Some people want to invest, but think they need to have to have a ton of money to start investing. That’s not true. Everyone must start somewhere.
Here are ways to invest $100 or less today. Investing in your future should be a regular habit, so starting with a $100 a month will begin to build a nice egg for you and your family.
The best time to invest money is early in life, but it is never too late.
• Savings account: You may not think of a savings account as an investment, but it is a great way to start building up your savings. This could be the best option for many of you, it all depends on your situation. You can later take that money and put it into another form of investment later on down the line. Have children? Start a savings account for them. Take them with you to the bank, and let them help open their very own savings account! We did this, and now every time our son gets money: Christmas, birthday, report cards, etc he takes and puts some of it into his savings account. He loves seeing how much money he is saving, and he knows this will help him later in life. This is a very valuable and important lesson you can teach your children.
When looking to start a savings account look at several banks, before deciding where to put your money. Some banks may offer incentives to bring new customers in. You can earn a percentage for how much is in your account, a fee free account and more. Be careful because some banks charge a monthly fee to have a savings account. You don’t want to open an account if you get $5 a month taken out for fees — that’s a waste for you.
• 401(k): If your company has a 401(k) plan, consider investing your money that way to save for retirement. Your employer will take money directly out of each paycheck (normally a percentage), and put it in a 401(k) account for you. That way it is taken care of each month without you having to do anything.
If you are lucky, some employers will match what you put in. That means if you put in $100 a month, they will match that and put in $100, so it is really $200 a month. Consider that to be free money and an awesome perk. They base taking money out on a percentage, so your employer can help you decide what percentage needs to come out to reach a price you are comfortable with. It all depends how much you make each year on what the percentage will be.
• Stash: This is an app you can use to start investing with as little as $5. They have different investment option to choose from to fit your needs. You can put down how much money you want to invest each month. This is a neat way to slowly begin and learn how to invest.
Stash has more than 30 investment options to fit your needs. You can invest in stocks or bonds if you want, and more. This is a great option and very affordable. You can choose a one-time investment, weekly, monthly and other options that will fit your budget.
• Pay off debt: By paying off medical and credit card debt, you will open up more money financially for you. Consider putting $100 each month towards your debt, to free you from it. Then consider canceling your cards and trying to live off your means in the future, instead of depending on credit cards. It is okay to have one for emergencies only.
• Emergency fund: Everyone should have an emergency fund ready in case something happens. Experts recommend having three to six months of living expenses saved. It sounds like a lot, but it can really help you out in case you lose your job, have an accident, or some other expensive surprise. Keep investing money each month towards this emergency fund, and that $100 will be thousands. You can choose to put it in a savings account or save back in cash in a safe at home. Whatever you decide is up to you.
There are so many ways to save money, and where to allocate it. Every family situation is different and not every option is viable for everyone. Talk to a financial adviser to get guidance for your individual needs.
Melissa King is a professional savings blogger from Savannah. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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