Student, 23, with a net worth of $141,000 reveals how she saved to buy her first apartment at 22 - and why investing is the secret to financial success

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An Australian student has revealed how she bought an apartment at the age of 22 and why investing is important to secure financial freedom.

At the young age of 23, Natasha Etschmann, from Perth, is already financially ahead as she has an astronomical net worth of $141,000, which is calculated by her total number of assets minus liabilities.

Tash has always had an interest in learning more about money and purchased her first shares at the age of 18, but only started investing further into index funds last year.

‘I often get asked why I like to save and invest and why I care so much about money, but I’m not obsessed with money; I’m obsessed with the freedom that comes with being financially secure,’ she told FEMAIL.

‘The freedom that allows you to work less, travel the world and make life choices based around what you want to do, not what you need to do to survive.’

To assist others who are considering investing but don’t know where to start, Tash has started sharing her knowledge with hundreds of others on TikTok and Instagram.

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At the young age of 23, Natasha Etschmann (pictured) is already financially ahead as she has an astronomical net worth of $141,000, which is calculated by her total number of assets minus liabilities

Tash has always had an interest in learning more about money and purchased her first shares at the age of 18, but only started investing further into index funds last year

The occupational therapy student taught herself about financial independence and personal finance by watching free videos, listening to podcasts and reading books.

Her economical accomplishments are the result of hard work, dedication and research as well as support from a financial advisor as needed. 

Prior to buying her apartment at the start of 2020, she was working two casual jobs and has been saving since she left high school five years ago.

The net worth figure is calculated by her total assets, such as shares, apartment value, savings and superannuation, but excludes any debt and liabilities. 

The occupational therapy student taught herself about financial independence and personal finance by watching free videos, listening to podcasts and reading books

‘I often get asked why I like to save and invest and why I care so much about money, but I’m not obsessed with money; I’m obsessed with the freedom that comes with being financially secure,’ she told FEMAIL

‘To save the deposit I studied at University part-time so I could work multiple jobs and have been working full-time hours since I finished high school,’ she said.

‘I track everything that I spend to ensure I am meeting my savings goals and spend mindfully.’

Due to COVID-19 she needed assistance from a mortgage broker to find loans, as the banks weren’t accepting those without permanent employment.

Tash purchased the two-bedroom flat for $295,000 with a $52,000 deposit plus an additional $10,000 from the first home buyers grant, boosting the deposit to the recommended 20 per cent mark.

‘I’m living in the apartment at the moment but it will soon be an investment at the start of next year,’ she said.

‘Investing is the key to achieving financial independence and ensuring your money beats inflation.’

Tash purchased the house for $295,000 with a $52,000 deposit plus an additional $10,000 from the first home buyers grant, boosting the deposit to the recommended 20 per cent mark

‘I’m living in the apartment at the moment but it will soon be an investment at the start of next year,’ she said

Tash is also an advocate for investing a proportion of your savings into the share market in order to create a source of passive income, which is taxed at a far lower rate compared to earned income. 

Rather than simply having money sitting in a savings account, she suggests investing it in order to increase the value and beat inflation. 

‘If you save $100 per week for 40 years, you’ll end up with $208,000, but of you invest $100 per week into an investment returning 7 per cent a year you’ll end up with $1,137,419. Compound interest is amazing!’ she said.

This strategy will not only secure financial freedom but will also allow for a comfortable lifestyle after retirement. 

Tash also shared this insightful news on TikTok where it has been viewed more than 40,000 times.

Tash is also an advocate for investing a proportion of your savings into the share market in order to create a source of passive income, which is taxed at a far lower rate compared to earned income 

Investing will not only secure financial freedom but will also allow for a comfortable lifestyle after retirement

Since there’s a seemingly endless variety of index funds and shares to invest in, it’s essential to gain as much knowledge as possible before starting.

‘I learnt a lot from listening to My Millennial Money and She’s On The Money – Mindful Money by Canna Campell is a great book too,’ Tash said.

‘Set goals around what you are planning to achieve and then find investments that match your goals and values.’

If a person invests $100 per week for 40 years into an investment returning 7 per cent a year, they will accumulate a total of $1,137,419 over that time 

Tash’s net worth has increase to $141,000 and is calculated by her total number of assets minus liabilities

Investing in either the stock market or property will create a well-diversified portfolio and neither one is better or outweighs the other.

Once the knowledge is acquired, an individual can invest as much or as little as desired every week or month. 

‘There’s no set amount; personal finance is personal and it’s going to vary depending on the person’s goals and values,’ Tash said. 

TASH’S TIPS FOR INVESTING

Research as much as you can before starting – read books, listen to podcasts and watch videos 

Consider what your values are and set goals

Consider whether index funds or property are suited to your goals 

Invest a certain amount each week or month rather than simply saving your money – cash in a bank account won’t increase in value 

Pay off any debt 

Work hard to reach financial goals 

Consider using investing platforms such as Raiz and Spaceship

Speak to a financial advisor for assistance and feedback if needed 

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Investing in either the stock market or property will create a well-diversified portfolio and neither one is better or outweighs the other

For a beginner, using platforms such as Raiz and Spaceship might be a good way to start investing as both allow users to invest with as little as $5 without paying brokerage fees.

‘Raiz has different investment options based on risk profiles from conservative-aggressive, as well as an ethical option and one that has exposure to Bitcoin – it’s $2.50 per month up to $10,000,’ Tash said.

‘Spaceship is free up to $5,000 but only has two portfolio options to choose from.

‘They’re both a great entry point for someone who is looking to get started and learn more about investing.’

Speaking to a financial advisor for further advice is also strongly recommended.

TIPS FOR BUYING AN INVESTMENT PROPERTY IN 2020

Spend less than you earn and invest the rest into a savings account to put towards a property deposit  

Consider purchasing an older house in a well-established area that will increase in value 

Consider how a property can be renovated to add value 

Think about why you wish to buy a property and if this is the right solution for you, as stocks are another alternative 

Save as much as possible for a deposit of 10 to 15 per cent – 20 per cent is ideal to avoid paying the Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI)

Seek professional advice from a broker or mortgage consultant if feeling overwhelmed  

Aim to not have any credit card debt 

Have a strong work ethic

Live at home for as long as possible in order to save money faster

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