Investing today is more accessible than ever before, with an abundance of free resources to help you out. With the growth of financial blogging, the rise of online discount brokerages and the surge of digital wealth management platforms, the journey to your first $1M has never been more democratic and seamless. These three digital trends have enhanced the attractiveness and availability of DIY investing because the barriers to entry to invest have declined and the access to knowledge to invest smartly has greatly increased.
Millennials are in an excellent position to take advantage of these digital tools to achieve their wealth and retirement goals. And you can easily add in these 3 free tools to your DIY investing toolbox today to help you get to your first $1M (in the long-term)!
- Read financial blogs. One of the first steps to building your DIY mentality and capabilities is to cultivate your education around personal finance more broadly, and investing and saving more specifically. Financial blogs are an excellent source of free information to learn about investing basics, retirement accounts, living frugally and overall “how-tos” for the DIY investor. Blogs are a great way to get another person’s perspective on what has and has not worked for them, as well as for their (free) recommendations. Individuals (like me!) and institutions alike have blogs. Here’s a sample of blogs to get you started:
- Invest with an online discount brokerage. When you invest in your 401(k), your employer will already have partnered with a plan administrator (i.e. Fidelity, Vanguard, etc.) to set up your plan. However, if you want to do investing on your own, such as open up an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) or Brokerage Account, you can do so online through discount brokerage firms. The benefits of these brokerage firms is that you often need very little money to start investing, you get access to a wide variety of investing products (i.e. stocks, bonds, mutual funds, exchange traded funds, etc.) and they offer a wide variety of educational material to help you start and sustain your investing. Additionally, they provide you with analytical tools to create savings and investing goals, to track and monitor those goals and to check that your investment portfolio is aligned to your age, time horizon and risk tolerance. Here’s a sample of discount brokerages to check out:
- Use a digital wealth management platform. After you’ve started saving and investing you can aggregate all of your accounts into one place using a digital wealth management platform. These platforms provide a holistic view into all of your accounts, including checking/savings accounts, 401(k), student loans, etc. You can see how your money is growing (or not) over time, and these sites similarly provide free and user-friendly analytical tools to help you optimize your budgeting, saving and investing goals. Two of the best digital wealth management platforms out there are:
In my upcoming book, I’ll show you how to supplement your DIY 401(k) investing with these free digital resources. Take advantage of what’s out there, and get started on the road from a Millennial to a Millionaire today!
Stay tuned! To get this blog started, I’ll be taking inspiration from my upcoming book, From Millennial to Millionaire: DIY 401(k) – 5 Do-It-Yourself Steps for the Digital Generation to Design and Manage their 401(k), to write blog posts. My new book should be available in eBook and paperback on Amazon by summer 2017.