Savings rates are low and the debt to income ratio in the US and other developed countries is higher than it’s ever been. People are taking more and more on financially, sometimes without knowing the consequences. Many people are financially illiterate, simply because they have never put forth the effort to learn about money.
Others are financially unsound because they didn’t have good role models growing up that could demonstrate how money should be used.
Even if you are financially sound, there is always an opportunity for learning about money; whether that is about investing, saving, cutting expenses, or retirement.
If you want to learn about money, but don’t know where to start, here are some suggestions:
Learn About Money Through Blogs
You’ve already made a great first step in starting with Suburban Finance. There are some great, informative blogs out there about every money topic under the sun: investing, debt, student loans, earning, saving, spending, inflation. You’ll be able to find it all. Start with a Google search about your money topic of choice, and go from there.
Learn About Money Through Books
Many personal finance enthusiasts became enthusiasts after reading a book by Gail Vaz Oxlade, Dave Ramsey, Suze Orman, or others. Some popular books may include (affiliate links):
The Wealthy Barber: The Common Sense Guide to Successful Financial Planning
Rich Dad Poor Dad: What The Rich Teach Their Kids About Money That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!
The Total Money Makeover: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness
Dave Ramsey’s Complete Guide to Money: The Handbook of Financial Peace University
Debt-Free Forever: Take Control of Your Money and Your Life
Money Rules: Rule Your Money or Your Money Will Rule You
The Money Book for the Young, Fabulous & Broke
There are certainly more books out there that will help you learn about money and different financial topics, however, these are some of the more popular ones. I love the way Gail Vaz Oxlade’s books speak to audiences of all knowledge levels. The first money book I read was Debt-Free Forever: Take Control of Your Money and Your Life.
Use Tools to Learn More About Your Finances
There are so many tools out there that can help you learn, and they are all helpful in their own way. If you are a learn by doing type of person, seek tools out to learn a bit more.
Financial calculators can be found through a simple Google search. Google things like “interest calculator” or “extra mortgage payment calculator” and you’ll find websites that have calculators that will help you find out how much you’ll save by making extra payments or ramping up your debt payoff.
Tools like Mint.com and Quicken will help you budget and learn about budgeting, as all the categories are in the tool already.
Take Some Courses to Learn About Money
If you learn better by somebody teaching you, look for short courses or information sessions on money management in your community guide. Check at local universities and libraries to find out whether they have any offerings. Even some banks and financial institutions have sessions on money management.
One of my favorite short, cheap, and easy courses to learn about investing is the Investing 101 course (click to enroll below):
Learning about money management and financial topics can seem daunting at first, but once you get the ball rolling you may find it easier.