As I’ve said about a zillion times before, no one just wakes up one day “knowing how to money.”
Nope, pals, that is not a thing, so let’s all breathe a big sigh of relief. Needing to muddle your way through books, blogs, workshops and learning from experience when it comes to managing your money? That’s the norm.
Learning how to manage your money in a way that works for you, while avoiding all of the fun trickery that comes standard in the financial industry, is one of the highest-value things you can do. So no matter how you get those lessons, and pretty much no matter how much they cost you, it’s probably worth it if you can learn ‘em relatively quickly.
But… it’d be pretty nice if you could do it all for free, right? (Obviously.)
That’s why I wanted to put together this not-even-fully-complete list of ways you can learn how to manage your money fo’ free, from the comfort of your home and your sweatpants, with absolutely zero awkward face-to-face sales pitches that you have to turn down.
Like when they try to offer you balance protection on your credit card, and you feel really guilty that you don’t buy it, even though you pay off your card every month and legit don’t need it.
That feeling sucks, no matter how much “advice” you just got, you know?
So without further ado, here are five rock-solid free ways to school yourself on money from the comfort of your couch.
Grab a stack of money books at your local library.
Ok, fine, this requires pants and leaving your house to go pick up the books, but trust me: you don’t need to drop $100 on a stack of brand-new money books from Amazon to get all of that sweet, sweet money know-how into your brain. Fire up your local library’s website, register for a card or an account if you don’t have one, and build yourself a totally-borrowed, totally-free money learnin’ stack of books.
They might not all be available all at once, but if you’re building out a list of hold requests at your library, I’d make sure to include…
- Worry-Free Money, by Shannon Lee Simmons (my #1 recommendation!)
- Wealthing Like Rabbits, by Robert Brown
- I Will Teach You to Be Rich, by Ramit Sethi
- Broke Millennial, by Erin Lowry
- Stop Overthinking Your Money!, by Preet Banerjee
Plus, some libraries offer e-books these days, and you can download those from your library without leaving the house. So there.
Watch money videos on Youtube.
While the concept of “not being a reader” is foreign to me, some people prefer their info delivered in video form. Luckily, you can get all the money videos you can handle on dear old Youtube, with channels covering everything from money basics to investing and more – and the downright hilarious personality that comes with some of my fave personal finance vloggers, Bridget from Money After Graduation and Alyssa from Mixed Up Money.
Read a whole pile of financial blogs.
You clearly already have a head start on this, because hi, you’re already here. You’re doing it!
That said, there are a lot of different financial blogs, covering a whole wide world of different opinions and approaches to money. Did you know that there are people out there who write about retiring in their 30s? Making hundreds of thousands of dollars through a blog? Living in a tiny house?
Let’s be clear, none of those are things I am doing or want to do or want to write about – but that’s exactly why you should read more than one finance blog! It’s a great way to get exposed to people who not only do money totally differently, but who are – gasp shock awe – willing to talk about it with total strangers.
What can I say, we’re a weird bunch.
To build your own list of must-reads, check out the Rockstar Finance directory to sort through over 1,000 blogs by just about any filters you can think of.
Money blog soulmates, here you come.
Track your spending.
Oh, you thought maybe I’d give up my eternal mission to make everyone track their spending to learn where their money is going?
All you need to track your spending is a free app like Mint, or my preferred method, a beautiful, blank spreadsheet that you update every so often. And while yes, reading everything you can get your hands on is amazing, there’s nothing that will teach you more about your own, personal money situation than… you know… knowing what that is.
Attend the Canadian Financial Summit.
Last but certainly not least is a very new, very exciting thing called the Canadian Financial Summit*. It’s an online summit, and if you’ve never been to one, here’s what that means: For one week, there will be presentations from speakers about every topic under the personal-finance sun, and you can watch them, for free, from anywhere with an internet connection.
It’s like a conference, but you can attend for free, with zero travel costs, from wherever you are in the world. So you get all of the learning, without the ultra-hefty price tag and bad airport food. (Sorry airport food, I love ya, but you’re too expensive and not delicious enough to justify it.)
The speaker lineup is so stacked that I’m a little embarrassed to even be included – the conference is going to feature presentations and interviews with BFD personal finance legends like Rob Carrick, Preet Banerjee and Robert Brown, and big-deal money bloggers like Tom Drake, Barry Choi, Bridget Casey and more. I’ll personally be breaking down how we planned and funded our “medium-budget” wedding, aka spending more than nothing but far less than the national average, but you’ll also get insider info about…
- Saving more on everyday items
- Better, smarter, easier ways to invest
- Protecting yourself from corporate chicanery
- Retiring earlier
- Levelling the playing field when it comes to discussing financial matters
- Negotiating the best deals for yourself
- Avoiding crippling fees and terrible advice
- Understanding the housing market and what’s actually important to know
- Getting your credit cards to PAY YOU
- Earning hundreds more every week with brilliant side hustles
- Travel on the cheap to exotic locales
Sounds pretty good, right?
You can grab your totally free ticket to the Canadian Financial Summit right here*, and if you get in before the conference officially kicks off, you’ll be entered to win an all-access pass to the whole dang thing. That pass comes with forever access to the video recordings and a whole pile o’ bonuses to help you rock your money.
Here are five totally free ways you can rock your money.
- Hit up the personal finance section of your local library.
- Watch money videos on Youtube.
- Read financial blogs.
- Track your spending.
- Attend the Canadian Financial Summit*.
*Those, my dear pal, are affiliate links, but don’t worry – the conference really is entirely, 100% free to attend. If you upgrade to an all-access pass, I’ll get a bonus at no cost to you, but if you make a plan to make sure you catch the sessions you want before they expire, you can get all the money goodness for $0.