It has been stated many times on the Internet that French doesn't have a word for 'cheap', but what do you do when you don't want to say that someone is 'greedy' but still they have problems with money?
For example, there's Bernie Madoff and Gordon Gecko in one corner and then there's your uncle's friend who doesn't want to buy his first date a cup of coffee. Clearly, Madoff is greedy but to say that my uncle's friend is worthy of the same property is too much. Aside from 'avaricieux', I've looked at 'radins, pingres, grippe et rapiat' and native speakers have all confirmed that they are extremely negative and just as bad as 'avaricieux'. Also, 'économe' was proposed but that means 'frugal', not 'cheap'. A frugal person wisely spends their money. A cheap person refuses to be generous in situations where is socially normal to be generous.