Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Money Matters: 5 Investment Options You Probably Haven't Thought About



There are countless articles about the power of saving at 20 versus saving at 30, and how with just $100 a month, incredible gains can be made. This foundation of investment wisdom is great, and if you started saving consistently from a young age you can be very comfortable later. 

However, stocking money into a tax-advantaged account is not the only way to invest. And money isn't the only medium of exchange. When thinking of investing beyond the basics, consider these investment options.


Microloans


While the average reader of this site cannot do much with a loan of $25 or $100, there are people all over the world looking to get ahead who can, such as in India





Microloans are a way for average people to become lenders, which will permit them to make a fair interest rate - as opposed to less than 1% at the local bank - while also helping people get ahead. Rates of return have been found to be at or around 8%.


A Good Mattress


A government study found that sleeping poorly costs you a lot of money. This is why you need to consider not just saving for later, but putting it into something right now. 

A good mattress is the answer. Whether you sleep 4 hours a night or 14, the quality of sleep matters. By choosing to save hundreds on a mattress there could be thousands lost as a result.


Invest Time to Researching Grants


Grants are tax-free money from non-profits and the government. Just as kids should be researching and applying for scholarships when going to college, adults should look into opportunities for grants. 

Some towns will update old windows and doors for residents who qualify. Why? They received a "green" grant, and the funds are to be used in ways that are good for the environment, such as with structural updates. Some grants are cash. Others are services. Both are worth your time.


Collect Something


Most people don’t think of hobbies as investment opportunities, but there are a few different things you can begin collecting that can end up providing a significant value down the road. 

A good example of this is stamp collecting. This habit is dying out, but there are stamps out in the world that are worth quite a bit of money. Another good option that is still fairly popular among much of the world today is collecting coins and other currency. Some rare coins can be worth hundreds or even thousands of dollars. 

The best part is that they only appreciate in value as time goes on, so beginning to build a collection early can really pay off. Some companies like Rocky Mountain Coin and similar firms are experts at hunting down rare and valuable coins. Buying from someone like that can be a good way to get started.


The Wait & Lunge Strategy


Lastly, we'd be remiss if we didn't talk about how to make a lot of money. This is where we interviewed a financial expert, Christopher Pascale. Mr. Pascale has an MBA in Accounting, has been published in numerous tax and law journals, and was the CFO of Portfolios with Purpose from 2013-2015.

He said this: "I mostly invest through retirement accounts - a Roth IRA as well as a TSP. Plus property. But on the side I have a special account where I wait for special events to occur," he said. "One just happened, in fact. 

The Kroger (KR) Company had a huge fall in its stock price really for no good reason, going from $30 to $21 in two days. That's what I wait for, and when it happens I lunge if I have the cash. It might take 18 months for the stock to recover, but for a 50% gain or greater, I can wait."

Not everyone has a pool of cash just to make money with, but everyone can take advantage of these other opportunities, such as microloans, a good mattress, and putting time into online research and helping others.

By employing even one of them, you will be better off.



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