Review of 'The Wealthy Barber Returns'

The Wealthy Barber Returns by David Chilton

the_wealthy_barber_returns.jpg The original “Wealthy Barber” was written in the form of a story where a rather financially savvy barber dispensed common sense personal finance wisdom. Or, this is what I have been led to believe as I did not read it. I have, however, read the follow-up “The Wealthy Barber Returns” which is, instead, written as straight-forward financial advice with no story and divided into two sections: “Insights into Saving, Spending and Borrowing” and “Random Thoughts on Personal Finance” but, to be honest, this is all a bit on the random side as Chilton covers financial aspects from birth to grave.

The financial instruments Chilton discusses here are Canadian (e.g. RRSPs, or “Registered Retirement Savings Plans”), which is to be expected as he is from Canada, but the general advice I found useful for everyone things like remembering to pay yourself, recognising your financial limits (“I can't afford that”), and working out honestly how much you will need to save to retire including some interesting financial quirks that may surprise many. The chapters are short, and easy to read with Chilton's self-deprecating humour mildly amusing but wears a bit thin on continual repetition. I hope his mother and sister have a good sense of humour as they are subjected to multiple instances of ridicule.

In general the book does feel a bit of a muddle as Chilton frequently hops between completely different topics from chapter to chapter then returning to the same topics in later chapters. To me it feels like this is a hodge-podge of randomly selected tid-bits that came to him following the publication of his first book (which, by the way, he knowingly contradicts a few times here though, to be fair, he justifies it).

If you are looking for general, down-to-earth, financial advice told in a reasonably easy to understand manner (with very few maths!) this is the book for you. If you are looking for something more structured, it is not.

Rating: “Really good but I have some issues”

Review Date: 2023-09-03

Genre: Non-Fiction

Publisher: Financial Awareness Corp.

Publication Date: 2011

ISBN: 9780968394748