The Average Family's Guide to Financial Freedom

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John Wiley & Sons, Feb 24, 2000 - Business & Economics - 256 pages
9 Reviews
Like most average American heads-of-household, Bill and Mary Toohey found themselves increasingly stressed by their financial responsibilities, with no real job security, their standard of living in constant jeopardy, and little promise of ever having enough time for their children or each other. The realization that their familys financial future was entirely dependent on benevolent employers, a lifetime of full-time work, and the fate of social security was a disheartening condition they wanted to changequickly. Unlike most Americans, in eight short years, the Tooheys managed to save nearly half of their modest annual incomeand add almost half a million dollars to their net worth. They now have enough money to cover most expenses for the rest of their liveseven if they never earn another paycheck. With a daughter headed for college and a son with costly health problems, do the Tooheys claim this was easy? No. But it was doable. And it can be for you, too.

Named among the "Best Personal Finance Managers in America" by Money magazine, the Tooheys have taken their story, and their strategies, public in the hopes of helping others achieve the financial independence to enjoy their livesand even their work.

Easy-to-understand and conversational, here is the Tooheys groundbreaking formula for building assets without earning more money, relocating, or changing jobsand without suffering. In addition to practical planning and investment suggestions, covered here are crucial issues in developing a money saving mindset, including:

  • The impact of money on relationships--featuring the Tooheys personal "Killer of Love" list
  • The value of work beyond a paycheck
  • The importance of a varied reading in order to build a network of ideas and stimulate creative thinking
  • Maintaining normal family routines in times of crisis
  • Deriving comfort, satisfaction, and beauty from your homeyour most inexpensive place to be
  • The simple truth that spending less is easier than saving more
  • How adapting an "attitude of gratitude" can help break the spending cycle
  • Defining financial freedom

. . . and more, to help you turn your average income into above-average wealth.

BILL and MARY TOOHEY lecture widely and have written several magazine articles on their sound money strategies. Bill is a vocational rehabilitation counselor, and Mary is an office manager. The couple live in Iowa and have three children.


"If youve got the grit, determination, and vision, the Tooheys astonishing plan will lead you to financial security."Jeff Davidson, author of The Joy of Simple Living

"If you think you cant build wealth on what you earn, read this book. Bill and Mary Toohey will show you exactly how to achieve financial freedom for yourself and your family. Inspiring!" Gerri Detweiler, coauthor of Invest in Yourself: Six Secrets to a Rich Life

"The Average Familys Guide to Financial Freedom is an excellent resource for people who are serious about changing their financial lifestyle. Moderation is the key. The point is that it doesnt require a huge fortune to achieve financial freedom. This book teaches the reader in a sensible, realistic fashion how to control spending by reducing needs. As the authors say, its not easy, but doable." Kerry Hannon, author of Suddenly Single: Money Skills for Divorcees and Widows

"Hooray for the real-life version of getting financially fit. All of us coping with families, middle income, and mortgages can relate to this energetic, practical book. If they can do it, so can we!" Janet Luhrs, author of The Simple Living Guide and editor/publisher of The Simple Living Journa

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Review: The Average Family's Guide to Financial Freedom: How You Can Save a Small Fortune on a Modest Income

User Review  - Elizabeth - Goodreads

A bit outdated (the copyright on my version is from the year 2000), but it has good information. I like how the perspective is from the average family with a modest income, and not from a financial professional. I found this book to have good, solid, practical advice. Read full review

Review: The Average Family's Guide to Financial Freedom: How You Can Save a Small Fortune on a Modest Income

User Review  - Jeffcharie Charie - Goodreads

This was a great book. It really made us think about having less and enjoying life more. Read full review


How to Be Comfortable in a Modest Home

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About the author (2000)

Toohey was named the "Best Personal Finance Manager in America" by Money magazine in 1994. He is a vocational rehabilitation officer.

Toohey was named the "Best Personal Finance Manager of America" by Money magazine in 1994. She is an office manager.