• Alexis Amsden

You Need a Budget: A Book Review

For all of my book reviews, I will be using a rating system of 1 through 5: 1 for the worst, 5 for the best! I will be rating only books that can be found at no cost through the local library and are rated as some of the best career, financial, and self-help books in the 21st century. If you have any suggestions or questions, please feel free to leave them in the comments below!


You Need a Budget By Jesse Mecham


Rating: 4/5 Quarters


You Need a Budget is a book as succinct as its title. This book does a wonderful job of not only introducing financial literacy in a down to earth manner but also explaining how to adjust budgets to fit your lifestyle.


I chose to review this book because an important aspect of working and managing career goals is also the wages and salary you’re making. For some starting their first job, this can give them a leg up on budgeting their first paycheck. For those looking to switch careers, this can help you plan the financial implications. This book in particular does a great job of addressing how budgeting can set you up for future career success so far as breaking the paycheck to paycheck cycle and calculating actual costs and gives great tips to help keep you going during unexpected events such as layoff or job loss or disability.


This book does a great job of explaining how to budget regardless of your goals, income level, or understanding of finances. Instead of throwing numbers at you, the chapters are organized by 4 simple rules to help you to create a budget, explaining in depth techniques and how to apply them, and giving real life examples of each utilizing numbers only in those examples. The author’s anecdotes are relevant and can be applied to people at all different levels from those in poverty to those who are wealthy.


The only flaw to this book is he doesn’t address programs that can help people who may not have the financial stability of a paycheck yet, or are in difficult situations, depending on TANF, SNAP, WIC, and other services. While some of his financial advice can be applied to these programs budgeting money from government services, he glosses over them and the difficulties that managing and balancing money from all of these sources can pose.


Overall the book is an easy and enjoyable read and a great starting point to learn how to save money and be more financially secure.

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