Getting out of debt takes a great deal of motivation. Our family has set a BHAG (a big, hairy, audacious goal) to pay off a heavy chunk of debt, so we know that as well as anyone!
That’s why I enjoy reading financial management books. And when I find one so helpful that I can’t put it down…well, I’ve got to share it!
Besides, who’s got time to scour the library shelves looking for books that might work with our own finances? These books have given me the most bang for my buck. Each one has made a difference in our finances.
The Best Financial Management Books to Get Out of Debt
Let’s start with the more obvious books that are popular because they are just that good.
Dave Ramsey has a ton of awesome books out there, but the one that gave me the push I needed to start my own debt free journey was definitely The Total Money Makeover.
Why this book rocks. I love his baby steps (I constantly talk about the power of baby steps and the power of pennies). Baby steps make it clear as a bell what you should be working towards every step of your financial journey. There’s no reason to reinvent the wheel!
Read this book if: You’re just starting on your financial or debt free journey and aren’t really sure how to make sense of it. Nearly anyone can benefit from Dave’s advice.
The Millionaire Next Door is surprising in a super fun way. It will make you reevaluate the way you look at your neighbors. Anyone could be a millionaire. You might not know it just to look at them!
Why this book rocks. It examines the lives of millionaires who don’t look the part. These guys don’t drive fancy cars or wear expensive clothing.
Stanley interviews and researches these secretly wealthy folks and gives you all of the amazing results to learn from and imitate (if you like).
Read this book if: you like to learn from others and enjoy uncommon tips for saving money.
Mary Hunt wowed me with her personal story of crashing and burning out her family finances in Debt Proof Living. She definitely learned her methods of saving money in a very real way.
Why this book rocks. Hunt gives tips for frugal living and outlines ideas for digging your way out of debt. My favorite part was her concept of a Freedom Fund where you funnel money into an account for irregular bills. That way they don’t catch you off guard. (This was my first introduction to a sinking fund.)
Read this book if: You are tired of bills catching you off guard, even though you know they are coming in eventually! Also great if you need some encouragement that you, too, can dig your way out of debt.
The full title is Debt Free U: How I Paid for an Outstanding College Education Without Loans, Scholarships, Or Mooching Off My Parents. It’s a mouthful, but the book is fascinating. It’s a hard look at the transition to college, and the reasons why so many in this country are hopelessly saddled with student loan debt.
Why this book rocks. It gives real world examples of things that occur when a high school student is preparing for college. You’ll also find a wealth of information for alternatives to help you navigate your child through the maze that is paying for college.
Read this book if: you have a child that might consider attending college in the next 6 years. (Or more if you really like to be prepared!)
Why is a book about habits showing up on a list of best personal finance books? Because Better Than Before is a book that makes you consider your every day habits that influence every factor that is important to you.
I am working hard to pay off debt, and this book has helped me change habits that have negatively influenced my abilities to do that for a long time. For instance, we avoided buying fast food using the “don’t break the chain” concept. And by “deciding not to decide”, there is less stress in daily life. That means less need to spend stress away.
Why this book rocks. Once you have an idea of your tendency (upholder, questioner, rebel, or obliger…learn more here), you can really start to examine ways to change your habits. This goes well beyond the idea of trying something for 21 days.
Read this book if: you can identify the nagging habits that poorly influence your financial situation, but feel powerless to change them.
And Two On My “To Read” List
Slaying the Debt Dragon
Slaying the Debt Dragon interests me because I love learning how different families handle digging out of debt. I mean, who isn’t curious about how a family goes about escaping $127,482.30 in debt?
Your Money or Your Life
Your Money or Your Life is incredibly popular due to its concepts of connecting your money more deeply to your time. I’ve already embraced this concept, but I’d love to learn more about the inspiration behind it.
These financial management books can inspire big changes in your life.
Choose the one that best matches your situation and start reading today.
If I missed your favorite financial management book, definitely tell us all about it! Leave a comment here or over on Facebook.