How’s that for a mouthful of a title? But seriously, there is always more to learn about personal finance. It’s not like learning to ride a bike, where after you have the basics, there’s not much else to it unless you want to become a master mountain biker. No, it’s more like cooking. With cooking, you can learn the basics to get yourself through life, or you can learn a little more every year and elevate your skill set to kick-ass-dom.
If you haven’t heard, the month of November is financial literacy month, and I use this month as my once-a-year reminder to up my personal finance game and learn something new about money.
There are many different ways you could up your personal finance game, depending on where you are in your financial journey. Here are five ways you can expand your knowledge, learn something new, and manage your money just a little better. I’ve included options that are appropriate for newbies, seasoned pros, and everyone in between:
For Newbies: Read a Personal Finance Book
I love the Internet, but the wealth of information available on money can be overwhelming, especially if you aren’t yet adept at distinguishing genuine personal finance advice from spammy loan websites. That’s why I love directing personal finance newbies to books. If you’re new to being responsible with your money and you want to learn the basics, start with Stop Overthinking Your Money by Canadian personal finance blogger Preet Banerjee. I have yet to find a better introduction to personal finance.
For Newbies: Kick Ass At Budgeting
Are you interested in budgeting but you’re not sure where to start? Cait from Blonde on a Budget has got you covered. She’s put together an awesome budgeting spreadsheet for a mere $17 USD.
For Intermediates: Set Your Debt Free Date
If you’re paying off your debt but don’t feel like you’re getting anywhere with it, you need to figure out your debt free date. This can be complicated once you factor in all of your extra payments, lump sum payments and snowballing of debts. Most debt repayment calculators aren’t sophisticated enough for that.
Which is why I created a free downloadable debt repayment spreadsheet that can handle all of the inputs I mentioned above. Download this spreadsheet, figure out your debt free date, and start tinkering to figure out how to move that date a little closer.
For Intermediates: Learn About Investing
Maybe you’ve already paid off your debt, and it’s time to start investing your money for retirement. If you’ve been putting it off because the whole idea of investing makes your eyes glaze over (I understand, because that used to be me) I’ve got the book for you: The Millionaire Teacher. This book is a great introduction to low-fee, do it yourself investing and the information is delivered in a way that won’t put you to sleep.
If you’re already in the DIY investing camp and want to up your game in a significant way, try our my friend Bridget’s Master Class Money investing course. This course is not free, in fact, it’s a little steep at $379 USD, but I have no doubt it’s worth every penny.
For Experts: Learn From Other Experts
Nothing gets me more fired up and excited about personal finance than talking about money with other personal finance lovers. While I may not be able to get in the same room as most of my fellow personal finance bloggers more than once a year, I can always connect online.
In fact, I’ll be joining other personal finance experts on Wednesday, November 25th from 7-8pm for a Twitter chat. Some of the bigger names you might recognize are Robb Engen (Boomer and Echo), Kyle Prevost (Young and Thrifty) and Tom Drake (Canadian Finance). I’m super excited to chat with these folks about all things money. If you’d like to join us, tune into the Twitter party using the hashtag #LoonieLiteracy.
Bonus: Earn Extra Cash
If you’re earning extra cash and putting it to good use, you’re upping your personal finance game. In fact, if you join the #LoonieLiteracy Twitter chat I just mentioned, you can win a $100 prepaid card. LowestRates.ca is giving out five, and all you have to do is pop in the chat and ask a question. If you’re aiming for a bigger wad of extra cash, you also have a chance to win $1,000 from LowestRates.ca by filling out a car insurance quote from them. You should be shopping around for the best car insurance rates every year, so consider this a way to kill two birds with one stone.
How are you upping your personal finance game this November? Tell me!