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Make Budgeting Your Hobby

I’ve recently had three experiences that reminded me about the importance of simple budgeting and having a basic knowledge of money. The first occurred here in the library, at the Business and Job Center reference desk. A woman who planned to teach a budgeting class at her church asked for a basic sample home budget to hand out. A short time after that, at a dinner I attended, I spoke to a young man who bemoaned the fact that no class he’d had, either in high school or college, ever taught anything about personal finance. Now that he was on his own, working and paying bills, he was getting an unpleasant crash course. My last experience occurred on my way home from work one evening as I enjoyed listening to my radio financial hero, Dave Ramsey. The guest caller wanted Dave’s advice about whether it would be wiser to have his son live at home and commute the twenty minutes to their local college, or, as his wife preferred, take out a $10,000 loan and allow his son to live in the dorm so that he could participate in the college experience. While Dave was polite, if you’ve ever listened to his show, you can imagine his answer. I believe he was laughing on the inside.

The library has many resources for those wanting to learn about basic budgeting and personal finance. There are also websites like FINRA which will provide you with useful advice and budgeting tools. Just click below.

Subject headings:

Budgets, Personal

Finance, Personal

Home economics -- Accounting

Helpful websites, articles, and tools:

About.com: Living on a Budget

FINRA: Tools & Calculators

FINRA: Weathering Tough Financial Times - The Long-term Costs of Quick Cash

Kiplinger: 10 Tips

Dollartimes.com: Budget worksheets

Books and a YouTube video:


Chick Living: Frugal and Fabulous by Kris Koederitz Melcher
Amazon Says: You’re young. You’ve used up the handful of decorating ideas you ever had and, frankly, it’s time to take down the tapestries and the pushpin-worn posters. You’re livi more...
Amazon Says: You’re young. You’ve used up the handful of decorating ideas you ever had and, frankly, it’s time to take down the tapestries and the pushpin-worn posters. You’re livin’ in the real world now, sister. And, you’re broke. So what if your mom thinks you’re sassy and sophisticated—it’s high time you showed everyone else you truly are. In Chick Living, Kris Koederitz Melcher teaches us how to live frugally while oozing fabulousness. Melcher’s got your back with real-life lessons in necessity such as securing renter’s insurance, getting enough calcium in your diet, and when to take your car and yourself in for a routine checkup. We can all learn a lesson or two from Melcher who, in her first year out of college, paid every bill on time and had funds left over for starting a Grown-up Girl wardrobe and a savings account. What’s a Grown-up Girl Wardrobe, you ask? What’s a savings account? Never fear, oh sweet young dear. Help is on the way. It’s an expensive world out there and this guide is here to tell you what to spend on and when to put your money away. Quit dishing out three bucks for your morning latte and start making your frothy favorite at home. Discover the beauty of a yard sale and have enough cash left over for a monthly dinner-out splurge. Invest in a few classics for your closet but avoid the enticing lure of fad clothing. You’ll find everything here but the kitchen sink (although Melcher tells you what should be underneath your sink). Whether you’re in search of a job, a roommate, a couch, or a recipe, Melcher’s preparedness savvy is the ideal remedy for the just-out-of-college blues or the woes of any fund-hungry chick. You’ll thank your extra pennies that she’s put her hard-won wisdom and experience into a guide for the rest of us. less...
Amazon

Amazon Says: Start Your Marriage with Money in the Bank, not Bills in the Mail. In a world where the average wedding costs around $30,000, a realistic plan for a dream wedding no matter wh more...
Amazon Says: Start Your Marriage with Money in the Bank, not Bills in the Mail. In a world where the average wedding costs around $30,000, a realistic plan for a dream wedding no matter what your budget. Many couples are unnecessarily going deeply into debt to pay for their own weddings. Pastor Todd Outcalt has counseled hundreds of couples on how to avoid this strain on a new marriage, and now he's bringing his message to brides and grooms everywhere. With costs rising, the economy faltering, and the future uncertain, Outcalt provides an overall plan for cost-saving and dream-building. Unlike other books, Your Beautiful Wedding on Any Budget creates a plan tailored to your financial reality, not a specific dollar amount. It offers the most flexibility, showing: How to prioritize what's important so you know where to spend $$$ and where to spend $ Planning strategies for realistic costs of each component How to use the internet to save money Couples can now plan the wedding of their dreams, and go on their honeymoon knowing that every expense is paid for! Learn How To: Determine what kind of unique day you can afford: Design your own plan using sample budgets as a guide Have an elegant wedding without the high costs Host a large wedding on a small income Increase the funds for your wedding and spend that cash smartly Cut wedding costs easily and painlessly Prioritize what's important to you so you know where to splurge and where to save Work with parents and others who have a say in wedding money matters Create a debt-free wedding if you're already in debt Your Beautiful Wedding on Any Budget reveals how to craft a debt-free big day, giving you the techniques and strategies to help you enter into marriage with a bigger wallet and lower stress level. Rather than focusing on a certain dollar amount, Your Beautiful Wedding on Any Budget allows you to design a plan tailored to your financial reality, whatever that may be. less...
Amazon

Amazon Says: Borrowing from Peter to pay Paul? The American economy is dragging, with unemployment rates rising and consumer debt hitting $2.5 trillion. Many people are in deep an more...
Amazon Says: Borrowing from Peter to pay Paul? The American economy is dragging, with unemployment rates rising and consumer debt hitting $2.5 trillion. Many people are in deep and need help. Here, a Certified Financial Planner explains the mathematics of debt; strategies to deal with credit card, mortgage, student, and other loans; why debt consolidation and taking loans from a 401(k) can lead to problems; truths about bankruptcy; and how to use debt while eliminating it. *Includes essential resources and websites, sample letters and forms, loan forgiveness programs, bankruptcy resources *Author a Certified Financial Planner *Covers every kind of debt, mortgages to credit cards to student loans *National credit card debt is growing exponentially less...
Amazon

Amazon Says: Think of sports: a football game, a round of golf, a tennis match. Or think of a play, or an opera. Now think of the halfway mark in that event -- the halftime, the intermissi more...
Amazon Says: Think of sports: a football game, a round of golf, a tennis match. Or think of a play, or an opera. Now think of the halfway mark in that event -- the halftime, the intermission -- when everyone takes a breather and wonders the same thing: What's going to happen in the second half? We have a similar point in our lives, often around our fiftieth birthday, when we begin to wonder about our second half. If you're at or approaching that age, you probably think about how much money you're going to need so you can have the kind of life you want. Charles Schwab, bestselling author of Charles Schwab's Guide to Financial Independence, offers you advice and support for getting there. For more than twenty-five years, Charles Schwab has been passionate about demystifying investing. In a user-friendly style, You're Fifty --Now What? offers a mix of clear and workable advice about how to accumulate and grow your money. Through simple worksheets, understandable language, and a healthy dose of encouragement, you learn how to take control of your financial life. You'll find answers to your questions, including help with estate planning and charitable giving. His message emphasizes that the goal is not just financial security, but also the peace of mind that comes from knowing you're prepared. He takes you step-by-step through a process that will enable you to see where you are financially today and where you want to get so that the second half of your life can be as fulfilling as you hope. One hundred percent of the author's profits from this book will be donated to a charity that benefits seniors through The Charles Schwab Corporation Foundation. Dear Reader, We have a point in our lives when we find ourselves wondering about the second half. The age differs from person to person. For some it comes in their late forties, for others it's in their early fifties. When we reach that age, we feel different. We may sense a change coming and we want to pause and to think about what we've accomplished and what we still hope to do. So what does this have to do with investing? A lot. A sound investing strategy is what gives you the means and the courage to do what you want. The issues may seem daunting. But it can be done. It has to be done, because while getting older isn't a bad thing, being unprepared for it is. And by not understanding the financial part of your future, you sabotage yourself and you limit your choices. Start today, maybe even right now. Take control of the second half of your life. Dream about it, wonder about it, think boldly about what you want. And take the first step, which is usually the hardest. Once you get started, the satisfaction you feel will keep you going. But don't delay in your preparations. The best is yet to come. Charles R. Schwab from the prologue less...
Amazon

Amazon Says: Your future is based on the decisions you make now. You don't have to give up pizza or forego driving to find a way to make the smart money moves Lewis recommends. more...
Amazon Says: Your future is based on the decisions you make now. You don't have to give up pizza or forego driving to find a way to make the smart money moves Lewis recommends. Starting with in depth analysis of the current state of one's financial affairs, she shows would be investors how to create the personal and financial goals that will power up the plan. Like an engaging personal friend who is also a financial advisor, Lewis outlines the key issues related to finding the appropriate financial advisor, and shares the results of a survey of actual investors, identifying what they most want explained in the investment planning process. less...
Amazon

Amazon Says: Get your spending under control and create a budget that will get you on the road to financial freedom. In an age of information overload, many simply don't have the time, more...
Amazon Says: Get your spending under control and create a budget that will get you on the road to financial freedom. In an age of information overload, many simply don't have the time, knowledge or organizational skills to create a simple, functional system for managing personal finances. Now in its fourth edition, The Budget Kit: The Common Cents Money Management Workbook is a best-selling classic that has helped hundreds of thousands of people across America develop effective budgets and gain financial freedom. Even if you are using a financial software program, you will find the concepts in The Budget Kit to be essential to your understanding of budgeting. In the completely revised and updated fourth edition, Lawrence tackles the unique challenges faced in the digital society in which we live. The increased use of debit cards, automatic withdrawals, direct paycheck deposits and online bill payment systems have distanced us from our money like never before. Lawrence guides you through the electronic shift to a cashless society, and keeps you connected to your money. This new and updated edition also comes with budgeting starter software to help you achieve your financial goals. less...
Amazon

Amazon Says: With the average cost of a wedding in the U.S. approaching $28,000, many couples are eager to find ways to cut back, particularly in these tough economic times. Who needs to s more...
Amazon Says: With the average cost of a wedding in the U.S. approaching $28,000, many couples are eager to find ways to cut back, particularly in these tough economic times. Who needs to say "I do" to a mountain of debt? Yet, considering the emotions and expectations that come with planning the big day, it's easy to succumb to inflated wedding pricing and spend beyond your budget. But you can have that fabulous, once-in-a-lifetime wedding - the type you've always dreamed of - without breaking the bank. Stylish Weddings for Less by Catherine Sabino will show you how! From finding that knock-out gown at a fraction of its original cost, classy wedding invitations, rings, flowers, and bridesmaids' gowns at reduced costs, to creative ways to save on wedding cakes and reception menu strategies, to locating incredible reception sites at affordable prices, the book offers hundreds of ideas and solutions! It will also reveal how experts get the best deals on photography, transportation and even on honeymoon travel. In an easy-to-reference format, Stylish Weddings for Less is sure to be an indispensable resource for anyone looking to tie the knot with cost-conscious flair and style. less...
Amazon

Amazon Says: A survival guide for young adults to turn financial chaos into financial order Consider these facts. The average college student graduates owing almost $20,000 in stude more...
Amazon Says: A survival guide for young adults to turn financial chaos into financial order Consider these facts. The average college student graduates owing almost $20,000 in student loans. In addition, nearly 10 percent of undergraduates owe more than $7,000 in credit card debt. Young Americans aged 15-­25 filed bankruptcy at a record rate in 2000, accounting for nearly 7 percent of the nation's personal bankruptcies. Clearly, young people today need help managing their money better. Don't Spend Your Raise, by one of America's leading advocates for personal finance education, offers young people in college or just starting out in the real world practical, doable "money rules" to help them handle their money more wisely and dramatically increase their personal wealth. It does not contain lengthy, complicated charts and equations for financial analysis and planning. Instead, it presents 60 clear, uncomplicated, easy-to-follow dictates­­such as Never have more than two credit cards, never buy a new car, and don't fly first class for the free cocktails­­which, if followed, will guarantee fewer money mistakes and more money successes. less...
Amazon

Amazon Says: Like most average American heads-of-household, Bill and Mary Toohey found themselves increasingly stressed by their financial responsibilities, with no real job security, thei more...
Amazon Says: Like most average American heads-of-household, Bill and Mary Toohey found themselves increasingly stressed by their financial responsibilities, with no real job security, their standard of living in constant jeopardy, and little promise of ever having enough time for their children or each other. The realization that their family?s financial future was entirely dependent on benevolent employers, a lifetime of full-time work, and the fate of social security was a disheartening condition they wanted to change?quickly. Unlike most Americans, in eight short years, the Tooheys managed to save nearly half of their modest annual income?and add almost half a million dollars to their net worth. They now have enough money to cover most expenses for the rest of their lives?even if they never earn another paycheck. With a daughter headed for college and a son with costly health problems, do the Tooheys claim this was easy? No. But it was doable. And it can be for you, too.Named among the "Best Personal Finance Managers in America" by Money magazine, the Tooheys have taken their story, and their strategies, public in the hopes of helping others achieve the financial independence to enjoy their lives? and even their work.Easy-to-understand and conversational, here is the Tooheys? groundbreaking formula for building assets without earning more money, relocating, or changing jobs?and without suffering. In addition to practical planning and investment suggestions, covered here are crucial issues in developing a money saving mindset, including:The impact of money on relationships--featuring the Tooheys? personal "Killer of Love" listThe value of work beyond a paycheckThe importance of a varied reading in order to build a network of ideas and stimulate creative thinkingMaintaining normal family routines in times of crisisDeriving comfort, satisfaction, and beauty from your home?your most inexpensive place to beThe simple truth that spending less is easier than saving moreHow adapting an "attitude of gratitude" can help break the spending cycle Defining financial freedom...and more, to help you turn your average income into above-average wealth. BILL and MARY TOOHEY lecture widely and have written several magazine articles on their sound money strategies. Bill is a vocational rehabilitation counselor, and Mary is an office manager. The couple live in Iowa and have three children.H OW ONE FAMILY QUICKLY WENT FROM "GETTING BY" TO FINANCIAL FREEDOM?AND HOW YOU CAN, TOO"If you?ve got the grit, determination, and vision, the Tooheys? astonishing plan will lead you to financial security."?Jeff Davidson, author of The Joy of Simple Living"If you think you can?t build wealth on what you earn, read this book. Bill and Mary Toohey will show you exactly how to achieve financial freedom for yourself and your family. Inspiring!" ? Gerri Detweiler, coauthor of Invest in Yourself: Six Secrets to a Rich Life"The Average Family?s Guide to Financial Freedom is an excellent resource for people who are serious about changing their financial lifestyle. Moderation is the key. The point is that it doesn?t require a huge fortune to achieve financial freedom. This book teaches the reader in a sensible, realistic fashion how to control spending by reducing needs. As the authors say, it?s not easy, but doable." ? Kerry Hannon, author of Suddenly Single: Money Skills for Divorcees and Widows"Hooray for the real-life version of getting financially fit. All of us coping with families, middle income, and mortgages can relate to this energetic, practical book. If they can do it, so can we!" ? Janet Luhrs, author of The Simple Living Guide and editor/publisher of The Simple Living Journal less...
Amazon
Household Budgets : How to Make a Personal Weekly Spending Budget
YouTube Says: In order to make a personal weekly spending budget, make sure to first be able to offset expenses with income. Find out how to make the process of planning a budget a visual e...
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