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Deal with Your Debt: The Right Way to Manage Your Bills and Pay Off What You Owe (Liz Pulliam Weston) [Kindle Edition]

Liz Weston
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Deal with Your Debt: Free Yourself from What You Owe, Updated and Revised Deal with Your Debt: Free Yourself from What You Owe, Updated and Revised 4.1 out of 5 stars (45)
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Book Description

Most people carry debt for most of their adult lives. Yet, most books on debt focus mainly on how to pay it all off, and live forever without it. Too often, following that advice leads only to failure. People either give up, or pay off the wrong kinds of debt. They strand themselves with too little flexibility to survive a financial crisis -- and land in bankruptcy court. They neglect saving for retirement, homes, or college, and end up poorer than they might have been. For most people, it’s more realistic -- and smarter -- to control and manage debt effectively, rather than eliminating it completely. Debt Smart shows how. Award-winning personal finance columnist Liz Weston explains the rules and explodes the myths surrounding debt. Discover the crucial role debt can play in a portfolio, identifying debts that actually contribute to  wealth and flexibility, while avoiding or eliminating “toxic” debts. Weston presents effective strategies for evaluating, monitoring, and paying every form of debt, from credit cards and mortgages to student and auto loans. She offers practical guidelines for how much debt one should take on.  Find realistic (and often surprising) guidance on everything from home equity loans and 401K borrowing to small business loans.

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Liz Pulliam Weston is one of MSN Money's most-read columnists and author of the Q&A column Money Talk, which appears in newspapers nationwide, including the Los Angeles Times, the Cleveland Plain Dealer, and the NewarkStar-Ledger. She appears weekly on CNBC's Power Lunch and regularly on other radio and television programs, including NPR's All Things Considered.

An award-winning journalist, Weston is also a graduate of the certified financial planner training program at the University of California, Irvine. She is author of Your Credit Score: How to Fix, Improve, and Protect the 3-Digit Number That Shapes Your Financial Future (Prentice Hall 2004).

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Deal with Your Debt

Deal with Your Debt


If you're picking up this book, you're probably concerned about your debts.

If so, you're in good company. Half of Americans in a December 2004 Associated Press poll said they worried about what they owed, with 42% saying their debts caused them "a great deal" of stress. One in five said they obsessed about what they owed most or all of the time.

Some people have good reason to worry. They've maxed out their credit cards, or struggle with an unaffordable mortgage, or face repossession of their car. One in 10 Americans in the AP poll said they had missed a minimum payment in the past six monthsmda sure sign of major credit trouble.

If you're one of those folks, you'll find plenty of information in this book to get you back on your feet.

But you don't need to have overdosed on plastic to be concerned about your debt situation. Most people get little if any education about the right ways to acquire and manage borrowed money. They rely on lenders, family, friends to tell them which loans are "good" or "bad" and to advise them how much they can afford. Many veer between extremes, thinking debt is evil one minute and the next applying for yet another new department store card to get that 10% discount.

The typical book on debt, meanwhile, focuses almost entirely on how to pay it off and ignores when debt might actually be beneficial to your overall financial life.

In reality, debt can be an enormously helpful financial tool, allowing us to buy homes, get educations, and build businesses. Instead of sucking us dry, it can help give us the cash flow we need to grow our long-term wealth. But we need to know how to get it, when to get it, how much to get, and when it's time to pay it off.

This book is designed to help you identify which debts are toxic to your financial health and which actually help you get ahead. You'll learn the smart ways to deal with your debt, including which loans you should pay off and which you should keep. You'll discover how to manage your finances and your credit so that you'll be able to borrow all the money you need at the best rates and terms. In short, you'll be able to craft a sensible, workable plan to achieve your goals and truly deal with your debt.

So let's get started!

Product Details

  • File Size: 1064 KB
  • Print Length: 244 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0131856758
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Up to 5 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
  • Publisher: FT Press; 1 edition (August 17, 2005)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000P28W8A
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #972,623 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great information - but use with caution December 13, 2006
This book is full of great information on high to prioritize your financial life in terms of debt reduction, retirement saving and other saving. But the advice assumes the reader has a fair amount of discipline (i.e., ability to budget and constrain extraneous spending). The book goes into great detail on how to balance debt reduction with maintaining financial flexibility, maintaining good FICO scores, etc. But far too many people who are deeply in debt (and seeking help from books like this) have a spending habit that needs more drastic surgery than this book gives. So, I would say this book gives outstanding advice, but only for a subset of the public who have the right discipline. For many folks, the more drastic "surgery" advocated by cheerleaders like Dave Ramsey will be more effective.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I bought three debt books the last time I was at Amazon. They were all good, but this was the most comprehensive in easy to read format and sentences that it made things easy to develop a plan from this book. I already passed it on to two other people.
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15 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thorough unbaised advice February 2, 2006
I have known Liz Weston for years as a journalist and have always found her to be very thorough and no-nonsense. This book is no exception. It's well researched with unbaised and sensible strategies for dealing with debt. I had the opportunity to interview Liz on my internet radio show EverydayWealthRadio recently about the book and she clearly has great advice on this topic. She addresses things like 401k loan, pros and cons of different types of debt, and the common questions I hear from consumers,
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars dealing with your debt rating November 3, 2007
This book is very informative. It gives a lot of useful tips as to how to manage your finances and how to actually deal with your debts. I would recommend this book to anyone who is trying to figure out ways to managing their debts.
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More About the Author

Liz Pulliam Weston is the most-read personal finance columnist on the Internet, according to Nielsen//NetRatings. She's also an award-winning, nationally-syndicated personal finance columnist who can make the most complex money topics understandable to the average reader.

Her first book, "Your Credit Score," is the best-selling book on credit scoring and was recently published in a fourth edition. Her other recent books include "The 10 Commandments of Money" and the ebook "There Are No Dumb Questions About Money."

Liz's columns run twice a week on MSN Money, which reaches more than 12 million readers each month. Millions more read her question-and-answer column 'Money Talk,' which appears in newspapers throughout the country, including the Los Angeles Times, the Portland Oregonian, Stars & Stripes and others.

Liz has appeared on "The Dr. Phil Show," "The Today Show" and "CBS Evening News with Brian Williams" and is frequently featured on American Public Media's "Marketplace Money" and NPR's 'Talk of the Nation' and "All Things Considered." She was for several years a weekly commentator on CNBC's "Power Lunch."

Weston is a graduate of the certified financial planner training program at University of California, Irvine. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and daughter. She can be reached via her Web site,

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