The best thing you can do in your early-mid 20s is to minimize living expenses so you can free up money for experiences (travel, classes, hobbies - stuff you don't have as much time for during the family building/mid-career phase of life) and early forays into investing (maxing that 401k and Roth). Part of the fun of youth (maybe this is hindsight) IS the studio apartment in the weird building, the second hand furniture and so on - your friends (and girls) your age don't care when they come over, because they live that way to. It's being young. A small place also has the added benefit of reducing temptation to buy tons of *stuff* - lack of storage keeps you frugal My first place out of grad school in the early 90s (I won't count the single basement room I rented in a house when I was in grad school) was a $300/month studio in an old highrise in then-sketchy midtown Atlanta (for those in the know, the infamous Howell House on 3rd and Peachtree) on a salary of $60,000, so I was spending 6% of my gross income (I guess 10% of net?) I also drove a paid-for Mazda 626, so I had no car payment. A good way to start! In my view, there's simply zero reason to have luxurious accommodations as a young man; that can come later in the form of a house.