7 Financial Mistakes To Avoid In Your 20s in 2021

Your 20s are an interesting time.

It is when most of us are able to start earning a decent pay check for the first time in our lives and take on major financial responsibilities such as debt. While it is really exciting (Especially the whole full-time salary part!), it can also be scary and overwhelming.

As a member of the 20s community, here are some mistakes to avoid. I’ve made a lot of these mistakes myself but also seen it affect my friends and peers.

1. Living Beyond Your Means

It is really tempting to go into debt in your 20s.

It’s often the first time you are really allowed to take on a line of credit. You want to travel and make memories while you’re young, keep up with the latest trends, look your best and have a nice vehicle. All, which cost money. Just remember that while it is important to go out and have fun, a balance is really important. If you are perfectly happy with your current old car or living in a share house – don’t increase your expenses just because you earn more money.

If you keep inflating your lifestyle, you will struggle to save, invest and achieve other financial goals.

2. Not investing until later in life

Are you someone who has thought they would “invest eventually” when they’re older?

If you have the means and it aligns with your goals – do it now! Don’t put off saving and investing as a “future me” problem. The reason for this is that time in the market is one of the most financial moves that you can make.

Okay, but what does this mean?

Basically, just buying stocks early and letting them sit in your portfolio for years can help you build significant wealth. For example, If you started investing at 40 versus your 20s, you’d have to invest eight times as much to have a similar portfolio value. You can check out my article with all the graphs and sources here.

3. Buying an expensive vehicle

Expensive cars can honestly kill your financial situation.

Especially when you’re in your 20s with a lower income. Just because you can afford your dream car doesn’t mean you should get it. While this includes things like a car loan, it also include maintenance and other associated costs. I discussed a real life case study about one of my friends who bought a $20,000 car at 19 – you can read all about it here (hint: wasn’t a good idea!).

4. Not learning how to cook

Look, I know not everyone enjoys cooking.

But, eating out everyday can really kill your wallet long-term. Forbes found that it is five times more expensive to order delivery from a restaurant  than it is to cook at home. And if you’re using a meal kit service, it’s a bit more affordable, but still almost three times as expensive as cooking from scratch. You can check out the full article here.

Here are some of my tips as someone who cooks nearly everyday:

  1. Freeze several different ingredients so you have them ready to go. I have beef, chicken, seafood, veggies all sorts of things frozen. It’s hard to justify ordering a meal when you already have the ingredients at home. You also have reduced food waste.
  2. Figure out your top 3 favourite dishes and learn to make them really well – you’ll start craving your own home-cooked meals!
  3. Open your food delivery app, decide what you want to eat…and then cook it! This is something I’ve been doing a lot lately. I’ll choose what I want to eat on UberEats and then google the best recipe and make it. Weird tip, but works for me!

5. Not setting financial goals

If you don’t have any financial goals – please get a pen and paper out to write them down. Even something simple like “Millionaire at 35” or “Save $50,000 for a house deposit”.

The reason for this is, simply writing your goals out will make you more successful. According to a Harvard Business Study:

  • 83% of the population does not have goals
  • 14% have a plan in mind, but are unwritten goals
  • 3% have goals written down
  • The 14% who have goals are 10 times more successful than those without!

6. Telling yourself that “you’ll work it out in the future”

“That’s a future me problem.”

I’ve seen this mentality a lot when young people take out debt. It can be easy to tell yourself that it’s okay to overspend or make poor financial decisions because you can “just make more money in the future”.

However, decisions that are seemingly small now can compound and affect you significantly in the future. This could be debt that has spiralled out of control, poor money habits that are difficult to break or a very inflated lifestyle.

7. Not taking career risks

Your 20s are a time where you can be selfish and spend time figuring out your career path. Don’t be afraid to go to that networking meeting, take that job offer or even learn a new skill.

And at the end of the day, it is all about maintaining a balance. Yes, you could live with your parents until the age of 35 to save on rent. However, the independence you gain from moving out is significantly more valuable than the money you save.

Similarly, spending money on your physical and mental health, as well as self-development is always worth more than the money itself. It is up to you to decide what your personal goals and priorities are.

Why Saving Money Won’t Make You Rich

When I was a kid, I thought that in order to become wealthy, you had to save a lot of money.

If you kept saving and saving, soon you would have a lot of money, right? It seems to be the safest and most reliable method to generate wealth, does it not? Unfortunately, this isn’t quite the case. Well, it certainly isn’t true for people on a regular salary like myself.

Why you can’t save your money forever

The short answer to why only saving won’t make you rich is inflation. Do you remember how everything used to be so much cheaper back in the day? Like, your grandparents bought an entire home with the cost of your annual salary? This is a normal process known as inflation. Or, it could be the insane Melbourne property market but bear with me.

To keep things simple, inflation means that money loses its value over time. $1 in 1970 is not the same in $1 in 2021. In fact, $1 in 1970 had the same purchasing power as $11.88 – over ten times the value! The RBA has a great inflation calculator that you can play around with it, check it out here:

Keeping this in mind, if you saved $100,000 in 1970, it would have the same purchasing power as $1,187,723. Therefore in order to preserve your wealth from 1970, your savings would have had to increase with inflation or you would be “losing” over a million dollars.

The same can be said about your wealth today, sitting in a savings account. If you have an interest rate less than the inflation rate, then you are losing money and purchasing power every single day. As of May 2021, most banks in Australia do not offer interest rates on savings accounts that even match inflation, forget about even beating it.

How to actually preserve wealth

After reading all that, you may be thinking – how do I actually keep my money and not let time erode it away? It’s pretty straightforward – you need to make sure your money is beating inflation.

What does that mean? Well, in simple terms your money should be increasing with the inflation rate. If inflation is at 2%, then your cash should be increasing by 2% every year. This doesn’t mean that you add 2%, rather it does this on it’s own. One of the easiest ways to do this is by moving your funds to a savings account that offers a 2% or higher rate.

However, with current low interest rates it can be hard to find such an account. Not to worry, you can also beat inflation by investing your money. This could include buying real estate, stocks or even precious metals. It’s all about doing what works for you. For myself, I prefer investing in stocks. With an average return of 8 – 10% per year, my wealth grows at a much faster rate than inflation. This means that not only will I be able to preserve my wealth over decades, but also grow it. Savings rates at bank accounts are so low that I prefer only having my emergency fund in cash with the rest of it going straight into investments.

Want to get started with investing but unsure how? Check out some of my articles around this topic:

The other side on the coin

Now, if you’re a saver and prefer that – it’s not all bad! In fact, saving can be the better option in many cases! Here are some situations in which saving might be the “correct” choice.

Emergency funds. Do not invest your emergency fund! I’ve spoken a lot of emergency funds, and chances are that you will have 3 – 6 months of your expenses stashed away. If you don’t, be sure to read my article on it. No matter how large your emergency fund is, you need it in cash as it should be easily accessible – don’t worry about inflation!

Timing. Similar to an emergency fund, a key situation is if you need your savings within a short period of time, let’s say in two years. Perhaps for a house deposit or international travel. Two years of inflation is not going to be substantial enough and will be well worth the liquidity that is needed. Furthermore, if you will be using your savings for something like buying a first home, you are already protecting that wealth from eroding over time.

Risk tolerance. If you can’t watch the dollar amounts that you have saved decrease without having a heart attack, then investing simply isn’t for you. A big advantage of keeping your money in savings is that the dollar amount will not decrease, while you risk that with investing. However, I would advocate for better financial education and research if you feel this way.

Greater control. If you save $100 a month, you know for certain you will have $1,200 a month at the end of the year. It doesn’t quite work like that with investing. If you invested $100 a month, on average you’ll have around $1,353 at the end of the year but this is not a guarantee – at all. You could be left with $900 or even $1,600, it all depends on what the market at the time and what you invested in. It can be harder to reach financial goals when you aren’t 100% sure how much money you will have after a certain period of time.

That’s it! I hope this has given you a great understanding into inflation as well as ways to overcome it and situations when it is okay to take the hit. Saving money is a great first step to achieve your financial goals so if you have enough money laying around where you actually have to think about inflation, congratulations! It means you’ve done well. Thinking about inflation and investing can be intimidating especially if you’re new to personal finance. However, some research and education can give you an excellent foundational understanding that will support you throughout your life. If you have any questions feel free to contact me here.

Why I Don’t Reinvest My Dividends

We all love receiving dividends and the common advice in regards to dividends is to reinvest them.

Why? Reinvesting these dividends allows an investor to super-charge future returns, using the power of compound interest. It’s a pretty great strategy. It is cheap, easy, flexible and increase stock market returns substantially.

That being said, I actually don’t reinvest my dividends and take the cash! I believe that there are pros and cons to each investment strategy, and it is all about choosing what works best for your financial goals. As my opinion on not reinvesting dividends is a more unpopular one, I wanted to share my rationale behind the decision.

Control

Control of my money is important to me which is also a reason why I don’t contribute extra to my super retirement fund – I like having access to my money, when I need it.

I used to previously reinvest all of my dividends but as my dividends start to get larger in value, I started to prefer controlling how each payment is spent, saved or invested. By taking the cash, I can always reinvest them manually myself if I choose to and just have to pay for brokerage which is worth the liquidity to me.

This is why it’s important to make decisions that suit your personal goals rather than following others. Many investors don’t need the extra cash-flow and are happy to be illiquid in return for the many benefits that dividend reinvest brings. As always, do what works for you.

Saved by a dividend

Not my car (I drive a 15 year old Mazda)

In January, I experienced some major car issues and was left with a pretty large bill. It was completely unexpected and not budgeted for. I also was not going to get my salary for a while so I was struggling cash-flow wise. Luckily, I got my dividend that day which helped cover the entire expense.

Getting a dividend in cash meant I could use the money for car expenses versus dipping into my emergency fund and having to build that back up. My emergency fund will always be a priority over investing so it was great to allocate that money to what was important to me rather than it being automatically reinvested.

Planning

I’m a big planner, especially with my finances.

I like to have a strategy behind putting X amount of $ into a certain investment rather than it just being reinvested with no thought.

  • What is the purpose of me buying this investment?
  • How long would I want to hold it for?
  • What % of my total portfolio should this investment be?

These are all questions I like to ask myself before making an investment decision. Having the dividends in cash allows you to carefully use the funds based on your financial plan rather than it getting mindlessly reinvested. Don’t get me wrong. Mindlessly investing is a great strategy that works for many people, however I prefer being more hands-on with my finances.

I’m big on diversification and if I reinvested all my dividends, one particular fund would be too overweight in my portfolio which wouldn’t suit my financial goals long-term.

Developing a passive income stream

One of my key long-term financial goals is to develop a passive income stream. My objective is to build this as soon as possible, and have my expenses covered by investment revenue, rather than a salary at work. By taking my dividends in cash, I am slowly working to build this and can retire early without potentially touching my capital. Too ambitious? Maybe.

My current passive income stream is small, but it currently covers all of my following bills:

  • Electricity bill
  • Internet/wifi bill
  • Mobile phone bill
  • Spotify subscription
  • Water bill
  • Car insurance

The wonderful part about this is that I don’t need to wait to live off passive income one day, I am already doing it now!

I see many investors who work on being frugal while they are younger, reinvesting all their dividends and then being financially independent in their 40s and beyond. However, I have a different outlook. I believe that life is simply too short – I am happy to start enjoying some of my passive income, now.

So, what do I usually do with my dividends?

It depends on the situation, I do something different every time!

Like I mentioned earlier, sometimes they help out with large expenses that come up such as car issues, insurance or dental costs. Sometimes, I will put them back into my investment portfolio – not always back into the fund that distributed them but also to buy different stocks that I had my eye on. It can also be completely random, like diamond earrings. Yup, I spent one of my dividends to buy diamond earrings at a police auction. Hey, we can’t all be financially perfect!

Dividends are not my focus

Another point that I would like to bring up is that at this stage, I do not focus on dividends.

This means that I don’t look at the dividend return when buying a stock and it’s not the most important factor to me, either. Rather, I see it as an awesome bonus. As I am still in my 20s, I focus more on capital gains. I focus on purchasing assets that will grow over time so I can make money through capital gains versus dividend yields as I believe this will be more profitable in the long-term. As I get older and closer to financial independence, I will certainly focus more and more on cash-creating investments.

That’s all from me! I’d love to know from you, do you prefer to reinvest or take the cash? What is your reason for doing so? Leave a comment below or send me an email on themoneymarketerblog@gmail.com!

7 Easy and Cheap Meal Ideas From a Lazy Girl

Who knew that such a big part of being an adult would be trying to decide what to eat for dinner each night?!

It can be so tough working all day, coming home exhausted only to have to make a meal from scratch. It can make those delivery services seem oh, so tempting. I usually find that after ordering delivery, the lukewarm, overpriced food often leaves me feeling disappointed. They’re usually not the best for you, either.

Here are go-to weekday meals that I, a self-professed lazy girl loves making. There are no exact measurements because truthfully, I eyeball everything. It somehow always works out.

1. Fried rice

This is one of my favourite meals to throw together in literally five minutes. I stir-fry whatever veggies are in my fridge which could be anything from mushrooms to carrots. I then will add leftover rice and prepare the seasoning. I usually will mix soy sauce with fresh garlic, brown sugar and vinegar as a “sauce”. Throw in an egg for extra protein and you have an awesome meal ready in no time.

2. Omelettes

Who says omelettes are a breakfast-only food? I regularly make them for dinner as they are so damn easy. You can add pretty much anything from cheese, meat, veggies, and it turns into a wholesome meal. I love throwing in feta and tomatoes…or whatever is in my fridge. Spring onion is always great. You can eat them with toast or salad to turn it into a more substantial meal.

3. Soup

My homemade pumpkin soup

Soup can seem like an intimidating meal to make if you’re a beginner cook but it is so easy!

I like to use stock cubes and throw in tofu, zucchini, and some noodles for a quick noodle soup. Throwing in some frozen dumplings and you have what I call “struggle wonton soup” which is decent (surprisingly).

Another great one is pumpkin soup. I simply boil some pumpkin in chicken stock, add butter, cumin, black pepper and blend it together with a hand mixer. Another bonus of soup is that it lasts forever in the fridge. I love toasting some crusty bread in butter to have with it.

I present to you…my struggle wonton soup…


If you enjoy miso soup, I recommend grabbing a pack from your local Asian grocery. It takes a minute to prepare and is a great addition to many meals. I love having miso soup with a stir fry or with some rice, it adds a lot to the meal while being cheap and easy.

4. Roast chicken

If you spend an extra minute or so marinating, you can create a great roast chicken meal. I like to throw a chicken breast in some olive oil, paprika, garlic and oregano and let it marinate (for only around ten minutes as I am usually unprepared). I then throw it into the oven and add some cheese on top for the last few minutes of cooking. Eat it with a side salad and you have a quick and easy meal. I’ve been experimenting with this a lot lately and have learned in order to make this a delicious meal rather than a dry mess is to not overcook it. At all.

5. Vegetable muffins

This is my go-to recipe when I have not been grocery shopping in a while. To make vegetable muffins, I usually change the recipe based on what I have at the time. The basic ingredients are flour and milk – I then add any veggies on hand such as frozen peas, corn or red capsicum, carrot and make it into a dough. Cheddar is also a great addition to this. I’ll then throw in oregano, red chilli flakes and separate the dough into a muffin tray. I make this “recipe” differently every time and it always comes together at the end.

6. Upgraded instant noodles

Doesn’t that look like an actual meal?

We all love instant noodles – migoreng, anyone? So delicious, cheap and fast. The problem is that they often aren’t great for you and aren’t quite enough for a main meal. This is where “upgrading” comes in by adding extra ingredients.

My favourite method is to throw a fried egg on top but I also like adding bok choy, sliced beef or onions. It adds much more substance to the meal as well as extra nutrition. This is also a great way to use instant noodles that you don’t like. Just throw out the seasoning and add your own ingredients and flavourings.

I recently bought these noodles that were far too spicy – no delicious flavour, just numbing chilli. I used the noodles themselves to make stir-fried noodles, noodle soups it and turned out great!

7. Salad

I know what you’re thinking but hear me out. Salad is the best lazy meal. I like getting a bag of greens such as spinach and rocket and adding in some olives, cucumber, tomatoes and smoked salmon (when I’m feeling fancy). Tofu or canned tuna are also great suggestions for a “I need protein but am too lazy to cook” option. You don’t have to cook anything, only a couple of dishes get dirty and can be ready in five minutes. I love adding some balsamic vinegar or squeezing some lemon on top.

Plus, you can also binge on dessert later because you were healthy and had a salad…

Pantry staples

Not only are these meal ideas easy and perfect for the lazy cook but a lot of them are also affordable. If you always have pantry staples on hand, you can often make multiple meals and won’t order delivery just because you didn’t grocery shop. Some pantry staples to always have on hand are:

  • Rice
  • Onions
  • Eggs
  • Flour
  • Butter
  • Sugar
  • Olive oil
  • Noodles
  • Stock cubes (chicken/beef/vegetable)

I would also recommend having lots of seasonings, here are my recommendations:

  • Garlic
  • Black pepper
  • Paprika
  • Cumin
  • Oregano
  • Red chilli flakes
  • Soy sauce

These staples last a long time and can be used to make meals in their own right – I personally prefer adding vegetables or meat as I like to enjoy my life.

No idea what to make?

If you have a handful of ingredients but no ideas to make them into an actual meal, check out Supercook. It is a free tool that I have been using regularly for years when I am stuck for ideas. You input the ingredients you have and it spits out recipes after scouring the internet. This is also a great way to try new recipes. With the help of Supercook, I made potato croquettes the other day – something I would never think of making and it turned out delicious.

That’s all from me! What are some lazy meal ideas that you like cooking? Let me know as I am always looking for new ideas!

Frugal Hack: Buy New Buttons – Not Clothes!

As the mornings get colder, we are well and truly headed towards winter.

I’ve had the same few wool and cashmere coats which I have worn for years and was feeling a bit bored of them. Instead of buying new ones, I instead bought new buttons and transformed them into completely different garments.

My pretty vintage buttons!

One problem with op/thrift shop coats is that they can look really dated – this frugal hack lets you update your wardrobe without buying extra clothes. I started by researching coats from luxury brands and noticed a lot of them had these big gold buttons that looked really trendy. I then scoured my local op shop, Etsy and eBay and bought some for $12.87. They were on the pricey side but they were high-quality, vintage ones which were perfect. It can definitely be done for significantly cheaper!

After a bit of hand sewing, my old coats were completely transformed! They look so high-end and has made me excited to wear them again. Instead of spending $100+ on a new coat, I spent just under $6.50 each. Furthermore, I reduced landfill waste and also got to have a more customised garment.

Here are the results!

How To Invest In Property Without Actually Buying Property

Recently, I was chatting to a girlfriend who mentioned that she wanted to invest in property but didn’t have the cash to do so.

She wanted the returns of the Australian property market without committing herself to purchasing an entire house. However, you really don’t have to – it is still possible to get real estate exposure in your portfolio.

How? The short answer is REITs.

What is an REIT?

“REIT” stands for real estate investment trust and is an investment product that gives investors exposure to property assets. Australian REITs are known as A-REITs and are publicly listed on the Australian Stock Exchange.

This means you can simply buy into these funds like you would a stock or ETF and can put in as little as $500. There are different kinds that provide exposure to retail, industrial, residential and even office buildings.

Furthermore, you can also invest in funds that hold a number of different REITs. One example is the Vanguard Australian Property Securities Index Fund (VAP) which uses S&P/ASX 300 A-REIT Index as a benchmark.

Would I invest in a REIT?

No, I wouldn’t. The reason for this is lack of diversification. I would like to purchase a home in the future that would be a large percentage of my net worth and if I started investing in REITs, I would be too overweight in one asset class.

However, I think it is a great option for those who won’t be purchasing a home within the next decade or so, or simply want diversified real estate exposure.

Was My $600 Blender Worth It? Vitamix Review

Five years ago, I made the big decision to buy a Vitamix.

Even after a sale, it ended up costing $595. Yes, I spent that much money on a blender. Is that insane? Maybe.

Why I decided to get a bougie blender

My family used to purchase cheap blenders that cost around $50 and they would always break within a year, it was so frustrating. We even tried getting “nicer” blenders which didn’t work out well, either. I decided enough was enough and I was happy to invest in a top of the line blender.

Basically, I wanted a blender that wouldn’t fall apart within 12 months…

I had heard great things about the Vitamix brand and decided to give it a shot. The model I wanted was $800+ but the white colour was on sale which is how I got a discount. It came with the machine, a blending jug, tamper, two extra blending cups and a really nice cook book.

Wow, did the Vitamix deliver! I have abused this poor thing the last five years and it has not acted up even once. I use it for a range of things such as making smoothies, cocktails, batters, sauces and soups. When I run out of breadcrumbs, I’ll throw in a slice of bread in the blender to make a fresh batch. I don’t think I’ve ever bought a smoothie out since my purchase, knowing I can make an awesome one at home.

Was it worth it?

Yes! I use it multiple times a week and it has helped tremendously with cooking and making drinks.

Even after five years, it is still running very well and I’ve heard that they can last for up to thirty years! That sounds a little crazy, but I’ll keep you updated on how mine goes, I would love for it to last as long as possible.

Buying Jewellery From Police Raids & Bankruptcies

Whoa, whoa – buying jewellery that belonged to criminals?! Yes!

I didn’t even know this was a thing until I came across First state auctions through a sponsored Facebook post. The website mentions that they are “selected as auctioneers to various Commonwealth of Australia government agencies in the sale of seized, recovered and unclaimed jewellery.

I browsed through the catalogue and my first thought were:

Wow.

Not only were the pieces beautiful, but had rare items such as Argyle pink diamonds. I was salivating while browsing the catalogue. The other aspect I noticed were the very reasonable prices. I usually purchase my fine jewellery second-hand, but these prices were even cheaper than that. They were significantly less than what you would pay at a retail jeweller.

I know what you’re thinking “Is this even legit?”. Well, I decided to buy something and try it out so I’ll waste my money instead of yours.

Look at those stunning diamonds!

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So beautiful, right?!

I decided to sign up and place some bids. After being outbid very quickly, I managed to actually secure a piece! I bought this beautiful 1.05ct ruby, diamond and 14k yellow gold necklace for $475. With the 20% buyer’s premium, I paid a total of $570 which included registered shipping. This necklace was new and not pre-owned which was awesome for that price.

Winning the auction was such a thrill. Is winning auctions addictive? I could totally get on it. Moving on, the process post-purchase was excellent. I was immediately emailed a confirmation of purchase and my invoice. Later, a staff member reached out to confirm my address. After that, it was shipped out within a day or so by registered mail and I was provided a tracking number. Their efficiency was awesome and made me feel very confident about my purchase.

I received my package within 4 days of purchase and here is my beautiful new ruby, diamond and gold necklace! What do you guys think is the story behind this necklace? I wonder who it belonged to.

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Looked even better than the picture! Came in a beautiful box too!
The Money Marketer, The Money Marketer Blog, Ruba Khan, Ruba Khan Blog, Ruby necklace, ruby and diamond necklace, first state auctions, 1.05 carat ruby
So elegant and dainty!

Would I do it again?

Yes! Not only do you get a great deal on beautiful fine jewellery, but it’s such a fun experience. I really enjoyed the process of browsing, bidding and of course the feeling of winning the auction. As someone with a regular income, I’ll have to save for months before I make another purchase but I am certainly going to browse regularly!

Why I’m Not Buying A Home (Even Though I Can Afford One)

If I told my younger self that I still didn’t own a property, she’d probably freak out.

For the longest time, buying property was my number one goal. I educated myself on the nitty gritty and knew exactly what I wanted, with the means to do it. However, after a failed attempt I reassessed and realised that buying property was not a good financial decision for me, right now.

I live in Melbourne.

I think we can end the article here.

Just kidding! But, this is very much the case. Property prices in Melbourne are insane. A property that I could afford comfortably would be either a small apartment or a house at least 45 minutes away from the CBD. By “comfortably” I mean being able to afford a deposit which is at least 20% of the house price and monthly payments that are not more than 30% of my pay (after tax). This is very important to me.

For most of us, a house is the most expensive thing we will ever buy. It also is a commitment that spans decades. For such a large purchase, I don’t want to compromise and make a purchase that I am not 100% happy with just to have a property now.

I don’t want to be tied down…yet!

As a 20-something, I am kinda scared of responsibility.

A commitment that I need to honour for the next 30 years is a pretty big deal! It’s especially hard making that decision when I don’t know where I’ll be in the next 5, 10 years. What if I get a great job in a different country? What if I want to take time off work and travel the world? Can’t quite do that with mortgage repayments.

Investing in the stock market on the other hand provides me similar returns, but completely responsibility-free. Another major plus is I can sell my stocks at anytime and get my money in cash in a few days. It’s certainly a bit more of a process when selling a house.

I’m waiting to get 50% off

Okay, hear me out. I love the idea of being a strong, independent woman who bought real estate on her own in her 20s.

However, it makes much more financial sense to purchase a home with a partner. Not only do you instantly get 50% off your purchase but there is a backup income stream to pay the mortgage if you lose your job. You can purchase a better property in a nicer area and have less anxiety about shouldering all the responsibility of owning a home.

For these reasons I have decided to wait to purchase my first property, even though I have the financial means to do it now. This way I’ll be able to buy a property in an area that I love, won’t be burdened with paying a mortgage solo and will overall know what I want in life.

Can You Pay Your Bills Without Working? Here’s How I Do It

My electricity, wifi, water and mobile bill as well as my car insurance and Spotify are paid without me working.

How? The short answer is passive income.

Okay, so I do work full-time because I still need to pay rent, buy $25 cocktails and contribute to my investment portfolio. However, as a lazy 20-something girl – I love passive income. Earning money while doing nothing is the best.

How do I make my passive income? Is this a scam or MLM?

It’s a shame that the term “passive income” is being used by MLMs and weird scams which can put people off actual passive income! For me personally, I made my money primarily off dividends from my stock market investment portfolio. I also make some bank interest which is where I store my 12 month emergency fund.

I know what you’re thinking.

“Money Marketer. You’ve been investing for the last 5 years. Shouldn’t you have a bigger passive income stream?”

Yes, yes I should. As a long-term investor, I primarily focus on growth. This means I purchase investments that are likely to gain value in the future rather than ones that will pay me a larger dividend. I do this so I can make more money. Many of my individual stocks and commodities do not even pay a dividend. If I focused on high-dividend stocks, I could potentially double my passive income stream which is something I would like to do when I’m a bit older.

“Money Marketer. Is a couple of thousand extra a year really worth it?”

It’s easy to dismiss the power of passive income. You can instantly earn an extra $10,000 a year with a promotion at work so does an extra $2,000 or $5,000 really matter? Yes, and I’m about to show you why!

I remember when I first started making passive income as a student, I would make $14/month in bank interest. Excited, I shared this with my friend who said “Does an extra $14 month matter? That’s not even $200 a year”. That is, until I mentioned that my bank interest was essentially buying me 3 bubble teas a month. It made my little baby passive income stream seem so much more powerful!

Rather than seeing dividends/interest as $X amount per year, assign them to a bill.

This means my passive income from this year will “pay” for my:

  • Electricity bill
  • Internet/wifi bill
  • Mobile phone bill
  • Spotify subscription
  • Water bill
  • Car insurance

I can cover all of these expenses without working, how awesome is that?! My lazy self would love for my passive income to pay for all my expenses with some spending money leftover. I wouldn’t have to work at all, haha! Hope my boss isn’t reading this.

Don’t dismiss the value of a small passive income stream as it can be incredibly powerful – if you just view it differently.