The decision to start investing can be a scary one, especially for first-time investors. But the truth is that as challenging as it looks, the investment world is not only for professional investors. You can, too, build your wealth through investing in stocks; all it takes is some goal-setting, determination, and a bit of research. The following steps should guide you through the initial investing process and what you should focus on when it comes to your overall goals.
Again, no need to be a professional, some research and thorough reading can take you a long way in accomplishing some basic understanding of the field. The internet is your friend, and there you can find some of the most used terms of buying stocks, abbreviations, and acronyms’ meanings that will allow you to make informed decisions. As a first learning assignment, make sure you learn the difference between stocks, bonds, and mutual bonds.
You mainly have two options: you can either decide to inform yourself the best you can and invest in the stock market yourself, or you can hire a professional to do so. Before hiring someone though, take into consideration that buying stocks is not as hard as it seems. You can most definitely do it yourself, especially if you want to start safe and slow. The stock market is full of platforms and exchange traded funds (ETFs) that are secure and easy to invest in.
Before you start investing, it is vital to do two straightforward and basic things: figure out how much you can afford to invest and set one or two long-term goals. Ask yourself the question: Why do you want to invest, and how much would you like to make? When answering these questions, think about the length of time you are willing to invest in and how much you can afford to take risks. For example, if you plan to invest for your retirement and you’re in your 30s, or younger, you can invest in safer stocks. If you are almost about to retire, you might want to make riskier but informed investing decisions.
Setting your priorities is a good tip for any area of your life, and investing is no exception. If you have a set of companies that you believe in or that you really admire, investing in them would not necessarily be a bad idea as long as you do your research first. But mostly, if you do choose to prioritize these companies, it probably means that you are already somewhat familiar with them. In order to make wise decisions, read about their history and their current economic situation.
Once you have your information sorted out, it’s time to take the leap and open an account. Here too you have several options. One of them is to simply go to an investment company and open your account. Most of these companies have some helpful customer support, so you should be sorted. Or you can also decide to open an online brokerage account or what is known as a robo-advisor account. Brokerage online accounts allow you to be more proactive in choosing your stocks, while robo-advisor accounts build a personalized portfolio for you to make your investments in, and basically do the investing for you.
Last but not least, make sure to not become completely overconfident and complacent with your investment choices. It is crucial to constantly reevaluate your approach and the goals you’ve set for yourself. What’s important is to make sure that your decisions are adapting to the changing world of investing, and that you are always keeping your goals in mind. For instance, you might start with a brokerage online account, but then decide to either move on to robo-advising or move your investment funds to other options. In general, try to reevaluate every six months.