Here’s some background information: I am 24 years old and I still live with my parents. They opened a business a few years ago that I help them with. I’m filling in until they can hire a real employee. Because of this, they are not charging me any rent. (I’ve been assured by my father that I have no need to feel like a leech because I’ve helped so much with the business that I earn my room and board. I still feel like a bit of a leech, though.)
My problem is this: I’m in almost the exact same position that I was in 6 years ago after I graduated high school. I have some money saved up, and I have more stuff, but other than that nothing has changed for me. I have not gone to college or taken any steps to really get my life started. I am stuck in a rut and I need to get out of it.
I see two vague paths that I can take and both have their appeal. The first path is the adventurous one. I’d love to travel around the country (America.) Just pack some camping equipment, buy a used car, and see what there is to see. The second path is more sensible. I would work to buy a house and become financially stable so that I retire or semi-retire by the time I’m 50. I saw what my parents went through opening their business and I don’t want to be in the same position they were in. I do not want to turn 40 and say to myself, “Boy, I really should have started planning 20 years ago.”
My question is, “What should I do?” My main goal, the goal before all others, is to be able to move out of my parents house by the time they don’t need me anymore. How do I realize this? The plan after high school was to take a year off and do absolutely nothing because I was burned out. (I wasn’t a fan of high school.) Then, I was to take advantage of my living situation which was, and still is, this: no room and board and plenty of free time during the day. This is great opportunity to get my life together with little of the financial struggle that so many others have to endure and so far I have wasted it.
For some reason I’m averse to college but I’m not sure why. I’m not dead set against it, but it doesn’t appeal to me. I was interested in photography in high school but I don’t know if I’d like to make a career out of it. I heard that it is a very competitive field and I don’t have the passion for it that would be necessary to struggle. I have been thinking about getting involved in real estate because I’ve heard that there is good money to be made, but the money is the only reason. I don’t even know specifically what kind of real estate I would work in.
So what do I do? Any advice would be appreciated.