Investing is a process so there are a few things you must check off before you put your money to work because money you are investing, you cannot touch. This is a critical part of your investment strategy.
Which is why I always say, you have to start with your personal finances, that is understanding:
- What you owe (liabilities)
- What you own (assets)
- What you make (income)
- What you spend (expenses)
before you get to what you want – and that is determining your financial goals and how much money you will be allocating to them each month. Goals that are long-term, like your retirement or your little one’s education, are going to be investment-driven. This is what we are focusing on.
Not only should you be organized with your finances, you have to make sure you have cleared your consumer debt (credit cards or other high interest loans), and that you have your emergency fund set up.
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Four Things You Need to do Before You Start Investing
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When your money is being invested you don’t want to be caught during a downturn and be forced to sell your investments (hence, why you need an emergency fund), when your investments could potentially be at a loss on paper (with time, this will recover as it always has historically), which is why you have to give your investments time to grow and recover from economic downturns – this is part of the investing game that you cannot avoid.
Additionally, part of the investing strategy is to be consistent and investing every month or every quarter. Everytime you get paid, you want to allocate a portion of that towards your investments. This ensures your money is working for you and not just sitting around doing SFA!
Time is money. If you’re going to be FOMO on something, it should be on investing. Remember, so long as you are spending money, companies are making money. And when companies are making money, investors make money. It’d be a shame to miss out on all those profits!
To summarize, make sure you have:
- Organize your personal finances and determine your financial goals (and how much money you will be allocating to them each month);
- cleared your credit card debt or any high-interest loans;
- set up your emergency fund;
- the right investing mindset and strategy, which is investing consistently;