Here's A Get-Rich Tip--Start Being Cheap
By Ellen Florian

(FORTUNE Magazine) – When Thomas Stanley's and William Danko's book The Millionaire Next Door was published eight years ago, people were shocked. Shocked! Millionaires who bought used cars, lived in modest homes, and stuck to budgets? Now Stanley is back with a new tome about how the other half--the female millionaire--lives. And Millionaire Women Next Door shows that rich women are even thriftier than their male counterparts.

According to Stanley, the typical female millionaire is 49 years old, works 49 hours and 18 minutes per week, has a household income of $240,217 per year (she earns 71% of that), spent less than $300,000 for the most expensive home she's ever purchased, and has a household net worth of $2.9 million.

She says no to Manolo (Blahnik, that is--the most she's paid for a pair of shoes is $139). Her most expensive suit? Just $400. Instead of buying new clothes, 52% of these women are likely to have their old clothes mended or altered; 56% have searched for a foreclosed property for their families to live in. Overall the women say the greatest benefit they see to being rich is providing financial security for children and grandchildren and making charitable contributions.

So who are these women? A typical case is Mrs. Wertberg, a professor who sewed her own clothes and used a two-by-four to prop a broken dryer door shut (she used it that way for another ten years). Before she died, she and her husband were worth nearly $6 million. Her husband still lives in their $70,000 house. Another case: Susan J., who made budgeting and investing her husband's modest salary her part-time job. According to the book's wealth equation, the couple should be worth $615,600. Instead they are worth over $5 million thanks to her efforts.

Guess sometimes to live the good life, you've got to avoid the high life. --Ellen Florian