At some point in everyone’s life, there is usually a reason that prompts you to start investing. Some of the reasons may include establishing an emergency fund, saving for a home, saving for a college education and building retirement funds.
People assume that a lack of money is the reason people don’t start investing, but many are slow to begin investing because they lack the financial confidence to get started. In a recent WSFS Wealth survey, only half of the respondents felt confident and knowledgeable about their ability to invest. And unfortunately, just 27% of women felt they had the knowledge to invest.
While financial confidence means different things to different people, it is key to define what it means for you individually.
Education equals Knowledge
The quickest way to gain confidence around investing is to get EDUCATED about it. There are a few ways to approach this.
There are online resources that can provide information on variety of topics, such as:
- Which investments may have less risk like money market funds or CDs, or others that offer a bit more risk like mutual funds or stocks. Researching information will help you understand the levels of risk while balancing the return on different investments.
- Financial websites, podcasts and articles on investing and specific company investor pages offer advice and insight. Look for information that explains things in understandable terms and content that will assist you in planning for different periods in your life.
Although this seems like a simple exercise, sorting through this abundance of information takes time and patience.
Find a Trusted Advisor
It can also be helpful to SEEK ADVICE from those that have experience and that you trust with investing such as friends, family or resources that may be available from your employer or a local financial institution. A financial “check-up” at your local bank may uncover some of the financial nuisances that are stopping you from moving forward.
Another step-in gaining confidence is working with a professional who can help you plan for retirement or a second home. The WSFS Wealth survey showed of those polled who were not currently using a financial advisor, about half said they are likely to use one in the next 12 months.
The path to financial security begins with a solid investment plan that must be actively managed, even in difficult times. Talking to someone about ways to do that, and who will explain things to you as needed, is a great way to build financial confidence and prepare for the future. One of the most important components to a successful investment plan is getting started and sticking with it.
The survey also revealed when consumers choose an advisor, they’re primarily looking for a reputation of integrity (87%), transparency of fees (86%) and quality of service (84%). It is very important to find the best trusted advisor for your situation.
To gain confidence in investing doesn’t mean you have to be the expert. Financial advisors understand the markets, the risks associated with different investments and the importance of diversifying your overall portfolio of assets. In fact, 72% of those polled said the primary reason to use an advisor is “because they understand the markets better than I do.”
Educating yourself, seeking advice and working with an advisor will help you build your investment confidence and will lead the way to building a secure financial future.
Helping you boost your financial intelligence.
Read our financial resources from your friends at WSFS.