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Dwell Residential’s Back-to-School 2020 Recommended Reading List

It’s always a good time to step back and read a great book, but with a looming fall and winter season of quarantining we will be reaching for more books than ever!

And what better way to get you reading is to share our 2020 “back-to-school” reading list. It includes books that we keep re-reading, recommending, and passing on to others because they show you how to live a more fulfilling and rewarding life, including guidance on how to make the most of your money.

We highlight six books that we encourage both homeowners and those who want to become one to read.

This year’s list also includes ones that address racial inequality and homeownership. Now more than ever it’s important to learn how residential segregation in housing has impacted our country and what we all can do about it.

We hope you find all these reading recommendations helpful and enlightening!

So pick one to start reading today!  We’d love to hear your feedback on any of the books you do read, especially on how it could change the way you think and live your life.

We believe books can encourage us to improve ourselves and how we view the world around us.  And we want our beloved clients to have a great life and great home and hope these books inspire you!


theparadoxThe Paradox of Choice by Barry Schwartz

We love this book and talk about it almost every day with our buyer clients (and sometimes hand you a copy if you are really stuck in your home search!).

Here’s why we love it: understanding how to make choices in life determines everything—where you live, where you go on vacation, what you eat, literally everything you do all day long.

We assume that more choice means better options and greater satisfaction. But the opposite is true. This book explains that in order to make the best decisions in life, you must first narrow your options to only one or two choices. After reading this book, every decision you make—both big and small—will become so much easier, and you will be able easily to cut through overwhelming abundance of options that are available.



tamThe Automatic Millionaire by David Bach 

The average American couple–he’s a low-level manager, she’s a beautician–whose joint income never exceeds $55,000 a year, but somehow they manage to own two homes debt-free, put two kids through college, and retire at 55 with more than $1 million in savings.  This proves you don’t have to make a lot of money to become rich.

This book explains that the way to retire rich is NOT to have a budget and that you don’t need willpower or a huge salary. All you need is to set up a plan and let it work automatically for you. He also has an awesome follow-up to this book called The Automatic Millionaire Homeowner which we also highly recommend, but read the first one and then go to this one about homeowners.



How to Operate Your Home By Mr. Fix It

One thing we hear a lot is “how to do I take care of this thing” after our clients move into their dream home.  We give this useful book to our clients at settlement so that they can refer to it to help answer their questions and help maintain their biggest investment.

This is “The Guide” to operate your home. What we love most is there are over 400 drawings and simple explanations that describe the operation of the structural, electrical and mechanical systems in your home—hundreds of solutions to common problems you can learn to fix yourself.



Buy Homes, Not Shoes By Tamara Celeste 

Lawyer and real estate expert, Tamara Celeste, shows you that with just some small shifts in your thinking and spending habits, you can own the home of your dreams.

She teaches how you can stop building wealth for your landlord and start building wealth for you and your family.

This book is full of practical advice and shows you how “little hinges swing big doors” as we always say.  It makes buying a home feel attainable, no matter your income.



Race For Profit By Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor 

When redlining was finally ended in the late 1960s and early 1970s with the passing of the Housing and Urban Development Act of 1968, the intention was to require mortgage lenders and the real estate industry to treat Black homebuyers equally.

By the end of the 1970s, what happened instead was that the nation’s first programs to encourage Black homeownership ended with tens of thousands of foreclosures in Black communities across the country.

Race for Profit uncovers how exploitative real estate practices continued well after housing discrimination was banned.



The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America By Richard Rothstein

The Amazon description says it perfectly:

In The Color of Law, Rothstein describes how the American government systematically imposed residential segregation with undisguised racial zoning; public housing that purposefully segregated previously mixed communities; subsidies for builders to create whites-only suburbs; tax exemptions for institutions that enforced segregation; and support for violent resistance to African Americans in white neighborhoods.

A groundbreaking, “virtually indispensable” study that has already transformed our understanding of twentieth-century urban history (Chicago Daily Observer), The Color of Law forces us to face the obligation to remedy our unconstitutional past.