Margot Bai and her publisher were kind enough to send me a free copy of their new book “Spend Smarter, Save Bigger” for review. This book primarily focuses on how Canadians can save big on various topics like mortgages, cars and insurance.

Without further ado, lets get to the guts of my review of the book.

Main points made by the book:

  • Explains the difference between living within and living outside your means.
  • Explains the advantages of budgeting with financial software like Quicken.
  • Mortgage tips – Short or long?
  • Home and Life Insurance – What your deductible should be.
  • Reducing driving costs – How to pick a good used car at a great price.
  • Investing Basics – How to pick out a financial adviser, which funds to choose.
  • RRSP considerations – Bigger is not always better.
  • Charitable Donations – How it works and why you should donate.

What I liked?

  • I enjoyed how the book explained a lot of the savings strategies and techniques in terms of real life people/couples. I always find it enjoyable reading about real life scenarios, the decisions made, and the outcomes.
  • I appreciated that the author put some of her personal financial information in the book. Some examples include which car repair shops she uses, which mutual fund firms that she invests with, and her resulting net worth from following some smart personal finance strategies.
  • Tips on saving on home purchases when choosing between new builds and mature properties.
  • I learned a bit about choosing a financial adviser/planner and the credentials that should be considered.
  • The charitable donations chapter.
  • The “cheat sheet” summaries provided at the end of each chapter.

What I didn’t like?

  • No real negatives about the book, only that this book may not be suitable for those who are already financially savvy.

Who should read this?

  • Anyone who is just starting to learn about the vast world of personal finance. This book will provide a great starting point to get you ahead in your financial life.

Final Thoughts:

  • I give it two thumbs UP! Great book that is written clearly and flows nicely which makes it an extremely easy book to read. It provides a comprehensive all in one book for someone starting out in their personal finance journey.
  • If you are interested in purchasing this book, you can buy it directly from their website: http://www.SpendSmarter.ca
  • Canadian Capitalist interviewed the author AND reviewed the book a few weeks back, you should check that out for a second opinion.
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