8 Tips for Really Frugal Living

“Jeff Yeager doesn’t clip coupons — surprising for a frugal living expert whose books on the subject have landed him on The Today Show.

Using coupons leads to unnecessary spending, and Yeager, author of The Ultimate Cheapskate’s Road Map to True Riches and The Cheapskate Next Door, preaches spending a little and reusing a lot. Give him an orange rind and he’ll use it to shine copper pots. Show him an empty toilet paper roll and some dryer lint, and he’ll stuff one with the other for a homemade fire starter.

A pared-down lifestyle isn’t solely about saving money. It’s also about getting happy, he says. ‘It’s about choices. Every time you get your wallet out and decide what you’re going to spend on, you’re making a choice.’

To get into the frugal habit, Yeager suggests going a week without buying anything, what he calls a ‘fiscal fast.’ Pay bills that are due and buy prescription medication ahead of time. Otherwise, don’t stockpile food or anything else. Fix meals from what’s on hand. Stretch the gas in your tank by telecommuting, carpooling, biking, walking or taking public transportation. For fun, play board games or read a book. When the week’s over, use any money you saved to pay down debts, or put it in savings, Yeager says…”