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America's Cheapest Family Gets You Right on the Money: Your Guide to Living Better, Spending Less, and Cashing in on Your Dreams [Kindle Edition]

Steve Economides , Annette Economides
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (254 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $14.00
Kindle Price: $9.99
You Save: $4.01 (29%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

Do you have too much month at the end of your money? Is your credit card screaming for relief? Are you tired of robbing Peter to pay Paul . . . whoever they are?

Meet Steve and Annette Economides. They’ve been called cheapskates, thriftaholics, and tightwads, but in these tough economic times, Steve and Annette have managed to feed their family of seven on just $350 per month, pay off their first house in nine years and purchase a second, larger home, buy cars with cash, take wonderful vacations, and put money in savings. Without degrees in finance or six-figure salaries, Steve and Annette have created a comfortable, debt-free life for themselves and their children. In America’s Cheapest Family Gets You Right on the Money, they show you how they did it- and how you can do it too.

Steve and Annette share many down-to-earth principles and the simple spending plan that they have used since 1982. They have taught this economizing lifestyle to thousands of people worldwide through seminars and their newsletter, and they include lots of real-life stories to make you feel as if you’re having your own private coaching session. Not only will you find solutions to your financial dilemmas, you’ll also discover a whole new way of life.

You don’t need to be a CPA or a math wizard to learn their revolutionary system, which will teach you:

- hundreds of ways to save money on everyday household expenses, including groceries, clothing, and health care
- how to save in advance for major purchases such as homes, cars, and vacations
- how to stop living paycheck to paycheck
- how to eliminate debt . . . forever!

America’s Cheapest Family Gets You Right on the Money puts meeting your financial goals- and living well at the same time- in reach for every family.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

There's no doubt that today's families can use some help in balancing the household finances, and the Economides family, headed by a former ad sales exec and his homemaker wife, deliver the goods here. To an extreme. As founders of the HomeEconomiser newsletter, the couple offers plenty of helpful tips on shopping and menu planning, saving, reducing debt, and cutting back on utilities. Most of Middle America, however, will probably find their habits overly harsh. Take, for instance, their shopping routine: they make one monthly trip to the grocery store, which takes up to five hours but costs them only $350. By freezing such items as milk, bread, and cheese for later in the month and using the more perishable fruits and veggies early in the month (saving such things as apples and carrots for the latter weeks), the Economideses feed themselves and their five children based on this one trip. Even though some tips advocate what others might consider garbage picking and mooching, any family with money issues will find useful information here. Especially helpful are their household budgeting techniques, adaptable to any home. Mary Frances Wilkens
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved


“Of all the how-to-do-it books ever written, the best and most constructively useful are the Bible, Voltaire’s Candide- and this one. The time is right, right now, for somebody to give us all a top sergeant lesson in practical economics: ‘There is no free lunch.’ Congratulations, Annette and Steve Economides: I pray your readers will practice what you teach.”
- PAUL HARVEY, legendary American radio broadcaster and host of The Rest of the Story on the ABC Radio Network

“If your family is struggling with debt or you find yourself spending more money than you can legitimately afford, pick up and READ this book today! Implement the strategies you find and enjoy a lifetime free of financial anxiety!”
- Glinda Bridgforth, financial coach, Oprah Debt Diet consultant, and bestselling author of Girl, Make Your Money Grow! and Girl, Get Your Credit Straight!

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Product Details

  • File Size: 496 KB
  • Print Length: 290 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0307339459
  • Publisher: Crown Business (January 23, 2007)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000PDZF6G
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #174,598 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
340 of 343 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I saw the show. I already had the book. I bought another copy to give to my son. I use the tips in the book and, yes, we DO save money.
Here is the REALITY you have to face before you even buy this book:
To get the full benefit of this book, you do need to be willing to buck certain attitudes that are part of our society. The Economides family is willing to get clothing from the thrift shop. When your child comes to you and asks to have those designer jeans, will you have the courage to say "No" or will you cave in? Can you put off impulse buying? Are you willing to take the steps necessary to stay out of debt? Read the chapter on Attitude and if you think you don't have the guts to commit to a new attitude (and don't fool yourself, it does take guts), the this may not be the time for you to buy this book....just don't wait till you are drowning in debt to see the light. I personally think that one chapter is the MOST valuable one right there.

One MAJOR advantage of this book is that it offers options, depending on your comfort level with saving money. You can opt to be a bit frugal or save every spare penny. If you need to take some baby steps before moving to the next level - or just stick with a certain level of savings - each chapter offers options. Clearly, this family understands that not everyone can commit to their value system and they give a nod to those people. I found that refreshing and different.

It is not an "all or nothing" book, although the family themselves describe how far they'll go to save money. They get by on about 35K a year and have 7 children, so it doesn't take a lot of imagination to figure out that they have to be cutting back in a MAJOR way.

We don't save quite as drastically as they do.
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268 of 270 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very solid introduction to realistic frugal living April 2, 2009
I have a soft spot for books on frugality, so when I spotted America's Cheapest Family on the shelf at my local bookstore, I had to read it. In a nutshell, it's a lifestyle guide to frugal living, one that I was happy to see come out because there simply aren't that many strong books on frugality.

Right off the bat, the entire purpose of the book is laid bare, as it gives you three principles for getting you right on the money:

Avoid debt like the plague. Debt means that you take your hard earned money and just hand it to someone else in exchange for nothing but instant gratification. Rather than using credit to buy things, you should save up the cash and let the interest work in your favor, not in the favor of some banker willing to lend you money - and take back even more money.

Live below your means. This book believes strongly in the concept of the written budget, something I'm not wholly sold on. However, I do agree that you should spend less than you take in every month, and the greater the difference between the two numbers, the better off you'll be in the long run.

Embrace the thrifty lifestyle. The authors pitch living thrifty as being like a game, one in which savings in time and in money are the prize. Every time you can do something that saves you money or time, you're winning, even if it seems like a pain to get started. I agree: that kind of attitude will win some serious rewards over the long run.

Let's dig in deeper.

In each chapter, I'm picking out a "best" tip. This isn't the most money-saving item in the chapter, but the one that stood out to me as being quite interesting.
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182 of 192 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Be prepared to save real money using these tips! July 5, 2007
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
What takes courage, commitment, creativity, idealism, faith, and the help of others? And isn't homeschooling? Choosing to live a frugal lifestyle, especially during the good economic times.
The biggest negative about this book - use it and you'll soon realize that not everyone cares to be smart about how they spend their money. It could be an elderly parent on a fixed income who says, "I'm not /that/ desperate," when you tell them how to save $20 a month on their AOL bill. A sibling who thinks coupon clipping is only for lonely housewives who need something to do while watching soap operas between loads of laundry. Or maybe a good friend who swears their current method for teaching their children responsible money habits works perfectly fine, but admits they rarely remember to actually use it with their kids. When faced with these people, its best to avoid asking for the $240 per year in AOL savings, fast food coupons, and money their kids may very well waste themselves "forgetting" to pay their own bills, as they learned from mom and dad forgetting to pay them during their childhoods.
Don't panic - this is not an all or nothing book that will force you to live on ramon and peanut butter just to pay off bills as early as possible. Every helpful chapter ends with three options: Timid Mouse for those wishing to start slowly, Wise Owl for those ready to make more of a commitment to frugality, and Amazing Ant for those eager to stop wasting their money needlessly and wanting to change now. Nor do you have to read this as a start to finish system with each chapter requiring you've read and implemented the previous chapters. Instead, you can start where you wish to dive in and bounce around as your interests and needs dictate.
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More About the Author

Steve and Annette Economides (Econo mee' dis) were married in 1982. At that time, Steve worked as a graphic designer earning $6.50 per hour, while Annette stayed home to figure out how to stretch their pennies until they begged for mercy. In just nine years, on an average income of just $35,000 they purchased and paid-off their first home. They have also paid cash for all of their cars, taken fabulous debt-free vacations, spent only $350 per month to feed their family of seven, and put their kids through college without any school loans. Steve and Annette are quick to say that anyone can do what they do, if they are willing to learn.

In 2004 the Economides family was invited to appear on Good Morning America, it was then that host Charlie Gibson affectionately dubbed them America's Cheapest Family. This appearance led to the publishing of their first book, "America's Cheapest Family Gets You Right on the Money."

Steve & Annette are NY Times Best Selling authors of three books, often requested conference speaker and are recognized internationally as family finance experts. They have appeared on many national TV shows including: Good Morning America, The Today Show, ABC's 20/20, Fox TV's Your World with Neil Cavuto and The Dr. Phil Show. They are regularly quoted on radio, in newspapers and have been featured in magazines such as Good Housekeeping, People and Real Simple as well as profiled on Yahoo and MSNBC.

Steve and Annette's writing and speaking style are down to earth and easy to understand. They'll show you how they've done it, step-by-step, and how you can you too. If you follow their advice you'll experience financial freedom, more money in the bank, debt-free living, better family times and lots more laughter.


Topic From this Discussion
surprising /paradoxical ways to save money
Very good. I am a "flugalista" always learning ways to cut expenses while maintaining a good standard of living. That is,, frugal is not a poverty mindset. I like Dave Ramsey;s approach also.
"Slow and steady wins the race". Fancy cars and trips do not satisfy as much as... Read More
Dec 27, 2013 by K. thomas |  See all 2 posts
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