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27 Reviews
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149 of 154 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Real answers to real problems from a financial expert
I found this to be one of the better personal finance books available at this time. It's written strictly for the new normal, an economy that's badly wounded and not healing quickly.

Weston, unlike Suze Orman and many others, understands that cash strapped, debt-ridden people can't build a large emergency fund and pay off debt and do it all. There has to be a...
Published on January 21, 2011 by Susanna Hutcheson

versus
13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars NOT a strong, useful book
Don't recommend this book for folks that have read significant financial planning data, especially don't recommend on a kindle..... Might be a better fit as a pure entry level book.

Positives
+ Limited useful data - especially chart data - and facts pertinent to both retirement and personal finance. While not definitive the data provided is useful for...
Published 24 months ago by DFFTX


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149 of 154 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Real answers to real problems from a financial expert, January 21, 2011
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This review is from: The 10 Commandments of Money: Survive and Thrive in the New Economy (Hardcover)
I found this to be one of the better personal finance books available at this time. It's written strictly for the new normal, an economy that's badly wounded and not healing quickly.

Weston, unlike Suze Orman and many others, understands that cash strapped, debt-ridden people can't build a large emergency fund and pay off debt and do it all. There has to be a real, workable way to get ones debts and financial life under control.

Her book is based on the realistic, the possible, the doable. When you've finished reading this book, you'll have hope. You can begin to take control of your financial life and dig out.

Now, not all chapters will concern all readers. But there's something here for everyone. Here's what you'll find.

1ST COMMANDMENT - Create a Budget That Works in the Real World
2ND COMMANDMENT - Create a Survival Plan with Cash and Credit
3RD COMMANDMENT - Pay Off Debt the Smart Way
4TH COMMANDMENT - Don't Avoid Risk . . . Embrace It--but Sensibly
5TH COMMANDMENT - Your Home Is Not a Piggy Bank--Preserve Its Equity
6TH COMMANDMENT - Saving for Retirement Must Come First
7TH COMMANDMENT - Get a College Education You Can Afford
8TH COMMANDMENT - Reserve Insurance for the Big Losses
9TH COMMANDMENT - Treat Your Marriage Like a Business
10TH COMMANDMENT - Defend Yourself in the War on Consumers
CONCLUSION
RESOURCES

Many personal finance gurus today are telling readers to call their credit card companies and ask for lower rates. Guess what? BIG MISTAKE.

"Until the credit crunch, the standard advice was to "call your issuer and ask for a lower rate." After all, the worst your issuer could do was say no, right? That tactic often worked before the financial crisis. Once the recession hit, though, some issuers apparently decided that merely asking for a lower rate was a sign the caller was in financial trouble. Instead of considering the requests, these issuers responded to such calls by jacking up people's rates, lowering their credit limits and even closing their accounts."

And what about investing? The author discusses that at length too.

In talking about previous downturns she says, "Others swore off stock market investing, missing the subsequent recovery and a lifetime of potential gains. (Investors who jumped in during the depths of the Depression, 1932- 1939, saw some of the best long-term gains: average annual returns of 12 to 13 percent. Even after inflation, these investors saw a real 9 to 10 percent return on their money.)" She favors a degree of risk over so-called "safety."

When should you borrow money. The author says, "The only time it makes sense to borrow money is when you're buying an asset that stands a chance of gaining value over time."

And what should you know about insurance? She tells us, "Once you understand the nature of insurance, you'll know why it's important to
* keep your deductibles high,
* max out your liability protection,
* drop unnecessary coverage and
* avoid making claims whenever possible."

About homeowner's insurance she says, "Get replacement cost, not actual cash value."

Should you follow Orman's advice and save up a large emergency fund and just pay the minimum on your credit cards? The answer that makes sense to me is in this book. In fact, I immediately put a number of these "commandments" to work and what a great feeling! All of a sudden you can take control of your life in this world of financial sickness that has hit us all so hard.

If you're having a rough go of it and need some realistic help, buy this book. It even tells you when bankruptcy should be considered and when to stop paying bills and what bills to stop paying.

These are real answers for real problems.

Highly recommended.

-- Susanna K. Hutcheson
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46 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Resource for those lacking Fiscal Common Sense, February 24, 2011
By 
tvbambi (Phoenix, AZ) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The 10 Commandments of Money: Survive and Thrive in the New Economy (Hardcover)
As one whose intellectual acuity diametrically opposed to her fiscal common sense, I found Liz Weston's The Ten Commandments of Money to be a wonderful resource for smart people who tend to do dumb things with money. Weston's book is like a great teacher's lecture: she never talks down to you, she shows diligence in making sure that you understand the key concepts and she gives you the tools to utilize what you've learned. I have already begun to put some of the commandments to work and I no longer feel that getting financially healthy is for other folks and not for me. Thank you, Ms. Weston!
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44 of 50 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Important Stuff, January 30, 2011
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This review is from: The 10 Commandments of Money: Survive and Thrive in the New Economy (Hardcover)
If you're familiar with Liz Weston's stuff from her columns, you know what she offers: a depth of research that is unparalleled in the personal finance world -- and a very high level of attention to changes in laws and policies and how they effect your bottom line.

In The 10 Commandments of Money, she shows how the old rules about money led people into the financial outhouse -- and how they can get out.

Her approach is nuanced and intellectual: You never have to believe Liz Weston's opinion about anything; it's always backed up and she's the guide who puts it all together.

If you're looking for a personal finance guide that will change your life, you can't do much better than this one.

Zac Bissonnette
Author of Debt-Free U.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Based on reality, April 24, 2011
By 
Angelynn (Fresno, CA, US) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The 10 Commandments of Money: Survive and Thrive in the New Economy (Hardcover)
I found this book to be clear, concise and motivating. Liz offers flexibilty and understanding in her writing. Unlike On My Own Two Feet: A Modern Girl's Guide to Personal Finance this book offers advice for both full and part-time workers on proper budgeting, doesn't assume you can magically make more money on a whim, but offers possible side jobs and other ideas to bolster my income as well as supplement my earnings during the lean months that really got me thinking! She doesn't have to try to be hip but her writing comes across in the most friendly, caring and optimistic tone, which I found to be more efficient. I was extremely happy and satisfied with this book and walked away with not only a game plan (to pay down debt but also save in a manner condusive with my income) that can grow with me, but a vital reference as she suggests other helpful books and websites.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Practical Advice For Current Economy, May 11, 2011
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This review is from: The 10 Commandments of Money: Survive and Thrive in the New Economy (Hardcover)
This book is awesome to describe it in one word. The book is so resourceful that I purchased it for a friend as a gift because of the wealth of information in it. I'm an avid fan of Suze but let's face it some of her advice is hard to apply to your own financial circumstance (like the 8 month emergency fund). Liz Weston is offering solid, practical advice for the current economic climate. This book is a great reference book and one that you will want to use page markers and a high lighter with.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best-of-Breed Book about Money, September 24, 2012
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"The Ten Commandments of Money" is by far the clearest step-by-step guide to money management that I've ever read. Ms. Weston covers it all, from saving plans to retirement plans (Tip: No matter your age, start saving NOW and NEVER STOP), from "Good debt" (mortgage) to "Bad Debt" (credit cards), from harvesting income to bucket-type budgeting. I got this book from the library and after reading it twice, bought my own copy for reference. I re-read this book every 3 or 4 months and learn something new in every chapter every time. Along with buying Google at $115/share, this is one of the best investments I've ever made.

Federal Cop (Ret.)
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars NOT a strong, useful book, November 29, 2012
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Don't recommend this book for folks that have read significant financial planning data, especially don't recommend on a kindle..... Might be a better fit as a pure entry level book.

Positives
+ Limited useful data - especially chart data - and facts pertinent to both retirement and personal finance. While not definitive the data provided is useful for preliminary conclusions.
+Fairly well written and well organized with clear documentation of reference material.

Negatives
-too many history lessons and stories, not enough forward looking analysis and data
-Parrots too much very general, standard personal finance guidance with limited actionable data
-lean/tilt in ` sources or in the actual writing' has no real place in quantitative work - which is what personal finance is - quantitative. In general, in my opinion, financial/investment institution data both trumps academics theoretical work and 'example stories'.... For others, I suggest doing what I did not in this case and will in the future, checking the history of authors in terms of contributions,publications, afflications.

*Serious `tick-off' I guess I'm too new to kindle - because:
---- Some of the best data is in Tables that are very low contrast, faint and hard to read on a regular kindle - especially when in some sort of motion - like on an elliptical or riding as a passenger in a vehicle. Really ridiculous to sell something not completely usable .... While Searching for ways to fix, I find it is a common issue. Amazon should tag eBooks as Not Appropriate for certain kindles - if that is what the real situation is and the author should make sure the product works..... but I suppose that is just my opinion ...
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favorite financial planning book!, October 13, 2011
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As someone who is starting a business and looking for basic financial planning advice, this book is perfect for me. Unlike many of the other financial planning "gurus", the author gives the reader easy to understand, easy to implement financial tips and techniques to help navigate the waves of the tumultuous financial world we currently find ourselves in.

She gets to the essence of how to survive and thrive without using the fancy technical jargon that hinders other finance books and literature. I especially appreciate that the author gives advice that is not catered to simply one group of people; rather, she explains and advocates for different financial strategies depending upon where one is in life. Getting away from the generic "one size fits all" advice that seems to plague so many financial planning tips, the author instead opts to give different options for people depending on where they are in their financial circumstances. The result of this is that this book truly feels educational and motivational rather than simply another " how to" book.

I would definitely recommend this book for anyone who is looking for clear, concise, and straightforward guidance on how to successfully build, create, and sustain wealth and all of the myriad benefits that go along with it!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Reality based fiancial guidance for the middle income person, May 3, 2013
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I have read Suze Orman's Money Class and thought there was a lot of great information, but it was rather detached from the reality that I, and many other middle income people, come from. The thought of coming up with 8 months of income to sock away is not realistic which is rather depressing for readers. It didn't provide a realistic bridge to get from where I am to where I want to be.
I decided to try another resource for financial information. The 10 Commandments of Money was more grounded in my reality. It presented useful tips on gaining income, paying off debts in a smart way by arranging bills for pay off in a more manageable way that I could relate to and start to put into practice right away, the 50/30/20 plan is a great example. I understand that in an ideal situation you should max out employer matching on retirement investment plans, and try to save where you "pay yourself first", but when many of us are living paycheck to paycheck, it's not realistic. Saving $50 per month is realistic. Stashing away $500 for emergencies initially is a reachable goal to start with. There are more realistic approaches to money with examples for people who don't make 100 grand a year and still need to dig out of debt and survive rough spots. Good book, useful information.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great advice on insurance and consumer protection, April 11, 2013
By 
Chapwoman (Charlottesville) - See all my reviews
I am pretty squared away financially but I was interested in the chapter on insurance since that can be a very confusing area of finance. I changed my auto insurance (more coverage and higher deductibles) based on her advice and my insurance actually went down a little. She really puts it out there as to why it's good to have better coverage and higher deductibles. She also has good advice on other types of insurance as well as where to go to get more information. I was really surprised at how inexpensive it was to double my coverage - only a few dollars per month!

The chapter on the War on Consumers was also very good and had some reasonable steps to take about arming yourself with knowledge, etc.

I can't comment on the other chapters but I would expect them to be just as well written and full of good advice. Too many people are "dumb" when it comes to money and you don't have to be!
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The 10 Commandments of Money: Survive and Thrive in the New Economy
The 10 Commandments of Money: Survive and Thrive in the New Economy by Liz Pulliam Weston (Hardcover - January 20, 2011)
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