Don’t you just love curling up with a good money book? OK, so maybe financial volumes aren’t exactly bedtime reading. However, every family could benefit from having a couple of these books in their library. Here are some of my favorites (in no particular order). I hope you’ll read at least one this fall. There’s some great information to help you and your family with saving money and improving your credit score.
1. Clark Howard’s Living Large in Lean Times by Clark Howard
This is the latest book from the well-known financial talk-show host. I love his smart, down-to-earth advice. His book is filled with quick things you can do to save money on everything from health care to cell phones. Another good one of his is Clark Smart Parents, Clark Smart Kids.
2. All Your Worth by Elizabeth Warren and Amelia Warren Tyagi
This mother-daughter pair also wrote The Two-Income Trap: Why Middle-Class Parents are Going Broke. Both books offer solid step-by-step advice for building a family money plan you can live with and for getting out of debt.
3. America’s Cheapest Family Gets You Right on the Money by Steve Economides and Annette Economides
If you like real-life tips on cutting expenses to the bone (remember The Complete Tightwad Gazette?, this might be your book. This husband and wife team teaches you the nitty-gritty of running a family on a very tight budget. Be warned: They are hardcore frugal.
4. Get a Financial Life by Beth Kobliner
Aimed at 20- and 30-somethings, this book is the ideal financial sourcebook for younger folks. It covers key money issues ranging from paying off college loans to the wisdom of investing in a 401(k) at your job. For anyone who needs a quick cheat sheet or who has a short attention span when it comes to finances, Kobliner includes a “financial cramming” synopsis at the end of each chapter.
5. The Money Saving Mom’s Budget by Crystal Paine
Paine is a blogger-turned-author worth following. (Find her blog at MoneySavingMom.com.) She and her husband bought a house in cash after following their own money-saving advice. She includes lots of great tips on couponing and saving on food costs.
6. Your Money or Your Life by Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez
This classic book is one of the core tomes of the simplicity movement. It offers smart advice (a little New Agey) on sorting out your money priorities as well as saving money so you can leave the workforce when you’re ready. It’s definitely worth re-reading every couple of years.
7. The Millionaire Next Door by Thomas Stanley and William Danko
After surveying numerous millionaires, the authors share their astounding findings that many wealthy people stay that way because they live and spend modestly. The book offers good insights into why conspicuous consumption may not be the answer to your money prayers.
8. The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey
Radio talk-show host Dave Ramsey simplifies the process of getting out of debt and building wealth by breaking it down into a series of baby steps. His book is very encouraging and unintimidating, even for financial newbies, but note that it includes some religious overtones.
9. The 10 Commandments of Money by Liz Weston
I’ll read almost anything by Weston, the syndicated newspaper columnist. She’s smart and easy to follow, and she covers everything from creating a workable budget to saving for college.
Teri Cettina is a mom of two daughters and freelance writer who specializes in personal finance and parenting topics. She blogs at Your Family Money. Follow her on Twitter: @TeriCettina.