How to Invest Money
For many people, the word “investing” conjures up images of men in suits, monitoring the exchange of millions of dollars on a stock ticker.
I’m here to tell you: You don’t need to be the Wolf of Wall Street to start investing. It’s okay if you’re more of a mouse of Main Street. Even if you only have a few dollars to spare, your money will grow with compound interest.
The key to building wealth is developing good habits—like regularly putting money away every month. Swap out the barista-made cappuccinos for coffee at home and you could already be saving more than $50 a month.
Once you have a little money to play with, you can start to invest.
Saving money and investing it are closely connected. In order to invest money, you first have to save some up. That will take a lot less time than you think, and you can do it in very small steps.
If you’ve never been a saver, you can start by putting away just $10 per week. That may not seem like a lot, but over the course of a year, it comes to over $500.
Try putting $10 into an envelope, shoebox, a small safe, or even that legendary bank of first resort, the cookie jar. Though this may sound silly, it’s often a necessary first step. Get yourself into the habit of living on a little bit less than you earn, and stash the savings away in a safe place.
2. Let a robo-advisor invest your money for you – How to Invest Money
Robo-advisors were created to make investing as simple and accessible as possible. No prior investment experience is required and set-up is easy. Let their automated intelligence track your investments in the background, and pay lower fees in the process.
3. Make your first steps in real estate market
Real estate investing does not have to be for the very rich. There are many options for real estate crowdfunding and though this may seem like something you’d be nervous about looking into – it actually can be an intriguing investment.
4. Enroll in your employer’s retirement plan
If you’re on a tight budget, even the simple step of enrolling in your 401(k) or other employer retirement plan may seem beyond your reach. But there is a way that you can begin investing in an employer-sponsored retirement plan with amounts that are so small you won’t even notice them.
For example, plan to invest just 1 percent of your salary into the employer plan.
You probably won’t even miss a contribution that small, but what makes it even easier is that the tax deduction that you’ll get for doing so will make the contribution even smaller.
5. Put your money in low-initial-investment mutual funds – How to Invest Money
Mutual funds are investment securities that allow you to invest in a portfolio of stocks and bonds with a single transaction, making them perfect for new investors.
The trouble is many mutual fund companies require initial minimum investments of between $500 and $5,000. If you’re a first-time investor with little money to invest, those minimums can be out of reach. But some mutual fund companies will waive the account minimums if you agree to automatic monthly investments of between $50 and $100.
6. Play it safe with Treasury securities
Not many small investors begin their investment journey with US Treasury securities, but you can. You’ll never get rich with these securities, but it is an excellent place to park your money—and earn some interest—until you are ready to go into higher risk/higher return investments.
Treasury securities, also known as savings bonds, are easy to buy through the US Treasury’s bond portal Treasury Direct. There you can buy fixed-income US government securities with maturities of anywhere from 30 days to 30 years in denominations as low as $100.
7. Pick investments yourself using an online trading platform – How to Invest Money
If you’re the do-it-yourself type, and you have some investing knowhow, you might want to consider picking investments yourself using an online trading platform
8. Lend to those in need and earn some interest- How to Invest Money
If you want to invest into the lives of others and earn some interest, there’s a new craze that’s both exciting and reasonable: peer-to-peer lending.
Peer-to-peer lending is the practice of lending to borrowers through an online service whose goal it is to bring borrowers and lenders together.
Lending Club is one such peer-to-peer lending service I tried out, and I found it to be very easy to use and reliable