“My parents paid most of my tuition, which helped me save for a house”: How a 23-year-old business grad spends his money

“My parents paid most of my tuition, which helped me save for a house”: How a 23-year-old business grad spends his money

Photograph by Erin Leydon

Who: Jelani Smith, 23

What he does: Operations analyst at BMO and editor of a finance blog

What he makes: $60,000 a year, including bonuses, and rental and investment income

Where he lives: A three-bedroom townhouse in Scarborough that he shares with a roommate

What he spends in a month: Mortgage payments: $1,600, on a 30-year mortgage. He rents out a spare bedroom to a friend for $600 a month. Utilities: $200. Property taxes: $265. Internet and phone: $174. Groceries: $125. “I use Flipp, an app that helps me find good deals.” Eating out: $110, at restaurants like Scarlet Ibis and Kairali in Scarborough. Transit: $140. “Taking the GO to work is 15 minutes faster, but I’ve been taking the TTC to save money.” Gas: $60. “I share a car with my parents. I only use it on the weekends.” Grooming: $100, including biweekly haircuts. “It’s important to make a good first impression.”

Recent splurges: Down payment: $126,357, on a $526,000 freehold townhouse. “My parents paid most of my tuition, which helped me save up for a down payment. I also worked two part-time jobs during school, did full-time internships over the summer, traded stocks and saved.” Furniture: $1,600, for items from Structube and IKEA. “My bedroom set was a housewarming gift from my parents.” Education: $7,000, for the remainder of his U of T tuition. He graduated with a degree in business administration in 2017. Clothes: $555, for shirts, ties and boots from Brooks Brothers and Town Shoes. Battery: $220, for his hearing aid. Gifts: $142, for a shirt for his brother, an Amazon Alexa for his dad and an investing book for his mom.

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