Cover image for The complete idiot's guide to personal finance in your 40s and 50s
The complete idiot's guide to personal finance in your 40s and 50s
Fisher, Sarah Young.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Indianapolis, IN : Alpha Books, [2002]

Physical Description:
xix, 339 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
HG179 .F53422 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks
HG179 .F53422 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



Looks at personal finance for middle aged persons covering such topics as choosing a financial advisor, investments, college costs, real estate, and estate planning.

Author Notes

Sarah Young Fisher is the owner of Fisher Advisors, a financial planning firm in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. She is a certified financial planner, a chartered financial consultant with the American College in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, and a certified financial services counselor. Fisher has managed the personal and financial portfolios for hundreds of clients. She is a co-author of Everything You Need to Know About Money and Investing: A Financial Expert Answers the 1001 Most Frequently Asked Questions About Money; The Complete Idiot's Guide to Personal Finance in Your 20s and 30s; and The Complete Idiot's Guide to Starting an Investment Club. She lives with her husband and two children in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

Susan Shelly is a freelance writer and researcher. A former newspaper reporter, she has written, co-written, or contributed to 20 books, including The Complete Idiot's Guide to Personal Finance in Your 20s and 30s; The Complete Idiot's Guide to Starting an Investment Club; and The Complete Idiot's Guide to Being an Entrepreneur. Shelly lives with her husband and two children in Shillington, Pennsylvania.

Table of Contents

Part 1 Taking a Look at the Big Picturep. 1
1 So, How's Mid Life Treating You?p. 3
How Time Fliesp. 4
Dealing with Changesp. 5
How's Your Health?p. 6
Feeling a Little Bit Stressed?p. 9
Welcome to the Sandwich Generationp. 10
2 Figuring Out Where You Are in Lifep. 13
Knowing What You Needp. 14
Emergency Fundp. 15
The Right Accountsp. 16
Insurancep. 17
Knowing What You Wantp. 21
Understanding the Difference Between Want and Needp. 23
Get Realp. 24
3 On the Plus Sidep. 25
Your Housep. 26
Incomep. 27
Savings and Investmentsp. 29
Vehiclesp. 30
Your Familyp. 30
A Place in Your Communityp. 31
4 On the Minus Sidep. 33
Your Mortgagep. 34
Credit Card Debtp. 37
Car Paymentsp. 40
Expenses, Expenses, Expensesp. 41
And Then There's Your Exp. 43
5 Getting It All Togetherp. 45
What Is Net Worth?p. 46
Figuring It Outp. 46
Maybe You Need a Budgetp. 50
Planning for What You'll Needp. 55
Keeping Your Finances on Trackp. 56
Part 2 Your Kids and Your Moneyp. 57
6 The Big, Expensive Parent Trapp. 59
Cell Phones, Jeeps, and PlayStation 2sp. 60
But Mom, All My Friends Have Onep. 61
Teaching Kids About Moneyp. 63
Letting Them Earn Their Ownp. 66
You're Not a Fairy Godmotherp. 67
Helping Out with Big Expensesp. 67
7 Trading In the Bikes for Carsp. 69
When Your Kid Wants a Carp. 70
Knowing If He or She Is Readyp. 71
Who Should Buy the Car?p. 73
What About a Lease?p. 74
New Jetta or a Junker?p. 75
The Cost of Keeping a Carp. 77
8 Paying for Collegep. 81
The Cost of Higher Educationp. 82
Starting Early to Save for Collegep. 83
Traditional College Accountsp. 83
Other Options for College Savingsp. 84
Figuring Out What You Can Affordp. 88
Finding Financial Aidp. 90
Other Ways to Finance Collegep. 91
Extras, Spending Money, Cars, and Credit Cardsp. 93
9 Wedding Bellsp. 95
Your Baby's Getting Marriedp. 96
Who Pays for a Wedding These Days?p. 96
Wedding Costsp. 98
Saving on Wedding Costsp. 100
Avoiding Temptationp. 102
10 Helping Your Kids Get on Their Feetp. 103
The Cost of Getting Startedp. 104
How Much Should You Help?p. 105
To Loan or to Give?p. 107
Keeping It All Up Frontp. 108
Boomerang Kidsp. 110
Part 3 Hearth and Homep. 113
11 To Stay or Not To Stay?p. 115
If Your Housing Needs Are Changingp. 116
Welcome Home, Momp. 119
Considering a Brand-New Homep. 122
Adapting the House You Havep. 125
12 A Home Away from Homep. 127
Thinking About a Vacation Homep. 128
Tax Advantagesp. 129
Other Advantagesp. 132
The Downside of Vacation Homesp. 133
What About a Timeshare?p. 134
13 Paying for a New Home or Second Homep. 137
Knowing What You Can Affordp. 138
Considering Extra Costsp. 140
Deciding How You'll Pay for Itp. 141
14 Selling the House You Already Havep. 147
Hire a Realtor or Sell It Yourself?p. 148
Finding the Right Realtorp. 152
Timing Is Everythingp. 153
Costs Associated with Sellingp. 157
Preparing for a Movep. 157
When the Big Day Arrivesp. 160
Part 4 Life Changesp. 161
15 Knowing That Nothing Stays the Samep. 163
Coping With Change Isn't Easyp. 164
Types of Changes You May Encounterp. 165
Strategies for Handling Life Changesp. 167
Knowing When You Might Need Some Helpp. 169
16 Job Changesp. 171
The Changing Workplacep. 172
Voluntary Job Changesp. 174
Involuntary Job Changesp. 175
Heading Back to the Classroomp. 177
17 Dealing With Losing Your Jobp. 179
Downsizing and Other Dirty Wordsp. 180
You Job and Your Identityp. 180
Bridges Aren't Built to Be Burnedp. 181
Practical Concerns When You're Not Workingp. 182
Financial Strategy Planningp. 184
Resources to Help Youp. 186
18 Going Out on Your Ownp. 189
Entrepreneurial Opportunitiesp. 190
Risks of Starting Your Own Businessp. 193
Rewards of Going It Alonep. 194
Thinking Toward Retirementp. 195
Working at Home vs. Renting an Officep. 196
19 Other Changes to Think Aboutp. 199
Nobody Lives Foreverp. 200
Marital Statusp. 204
The Empty Nest Syndromep. 208
I Need to See the Doctor, Pleasep. 209
Part 5 Smart Investing in This Stage of Lifep. 211
20 Investing at Workp. 213
Basic Methods of Saving for Retirementp. 214
Pension Plansp. 215
401(k) Plans and the 403(b)p. 218
Simple Plansp. 220
Understanding Vestingp. 221
Knowing What You Have and What You'll Needp. 222
Retirement Needs Analysisp. 224
21 Investing Outside of Workp. 227
The Stock Marketp. 228
Knowing What and When to Buyp. 229
Knowing When to Sell Stockp. 231
The Bond Marketp. 232
Are Bonds Safer?p. 233
Mutual Fundsp. 234
IRAs, Roth IRAs, and SEP IRAsp. 235
22 Investing Lump Sumsp. 239
Tax Refundsp. 240
Severance Payp. 240
Bonusesp. 241
Stock Optionsp. 243
Settlementsp. 243
Inheritancesp. 245
Retirement Lump Sum Payoutsp. 246
23 Finding a Good Financial Advisorp. 249
Why You Should Have an Advisorp. 250
Not All Financial Advisors Are Equalp. 251
Finding an Advisor Who's Right for Youp. 253
Fees Associated with Financial Advisorsp. 255
Some Things Your Advisor Should Never Dop. 256
Part 6 Preparing for the Futurep. 259
24 You're Never Too Young to Planp. 261
You Do Have a Will, Don't You?p. 262
Choosing a Guardian for Minor Childrenp. 264
Protecting Your Family and Your Businessp. 266
What About Long-Term-Care Insurance?p. 268
Living Willsp. 269
Power of Attorneyp. 270
25 Helping Aging Parents Planp. 273
Knowing If Your Parents Need Helpp. 274
Assessing Their Financial Situationp. 276
Talking Things Throughp. 277
Deciding Together Where They'll Livep. 278
Sorting It All Outp. 281
26 Estate Planning 101p. 283
The Purpose of an Estate Planp. 284
Why Everyone Should Have Onep. 284
Choosing an Executorp. 285
Methods of Controlling Assetsp. 286
Trustsp. 286
Giftingp. 289
Dying Without an Estate Planp. 290
Ten Most Common Estate Planning Errorsp. 291
27 Seeing Into Your Crystal Ballp. 293
What Lies Ahead for You and Your Family?p. 294
Planning Things You Want to Dop. 295
Some Misconceptions About Agingp. 296
Making Sure You Can Afford Your Dreamsp. 298
Aging with Stylep. 300
A Glossaryp. 301
B Resourcesp. 325
Indexp. 331