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Degunking Your Personal Finances

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We could all use a bit of leadership on the financial front. Credit cards are rampant&#8212every store offers one these days&#8212and carrying debt is as common as carrying a set of keys. Taking control of your financial life can often seem an impossibility. Fortunately for us, Shannon Plate, the president of Everyday Money, offers us Degunking Your Personal Finances, a new book out from Paraglyph Press that dissects every aspect of modern-day finances and offers friendly, empowering wisdom to help us take control.

Like all good comprehensive financial guides, Degunking Your Personal Finances starts by explaining the fundamentals: understanding the guide, finding where to start clearing things up, organizing your finances, and understanding your entire financial picture. The more-complex issues (bankruptcy, homes and mortgages, budgeting, credit reports) are left to their own detailed chapters.

While there will always be universal truths to finances, modernity is extremely important as our lives are drastically different than they were ten years ago. Plate discusses cell-phones, the rising costs of basic entertainment, and the dangers of credit cards for students. Explanations and scenarios are offered for each, and, as we all miss the obvious occasionally, a common sense analysis that serves as a voice of reason. Why don’t our pre-teens need cell phones? Why don’t we need that 300-dollar DVD player? Plate gives you the indisputable answers to these questions.

Degunking Your Personal Finances is comprehensive enough to help you dig your way out of debt or find that little bit of extra cash you may not have known was there. It’s important to understand, though, that there is no guide that will whisk your loans away the second you purchase it. Plate makes this apparent right from the start with her “Degunking Sheet.” From a measly fifteen minutes all the way up to a half day, there are different exercises (nicely arranged by how much time you have) you can do to save money, pay off bills, understand your debt better, and plan for the future. All of these items take effort, though, and Plate takes a large portion of the load off by helping you every step of the way.

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About M. R. Benning

  • Darn! I was hoping having this book under my pillow would start the dollars rolling in. You mean I have to work at it?


    Thanks for the overview!