Great $500 Investment Ideas

Everybody wants to save – we realize that a penny saved now will make a huge difference to our loves in the future. But the problem is that we are continually exposed to a media and marketers that spread the message that without a healthy nest egg there seems to little no reason to save – it is basically a waste of time and effort – rather spend that money today and enjoy the thrill of instant gratification. It is after all part and parcel of the modern consumer mindset.

However, is this mindset one that is the inevitable outcome of not having large amounts of money to invest? the answer is most assuredly no. You can make savvy investments of $500 as a lump sum or split that into smaller installments and still make sure that you are growing that nest egg.

Here are some great ideas to make even modest sums of money work for you.

The Savings Account.

OK – putting $50 into a savings account each month is not going to contribute to the downpayment of that tropical island that you have an eye on – but you will be surprised how quickly that investment can grow. The key to successful saving is discipline. Leave the money alone and you will have an investment that beats inflation (usually) and is just about as safe as can be. It also helps you accumulate larger lump sums to take that next investment decision.

Mutual Funds and ETFs.

Some mutual Funds require minimum investments that run into the thousands of dollars – but there are some respected financial vehicles that allow minimum investments as low as $500. If you could upsize that investment to $1,000 you would be able to invest in several funds and reduce your risk profile.

Online Brokerages.

It may come as something of a surprise – but there are online investment firms that will allow you to invest for as little as $100 a month if you are prepared to do a direct or automatic deposit. This gives you the freedom to explore a wide variety of investment options – but try and get professional advice before you commit to a substantial position.

Flip for Funds.

It’s not necessary to invest in property to enjoy the advantages of flipping an asset. Craigslist is a wonderful place to find furniture for instance. Learn some basic refurbishing skills or keep a look out for those quality bargains where people want to get rid of furniture that is taking up space. learn a bit about classic or antique furniture in order to spot a bargain. remember – you’ll need storage space.

Invest in Yourself.

there is an old saying that one of the best investments you can ever make is in yourself. So do the research and leverage your unique talents. Use that $500 to get the right materials and equipment. Arts and crafts, writing, real estate sales – the list is almost never ending. Do the research and become the master of your own destiny.

Peer-to-Peer Lending.

There are numerous companies on the Internet that arrange funding for borrowers – with funds sourced from investors. The returns can be very attractive. But be warned – do your due diligence and make sure that you are going to be doing business with a company that has a solid reputation.

Get OUt of the Debt Trap.

One of the best investments that you can make is to deal with the debt that you are carrying. Make a plan with lenders and free up some of your finances to engage in investment activity. Pay off those credit cards first – you can be paying interest of around 20% – and that is an enormous financial burden – and a roadblock to your investment activity.

Invest in Coins.

It is not as expensive as you might think to invest in Sterling Silver coins. They are issued by governments all over the world and retain their value based on both silver content and collectability. Not only is collecting these coins a great hobby, but also a nice hedge against inflation.

So, a $500 budget should set you on a path to great investment habits – make the right decision today.

6 Tax Free Ways to Grow Your Retirement Fast

If it is a couple decades before you will retire, this is the best time to start planning for your retirement. Even individuals that have procrastinated on creating a retirement fund can still find ways to build their retirement up very quickly. When you strive to do this properly, you will look for innovative and safe strategies to use. One of the best techniques is to grow your retirement completely tax free, a strategy that is applicable for many people. Here are 6 tax free ways to grow your retirement fast that you may not have thought of before.

Use IRAs

IRA cubic letter on 100 dollar at low light

The most common way that people can save for their retirement is to set up a Roth IRA. This is a retirement account that will help you save money in tax-deferred dollars, up to a certain amount every year. There is a maximum contribution into this account that you can make. At the time of this writing, it is $5500. You can also contribute up to $1000 more if you are trying to catch up on previous contributions that you have not made. Although you do have to pay taxes on this money once it is withdrawn, you are building your retirement on a tax-free principal amount. This will allow you to build your retirement very rapidly, with as much money as legally possible.

Start A 401(k) Plan

This strategy is one that people often take advantage of when they work for businesses that offer them. You can put tax-deferred dollars into these accounts, similar to IRAs, but there are some drawbacks to this particular type of investment. You have no control over where your money is going to be invested which can be troublesome. Although this money will be in a mutual fund, what you cannot control are the stocks that the mutual fund is investing in. There are also higher fees that you will have to pay in comparison to Individual Retirement Accounts. However, if you can have both a 401(k) plan and an IRA, you will be saving money at an astounding rate.

Start A Health Savings Account

This is another type of account that you can start for your retirement that is not technically a retirement account at all. As with the others, your money will begin to earn interest on tax-free dollars, and they are used to help you pay for medical expenses.

Start A Roth 401(k)

Similar to a Roth IRA, these are perfect for people that are earning more than $137,000 every year. If you are married, you can also qualify for this type of 401(k) if you make more than $203,000 a year. The reason that this type of investment is also beneficial is that there is no limit to how much you can contribute.

Start As Early As Possible

This is simply a common sense suggestion that has massive implications in regard to the total amount of your investments. If you are a millennial, you need to start saving right away. If you do, you will end up with a massive retirement. If you are able to do a Roth IRA, Roth 401(k) plan, and standard Individual Retirement Accounts and 401(k)s, you will literally have the ability to save unlimited income. Although some of them do have maximum contribution limits, two of the others do not.

Add Additional Sources Of Revenue

Curly woman sitting on floor and completing tax

One final strategy that you can use is to find a way to generate a secondary source of income. If you are married, both of you might want to consider starting a separate business. This money can represent a massive contribution to your retirement plans. This works perfectly when you are setting up at least one retirement account that has no ceiling on the total amount that you can contribute.

By using these simple suggestions on planning for your retirement, you will be able to save a large amount of money by the time you retire. By creating these 401(k) and IRA plans, plus adding additional sources of revenue, the sky is literally the limit. However, you need to start as early as possible if you hope to have the retirement that you have envisioned having once you get to that point in your life. Regardless of when you begin, you now have the means by which to start building your retirement funding using these tax-free strategies.

Get Started Investing With These 8 Basic Steps

Investing should be part of your retirement plan. The sooner you start, the better chances you have to enjoy a life free from financial stress in your elderly years. However, if you’ve never considered investing, you may find it hard to start. This article shows you eight basic steps to help you get started investing.

1. Assess Your Finances

Close-up of mature couple doing finances at home

You don’t need to be wealthy to start investing. Nonetheless, you have to take a look at your current financial situation, in order to understand what kind of money you can afford to invest on regular basis. You’ll have to consider your loans, your credit card payments, your student debt, and your monthly expenses before knowing what would be the bets sum to invest every month.

2. Learn About All Investing Opportunities Available

Once you know how much you can invest, you should learn about all opportunities that are available, and about the main differences between them. Learn about thew stock market, about bonds, stocks, mutual funds, and certificates of deposit. In addition, try to understand the basics of portfolio optimization and diversification. There are some really good books and online tutorials that can teach you all these.

3 . Set Your Investment Objectives

Your investment objectives will vary with your age, gender, and walk of life. People in their 30s won’t have the same investing goals as 75 year old ones. If, for instance, you’re young and you wish to start saving for your retirement, perhaps you should choose an IRA or another type of tax-deferred savings account. If you’re already retired, your investment goals will be different, so you’ll need to find the most appropriate investing opportunities to match these goals.

4. Assess Your Risk Tolerance

Different investment opportunities bear different amounts of risk. If you have a high risk tolerance, you may want to choose options that involve a higher level of risk, as they may offer you much better returns on your investment. If risk is not your cup of tea, you should probably choose investments that are less profitable but much safer. Low-risk, fixed-income securities such as Treasury bills are perhaps the bets example in this category. You’ll have the peace of mind that you won’t lose everything you’ve invested, but at the same time you won’t gain as much as possible.

5 . Learn The Costs Of Different Investment Options

There are two basic types of investment; active and passive. Active investing strategies such as stock trading will involve some costs. You’ll need to pay your broker a commission for their services. To start with, you may want to search for a discount broker, in order to keep your expenses at a minimum. Mutual funds also involve some costs, as they usually charge management fees that may vary over time. Some funds also charge load fees. You have to be aware of all these costs before deciding where to invest your money.

6 . Choose Your Investments

Once you know the difference between the various types of investment, you’ll be able to choose the ones that suit your personal style and your risk tolerance. At this stage, you may want to hire an advisor or a broker to guide you throughout the process of putting together a solid investment portfolio. Asset allocation and diversification are two of the key issues you need to pay close attention to.

7. Review And Adjust Your Portfolio

For best results, you have to keep tabs on your assets at all times and take action as soon as you notice changes that may influence your performance.

8 . Control Your Emotions

There’s always a certain level of risk involved in any type of investment. At times, your decisions will prove to be wrong. Don’t allow your emotions to overwhelm you. Clear thinking will help you make the best decision and reverse the situation.