Question of the Week: What Are the Most Important Takeaways of Personal Finance?

J.D. from Get Rich Slowly recently released his book, Your Money: The Missing Manual. I’m pretty excited to read it and aim to do a review of the book soon. Anyway, let’s say you were writing your own personal finance book to pass along to your friends and family as a guide which would cover the most critical aspects of personal finance. What would you include in the book? What are the major takeaways from the personal finance world?

Next week I’ll be presenting my own answer to this question. I’ll share what I believe are some of the core tenants of personal finance. I’ll call this series of posts, The Key Takeaways of Personal Finance.

But before I get rolling with this series, I want to hear from you in the comments. What are your most important takeaways of personal finance? Feel free to just list one or spell out everything that you think is important.

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About Philip Taylor

Philip Taylor, aka “PT”, is a CPA, financial writer, podcaster, FinCon Founder, husband, and father of three. He created PT Money back in 2007 to share his thoughts on money and to meet others passionate about managing their finances. All the content on this blog is original, and created or edited by PT. Read more about Philip Taylor, and be sure to connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, or Google+. Listen to the new podcast, Masters of Money!


  1. These are not absolute tenets of mine, but they are guides.

    (i) When investing, the most important features are IRR, NPV, and the payback period.
    (ii) When determining if it is best to refinance or payoff a loan or other payable, use the two-year rule. If the additional cost is more than two years of savings, you’ll have remorse.
    (iii) If you do not micro-manage expenses, you will have macro-problems.

  2. In my life, I have learned that the greatest place you can invest in is in yourself. Yeah, I know..sounds airy fairy. But, when you depend so much on so called “experts” and don’t know exactly what it is they are doing…who is the one who is ultimately responsible for the investment? It’s me. There is no power in displacing your responsibility to someone else. Looking forward to hearing your takeaways on personal finance. 🙂