Feeling Financially Illiterate? Four Tips to Get Smarter This Week.

source: freedigitalphotos.net
source: freedigitalphotos.net


Have you ever overheard a friend or colleague talking about investing or financial planning and realized that you weren’t exactly sure what they meant? Do you know you need to be saving for retirement but aren’t sure where or how? Are you not sure why interest rates are rising and what it means to you? Don’t feel too bad about it. I have a secret for you. Having a Ph.D. in finance doesn’t mean I know everything about personal finance either. I am always learning something new because the markets are always changing. The good thing is that there are so many ways to get a little smarter starting right now.


1. Subscribe to some great personal finance bloggers. Just check their qualifications before taking their advice.  Obviously, if you are here, you’ve found one of those blogs! If you click over to the About Me page, you can get some more information about why I am qualified to talk about personal finance and real estate topics. I have a Ph.D. in finance and am a tenured professor at a large state university. Some of my other favorite personal finance blogs are:


2. Take an online class. If you don’t need college credit, there are a few places where you can take classes on specific finance topics. Khan Academy has an outstanding finance and capital markets course. Coursera also offers free, online courses taught by university faculty. They have introductory finance courses available a couple of times a year.


3. Read a book. There are a lot of books out there about personal finance and investing. I don’t like to read boring textbooks any more than you do. I’m also pretty picky about authors with whom I want to spend more than a couple of pages. So, I feel pretty good about giving you these couple of book recommendations as a start.

On My Own Two Feet: A Modern Girl’s Guide to Personal Finance
Get a Financial Life: Personal Finance In Your Twenties and Thirties
Financially Fearless: The LearnVest Program for Taking Control of Your Money


4. Find some online tutorials. Answers to every question you have can be found somewhere on the Internet. Many finance web sites include great basic finance tutorials. I like Investopedia, the University of Arizona, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).