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Personal Finance Workbook For Dummies (For Dummies (Lifestyles Paperback))

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Personal Finance Workbook For Dummies (For Dummies (Lifestyles Paperback))

Personal Finance Workbook For Dummies (For Dummies (Lifestyles Paperback))

Hands-on tools and strategies to boost your financial fitnessFrom analyzing assets to planning for retirement, this new edition of Personal Finance Workbook For Dummies gives you the information and resources you need to get your finances under control.Personal Finance Workbook For Dummies walks you through a private financial counseling session, using worksheets, checklists, and formulas for assessing financial health, providing for day-to-day financial management, making wise financial decisio

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3 Responses to “Personal Finance Workbook For Dummies (For Dummies (Lifestyles Paperback))”

  1. 3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Great reference book for financial planning, March 31, 2012
    By 
    Gadgetman (Saratoga, CA USA) –
    (VINE VOICE)
      

    This review is from: Personal Finance Workbook For Dummies (For Dummies (Lifestyles Paperback)) (Paperback)
    Customer review from the Amazon Vine™ Program (What’s this?)

    This is great introductory book for those who are interested in doing their own financial planning and budgeting. It covers a broad variety of subjects which are useful and practical. The book is organized into six sections :

    (1) Getting on the Road to Financial Fitness
    – this section provides a good introduction to basic money matters including assessing your own net worth, credit rating, budgeting and cash flows. It guides you how to obtain free credit reports. A number of work sheets are also provided to help you achieve such assessment

    (2) Getting the most out of your money
    – this section gets into a more in-depth analysis of your financial health such as managing your debts, expenses, and ways to minimizing taxes. It also shares the concept of debt ratio which allows us to tell if we are over-spending and/or have more debts than we can afford.

    (3) Thinking about the future
    – this section provides guidance to planning for major expenses such as buying a house, saving for retirement, funding for college education, and estate planning. It provides worksheets to help analyze how much we can afford in buying a house as as well different mortgage options such are ARM vs fixed rate mortgages. This section also presents various options college savings and reference web sites where you can get more useful information.

    (4) Building and managing wealth
    – the section gets into money management matters including investment strategies and guideline for finding a financial adviser should you need one. It shows five different investment portfolio mixes based on your investment / risk objectives.

    (5) Protecting you assets
    – this section covers quite a bit about insurance including health, property, automotive, and life insurance. It also help you assess if it is worth to consider purchasing based on your needs and own situation

    (6) Parts of Ten
    – this section provides guidelines and tips about how to save money, organizing your financial records, scams to avoid, and insurance which we should not consider. It provides a great way to summarize the objectives of this book.

    I am personally an avid planner of my own finance and investment. This books covers the main essential concepts to financial planning and money management. Once you have got a good handle of the concepts, I would suggest consider moving on to the more sophisticated tools such as Quicken and spreadsheets.

    Highly recommended.

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  2. 3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    An Exhaustive Approach to Exploring Financial Issues Marred By Worksheets that Cannot Easily Be Reused As Situations Change, March 14, 2012
    By 
    scesq “scesq” (New Milford, New Jersey USA) –
    (VINE VOICE)
      

    This review is from: Personal Finance Workbook For Dummies (For Dummies (Lifestyles Paperback)) (Paperback)
    Customer review from the Amazon Vine™ Program (What’s this?)

    The Personal Finance Workbook for Dummies takes an exhaustive approach to exploring different financial issues faced by people. As a result, I think most people will find it helpful. My only complaint is that the worksheets used to figure out finances are not on separate pages in the book and cannot easily be copied for reuse.

    One of the great things about this book is starts with a chapter in which the reader explores his or her views on money. For many people money is more than just a commodity and how we handle money often is based on emotional factors.

    The book then takes the reader on a process of looking at his or her financial situation, exploring goals and creating a plan for achieving those goals. This process covers everything from looking at one’s credit reports, planning for retirement, looking at insurance options, looking at investment options and deciding if a financial advisor is necessary.

    The book is close to 300 pages and covers a lot of material. Because of this the sections give a good overview of the subjects addressed but lack a certain depth. For instance the section on “Evaluating Your Current Portfolio” is 10 pages long. It is a great overview of the subject but if you really want to explore this subject in depth there are books that have been written on the subject.

    This was not an issue for me because this is a personal financial workbook rather than a book on a specific financial aspect of one’s life. If you have bad credit, books have been written on how to address this issue. Similarly, if you want to deal with estate planning in depth books have also been written solely on this subject. This book does a great job of giving a person an overview of his or her own financial situation. It helps one get a handle on important financial matters and leads one to address the matters in greater detail in the future.

    The one thing that could have been better is having the worksheets on separate pages that could be copied for repeated use or for the times a person makes a mistake when using a worksheet. For instance there is a monthly retirement budget worksheet that is half on page 142 and half on page 143 of this book which would make copying the sheet hard. The worksheet is good. It contains information that can change over time. I wish it was on a separate page so when I needed to change the information I could do so easily.

    Similarly there is a three page monthly expense tracking worksheet and a one page expense tracking log on pages 46-49 of the book. These are detailed and helpful. Yet expense will change over time and these worksheets will need to be used again. The book makes it hard to use the worksheets multiple times.

    Finally, worksheets by their very nature are works in progress. A person puts information on worksheets to figure out things. As a result mistakes can be made. If a person uses the worksheets in the book without making copies and makes a mistake there is no replacement worksheet. Having the worksheets on separate pages and suggesting copies be made would prevent this from happening.

    Some financial workbooks come with CD’s that can be put in a computer allowing the reader to print forms or worksheets multiple times as their financial situations change. I am sure this would have added to the cost of this book so I can see why that was not done. Yet, worksheets on seperate pages would have been very helpful.

    Overall this is a good book that does all that it is supposed to do. I only gave it four stars because the worksheets were not on separate pages and not easily copied. The book is entitled “Personal Finance Workbook” so worksheets should be on separate pages and easily copied.

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  3. 4.0 out of 5 stars
    Great reference–but not for everyone, December 11, 2012
    By 
    Zack Davisson (Seattle, WA, USA) –
    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)
      
    (VINE VOICE)
      
    (2008 HOLIDAY TEAM)
      
    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)
      
    (REAL NAME)
      

    This review is from: Personal Finance Workbook For Dummies (For Dummies (Lifestyles Paperback)) (Paperback)
    Customer review from the Amazon Vine™ Program (What’s this?)

    I admit that I know very little about personal finances. Money has always been somewhat of a mystery to me, and I know nothing about variable interest rates and only vaguely understand my 401(K). So I thought “Personal Finance Workbook for Dummies” might be just what I needed to educate myself and maybe start making some sounder financial decisions.

    And I was right, to a point. Like all of the “Dummies” series, this book does a good job taking a complicated subject and breaking it down into simple language. Even better, it is filled with worksheets that let you analyze you financial situation, figure out your “net worth,” and help you to plan your money for the future.

    The only problem is that the book has to make some big generalities. In trying to capture the widest audience, it assumes most people will have a house, car, kids, debt, etc … and gives most of the financial advice around these issues. I’m an urban apartment dweller, married with no kids, I don’t own a car, and the only debt I have is my student loan. I have some credit cards, but prefer to pay cash for all major purchases and the “plastic” rarely comes out to play. Because of my particular situation, most of the advice in here–like how to plan for your kids’ college education–just wasn’t helpful to me personally.

    If anything, what I got most out of “Personal Finance Workbook for Dummies” is that I am actually doing pretty good. Almost everything on their “Don’t” list are things involving debt accumulation that I don’t do anyways. Some of the chapters I enjoyed, like on “Spending Thoughtfully.” If I have a weakness it is impulse buying little things that I later regret or just never use. I thought the advice on cutting down on clutter, on how an overstuffed home is a sign of poor financial use, was right on target.

    All in all, because of my situation I only found about 40% of this book applied to me. But if you fall into those more general categories–if you are a homeowner, have kids, have a car, etc …–then you will probably get a lot out of this book.

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