Top Personal Finance Books for All Ages

These days, money and personal finance advice is easy to find. There are literally hundreds of books out there about managing your money. But finding good and practical personal finance advice? Now that's a little more difficult. If you're catching up on your reading, here are 10 great places to start when it comes to getting a handle on your money and personal finance. There's something here for everyone, from individual investors to couples and driven young professionals to those with less confidence in money management.

Your Money or Your Life

Your Money or Your Life's subtitle, "9 Steps to Transforming Your Relationship with Money & Achieving Financial Independence," says a lot about co-authors Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez's philosophy about personal finance, which is that personal finance is as much an emotional exercise as it is mathematical. 

Your Money or Your Life was first published in 1992 and has since gone through a revised edition that brought the New York Times Best Seller into the 21st century. Robin and Dominguez give consideration to some of the most common personal finance questions, such as:

  • Do you spend more than you earn?
  • Would you like to change jobs but can't afford to? 
  • Are arguments about money affecting your relationships?

Whether you're deeply in debt, financially comfortable, or already wealthy, this book can transform your relationship with money and it may just transform your life in the process. 

The Family CFO: The Couple's Business Plan for Love and Money

Co-authors Mary Clair Allvine, CFP (who is a Certified Financial Planner) and journalist Christine Larson take financial concepts familiar in the corporate world and bring them into the family household.

In fact, you may be very comfortable with the business tools and roles suggested in this book, like having a family business plan, a Board of Directors, and a Chief Financial Officer.

The book's primary aim is to show couples how to use these corporate tools to reach their money goals while minimizing the emotional conflict and anxiety that can affect couples trying to manage their money together. And fewer disagreements over money can make for more financial harmony as a couple

The Unofficial Guide to Managing Your Personal Finances

Though now several years old, this practical, easy-to-understand guide to managing your personal finances is still relevant. Written by Stacie Zoie Berg, this book includes basic information on credit cards, banks, investing, insurance, buying a car or home, taxes, financing college educations, retirement planning, estate planning, and more.

It is an ideal personal finance book for those who are in the early stages of taking control of their money and planning their financial future. And it could make the perfect gift for new college grads who are just starting their careers. 

Motley Fool's You Have More Than You Think

The creators of one of the most popular financial stock market sites, The Motley Fool, brothers Tom and David Gardner also wrote the New York Times Bestseller You Have More Than You Think. The Gardner brothers' book aims to show how even inexperienced investors can invest the smallest amounts of money and still make a profit. 

Their far-from-foolish advice includes how to reduce your debt and find money to invest, how to find the best investments, how to manage your 401(k), and more. As with most of their writing, this personal finance book is a fun and easy read.

The Millionaire Next Door

In this newly updated book, authors Thomas J. Stanley, Ph.D. and William D. Danko, Ph.D. attempt to debunk the myth that most American millionaires have inherited their wealth. They even go as far as to identify seven common traits that are shared among many of those who have accumulated significant wealth.

By demonstrating how hard work and smart investing have made millionaires out of average Americans, this book shows that it's possible to join the ranks of the wealthy without a large inheritance. 

Complete Idiot's Guide to Managing Your Money

Don't be offended by the title. This plainly written book shows that anybody can learn to manage their money effectively, and is full of consumer tips, advice on mortgages, debt, mutual funds, auto loans, bank fees, credit cards, and other money-related matters. 

The book, written by expert financial columnist Robert K. Heady and financial writer Christine Heady, has already gone through four editions and sold millions of copies.

The Courage To Be Rich

Suze Orman has become a household name in personal finance, in part due to her popular television show and her best-selling books. The Courage to Be Rich is but one.

What makes this personal finance book different is that it is not a nuts and bolts book about money. Rather, it is a look at the emotional and psychological barriers that keep us from realizing our full financial potential. The book is a must for those who have not yet taken control of their financial future because they are being held back by attitudes about money.

Couples and Money: A Couples' Guide, Updated for the New Millennium

As a psychologist and a Certified Financial Planner, Dr. Victoria Collins brings a unique perspective to personal finance solutions for couples, married or unmarried, who are in dispute about financial issues. The book includes practical advice, worksheets, and true stories that will help couples achieve balance and work toward common financial goals. 

Average Family's Guide to Financial Freedom

The Tooheys, named among the "Best Personal Finance Managers in America" by Money magazine, offer practical advice on how average families, with children, in debt, with modest incomes, can take control of their financial lives.

Putting their own advice into action, they amassed a whopping $467,000 in 8 years on an income of $65,000. They show you how to turn your average income into above-average wealth.

Women, Men, and Money

Yet another personal finance book with a telling subtitle: "The Four Keys for Using Money to Nourish Your Relationship, Bankbook, and Soul​." In Women, Men, and Money Author William Devine goes beyond the practical ins and outs of personal finance and gets to the emotion and meaning behind money, "showing you how to earn, spend, invest, negotiate, and communicate about money" in a way that will enrich your relationship with your significant other.