If you’ve been paying attention, you’ve probably noticed that inflation is at a 40-year high. This means that life’s becoming more expensive than ever before. Everything will cost more, from buying groceries to filling up your car to get to work.
You may have also noticed that your income likely hasn’t risen at the same rate. Despite the rising cost of living, you’re probably not earning at a pace to match this increase.
That’s why we can’t stress enough the importance of investing your money now, regardless of your life stage. You may think that investing is too risky — but it’s even more difficult not to have some cash invested to benefit your future.
How to start investing with little money:-
Here are seven simple ways to start investing with little money.
Try the cookie jar approach.
Saving money and investing it are closely connected. To invest money, you first have to save some up. That will take a lot less time, and you can do it in tiny 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 for 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 into the habit of living on a little bit less than you earn, and stash the savings away in a safe place.
The electronic equivalent of the cookie jar is the online savings account, separate from your checking account. The money can be withdrawn in two business days if needed, but it’s not linked to your debit card.
Then when the stash is large enough, you can take it out and move it into some actual investment vehicles.
Enroll in your employer’s retirement plan
If you’re on a tight budget, enrolling in your 401(k) or other employer retirement plan may seem beyond your reach. But you can begin investing in an employer-sponsored retirement plan with small amounts you won’t even notice.
For example, plan to invest just 1% of your salary into the employer plan. You probably won’t even miss a small contribution, but what makes it even easier is that the tax deduction you’ll get for doing so will contribute even smaller.
Once you commit to a 1% contribution, you can increase it gradually each year. For example, in year two, you can improve your contribution to 2% of your pay. In year three, you can increase your contribution to 3% of your income, and so on.
If you time the increases with your annual pay raise, you’ll notice the increased contribution even less. So if you get a 2% increase in pay, it will effectively be splitting the increase between your retirement plan and your checking account. And if your employer provides a matching contribution, that will improve the arrangement.
If you’re at a complete loss, companies like blooom offer hands-off investment management of your 401(k).
Open an IRA as well
Employer-sponsored 401(k)s are great, but they don’t offer the same tax benefits as other retirement accounts, which is why opening an IRA is essential.
For starters, you’ll have more control over your account since you’re opening your own personal IRA rather than going through your employer, who determines your investments.
In addition, one of the best benefits of an IRA (a Roth IRA, specifically) is its ability to grow tax-free. Your account will grow without tax, and you’ll be able to make tax-free withdrawals starting at age 59½.
Let a Robo-advisor invest your money for you.
Robo-advisors entered the investing scene about a decade ago and made investing as simple and accessible as possible. You don’t need any prior investing experience, as Robo-advisors take all the guesswork out of investing.
Robo-advisors work by asking a few simple questions to determine your goal and risk tolerance and then investing your money in a highly-diversified, low-cost portfolio of stocks and bonds. Robo-advisors then use algorithms to rebalance your portfolio and optimize it for taxes continually.
There’s no easier way to get started in long-term investing. Most Robo-advisors require very little cash to start investing and charge very modest fees based upon the size of your account. All offer automated investing plans to help you grow your balance.
If there’s any downside to Robo-advisors, it’s cost. Robo-advisors charge an annual fee equal to a small percentage of your balance. The industry average is about 0.25%. So, if you invest $10,000, you’ll pay $25 a year. That’s not a lot of money, but it begins to add up if you amass hundreds of thousands of dollars.
It’s important to note that Robo-advisor’ fees are on top of the fees charged by the exchange-traded funds (ETFs) that Robo-advisors buy to make up your portfolio.
You can avoid paying the Robo-advisor fees by building your portfolio of ETFs or mutual funds. However, for most investors, that’s a lot of additional work and responsibility.
Start investing in the stock market with little money
When investing in the stock market, the cost is often the barrier to entry. It takes money to make money.
Not anymore. The internet has made it easy for consumers to get started with very little upfront money. That means you can invest a few dollars in familiarizing yourself with support before making a more significant commitment. It’s a great way to learn about investing while putting very little money at risk.
Today, increasing numbers of options have swung open doors to a new generation of investors — letting you get started with as little as $1 and no trade commissions.
In the past, stockbrokers charged commissions of several dollars every time you bought or sold stock. That made it prohibitive to invest in even a single stock with less than hundreds or thousands of dollars.
$0 commissions have been so successful they’ve disrupted the entire investing industry and forced all the major brokers — from E*TRADE to Fidelity — to follow suit and drop trading commissions.
Plus, the ability to invest in companies with fractional/partial shares is a complete game-changer investing. With fractional shares, you can diversify your portfolio even more while saving money.
Instead of investing in a total share, you can buy a fraction of a share. If you want to invest in a high-priced stock like Amazon, for instance, you can do so for a few dollars instead of shelling out the price for one full share, which, as I write this, is around $2,434.
Dip your toe in the real estate market
Believe it or not, you no longer need much money (or even good credit) to invest in real estate. A new investment category known as “real estate crowdfunding” makes it possible to own fractional shares of large commercial properties without the headache of being a landlord.
Crowdfunded real estate investments require more significant minimum investments than Robo-advisors (for example, $5,000 instead of $500).
They’re also riskier investments because you’ll be putting that entire $5,000 into one property rather than a diversified portfolio of hundreds of individual investments.
The upside is owning a piece of an actual physical asset that’s not necessarily correlated with the stock market.
As with Robo-advisors, you were investing in real estate via a crowdfunding platform that carries costs you wouldn’t pay if you bought a building. But here, the advantages are apparent: You share the cost and risk with other investors, and you have no responsibility for maintaining the property (or even doing the paperwork to buy it!).
crowdfunding can be an intriguing way to learn about commercial real estate investing and diversify your assets. I wouldn’t lay all of my money on these platforms, but they make an intriguing alternative investment.
Put your money in low-initial-investment mutual funds
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.
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.
Automatic investing is a common feature with mutual fund and ETF IRA accounts. Mutual fund companies that have been known to do this include Transamerica and T. Rowe Price.
An automatic investing arrangement is particularly convenient if you can do it through payroll savings. You can typically set up a mechanical deposit situation through your payroll as you do with an employer-sponsored retirement plan. Just ask your human resources department how to set it up.
Courtesy:— Money Under 30