New to investing? Learn about your investment options and see how you can get started today.
Investing is the process of purchasing something or putting your money towards something with the hopes of gaining a profit. While investing involves risk, for many, investing can offer significant rewards.
There are various ways to invest your money. Investing can present an opportunity to grow your wealth and set yourself up for a more secure financial future. If you're brand new to investing, you may be wondering how to get started. This beginner's guide will help better explain some popular investing options and teach you what you need to know to get started with your investment goals.
Why Is Investing Important?
Investing is important because it can help you achieve financial security. It can be difficult for your income and wealth to grow substantially without investing. A regular savings account, for example, is best for your short-term savings goals. You may earn interest but will only earn so much, resulting in much smaller growth.
Investing, on the other hand, is a great way to achieve your long-term financial goals. It involves risk and takes a longer time to reach your goals, but it can usually provide a higher rate of return than regular savings. If you're hoping to feel comfortable financially in the future, you should consider making investing a priority.
If you never save or invest money, it can be nearly impossible to comfortably afford to live without having to work for the rest of your life. Many people choose to invest during their working years to reach their retirement goals without worrying about finances.
What to Consider Before You Invest Your Money
It's essential to outline your goals before investing your money. Your goals may include deciding how much you plan to have by a specific time frame and what investment methods you want to pursue. Those decisions will depend on your life plans and personal situation.
Additionally, be sure to think through your investment choices before taking action. Investing comes with risk, and there are never any guarantees. You should thoroughly research all of your investment options to learn as much as possible. With more knowledge, you can make financial choices that align with your needs and goals.
If you're going to invest your money, only invest extra money that you don't need in order to pay your bills or cover your expenses. That way, you won't risk losing the money that you truly need.
How to Start Investing in Stocks
Investing in stocks is a popular option to consider. You can buy shares of stock or equities. When you invest in a stock, you become a part-owner of the company. You can be rewarded by investing in that company.
If the company does well, the value of its stocks may increase. That can be a big benefit to you. If you sell the stocks while they're worth more than you paid, you can make a profit. Additionally, you can earn money from shareholder dividends. These are usually paid out every quarter and are paid out as additional stock shares instead of cash. Not all companies choose to pay dividends, but many do.
The stock market is volatile, and returns are not guaranteed, but typically, investors can make good long-term returns when investing in the stock market. You can buy stocks through an exchange. When choosing which stocks to purchase, it's smart to invest in companies you like and trust. You can also easily start by learning how to invest small amounts of money rather than risking a good chunk of change. Start where you're comfortable.
How to Start Investing in Bonds
Bonds are another investment option. When you purchase a bond, you lend money to the government or a corporation. When organizations want to raise money, they can issue bonds, or loans, to investors. After buying a bond, you can hold on to the bond until it matures. Then, you collect your initial investment. And you'll also earn interest. Bonds earn interest at a fixed rate. That means the interest is paid at regular, predictable rates and intervals.
In addition to making money off the interest earned from bonds, you can also make money by selling bonds at a higher rate than you originally paid. Bonds might be an investment option for you to consider.
You can buy bonds from a broker or exchange. You can also purchase bonds by investing in exchange-traded funds or EFTs. We'll explain those in greater detail next.
How to Start Investing in ETFs
Exchange-traded funds, also known as ETFs, are another investment tool. An ETF is a fund or basket of securities. They can contain stocks, commodities, bonds, and other securities. Like stocks, ETFs can be bought and sold on stock exchanges. An ETF holds multiple securities, unlike one stock. Investors like ETFs because they offer diversification. Some ETFs are commission-free, while others charge fees.
How to Start Investing in Real Estate
Some people choose to invest in real estate. One way to do that is by physically purchasing properties. When you invest in real estate, you hope that the property's value grows over time. You can buy properties and rent them out to other individuals and businesses or choose to invest in property that will serve as your home. Before deciding to invest in real estate, don't forget to consider the cost of taxes, maintenance, and repairs.
Another way to invest in real estate is by investing in real estate investment trusts, or REITs. Doing this allows you to invest in real estate properties without buying and managing the properties yourself. There are several types of REITs, but the easiest way to invest in REITs is to purchase publicly traded REITs through an exchange. Many investors choose this route. For investors who want to expand their portfolio, REITs may be an option to consider.
The Bottom Line
Yes, even beginners can invest! Investing can be a smart financial choice, and it could help you increase your wealth and feel more financially secure. While there are risks to investing, it's an idea that is worth exploring if you have financial goals that you want to achieve. Be sure to do thorough research, and don't be afraid to step outside of your comfort zone, or increase your financial literacy, to explore the many ways to invest your hard-earned money.
And if you're not ready to start investing quite yet, challenging yourself to build your savings can also be a great place to begin.
See what saving with Monorail could look like for you.
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