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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Managing Your Money

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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Managing Your Money shows that any numbskull can master personal finance. In this second edition, a father-and-daughter writing team, Robert K. Heady and Christy Heady, give readers the best advice culled from their many years of experience in consumer rights and money management. The Headys believe that money must be managed for the long haul and that there are no quick ways to build wealth. The guide is easy to read, witty, and scornful of the hype dished out by banks and other peddlers of personal finance. It provides a plethora of personal-finance tips for consumers, including how to get the best deal on a mortgage, pay off debt, and bank online. The authors expose financial pitfalls such as bank-sold mutual funds, dealer financing for motor vehicles, extended warranties, and those dreaded bank fees. A full chapter is devoted to the evils of credit cards, which they feel is the biggest ripoff in the financial world. The writers contend that the toughest thing about saving is making the decision to do it. You should get going by putting aside a little amount of money each month through a mutual fund or dividend reinvestment plan. "The whole idea of managing money is to save a dollar here and there and then take that dollar and build it into two," they write. It shouldn't take a rocket scientist to understand that. --Dan Ring

You're no idiot, of course. You know how to plan a budget, calculate your savings, and even do a straightforward 1040 tax return. But when it comes to taking full control of your finances, your confusion starts compounding. Don't lose interest yet! The Complete Idiot's Guide to Managing Your Money, Second Edition gives you the most up-tp-date information you need to make sense of today's confusing monetary environment. You'll learn everything you need to know to make a sensible financial plan and make your money work for you. In this completely revised and updated edition of the best-selling Complete Idiot's Guide, you get:

About the Author

Robert K. Heady is a nationally syndicated columnist who writes about personal finance and banking. His trusted Tribune Media Services column, "The People's Money," runs in scores of newspapers.

As founding publisher of Bank Rate Monitor (now bankrate) from which he retired in 1998, Mr. Heady pioneered the surveying of U.S. bank rates and averages in news media, beginning with a rate table in The New York Times in 1983. Eventually his consumer rate tables began reaching more than 50 million US households every week via The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Money Magazine, CNN, and dozens of other major dailies. He is a frequent guest speaker and has appeared many times on CNN's Your Money and Moneyline, Good Morning America, ABC's 20/20 and World News, CBS's Morning News, The Today Show, NBC's Dateline, and PBS's Nightly Business Report, as well as AP, ABC, CBS, NBC and National Public Radio networks.

Christy Heady is an award-winning financial journalist and the author of the best-selling book The Complete Idiot's Guide to Making Money on Wall Street, and co-author of The Complete Idiot's Guide to Managing Your Money and The Complete Idiot's Guide to Making Money in the New Millennium. She has been interviewed as a financial expert on dozens of national television and radio programs including CNBC, NPR, and WGN.

Heady's work has been featured worldwide on CNN's Moneyline program and in publications such as the Christian Science Monitor, Consumers Digest, Your Money Magazine, the Los Angeles Times Syndicate, and the Chicago Tribune. She is a frequent contributor of international business and investing articles to print and online publications. Heady is also the founder of the personal finance Web site, theWhiz, geared to help mainstream America learn basic money management skills. 

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