The Complete Tightwad Gazette

Known by some as the bible for frugal living, The Complete Tightwad Gazette: Promoting Thrift as a Viable Alternative Lifestyle is a book filled to overflowing with ways to save money on practically everything. The author, Amy Dacyczyn (a.k.a. the Frugal Zealot), manages to put together a book that is more complete on the subject of frugal living than any other book I have ever seen. This book explains simple ways to save a bit here and there, like reusing vacuum cleaner bags or finding new uses for canning jars. More importantly, there are a number of ways for saving hundreds of dollars a year—by using cloth diapers or saving on vacations.

Dacyczyn wrote a newsletter titled The Tightwad Gazette for over six years. Later, she compiled these newsletters into three volumes. The Complete Tightwad Gazette combines all of her brightest ideas along with some new ones into one collection. This is definitely the frugal way to buy these books—927 pages for just 20 bucks. I first checked this book out from the library and after looking through it I decided it would be worth the investment.

Perusing the pages, I found numerous ideas that would suit my lifestyle. I also found a lot of ideas that just sound either too cheap or too time-consuming for me. The thing is, there are so many ideas in this book that you will definitely find lots of things that will work for you.

Periodically, I would like to share some of the interesting ideas that I have found in The Complete Tightwad Gazette. Here is one simple idea as a sampling:

Dacyczyn explains that no one should ever use a bank. Instead, find a credit union. Credit unions are not-for-profit, and thus they share profits with their customers. The biggest savings come in getting free checking, and no fees and less interest for credit cards. Sometimes it is beneficial to have an account in a bank and a credit union. This way, you can take advantage of benefits that each type of financial institution has.