An initial step any individual can take is to create a simple budget. This can show your inflows of income, outflows of income as well as expenses. If you have more outflows than income, you have a deficit. If you have more income than outflows, you have a surplus. First step for many may be to change their financial situation from one of deficiency to surplus. http://www.investopedia.com/university/budgeting/#axzz1RwO3ZKdV Budgeting Basics What is budgeting? Basically, it's making sure that you're spending less than you're bringing in and planning financially for both the short and long term. investopedia.com Budgeting is good for microeconomics and personal finance. Accountancy will be the next step up from budgeting.