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Millionaire tells young people to stop eating avocado toast if they want to afford a house

Tim Gurner said there was ‘no question’ that young people were spending too much on lifestyle purchases.

shutterstock_606650123 Source: Shutterstock/SherSor

AN AUSTRALIAN BUSINESSMAN has said that young people spend too much money on coffee, travelling and ‘smashed avocados on toast’.

Tim Gurner was being interviewed by an Australian news channel when he made the comment, and then suggested that this was why people couldn’t afford houses: “people that own homes today worked very, very hard for it”.

People were incensed by the property mogul’s comments, and some suggested that his first investment came from a AUS $34,000 investment from his grandfather.

But after international media picked up the story, he defended his comments, saying that it was ‘incorrect’ that he’d received help and had to make a lot of personal sacrifices.

“They were also the darkest and hardest days of my life,” he told news.com.au today.

“I was only 18 and had just taken on a huge personal loan and needed to stop at nothing to ensure I didn’t go under.”

Those 1 hour comments

Gurner appeared on the show to talk about affordable housing in Australia.

He said was incredibly difficult to get into the market, and there was a need for an increase in supply.

But he went on to say that young people weren’t making enough effort to save.

“When I was trying to buy my first home, I wasn’t buying smashed avocado for $19 and four coffees at $4 each,” he told the 60 Minutes programme on Australia’s Channel 9.

He said that he thought the expectations of young people are “very, very high”.

They want to eat out every day, they want travel to Europe every year.
The people that own homes today worked very, very hard for it (and) saved every dollar, did everything they could to get up the property investment ladder.

“This generation is watching the Kardashians and thinking that’s normal. Thinking that owning a Bentley is normal, that owning a BMW is normal.”

Out of proportion

In response to the international backlash today, he explained that his grandfather did lend him $34,000, and the timeline that brought him to where he is today.

“My first investment property was an apartment bought for $180,000 in St Kilda and I was fortunate enough to have my boss at the time approach me to renovate it while he fronted up the money.”

“I spent every night on my hands and knees sanding back the floors, painting, renovating and working on the house. When we sold it, I used the small profits of $12,000 to purchase my next property and it all grew from there.”

After making $12,000 from his first investment property at 18, he took out a $150,000 loan using the $34,000 from his grandfather to expand his business.

“The most important thing for me was just to get my foot in the door at the absolute base level, and work my way up from there.

I sacrificed a huge amount through those years, working multiple jobs, seven days a week and I saved absolutely every penny that I could.

But he said there was ‘no question’ that young people were spending too much on lifestyle purchases.

His company currently has 5,000 apartments worth $2.7 billion.

Gurner was ranked 157 on this year’s Financial Review Rich List after making $473 million in 10 years.

News.com.au claims that young Aussies could potentially save $34,000 in four years if they gave up a number of life’s luxuries, including smashed avocado and $4 coffee.

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