Personal finance books come in two varieties: entertaining or drier than twice-reheated pork chops. So, you may not think of giving recent graduates personal finance books for fear of wasting your money on a book they’ll never read (see: pork chops).
That said, there are some fantastic personal finance books out there! I love giving at least one of these ten books as graduation gifts because they all teach wise financial lessons in relatable ways so grads start out their young lives on the right financial foot.
(Our original post included five books, but I found five more that are worth checking out!)
I love giving The Latte Factor as a gift to everyone, not just recent grads. This book is short and sweet, but very impactful. It teaches that no matter where you are in your personal finance journey, you have the power to achieve your financial goals. You’re richer than you think (and you didn’t have to take any big leaps to make that your reality)!
I Will Teach You to Be Rich is sharp and no-nonsense, much like Sethi himself (if you’ve heard any podcast interviews, you know this to be true)! This personal finance book was written for 20-35 year-olds, so it’s perfect as a college graduation gift. He delivers a 6-week program built on the 4 pillars of personal finance: banking, saving, budgeting, and investing. Buy as many lattes as you want as long as you follow this guidance.
#GYFLT (Get Your Financial Life Together) is Erin’s tagline and it’s the perfect blend of sassy and direct. That’s the kind of advice you’ll find in her book, Broke Millennial: Stop Scraping By and Get Your Financial Life Together. This doesn’t read like a personal finance book, but you’ll find tons of practical advice for starting out your financial life on the right foot in this guide. Written by a financial expert who understands the art of captivating an audience, any recent grad will benefit from learning how to talk about money and walk through sticky situations when it comes to money in the real world (read: with partners, bosses, and parents).
Jen Sincero, the powerhouse behind You Are a Badass, draws on her experience with money in You Are a Badass at Making Money: Master the Mindset of Wealth. Like The Latte Factor, anyone will benefit from the lessons Sincero packs in this personal finance book. It’s full of stories and “ah-ha” moments that will help anyone looking to power up their relationship with personal finance. Recent grads will love her style and approach to mastering your money mindset like a badass.
Grads who are into gaming will love Get Money: Live the Life You Want, Not Just the Life You Can Afford. Wong sets up this personal finance book as a game to help you understand money - and really “get” it - so you can beat the game and move to the next money level. In it, she breaks down basics like budgeting and then moves to advanced skills like setting up a retirement portfolio.
Cary Siegel wrote this book with his own teenagers (at the time) in mind and realized that these important money management concepts, not typically taught in school, are relevant to most adults. This book is quicker and easier to read than most books on money management and it focuses more on the qualitative aspects of personal finance. Siegel focuses on 99 practical principles that he learned while going through his own financial life.
This book was recently updated to highlight that it’s never too early to be thinking about personal finance. The authors discuss implementing good habits and a healthy mentality toward money as soon as one starts earning an income. This is so important for young adults as they can often get carried away with spending when they see those first few paychecks of their own. The 9-step program outlined in this book helps people to live more deliberately and meaningfully.
Jason Vitug uses his personal story of how he redefined his relationship with money to share lessons learned to help others live a more meaningful life. His goal is to teach people to manage money with a purpose and gives step by step guidance through the budgeting process and how to set-up a financial plan to help you reach your goals. This book is a good one to help young adults get off on the right foot with their finances.
Creating a financial foundation is key, and Peter Dunn discusses that in this book. Many people in their 20s start their careers with some kind of debt, whether it be credit card debt or student loans. In this book, Dunn offers practical tips and strategies to address the financial concerns and goals of people in their 20s. The more you can learn about saving, budgeting and other money management skills in your 20s, the better financial foundation you will have throughout your life.
This is the second book in Erin Lowry’s Broke Millennial series where she outlines investment basics in a way that’s easy to understand. This is a hands-on guide that includes common terminology you need to know when investing, how to buy and sell a stock, and much more! This book is meant to be a guide to any new investor who wants to become more confident and build wealth.
If you’re looking for a graduation gift for a high school or college graduate, these books go to the top of the class! They’re insightful, educational, and entertaining. A perfect mix to impart important financial advice to a new generation just figuring out money!
What personal finance books would you recommend as a graduation gift?
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