I recently went to my first ever book signing. Ramit Sethi, Entrepreneur and Author of a New York Times Bestseller, finished his multi-city book tour in Austin. I bought his first edition several years ago and he recently updated the book on its 10th anniversary.
Over the years, after a lot of trial and error and reading many other personal finance books, I pretty much do what Ramit suggests. I wish this book existed when I was just starting out. His clear and irreverent style makes it easy to understand the often-times conflicting financial advice. I mostly bought the first edition for my older son. I figure he would listen to someone closer to his age than his dad talking about saving and investing.
My son followed through and he now has a high-interest savings account and a brokerage account. He’s contributing small but steady deposits to his brokerage account and he’s still in college. If he continues and ratchets up the savings after graduation and as he moves up in his career, he should be set.
I got the second edition for my younger son, though I did get Ramit to include both my son’s names in his book signing. We’ve started a custodial high-interest account for my younger one and will probably open a brokerage account soon.
As a parent, beyond teaching my kids the do’s and don’ts of growing up in this rapidly changing world, I think the most important instruction is the proper care of one’s money. It doesn’t matter what profession they go into, having the proper money skills is critical. It’s something, unfortunately, that schools don’t teach. I’ve even met MBAs that don’t know the key strategies of personal money management.
What sets Ramit apart from others giving financial advice is the notion of spending generously on that one passion that really gives you pleasure. Save ruthlessly on all the other stuff. I think this makes sense especially for someone like me who can get too focused on efficiency and saving money. I’ve come to this conclusion recently, but Ramit’s talk reinforced it. As I mentioned yesterday, I don’t spend very much on most things, but I’ve decided to open the spigot on things photography related. The reality is, buying a bunch of cameras is not going to break the bank for me at my current stage of life. But the pleasure it gives me is worth it.
Here’s Ramit’s Book on Amazon, if you’re interested. Highly recommended.
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