28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
My chances of becoming debt-free by 30 have passed. However, as I perused the aisles of my local bookstore in search of a common sense book about getting out of debt, this one was clearly the winner. The book is filled with common sense advice on how to cut expenses and prepare for the future. It's all outlined in an easy-to-read fashion and delivered with a witty sense of humor. The authors offer a variety of on-line resources which I promptly accessed as I read through the chapters.
Prior to reading the book I was sure I had analyzed my budget completely and was paying off as much of my debt as possible. However, after reading some of the stories and examples in the book, I reworked my figures and discovered an extra $200 a month I can contribute to debt-reduction.
Anthony and Cluck have a "come on, you can do it" attitude that makes debt reduction seem a little less painful. I sure wish I had this book when I was twenty-something. However, with a little motivation I was able to establish my own debt-free day which will be well before I'm 40. Some of us take longer to learn. Wherever you are on your debt reduction efforts, this book can help.
25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on January 17, 2001
It is great to finally find a financial book that dispenses advice for people whose paychecks hover around $20,000 annually. So many people in their 20's are like those in the book -- over-educated, under-employed and in-debt as a result. This book speaks to us. My friend and I spent about 2 hours in the bookstore going over the advice in this book (we plan to buy it--when the budget allows). Some of it was common sensical but worthy of reiteration, and all of it was presented very realistically. This book covers taxes, car insurance, student loans, 401k plans, etc. I would definetely recommend it to anyone who is, as the authors put it, stumbling towards 30 one minimum payment at a time.
24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
on January 31, 2001
For a subject that can potentially be as taboo as it is lethally boring... this book rocks. Q: What 24-year-old that has a social life would actually enjoy reading a finance book on a Saturday night? A: The one that has this one on their coffee table. I am a twentysomething who isn't in horrible debt, but I find myself mysteriously living paycheck to paycheck. Debt-Free By 30 doesn't talk down to me in the least to get a clue about some basic and not-so-basic money strategies, so that someday I may graduate to scary "adult" money (stocks, Roths, etc.) that celeb financial people are always writing boring books about. I'd recommend this book to anyone in my age bracket who is in debt or just needs to find ways to hold on to more of their hard-earned money. And even if you're not in debt, this book's still a trip to read.
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on February 18, 2003
Charge it if you have to, this book is a must for anyone who makes and spends money. Even if you're not "young," "broke" or even in debt, the book is an entertaining and useful guide. I stood in the aisle of a bookstore with a friend of mine who is in debt -- $20,000 in school loans, $6,000 in credit card debt, a car lease -- all on a first-year teacher's salary. We read the book nearly cover to cover, laughing to the point of turning heads. I didn't buy it myself, as I'm not in debt. But I found myself wanting to refer to it so often -- for subjects such as car purchasing information (that's car PURCHASING, not leasing; for why, refer to the book) -- that I went ahead and bought it to add to the "personal finance" section of my bookcase. I'm now reading the whole thing all over again -- get this -- for fun. That's how funny the book is, and how pertinent to just about everybody's financial life. Buy it, charge it, borrow it, steal it. Just get it.
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on January 9, 2001
Mr. Anthony's engaging writing style offers straightforward "I've been there" financial advice along with an inviting dose of humor to help the medicine go down. As a thirty-something who experienced many financial pitfalls and learned how to handle them the hard way, I only wish a book like this was around ten years ago. Excellent advice on handling bank fees, insurance issues, credit card debt, cutting down on entertainment expenses, etc. apply to all ages. A great inspiration to get your finances and your life back in order.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on January 9, 2002
Like Anthony and Cluck, I too entered my 20-something years being clueless about the hidden costs of debt. As I graduated from college and entered grad school, I realized that my increased cash flow from teaching was being eaten alive... and that this WASN'T what I expected from twice the money!!! My advice to you, dear 20-somethings (or 30 or 40 or 50): read this book. It will help you become competent and AWARE of your financial past, present, and future! After reading this book, I started talking to my friends about money issues. We all began a huge dialogue, sharing hints, tips, and pooling information. The only reason we hadn't been talking cash before was because we all thought it was a taboo subject. Now, we're all on the way to saving for our investments and our bright(er) futures!
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on August 10, 2005
It's now been over a year since I read and successfully use the tips offered in "Debt-free by 30". And yes, I did pay off huge debts using this method.
This book is not about the "Latte Factor" but possesses the question, "Do you even know what the heck you're doing with the money you make?"
If you approach this book with the mindset of "I can't do that because...I don't have enough money or it won't work for me," then look somewhere else.
But if you are seeking true-to-life financial advice that you probably didn't get in college and you surely won't get anywhere else unless you actively seek it out, read "Debt-free by 30".
I used this book and made some simple Excel charts to show me where my money is and what I'm doing with it, and what I'm capable of doing with it.
Personal financing is just like running a business. If you don't have the bear facts in front of you on paper, you're only guessing and dreaming about your finances. Moreover, you could be disillusioned by your assumed inability to get out of dept by 30 simply because you have not laid out all the facts in front of yourself.
Putting the numbers on paper is a powerful step to moving out of debt. I recommended this book to my closest friend and I recommend it to you as well.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on March 27, 2002
This is an awesome book! The authors obviously know their audience and offer great suggestions on ways to reduce debt. The section on dealing with credit card companies is invaluable. I took their advice and have already had the APR's on all my accounts dropped to below 8%. Both writers make it clear that becoming debt-free is not going to happen overnight, but their practical tips are things that you can do immediately to see a difference. Never are they preachy or condescending, but rather amusing, as they definitely make it clear that they've "been there, done that."
I highly recommend this book for any person who is aware of their impending financial doom and who wants to do something about it, but doesn't know quite where to begin.
I hope you find this book as inspiring as my husband and I have!
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on March 13, 2001
Hey, these guys sounded even worse than me when it came to spending money they didn't have. As a twentysomething working in New York, this book offered sound advice with a style and tone I could relate to. I especially liked the "real world" examples and information on buying a car (I wish I read that before buying my paycheck-eater).
It also had excellent information on where your paychecks go, understanding the ATM and credit card schemes and how to read your monthly bank statements instead of just shoving them into a drawer.
I also liked the randomly placed pop culture references
"If capitalism is a religion, then Costco is its church"
"Unlike spandex or KISS reunion concert tour T-Shirts, checking accounts are not one-size-fits-all products"
You won't read that in some blah 12-steps to financial freedom guide. If you remember Cherry Coke, ALF and Joanie and Chachi, this book could be the one for you.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on January 14, 2004
My husband purchased this book for us about 2 years go. We read it in less than a week - an easy read as others have already mentioned. To say the least, we found this book motivating. After we read it, I made a spreadsheet of our debt - including who we owed, how much, the interest rate, and a schedule of how soon/or not we would pay it off making various payments. (To put it into perspective, we owed over $15K in credit card debt). We called each credit card company and got them to lower our rates. The one that didn't, lost all of our money. We transferred it to an introductory 0.00% credit card instead. We then started with the highest debt/highest interest rate, and worked our way down to the last of the credit cards from there. It took us about a year and a half to get it paid off, but it was worth the wait. Here we are less than a year from paying off our credit card debt (keeping only auto loans and a student loan as debt) with thousands of dollars in our savings account. We pay cash for everything we purchase, and seriously consider our purchases before making the transaction. Our lives truly changed after reading this book. This book will be our future gift to college grads.