Mar 10 2008

Giveaway: The Ultimate Cheapsake’s Road Map to True Riches

I’m giving away an autographed copy of The Ultimate Cheapskate’s Road Map to True Riches by Jeff Yeager! If you want a chance to win, please leave a comment below. I’ll use a random number generator to select someone on Friday, March 14.

Some personal finance books focus heavily on the "finance" aspect of things. This book is mostly focused on the "personal" of personal finances. Books of this nature appeal to me more, since living frugally is more of a mindset than it is anything else.

This 241-page book is both lighthearted and dead serious at the same time. Yeager has a quirky sense of humor, which you’ll find throughout the book. I have to admit, I haven’t read tons of personal finance books, but this one probably has the most toilet humor you’ll ever find in a book in this genre. There’s a few potty jokes sprinkled throughout and semi-crude language in parts, so if that bothers you, be forewarned!

The author’s basic philosophy is that it’s best to live on less.

He cites a study that shows "wealth increases human happiness when it lifts people out of abject poverty and into the middle class but that it does little to increase happiness thereafter…" (p. 10).

So, if you’re not in poverty, then having more money won’t necessarily make you happier.

Yeager tells us that if we continue wanting more money (and always wanting more than we have) then we’ll never be satisfied, and we’ll never be content.

"Because I actually enjoy stretching dollars until Washington weeps, I can be happy–indeed happier–with relatively less than I would be with relatively more," he writes on page 15.

Makes sense to me.

In Chapter 2, Yeager encourages us to try a fiscal fast. "As the name implies, fiscal fasting is the act of denying yourself the use of money for a specified period of time, usually a week or even longer," he explains on page 25.

Do we really know just how much we’re spending, and where the money is going? Probably not, unless we’ve already got a close eye on our finances.

Some benefits of this fiscal fast include: purging your system and becoming inspired, saving a few bucks, tapping your reserves and using up things you already have, and reflecting and understanding the impact money has on your daily life.

In Chapter 3, we find "Six golden rules for ruling your gold."

  1. Live within your means at thirty, and stay there. Don’t let your expenses rise to meet or exceed your income, he explains on page 48. If you establish your standard of living at a young age, you’ll tame the need for always wanting more. It’s hard to be content if you’re always desiring more money/better cars/bigger house/fancier clothes/etc. That’s not to say you should never earn more; rather, simply live on an amount of money and save or invest the rest. Don’t let each pay raise raise your standard of living.
  2. Never underestimate the power of not spending. His simple idea: "the easiest and cheapest dollar we ever make is the one we don’t spend. That’s not only because of taxes owed on the dearned dollar, but because of the costs you’re probably incurring to earn that dollar in the first place, particularly if you subscribe to the ‘spend money to make money’ philosophy." (page 59).
  3. Discretion is the better part of shopping. Quit buying stuff you don’t need. If you must buy something, establish a mandatory waiting period before you actually buy it. (page 64). Try paying with cash for a month.
  4. Do for yourself what you could have others do for you. Home repairs, auto maitenence, landscaping, haircuts…whatever you outsource to other people, try doing it yourself.
  5. Anyone can negotiate anything. If you’re like most Americans, you’re probably a little uncomfortable with the thought of asking for a bargain. Yeager shares some ideas for how to make this go more smoothly.
  6. Pinch the dollars, and the pennies will pinch themselves. You know how you’ve heard "quit buying that $4 cup of coffee everyday and you’ll save a ton of money each year"? Well, Yeager is really annoyed by that. Most people, he reasons, are smart enough not to buy a $4 cup of frou-frou coffee every day. See his take on this around page 80.

In Chapter 4, Yeager shares some ideas on grocery shopping, and shows how he stocked his pantry with essential items for less than $25 at the dollar store.

In Chapter 5, called "Buy a home, not a castle," we learn some of the ways Yeager and his wife remodeled their home. It’s a lot nicer than most of his friends expect, since they know he’s such a cheapskate. He points to statistics that show the cost of a house has gone up over the years, but so have our expectations for what a house should be in terms of size and fancy features.

"What if you bought a nice starter home when you were young and just stayed there? Or for that matter, if you’re no longer all that young, what if you moved to a starter home today?" he asks on page 122. And, he encourages you to pay off your mortgage as quick as possible.

Finally, here’s the author’s take on financial portfolios on page 201:

  1. Reduce your dependency on money as much as possible.
  2. Maintain your health, thereby preserving your ability to earn money as needed and reducing the chances of incurring catastrophic medical expenses.
  3. Safeguard your assets, both liquid and fixed
  4. Attempt to maximize the growth of your portfolio, as time and interest allow (optional).

Bottom line: This is an interesting book, and it’s worth taking a look. Pick it up at your library, or grab it on, or find it at a bookstore. The author is going on tour, maybe you can meet him in person. And, if you’re really really lucky, you can win a copy from me.

50 Responses to “Giveaway: The Ultimate Cheapsake’s Road Map to True Riches”

  1. Count me in.

  2. Please count me in!

  3. Sounds like an interesting read!

  4. Very interesting!

  5. Please enter me in the drawing. Thank you.

  6. I read several reviews of this book, and it looks great. If I’m not the winner, I’ll still find it at the library. ;-)


  7. This book sounds great for someone trying to get started on living frugal! Thanks for offering a review!

  8. Sign me up!!

  9. It would be nice to read some new ideas on frugal living. Thanks for this review!

  10. I’d love to be entered! Thanks for an informative review.

  11. Sounds good to me, sign me up.

  12. Here’s my comment for the drawing! Sounds like a good read. Thanks!

  13. Count me in too, please! :)

  14. Please include me!

  15. Add me to the list!

  16. Count me in!

  17. I need help! Please count me in. Thank you!

  18. I need something like this to get me motivated! Thank you!

  19. Count me in !

  20. Sounds like an interesting book. Count me in!

  21. I’ve been wanting to get this book for the past few weeks but haven’t had the time to go to Barnes & Noble.

    It sounds like a fun and interesting read.

  22. Wow, that sounds like a great book! Why are you giving it away?! i’m glad you had fun with your guests!

  23. Great summary of the book! I hope to read the whole thing!

  24. i want to win!!!!!!!!!

  25. Enter me please.

    Sounds like a great book. I mentioned your giveaway in my latest blog post!

  26. Sounds like a great book!

  27. Oh! Count me in, please! I could definitely use more ideas for saving money.

  28. I’d like to be included in the drawing. I coordinate financial literacy programs and really enjoy your blog.


  29. I’d love to join the fun!

  30. Sounds like a great book, I’d love to win it.

  31. Please count me in!

  32. I’d like it too! :)

  33. wah….thanks for sharing. of course I’ll be pleased to win the book:)

  34. This book sounds great, thanks for the review!

  35. Never heard of it…looking forward to reading it one way or another. Thanks!

  36. I’ve never seen this book, but it looks like it would be a good read!

  37. No, I’m not so cheap that I’m trying to win a free copy of my own book … so please don’t enter me in the drawing.

    But I do want to thank you for reviewing my book. I’m glad you liked it. It’s my first book, and I’m very proud of it.

    It’s been getting very flattering reviews, and I’ve been getting a lot of positive feedback from readers. I’ve been especially heartened to here from many readers in their 20’s and 30’s (and some even still in college), who say they’ve never read a personal finance book before, but that they’d heard mine was funny and entertaining (yes, in a PG13 way), but dead serious and practical at the same time. That’s music to my ears, because THAT is exactly the type of book I always wanted to write.

    So, thanks again for the kind review. Keep up the good work here at Sense to Save, and Stay Cheap!
    -Jeff Yeager
    The Ultimate Cheapskate

  38. Looks like a good book! Count me in on your drawing!

  39. This looks like a good read, I’d like to be counted in the drawing! Thanks!

  40. Thanks for the giveaways!

  41. Oh I’ve been wanting to read this! I’ll throw myself in. :)

  42. I would love to win! :) Enter me please. :)

  43. So cool that the author commented on your blog! That makes me even more eager to read this book! If I don’t win, *maybe* my library will have it, or else I will have to use my target gift cards to order it off of Amazon.

  44. I’d love to win this book. Count me in. I’ve just found your blog and I’m really enjoying it!

  45. Sounds like a great read!

  46. Thanks for the giveaway!

  47. i would love to read this book!

  48. This sounds like something that my husband and I would enjoy reading together. Please count me in!

  1. 2 Trackback(s)

  2. And the winner is… | Sense to Save
  3. Coupon Mom vs. Ultimate Cheapskate: Who will win? | Sense to Save

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Hey! I'm Kacie, wife to Shane and mother to Jonathan (7), Vivienne (5) and Amelia (2) . I write about my family's finance: how we save money, improve our spending, and plan for the future.

I hope I can inspire and encourage you to improve your situation. See disclosure.

I'm adopting a much slower-paced posting schedule, and treating this as a hobby blog now.

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