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Jaime Tardy
Jaime Tardy

Her situation: In 2008, Jaime wanted to have a baby and work part-time from home. But she and her husband were in serious debt, and Jaime made two-thirds of their household income.

Her strategy: Budget. She and her husband sat down and added up all of their debts -- a total tally of around $70,000.

Right away, they sold her husband's car and wiped out $19,000 of their total debt. They also began printing a budget each month to track their expenses.

They saved on gas by limiting their mileage, stuck to a grocery budget of $300 a month, cut cable, lowered their phone bill "as much as humanly possible" and switched their car insurance twice in one year to find lower rates.

By the time Jaime quit working full-time -- which was less than two years after she started the budget -- she had paid off $70,000 in debt and put $23,000 into an emergency fund.

Her advice: Save as much as you can before you quit your day job.

How she's doing now: Jaime is now able to work 20 hours per week from home. Her business, which entails interviewing millionaires for their personal finance advice and inspiration, is doing well.

Now it's about building her income back up and keeping the budgeting system in place to reach her next goal: Becoming a millionaire herself.


Last updated August 03 2011: 2:48 PM ET

From sleeping in offices to following senior citizens to restaurants in order to find the best "early bird specials," these people will do almost anything to save a buck.

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