I wrote a post a while back about how investing scares me, and in some respects, my feelings on it haven’t changed. Yet I know, deep down, that I truly want to achieve our dreams (see ultimate dream 1 and ultimate dream 2), then I need to get over my fear and get investing, especially for the longer term.
In that post, I talked about how I needed to do more research, more reading and generally gain more knowledge about investing. I am definitely the type of person who wants to know every little detail about something before taking the next step. As this involves our hard earned cash, I want to be even more sure that I have some idea about what I’m doing so that (hopefully) I don’t lose it by being reckless or getting out of my depth in something I don’t fully understand.
I think I have come up with a strategy that I am more comfortable with. I read a lot of financial blogs, some of which are focused mainly on investing and dividend income. Whilst I find it fascinating how their portfolios grow and fall, how their dividend payments increase month by month, year on year, and how it really does make a massive difference to their incomes and, in turn, their financial freedom. Most of the ones I read are based in the US, where there are a extensive range of accounts and platforms to choose from, or so it seems. Many of them don’t mention any recurring costs within their portfolio, once they have paid the fees incurred by buying the shares in the first place.
I have been doing some comparisons with various UK platform options, for both individual shares and funds, and in 99% of cases, the fees and recurring costs for owning individual shares massively outstrip the gains made by the market and the dividend income received. In fact, I did one comparison and if I bought funds instead of individual shares, I would have £50,000 more at the end of a 10 year period, which is insane! I think, in the end, that comparison has made me re-think what I thought would be my original investing strategy to a new one.
My investment strategy, as basic as this might sound, is to invest in around 20 different funds. I think that this will be a manageable number, as I can keep an eye on things but it shouldn’t get too complicated. I can also see if and when things change, either for better or worse, and act accordingly. I have already started to research and make notes on various funds that I think should do well (as well as you can know, I guess?).
My task over the next couple of weeks is to open a S&S ISA and set up a standing order so I can finally begin this journey. I’m still very apprehensive about it, but I’m going to take things slow and see where it takes me.
What do you think? Anyone really experienced want to give me any advice? I’d really appreciate it!