Preparing for The Good

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Why should you read books about investing and money management if you have no money to invest or manage?

It seems a little silly to read about investing when you’re lucky enough to be able to build a basic emergency fund or maybe even pay off consumer debt.

Here’s Why: So you can prepare yourself for the future.

Am I so convinced that investing will some day be in your future? Yes. Yes, I am.

Why? Because you are already reading this blog. If you are taking the time to read an article about personal finance that means that you are interested in actually taking control of your finance. Now, I may be naïve or hopelessly optimistic, but I believe that one day, we (and I include myself in that) will one day be in a better position financially than I am today. It may be soon, it may be in 50 years, it may be after I have some lower points in my financial roller coaster. But that day will come. And when it comes, I will be ready and prepared! That’s just the type of person I am.

Just like I encourage you to be ready for when times get worse (by saving NOW and building a robust emergency fun) I encourage you to be ready for when times get better.

If doing that involves reading some books, then by all means: Let’s do it!

I would not be worth my salt as a personal finance blogger if I didn’t recommend that you check these books out of the library first. Libraries are awesome and a great way to get free books. You can even get e-books from the library and download them straight onto a Kindle. If you can’t get those, then definitely try to buy used. I can’t remember the last time I bought a new book! If you can, use my Amazon links to place your order. Its a real help to me.

So I turned to the great people of #PF Twitter (That’s personal finance twitter for the uninitiated. Follow me on twitter and I’ll introduce you to some great folks in that community!) and I posed the following question:

“Best personal finance/investing book?”

Pretty simple question.

These are some of the responses I got:

5 Great Personal Finance and Investing Books:

Do you want to make money, or Do you just want to fool around? By John D. Spooner

(recommended by @SmallIvy_SI)

 

Rich Dad Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not! By Robert T. Kiyosaki

(recommended by @ShelbyGrosch)

Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill

(Recommended by @10YearTarget)

Broke Millennial Takes On Investing: A Beginner’s Guide to Leveling Up Your Money by Erin Lowry

(Recommended by @kbout11)

The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America’s Wealthy by Thomas J. Stanley and William D. Danko

(Recommended by @misterash13)

 

Other Great Book Recommendations:

 

Recommended Books on Investing by The Small Investor

10 Year’s Target Bookshelf

4 Great Books to Read Right Now

 

One Thing After Another

How To Budget for One Thing After Another

Fighting Budget Fatigue

Budgeting for The High Holy Days

When a few big scheduled events happen in close succession it poses a bit of a budgeting challenge.

Do you budget one big lump sum?

Do you budget for each event separately?

Do you even budget at all or just throw money into an account and then hope for the best?

The latter may seem like the best approach especially when you’re probably going to spend the money regardless of whether you have it or not. After all, you are not going to cancel a holiday, especially if you have credit cards available.

The High Holy Days

Jews around the world are getting ready for the High Holy Days which are coming really soon. This poses a real challenge, especially since it usually coincides with the beginning of the winter season which includes its own set of expenses and planning.

Although, I am going to be talking about the High Holy Days specifically these ideas can be applied to any set of events that happen in close proximity to each other.

In past years I have usually set aside money for all the holidays and clothes shopping at once and did a one lump budgeting method. What usually happened, is that towards the end of the “season” we would run out of money and put some on the credit card. When that happened, “budget fatigue” set in.

What is Budget Fatigue?

Budget Fatigue

 

Continue reading “One Thing After Another”

Remember the WHY

The problem of buying things you need is that you can’t buy things that you want.

It seems that I want a lot of things.

That is the dilemma that I am facing as my stove saga drags on. Basically, my stove broke and we thought that we would be able to fix it. However, after a visit from a stove guy and a guy from the gas company, we are facing the realization that it may not be worth it to fix the 10-year old stove and instead we may have to replace it.

Yes, we have a “Life Happens” Fund.

We are lucky enough to have the money to pay for a new stove without having to put it on the credit card but that means that the money will have to come out of another fund- money that is earmarked for something else. It doesn’t really matter what the money is earmarked for; we have money put aside for clothes, maternity leave, baby stuff or our 3-6-month emergency fund. Once we are past the amount set aside for “Life Happens” then tough choices have to be made.

Making the Deep Cuts.

The problem with living on such a tight budget is that there is not much in the budget to cut out. I have been very open before about our low-income and tight budget. Honestly, I am more frugal than I even usually let on here. You know that we have only taken a vacation once in the past 7 years but did you know our entertainment budget is approximately $4 a month? I buy myself books from the 25 cent rack of the local bookstore and my kids occasionally are allowed to puck something out from the dollar store. We also get a drink from the gas station every few months- that is the extent of our “Eating Out” budget. As I once joked on Instagram, my whole life is a no-spend diet. I am saying this not to get pity or sympathy but to explain why “cutting something out” is not really an option and when I have to cut something- it’s a deep cut that hurts. Really hurts.

Continue reading “Remember the WHY”