- Paperback: 224 pages
- Publisher: Currency; Updated, Subsequent edition (November 25, 1997)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0761513116
- ISBN-13: 978-0761513117
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 290 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,454 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Wealthy Barber, Updated 3rd Edition: Everyone's Commonsense Guide to Becoming Financially Independent Updated, Subsequent Edition
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" . . . quite simply the best financial self-help book."
--Money Book Club, Book-of-the-Month Club
From the Inside Flap
." . . quite simply the best financial self-help book."
--Money Book Club, Book-of-the-Month Club
In this new and updated edition of one of the biggest-selling financial-planning books ever, David Chilton simplifies the complex puzzles of personal finance and helps you achieve financial independence. With the help of his fictional barber, Roy, and a large dose of humor, Chilton shows you how to take control of your financial future--slowly, steadily, and with sure success. Chilton's plan (detailed in an entertaining story) is no get-rich-quick scheme, but it does make financial independence possible on nothing more than an average salary.
This third edition has been updated with assistance from the Arthur Andersen Corporation, and covers the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 and other recent developments.
Even if you consider yourself a financial "basket case," Chilton explains how you can easily put an effective financial plan into action.
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My complaints, however, are here:
- Although some of the tips are super easy to pick up, some will still go over your head. In my opinion, that defeats the whole purpose of the simplistic, investing-for-dummies approach to the book. I understand the types given are essential tips, so don't get me wrong there. It's just that some BASIC tips are fleshed out in 10 pages, and some ADVANCED tips are glossed over in a paragraph.
- With all the resources we have at our fingertips (aka the dang Internet), all the advice in this book could be found in a single personal finance blog post. I know, I know, that can be applied to about everything. But, it's important to remember this is an extremely short book as it is, so I would have liked a little more susbstance.
- Don't be fooled by the "Updated 3rd Edition" part of the title. It's crazy out of date, so be forewarned! The financial tips are still applicable for sure, but just know homes used the examples are going to cost $90,000. If that bothers you, pick up the updated version (2011): The Wealthy Barber Returns : Dramatically Older and Marginally Wiser, David Chilton Offers His Unique Perspectives on the World of Money
All that said, it's a solid 3 out of 5 for me. It had some great advice for first-time investors, but I think there's probably some better resources out there.
Surprisingly, the book is structured really well. After reading "The Wealthy Barber," there was no wonder why it is a timeless classic, still purchased though it's last edition was published in 1997.
"The Wealthy Barber" is in a novel format. Its story is about a few friends, all with different lifestyles (a new father, a well-paid business owner, and a single guy) who need to get their financial affairs in order. The different lifestyles among the characters sets the book up such that all of the financial advice given by the wealthy barber caters to different financial situations that its readers may have.
Once Chilton introduces his readers to each character's personal situation in the first few chapters of the book, each subsequent chapter cover a personal finance tenet-each tenet being one to follow to set one's self up to live a future prosperous life.
Although some of the information is dated (e.g. the Roth IRA was newly written into law at the time of this book's publishing, so it is said that the max contribution limit is only $2000 vice $5000) it covered every basic thing that every one should know in order to build a solid financial plan, if they choose, and it covered several perspectives for each topic. It cover topics such as:
Save 10% early to advantage of compounded interest, so that the money can be used in our retirement years to purchase luxuries or other things.
Make sure wills are in place, along with the right amount of life or disability insurance
Save for retirement in whatever vehicles that you can such as a 401(k), SEP, or Keogh Plan
Purchase or Rent a Home
Manage Everyday Spending
Take Advantage of Tax Deductions and Savings
I absolutely loved "The Wealthy Barber." The thing that I loved most about this book was it gave no absolutes. Too many books about personal finance argues only one point. "The Wealthy Barber" respectfully lays out that some people can choose or choose not to carry a credit card balance (as long as they are aware of the possible ramifications), rent or mortgage a home, or invest in CDs or aggressive mutual funds. The overall tone of the book is that there are different ways and approaches to everyone's path to financial success though, there are some "best practices."
In fact, this book made me rethink a few things:
My retirement account is not necessary just for me. All the time, I was only accounting for the money that I'd need at retirement. I had been calculating my retirement account for an income stream of only $4500 monthly, because it's what I need for me and a future wife. But, believe it or not, I may need to calculate for a bit more if I foresee myself taking care of my parents. At the time that I age to 59 1/2, my mom will be a bit over 80 years old. I'm pretty sure that if I have to take care of her, be it through assisted living or a live-in nurse, I will need to start saving at a more aggressive rate.
It's totally not okay to have $10,000 sitting around in an "emergency" account. Who in the hell has a $10,000 emergency, especially if they are in a stable job?
Having a sound financial plan, once set up, should not be very restrictive. If we do the important things correctly and make them a priority while starting early in life, we should be comfortable spending all other monies.
Once again, "The Wealthy Barber" is a great read for anyone looking to revisit or learn the basics of what it takes to build a sound financial plan.