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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 Paperback – January 16, 2007
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Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
- 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!
Top Customer Reviews
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.Read more ›
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.Read more ›
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.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I have shared this book and so many things I have learned in it with so many people. This book is written by real people and it gives real numbers and real suggestions. Read morePublished 19 days ago by bcarroll
I am in an austerity phase to get out of debt. This little book was extremely helpful! Loved it!Published 23 days ago by Pam R.
Very interesting insight to this family and their relationship with how they spend moneyPublished 26 days ago by YENVAN
Great book that changed my life. It was instrumental in moving me from living paycheck to paycheck to putting a years worth of expenses in the bank.Published 3 months ago by Patrick
Enjoyed reading. Got a lot of great information on setting up a budget.Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer