Investing can be a big life-changing decision, especially when you are thinking of investing for the very first time. The smallest of mistakes or errors can cost you, literally. Investments carry inherent risks and that generates fear even amongst the most experienced investors. At the end of the day, it is our hard-earned money that we want to turn into our children’s college fund, our first family home or any other reason most dear to us.
So, here are 7 habits of successful investors that can guide any novice to make the right investment decisions:
(Article is too long? Scroll down! We have an infographic)
1. Practice makes perfect but research can help you get it right
There is no dearth in the availability of research material for the purpose of investment. The internet alone can walk you through the basic nuances of investing which you can then supplement with studies, analysis and more. You could attend workshops and seminars that are conducted throughout the year in Singapore on how to invest.
Wall Street Journal’s various publications including “The Wall Street Journal Guide to Understanding Money and Investing” have been considered to be good reads. Any successful investor knows the exact reason behind their investment. They have investment goals and they work towards achieving them through intensive research and implementation techniques.
2. Understand the various facets of investments
There are plenty of investment opportunities and many that have the potential to be good investments in the future, but you need to understand the business thoroughly in order to know which one shows the best potential for your goals. This comes from understanding the various facets of investments in Singapore.
Equities, mutual funds, bonds, REITS and even fixed deposits, are just some of the popular investment opportunities that you can invest in.
3. Save for emergencies simultaneously
Don’t look at your investments when an emergency presents itself. Don’t funnel all your additional income into stocks, shares, real estate, etc. or any other irresistible investment opportunity. Because, when you don’t have an emergency fund, the alternative that you will choose is to sell one of your investments to cover the unavoidable expenses. Isn’t that a wasted investment opportunity, especially considering the amount of time you spent cherry-picking the perfect opportunity for you?
Your investment is not an emergency stash. So, set aside a portion of your income, however little that portion might be, for your future emergency requirements. This way, you won’t dip into your investments during times of need and your investments will continue to grow.
4. Don’t shy away from taking risks
The simple logic behind this is that if an investment is deemed to be risky, it will generate higher returns in the future. So, in saying that, if an investment has no risk involved, the opportunities will also be limited. You cannot live in the fear of taking risks for the rest of your life.
Although, when you start out with investing, it is advisable to start slow and get the lay of the land. However, after gaining knowledge and insights on how investments work in Singapore, you can try your hand at some investment opportunities with greater risk in order to reap higher rewards.
5. Always think about the future when making decisions
Investments are not about quick returns. Therefore, you need to learn to be patient when it comes to making investment decisions. It is not about thinking of today or tomorrow, but you need to be patient enough to wait months or even a few years to get the best return on your investment.
Your decisions should never be motivated by emotion, but by strategic thinking and thoughtful planning for the future. Calculate your every move like you would do in a game of chess and then wait for your investment to unravel and translate into favourable results.
6. Stop speculating and start investing
You need to learn to take action. Do not simply sit on the sidelines and speculate about investments, you need to put yourself out there and invest. When you sit on your back all day waiting for better prices, for every second that you wait, you are making a loss. The risk you are taking here is not of making a loss but of missing your chance at making a profit. Investment is not a game of “The Price is Right”, so get off your couch and take the leap, or maybe even the first step.
7. Learn from your mistakes
Nobody is perfect. Nobody can get it right every single time. If you do, then we should definitely swap lives right now!
The most successful investors build their careers on a monument of mistakes, botches, triumphs and accomplishments. The path does not lead to success each and every time. So, instead of being so hard on yourself for making a mistake in this business (which we have already established carries inherent risks), instead learn from them, ponder on what went wrong and how you can avoid making the same mistake again.
Discipline your financial decisions by learning from your mistakes. At the end of the day, if you do not make any mistakes, you have very little to learn from your actions.
Use this as your guide for the road to successful investments and try not to fall off course. But, even if you do, learn and grow from the mistakes you make and get yourself back on course, stronger than ever. Remember, the destination is only beautiful as long as the journey is memorable.
This article was contributed by Bank Bazaar Singapore.
Disclaimer: The views, opinions and positions expressed within this guest post are those of the author alone and do not represent those of Funding Societies. Nothing in this article should be construed as, constitute, or form a recommendation, financial advice, or an offer, invitation or solicitation from Funding Societies. The content and materials made available are for informational purposes only and the copyright of this content belongs to the author and any liability with regards to infringement of intellectual property rights remains with them.