If you are reasonably financially secure and have some spare cash to play with investing it wisely could potentially provide you with an income stream sufficient to retire early. Many people are put off investing because they believe that expert knowledge is required, but this is not the case. Everything you need to know can be learned. Here we provide an overview of what you need to know to start planning for the future.
Investing is all about balancing risk. The type of investor you will become depends very much on the type of person you are and will depend on how prepared you are to take a risk to potentially secure a better return.
If your ultimate aim is investing for retirement, you need to have a clear idea of when you ideally want to retire and work out how much money you realistically need to make that happen.
Type of Investment
Once you have ascertained your attitude to risk you will be in a position to start researching the sort of investment that dovetails with your outlook. It’s worth taking some time to really research the various options, from bonds and shares to more esoteric options such as investing in property or even art. Investing for retirement can be as hands on as you like, with options like SIPPs (Self-Invested Personal Pension) giving you maximum control over what you invest in and how much. If you’re less financially savvy, you may want to speak to a financial adviser before going ahead with any decisions.
Spread the Risk
Financially speaking, it is not often advisable to put all your eggs in one basket. Investing in shares in a limited number of companies or bonds will necessitate a great deal of research to ensure that the investment is sound. You could consider investing in a mutual fund, which is basically a pooled investment with other investors and allows you to diversify your stock in a way that’s not possible as an individual. A good fund manager will regularly review the investment made, track the progress and change the investment strategy if required.
There are a whole host of widely available financial tools that can help you chose the best investments to make your dream of early retirement a reality. As well as your own personal research, many specialist investment companies and brokers have in-house staff dedicated to talking you through your options.
Tax is generally payable on the profits and income generated form an investment, but some vigilant financial organisation can reduce the impact of tax on your investment. The simplest path to take for UK investors is to set up an ISA (Individual Savings Account) at a broker like Nutmeg, while those in the US will need to check out IRA options (Individual Retirement Account), wherein you can save tax-free until you make a withdrawal.
Once you have your plan in place you need to keep on top of it and regularly check that your investment portfolio is growing at the required rate to ensure your early retirement. Being proactive is the key to achieving your retirement goal.
What else do you need to do to invest?