Developing wise financial habits at a young age, such as spending cautiously, saving for the future, and making investments, can have significant long-term benefits that set a strong foundation for economic well-being in the long run. Alexandra Fasulo, a freelance writer, had her first six-figure year as a freelancer in 2018, earning close to $300,000 in revenue. Today, at the age of 29 and with six income streams, Fasulo earns a little over $400,000 in net income and owns three properties in Florida that are worth close to $1.2 million, as per CNBC.
Being aware that she can’t count on making this much money forever, Fasulo saves the majority of her earnings and invests aggressively to boost her net worth, she said to CNBC. Here are the five things that she refuses to spend her income on.
- Designer Clothes: Fasulo doesn’t like spending money on new designer clothes or handbags. She firmly believes that one should spend no more than $2,500 per year on shopping. Instead, Fasulo shops at thrift stores like Buffalo Exchange and Pavement and spends much less.
- High Travel Costs: Fasulo uses her Chase Sapphire Rewards credit card to pay for travel, flights, and rental cars in order to collect travel points. Though the card has a $300 annual fee, it saves her approximately $2,000 in flight and travel costs yearly. Also, she has the JetBlue credit card, which earns her enough points to cover some flights every year.
- Rent: According to Fasulo, she avoids spending money on rent and instead invests in properties. In 2021, she purchased her first property, where she currently lives. “In the house that I live in now, the amount I pay on my mortgage is, in some cases, less than what I would pay to rent the same house, except I own it,” Fasulo said.
- Late-Night Dining and Drinking: Fasulo loves to look for happy hours whenever she wants to drink. When traveling, she prefers to eat and drink at local restaurants and bars and enjoys earlier dining as it can cut the total cost of food and drinks down to one-third of what it would be if she dined at 8 p.m.
- Transportation Costs: Fasulo tries to avoid spending money on transportation. If she has to visit a destination within three miles, she prefers walking instead of taking an Uber for $30. She plans her days around being able to walk to places and checks the map beforehand to ensure there are sidewalks.
Fasulo’s thrifty habits and investments have enabled her to earn a high income and acquire a valuable portfolio of properties despite her young age. Her story highlights the significance of cultivating sound financial habits, investing in assets, and setting long-term goals to secure one’s financial future.
This story is part of a new series of features on the subject of success, Benzinga Inspire.