Financial calculators are very handy personal finance tools. Whether you need to figure out a mortgage payment, an auto loan amount, or plan for retirement, a well-designed calculator can make the process much easier.
The best compilation I’ve seen for personal finance calculators is at Choose To Save.org. They have dozens listed.
If you are a math geek and like to do it yourself, the granddaddy of financial calculators is the HP 12C. Used by business and finance professionals globally, it can perform nearly every financial calculation that you throw at it. Be aware that the 12C uses “Reverse Polish Notation” or RPN for performing math calculations. It takes a bit of work to learn how to do this. However, once you master it you’ll find this approach is much more efficient than the method used by most traditional calculators. (All the geeky details on RPN can be found here.)
To buy an HP 12C:
Click the button to go to Amazon.com for more information or to purchase. The 12C is also available from most major office supply stores. Alternatively, if you own an iPod Touch or iPhone, the calculator is available by searching on “12C” from the App Store.