Faces of Frugality: Jason White, the Frugal Dad
Faces of Frugality: From time to time we’ll introduce you to people who are changing their spending habits and remaking their lives. Today meet Jason White, who founded the FrugalDad blog
Jason has seen the underbelly of the beast called debt.
He used to work in a third-party call center handling customer complaints for a credit card company. He heard daily horror stories from regular folks crushed by debt — and despite those warning tales somehow managed to rack up about $10,000 in loans and bills of his own.
Jason eventually quit the job, but he wasn’t able to get rid of his debts so easily. In December 2007 — the official start of the recession — he started a blog called FrugalDad that chronicles his attempts to reduce his debt and offers tips to the growing number of people in the same boat.
“I’m just a regular guy. I don’t have certifications behind my name. I didn’t study finance in school,” said Jason, who lives in Atlanta. But he and his readers have “ridden the storm out all together.”
His posts range from comments about the state of the economy and Washington’s response (“Is Frugality the Anti-Stimulus Plan?” asks one recent entry) to growing your own garden. Jason has more than 6,200 subscribers to his site and about 130,000 visitors each month from across the country, including the Washington region — enough traffic for proceeds from the blog to pay his mortgage bill.
Jason has about $4,500 to go before he is debt-free. (Well, except for his house. But he’s working on paying that off early as well!) He tries to stay on track with monthly meetings of his family budget committee — that means sitting down with his wife to see where they went right and where they went wrong before it’s too late.
Saving money has now become simply a way of life for him. But that doesn’t mean he doesn’t know how to have fun as well. Being frugal doesn’t mean being boring.
“I tell people how to be frugal and still have a life,” he said. “Save it for the sunny days and the rainy days.”
Want to introduce yourself and tell us about some of your own small changes? Write me at muiy[at]washpost.com.
March 31, 2009; 7:00 AM ET
Categories: Faces of Frugality , Ylan Q. Mui
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