And reading about money isn’t enough—you need to put your knowledge into practice with real-world action. If you take one step at a time (and make sure those steps are in line with your priorities), you can get there. Saving just $10 or $20 per week will make a huge difference over time and give you something substantial to show for your efforts when you look back 10 years from now. Happy saving!
Private Detective, London