I received an email recently from Melissa, one of our readers, regarding investment advice. While I’ve mentioned that I don’t give advice on investments, I do want to open the floor to everyone to provide some guidance related to this issue.
By ‘guidance’, I mean advice regarding an approach, a strategy, a philosophy, even comments about specific asset classes such as real estate, stocks, bonds, annuities, precious metals, and funds are welcome, but please keep it general.
Feel free to discuss levels of risks associated with these, how steady or unpredictable returns are (or have been for you, in your personal experience.) Talk about how diversified your portfolio is and why. Discuss tax implications of profits and losses if you like. Wax eloquent about history and government policy and how that affects return on investment. However, please keep in mind the following, no-exceptions rule:
Any comments that mention a specific company, stock, index or mutual fund, brokerage fund, or investment advisor will be deleted.
If there are questions, please feel free to touch base with me by email prior to responding.
My intention with this post is not to promote investment products or companies. It is to provide a foundation and perspective with which to approach investing in a healthy and balanced way.
I think it would be beneficial to hear everyone’s thoughts about a number of things in a couple of categories…
Asking Yourself: First, what questions do you ask yourself before you considering investing? My list might start with the following…How much risk can you tolerate? What are your investment goals? How do they fit in to your life goals? How does investing fit in with your present situation: employment? current net worth? financial independence? children? retirement? charity?
Asking Others: Second, how to go about selecting an investment advisor. Who do you get referrals from? How much should you have ready to invest? How much research on investment products do you do yourself? How do you determine if the advisor is making money off his own investment recommendations–or only off clients’ commissions?
As always, I really appreciate everyone’s contributions. It should be a lively and informative discussion.