Tips for Low-Income Investors

There is a certain misconception that unless you make a certain amount of money each year, you can’t possibly begin to invest in your future. And that could not be further from the truth. The simple fact of the matter is that anything you can save towards retirement is a help that you can definitely use.

Remember that there are ways to make your money work for you even if you are what is considered a low-income investor. And this is more compulsive than optional because, like the ultra-rich, you will likely deal with problems in the future too. For instance, you might suffer from dementia when you’re old, which can make life rather complicated if you don’t have the money to take care of yourself. But when you have adequate savings, investments, and other assets in place, you can move into a memory care community with no hiccups.

The point is, there are a number of options to make what little money you have to spare work for you and help you save for the future. With that out of the way, keep these things in mind if you are a low-income investor:

Watch out for Minimums and Fees

Depending on the investment firm or site that you go with, they may have initial balance minimums, initial deposit minimums, or a variety of fees. Watch out for things like inactivity fees that punish you for infrequent trades, account transfer fees when you move from one brokerage to another, or expense ratio which is based on a percentage of your overall fun. Anything higher than 2% should be avoided entirely.

These are made to be nickel and dime transactions but they add up to quite a lot over a long period of time and can severely limit the amount of money that you have to invest with.

Index Funds Are Your Friend

What is an index fund? It is a mutual fund or exchange traded fund that is based on consistent rules. Because they lack a fund manager, index funds are considered “passively managed” and can benefit investors in two ways. The first is through performance. Index funds offer better after-fee returns than managed funds. And secondly, because they don’t have managers to pay, their expense ratios are much lower than actively managed funds.

IRA Accounts

An Individual Retirement Account (IRA) is an investment account that individuals use to save for retirement. IRAs typically allow people to deposit a certain amount at regular intervals that can be withdrawn when they retire. With the help of banks and brokerage firms, you can easily set up an IRA account and you are really spoiled for choice in this department. So how do you go about choosing one from these many financial institutions? The answer lies in reviews – expert reviews, customer reviews, market reviews etc. The idea is simple. If you were to impassionately go through say, goldstar trust company complaints, then what you are really looking for are service limitations and whether that is going to have a direct effect, should you invest with GoldStar Trust Company. The same goes for every other review of every other financial institution.

Retirement accounts like an IRA and 401(k) can be contributed to at the amount and pace that you determine; there are no hard-line requirements for these accounts and whatever you can contribute will add up exponentially over a long period of time. These are as smart of an investment as you can make.

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