I haven't really been posting much, but I can really relate to this so I just had to post. Like you, I am also sharing a rental house at 30 without a PPOR so I can afford to invest in property. At times I wonder whether I am making the right decision sacrificing lifestyle for the future so it was great reading that there are others like me. Thanks for sharing, Michael and congratulations on your achievements.
Congrats on two properties at age 26yo, that's impressive at a young age!
I did something similar. Moved into my first purchase to get the first home owner's grant and 12 months later moved back to my parents with my tail between my legs - I was flat broke. Eating out each night and paying a mortgage doesn't help.
Left home again at 26yo, this time round I rented frugally and managed my cashflow better. Still renting to this day with no PPOR, share with university students to keep the costs down.
After speaking to other successful investors one common theme has been the willingness to forego some current lifestyle choices for future benefits. You can't have your cake and eat it too, although I would love to! As you read the forums, you can see plenty of investors enjoying the fruits of their earlier sacrifices.
Do you want to achieve your goal in 5, 10, 20 years time? If 20 years can take it much easier than say 5 years.
Hope this helps,