Seven techies share why you should (not) leave home as a young adult.

15 || June || 2024

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Issue #67

Entering Tech,
Leaving Home

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Greetings ET people 🖖🏾

As a young techie, the allure of becoming independent can be strong. Young people figuring out their lives need space, freedom from errands, and if you’re like this writer, you probably need breathing space to explain what you do for work to your parents every 3 market days.

Twitter debates about when to leave home have been raging since 2019 and it trended again last week when people with hot takes said 25+ is the new age of independence. Some tell you to go lower. And others like this one warn you not to leave home until you have “bastard money”.

It got us thinking at ET, so we decided to play devil’s advocate and ask 7 techies who left home—Chidum, Timothy, Lydia, Pelumi, Ayomide, Oscar, and David—why they did, when they did, and how it’s going for them today.

Some stories are bougie, others are inspiring. But all of them, entertaining. Let’s dig in.

Faith Omoniyi & Emmanuel Nwosu

On leaving home

The last stanza of my favourite poem “If: A Father’s Advice to His Son” by Rudyard Kipling goes like this: “If you can fill the unforgiving minute with sixty seconds’ worth of distance run, yours is the Earth and everything in it, and which is more, you’ll be a man, my son.”

The stanza emphasises the role that important decisions (like leaving home) play in your character growth. The “unforgiving minute” typifies time. To “fill” that minute with “sixty seconds’ worth of distance run” means pushing your limits.

Deciding whether to leave home or not can be tricky. On one end of the divide, parents want you to stay back and find your footing no matter how long it takes. On the other end, you want to move out and see the world for yourself.

However, if you’ve caught yourself nodding to Twitter hot takes and need a strong pitch to convince your parents that you want to leave home right now, then take a hint from David, Technical Product and Project Manager, who left home to focus on his startup, Bondly, after trying and failing seven times. 

David left for boarding school at the age of eight, and hardly ever visited home again. When he completed his university education, he left his ₦100,000 ($63) job to take a ₦25,000 ($16) pay cut in Lagos while squatting with his friend. If this isn’t the real “hustle like your life depends on it” story, then I don’t know what is.

David Chima

On the other hand, there are parents who encourage their kids to leave as early as possible and find their own footing. Picture it as that classic mother eagle myth pushing its young off its nest to teach it how to fly. This was the story Lydia, a Growth Marketer at Circo Africa shared, “My parents pushed me out of the house to go do my own thing and meet someone at NYSC.” She was 22. Curious, we asked her how that’s going for her and she said that the confidence her parents instilled in her from a young age made the difference for her as she went Han solo into the world. She now beats her hand on her chest, proud that she can now fix a light bulb.

Lydia Effiong

The pattern for young people wanting to leave home is to find the freedom to do whatever they want, pursue opportunities that help them grow, meet new people—and possibly meet the love of their lives (like Lydia’s parents planned for her.) 

“Going out on your own gives you a sense of urgency to make money,” says Timothy, who left his parent’s house at 23. Timothy, who is now Product & Partnership Manager at Flutterwave, thinks that the amount of money you can make at your parent’s house is limited and leaving home guides your path to make the sacrifices needed for growth—and to up your bags. 💰

Oscar Soribe

For Oscar, leaving Abuja for Lagos at 22 to become a badass graphic designer was his valid excuse for not wanting to sit in his father’s house after graduation. Upon entry in Lagos, Oscar enrolled in a design school that would go on to fast-track his career. Pelumi, at 24, mischievously worked out his NYSC deployment to Ibadan so he could fast-track his personal development and access career opportunities in software development.

Ayomide Agbaje

Ayomide, at 22, left his home city of Ekiti to pursue his career interests in Data analysis. That led him to discover opportunities in innovative tech companies in different parts of the world, including Rwanda where he now resides.

Chidum, now an Onboarding Specialist at Flutterwave, left home at 22 so he could regain control and be free from his errands (that were haunting him) and, most importantly, to focus on his work and career development. So, he decided to move out and find his personal space.

Timothy Timothy

What it means to leave home

Like every other tough endeavour, leaving the comfort of your parents’ house is not a bed of roses,

Timothy used to wonder where his next meal would come from when he first moved out; Lydia almost cried the first time her apartment got flooded; Ayomide, felt like a stranger when he first landed in Kigali; Oscar’s loan from his mum didn’t suffice for his bills when he first moved out; Chidum’s exodus from home was met by skyrocketing inflation which made it difficult to purchase everyday items; Pelumi had a bone to pick with a lawyer and house agents after he paid for his first apartment.

Chidum Obinwa

While these techies found it hard at first, they adjusted just fine. Ayomide got used to the life and culture in Kigali; Lydia now knows to phone a plumber in case of emergencies; Timothy who is now getting rewarded for his work in tech no longer has to worry about his next meal; Oscar saved up his NYSC allawee to pay up his loan; and Pelumi is now the go-to person for housing hunting tips and handling house agents. 

Though it was difficult at first, these techies have forged their paths since they left home and are proud that they left home when they did. 


When is the right time to leave home?

Finally, there is no “right” age to leave home as a young adult starting out your career. Our techies say that the most important thing you need is to prepare yourself—financially, most importantly—for the jump. Have a clear growth plan and follow through because leaving your parent’s home is the first move you make in a series of moves that cause a ripple effect.

But then, do these techies regret ever leaving home when they did? Did they leave too early? Too late? While some share things that they could have done better, the common theme among these techies is learning important skills for surviving alone, including learning how to sell yourself, learning social skills to interact with people and most importantly, acquiring knowledge on financial literacy and managing money. 

Leaving home is not easy; neither is any move that is crucial to unlocking the next step of your career growth as a young adult. The resounding message from these techies is that leaving home is frightening, but with a solid plan and trajectory for your life and career, you’ll adjust and thrive. These tiny decisions are the ones you make to immortalise your journey. Remember Kipling’s poem?

Will you take the leap of faith?

P.S: You can let us know your thoughts by responding to this newsletter or sending an email to

Attend the Mastercard Foundation EdTech Conference

The Mastercard Foundation is hosting its inaugural EdTech Conference from July 8 – 10, 2024 at the Transcorp Hilton in Abuja, Nigeria. The Mastercard Foundation EdTech Conference, in partnership with the Federal Government of Nigeria, is themed ‘Education Technology for Resilient and Inclusive Learning in Africa.’Expect conversations on the current state of the EdTech ecosystem, emerging trends, the role of EdTech in solving Africa’s educational challenges and much more.

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