Want to invest, but don’t know how? This blog post has everything you need to make a sound and sensible life-time decision that will change your financial life. The goal is to convince you to open a low-fee index fund account, invest what you can, and start earning 7% annually. In ten years, this means you double your investment. This strategy is so sound, you may already be unknowingly doing it through your retirement accounts.

Consider this the beginning of your investment journey, and know that time in the market is greater than timing the market. The key is to start early, ideally now!


Action Steps to Your First Investing Account

  1. Open an investment account, preferably with a robo-advisor. I use Betterment (my referral account: https://www.betterment.com/invite/muhanzhang) but Vanguard, Acorn, Wealthfront, etc. all work.
    • Most robo-advisors are just a pretty design for what is essentially Vanguard funds, just like most eyeglass and sunglass brands means your money in Luxottica’s pockets.
  2. Fill out your service provider’s questionnaire and go with their recommended distribution.
    • Note: To compare for those under 30, I invest 100% in stocks versus bonds.
  3. Deposit however much you wish to invest, and you’re done!
    1. Whether it’s $100, $1,000, or $10,000, the important thing is to start. As a lifelong habit, setting the infrastructure to invest today will make it so your money goes to a productive place by default when you have future savings.

If you’d like to be persuaded why these are the right steps to take, read on.


Context

Five years ago, I wrote an email to good friends with the subject line “The Next FrontierInvesting“. In it, I introduced the most critical fundamentals of investing


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