I am 21 with $30,000 and no debt. Next Step?

5 Replies

I am a 21 year old with $30,000 of liquid money and no debt to my name, but currently I am living paycheck to paycheck. I have been learning as much as I can through the BiggerPockets podcasts and it is clear that real estate is the obvious answer to generating passive income. My problem right now is that my current jobs income does not qualify me for a mortgage on a house. Should i try to start a business and generate more income there? Should I just get a higher paying job and try to quit as soon as possible? Should I start a blog and document this experience as a whole?

My main goal at the moment is to be financially independent by 30, so the next steps are to

Cut living costs (40%+)

Save more money

Learn everything i can through books and podcasts.

I am interested to read what everyone has to say about this topic!

Hello Kris,

Despite the job situation preventing you from getting a loan from a lending institution, there are some options you could consider. The main one that I want to outline here would be seeking out owner financing opportunities. I also would note that you might want to just keep shopping around various lenders and see if any are willing to work with you.

Finding a property that works for you and that the owner is willing to finance can be tricky, but persistence is key. I am constantly on the lookout for Zillow listings that pique my interest. When I find something, I generally don't hesitate to send a message to the agent to ask if their client is willing to entertain owner financing. Most of the time they aren't, but if you keep at it, you'll happen across one.

You can also get your shoes muddy and hunt down properties that may look a little distressed that might not be on the MLS and ask the owner(s) if they're willing to sell to you. Apartments or duplexes that seem unkempt could prove worthwhile. The owners might not care anymore but are so used to getting a check in the mail, then you come along.

Do you have a business plan in mind? Are you looking to start acquiring single family homes? Or do you have your eyes set on multifamily? Or something else? If you can find yourself a property that you can House Hack and that the owner is willing to owner finance for you, then that would be a great start, given the circumstances you outlined. You'll have a place to live, you'll be able to rent out some rooms (if it's a single family house) or a unit (if its a multifamily), and you'll start building experience. If you happen across a house that has a shed in the back, consider renting that shed out as a storage unit.

I'd like to think that with $30,000 of liquid cash, you'll be able to find a pretty decent property. Again, though, this is just my position, and I am sure that others will have some worthwhile thoughts, but get out there on the real estate websites, find some properties that you like, and strike up a conversation with the real estate agent. If they tell you that their client isn't interested in owner financing, ask them if they know of any properties whose owners would be interested.

You could even go so far as to post ads on places like Craigslist saying something to the effect of: "Looking to sell your property and get a check in the mail each month? Consider owner financing." Then in the ad you can detail why owner financing could prove beneficial to the seller. Read up on the pros and cons of owner financing and craft an ad based on what you read. Some sellers might not be aware of what owner financing entails, but if you sell them on it, you might just land yourself a great deal.

@Kris Kellermeyer I was in a very similar situation when I was 22. What I did was live off my full time job money and then got a 2nd and 3rd job to be able to just sock away all that money for the future. It ended up paying off for me especially when my W2 income increased over time. 

Hi Kris, 

First of all, I want to commend you on the fact that you have $30,000 saved and zero debt. Few individuals your age can say that. I love the fact that your thinking like an entrepreneur- there is no guarantee with W2 income either . Check out this website : “entrepreneurs on fire”. You will find some great free resources. I’ve actually encouraged my own Kids to look at. I believe you will see some great opportunity in real estate in the next year so no need to rush . You might want to consider house hacking once an opportunity comes your way. Best of luck

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