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How to fasten your financial seatbelt

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Downsize, radically. In 2009, Terry Lee Ballard moved into a couple of tents after he lost his job. The Timberline Campground in Lebanon, Tenn., was charging him $325 a month for tent space, electricity, water, cable, internet, and the use of a swimming pool. Alternatives include living with roommates, couch-surfing with generous and understanding friends, and through-hiking the Appalachian Trail.

PHOTO: Melanie Stetson Freeman/Staff/File

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