50 Simple Steps You Can Take To Improve Your Personal Finances

With all the reports in the news about high rates of bankruptcy, high credit card debt, and lack of understanding in the general population about how to manage their finances, certainly everybody would love simple steps that help them make their finances better.

The first three steps all seem to involve *spending* money. She wants you to set up a home office area with office supplies and filing cabinets. She wants you to buy a computer, and Quicken. Next, you tally up your finances, calculate your net worth and plan out your goals. So far, none of these things seem to natively improve your financial situation. Yes, they're good planning steps.

OK we get on to #7 - a tip! "Spend less than you earn." Yes, that qualifies as a good tip. She actually provides 10 sub-tips here, things like "don't go out to movies" and "eat at home" (twice).

And on it goes. Don't smoke. Buy with cash, not credit. Use the web for directory assistance, not the phone company. Check your credit report. Consolidate your insurance bills.

The glossary in the back of the book is actually quite helpful, with a number of terms that come up in financial discussions. However, using her own tips, I could easily get that information from dictionary.com :)

Obviously this book *told* you they were "simple steps", not complicated ones. Still, I think that the book could have covered a wider range of information, and provided tips that were much more thorough. She could have created tip 1 as "set up a useful home office environment" that included the filing cabinets, computers, software, etc and warned you that it'd be over $500 to get this step done. There could be tip 2 about "get a handle on where you are now" and explaining in detail how to do that. Too many of the tips are redundant.

I also think, if this book is aimed at the very-beginning-market of people just out of college who are hoping to get their lives in order, that they could have done a better job of making this step by step. Provide checklists. Give simple examples. They do that in one or two places, but it could have been very helpful to do that with each tip.

There are many other books I'd recommend before this one, for people who are in this situation and need this kind of knowledge.

Buy 50 Simple Steps You Can Take To Improve Your Personal Finances from Amazon.com

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