You’re starting with a limited amount of financial capital. You really want to make it work harder for you, in order to achieve financial independence or a more comfortable lifestyle in the short or long term. However, it’s wise to consider safe investments that minimize your exposure to financial risk. You’ll probably also want to choose a mix of those which can generate returns in the short-term, and those which, with patience, will offer a high return at minimum risk.
Certificates of Deposit are great option for risk free-savings. They’ll typically generate a higher rate of return than most savings accounts. The downside (depending on how you look at it) is that these require a longer-term commitment than instant-access accounts. To get maximum benefit from the investment, and avoid penalties, you’ll need to be sure that you won’t need to access the funds until the agreed term is complete. They’re available from most banks, and the term can be as short as 3 months.
Property is clearly one of the most valuable tangible assets that you can own. However, if the reality is that you are still some way off being able to purchase your own property, there are other ways to get started in real estate investing. For example, there are several crowdsourcing platforms which enable you to take part in real estate transactions, either by lending money or purchasing a share of some real estate. CrowdStreet, DiversyFund and EquityMultiple are just three of the platforms to explore. Check out sites such as youngandtheinvested.com for more advice.
Whether it’s stocks or Forex, online trading services are one of the most easiest ways to sweat even limited financial assets. Reputable platforms such as Globex360, Ameritrade or eToro offers educational resources to help new traders understand how the markets work and the risks involved, as well as the potential rewards. Successful traders are not the ones who make short term gains, they tend to be those who know how to react in the face of losses, so it’s worth starting small. Learn by experience (and all traders make losses at some point), but be cautious so that you can continue trading, with a view to profits over the long-term.
What about sweating your own skills a little? If you’re employed by day, no need to give up this security. In these days of economic uncertainty, more and more employers are looking for freelancers to take on work. Sites such as Guru and Upwork allow you to offer your skills as often as you like, for projects that interest you, at the rate you want to earn. Yes, there’s some effort involved, but if you really want to make the most of your skills, this can provide a valuable additional income stream. No investment is needed to get started, and but expect to pay a commission on your earnings, so take that into account when you’re bidding for projects.
This isn’t technically an investment, but, as it is an important way to mitigate the risks that could derail your plans for financial growth, you shouldn’t neglect it. Accident, sickness and unemployment cover are relatively inexpensive and can all be considered as valid investments to avoid the risk of an unplanned loss of income, whether temporary or permanent.
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