Insights

My Favorite Personal Finance Books

By  Derek Condon

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I grew up not being a big reader at all. I struggled to read anything assigned to me in school. Not because I couldn’t read, because I can. But it was because I wasn’t interested in what I was being told to read. I had no drive to read what I was being given.

My journey from the world of engineering to finance was completely self-motivated, and everything I know now has been self-taught and learned through books and the courses I’ve taken. Finance is something I discovered I have a passion for, and have found that when I pick up a finance book, it’s tough to put it down. From personal finance to in-depth analysis, it’s all good to me.

I’ve read a lot of books on finance and this list is all about my top three favorite books on personal finance. If you’re someone just beginning your personal finance journey, then these books will be perfect to help you on your way. Even if you’re a finance expert, I think these books offer a lot of value. They can help simplify complicated concepts if you’re trying to teach or explain them to someone else, and reinforce your fundamentals. Like in most things, if something isn’t working for you, it’s best to revisit the basics.

I Will Teach You To Be Rich

I Will Teach You To Be Rich by Ramit Sethi is my favorite overall book for beginners on this list. The reason being is it covers a wide range of topics and offers insights into so many helpful areas.

It covers everything from why personal finance is important, how to manage debt, budgeting, what to look for with your banking, how to invest, advice on being happy with how you spend money, why investing matters, and how to make your finances easy and automated. There are a ton of helpful tidbits and advice to really help you improve your financial situation and get you where you want to be.

This book also contains a very practical and implementable 6-week program, where it guides you through an easy-to-follow program to improve your financial situation. I believe it’s great to learn something. But afterward, it might not always be easy to implement what you’ve learned. This book contains great information, and then shows you how it can impact your unique and personal situation.

The Richest Man In Babylon

George S. Clason’s The Richest Man In Babylon is a time-tested classic. Originally published in 1926, this book contains stories and lessons that are still as relevant today as it was back then.

This book takes you back to the prosperous ancient city of Babylon, and shares stories of people in common situations and the different life lessons and money lessons they encounter and ultimately master to better themselves and their situation.

My biggest takeaway from this book is how relevant the fictional ancient stories still are today. The times, technology, and situations have changed, but the fundamentals of the lessons taught are still the same. It’s amazing how simple strong financial fundamentals are, and how in an ever-changing world they are still are relevant as ever. If you’re looking to learn good fundamentals that can help you in a variety of situations, I’d give this book a read.

The Wealthy Barber

The Wealthy Barber by David Chilton is my number one pick for Canadians. It’s a Canadian book, by a Canadian author and focuses on things specific for Canadians. Most books are American-based, so this is a nice win.

If you’re a Canadian who is looking to get a better understand of how building wealth works, this book is for you. The book takes place in a barbershop, tells conversations between a group of customers and its owner (who is a self-made millionaire) over a period of time. With each haircut, a new lesson or topic is discussed. From the importance of investing, RRSP’s, TFSA’s, Canadian taxes, even insurance, this book doesn’t leave anything out.

If you’re passionate about learning something, I believe the best way is to pursue it on your own. You’re going to be more dedicated and interested in what you’re learning, and it’ll make it a better and more enjoyable experience. It won’t feel like school, it’ll feel like self-development, each page a step closer to where you want to be.

Derek Condon

About the Author

Derek Condon

Winnipeg based Financial Advisor focusing on investments, financial planning, and mortgages. I prioritize education, because I believe the more we know, the more we all benefit. It allows me to help people make the most of their financial future. 

Disclaimer: The information in this article is not intended to encourage any lifestyle changes without careful consideration and consultation with a qualified professional. This article is for reference purposes only, is generic in nature, is not intended as individual advice and is not financial or legal advice.

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