October 11, 2023 | 8 min read
Summary: Investing your money may be an effective way to help you build long-term wealth. Here are some things to consider before investing.
Investing your money may be an effective way to help you build long-term wealth.
While it can seem overwhelming at times, given the breadth of options available, you don't need to be a financial expert to be successful at it.
But as Warren Buffet says: "Risk comes from not knowing what you're doing."1 So understanding the basics is important.
To help better prepare you and potentially reduce your risk, here are some things to consider before investing.
Before investing, consider creating a plan. This helps you put into perspective not only your investment goals, but when and how you want to achieve them. It can also help to remove the likelihood of emotions influencing your investment decisions.
Start by asking yourself what you aim to achieve through your investments. Are you looking to build wealth for retirement, save for a down payment on a house, or fund your child's education? Your goals can influence your investment strategy and the level of risk you’re willing to take.
Before investing, it’s important to consider how much time you're giving yourself to build towards your financial goal and how much risk you’re prepared to take on to get there.
For example, an investment plan for retirement may look very different to someone who is much younger. If you're looking to access your money in a shorter time frame, remaining invested through ups and downs in the market may be unlikely, so a less risky investment approach may work to your favour.
It's critical to take the time to research what factors may have an impact on your investments so you can make informed decisions, before you consider investing.
Understanding what's going on in the market, domestically and globally, is important as it may have an impact on your investments. This can include things such as growth, unemployment rates, interest rates and inflation and even political events.
There's no denying that the nature of investing can be emotional. There are times where you may feel tempted to change your investment strategy because an area of your portfolio isn’t doing well, or you received recent news the market is going to plummet.
While these events may cause you to react quickly, such as selling off your assets, it's important to consider your investment strategy. If your approach is intended to be a long-term plan, making decisions based on short-term market fluctuations, may greatly affect what you set out to achieve. Something to think about before you start investing.
Before investing, consider where you want to invest your money. You may choose to divvy up your money across a variety of asset classes such as shares, cash and bonds, or you may choose to invest your money in a single asset class, such as a residential property.
One of the main advantages of investing in different asset classes, is the ability to diversify your risk.
This means if one of your investments doesn't perform well, your losses may not be as severe as your other investments will help to level it out. On the flip side, it does take more effort as you'll need to remain up to date across a variety of market sectors.
There are many ways you can go about investing your money depending on how confident you feel and whether you'd prefer to take a more passive or active approach to managing your money.
Here are some of the most common:
How much money do I need to start investing in Australia?
The amount you need to start investing can vary widely depending on which investment path you choose.
Some investment platforms allow you to begin with as little as $500, while others may require more substantial initial investments.
Are there tax benefits associated with certain investments in Australia?
Yes, Australia offers tax incentives for specific investments. For instance, contributions to super can be tax-effective. Additionally, the government has introduced initiatives like the First Home Super Saver Scheme to help people save for their first home with tax advantages.
How often should I review my investment portfolio?
Regularly reviewing your portfolio is essential to ensure it aligns with your goals and your comfort with risk. Many financial experts recommend reviewing your investments at least annually, but you may choose to do so more frequently, especially during significant market changes.
Bottom line: Investing your money can be an effective way to help you build long-term wealth. Sticking to a plan, understanding your timeframe and being in-the-know about what’s happening in the market, may also help to reduce your risk and set you up for success.
*Based on KPMG Super Insights 2023 Report as at May 2023 KPMG Super Insights 2023 Report
As one of the largest super providers in Australia,* we’re focused on delivering competitive returns, so your money continues to grow. When it comes to support, we go the extra mile— providing general super advice at no additional cost.
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This article has been prepared by NULIS Nominees (Australia) Limited ABN 80 008 515 633 AFSL 236465 (NULIS) as trustee of the MLC Super Fund ABN 70 732 426 024. NULIS is part of the Insignia Financial group of companies comprising Insignia Financial Ltd ABN 49 100 103 722 and its related bodies corporate (‘Insignia Financial Group’). The information in this article is current as at November 2023 and may be subject to change. This information may constitute general advice. The information in this article is general in nature and does not take into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions based on this information. It is recommended that you consider the relevant Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and Target Market Determination (TMD) before you make any decisions about your superannuation. You can obtain the latest copy of the PDS (or other disclosure documents) and TMD by calling us on 132 652 or by searching for the applicable product at mlc.com.au. You should not rely on this article to determine your personal tax obligations. Please consult a registered tax agent for this purpose. Opinions constitute our judgement at the time of issue. The case study examples (if any) provided in this article have been included for illustrative purposes only and should not be relied upon for decision making. Subject to terms implied by law and which cannot be excluded, neither NULIS nor any member of the Insignia Financial Group accept responsibility for any loss or liability incurred by you in respect of any error, omission or misrepresentation in the information in this communication.