So you have followed the steps so far. You’ve created some gap in your budget and found some positive cashflow to toss into savings. Now you’re reading this blog and you’re like “Okie Dokie Captain! I’m down with saving and whatnot, but investing? Sounds like a scam to me!” and I have to hand it to you, you’re spot on.
You shouldn’t invest because it’s just so darn complicated. The way you have to put money all the way into an account, then buy a broad-based ETF like VTI if you’re using something like Robinhood, or investing in total stock market index funds like VTSAX if you’re using a 401k or IRA that offers it. Like, how does one even do that? It can’t be as easy as just putting some money into Robinhood, searching “VTI” in the search bar, and pressing buy at market price and just leaving that there until retirement or whenever you want that money.
Sorry, what? Wait, like that’s literally the whole process?
Moving on! There’s no way you want to lock that money away for like, 20 years right? I mean committing your money onto a trading platform means you can’t get that money back! You have to wait, and wait, and wait until you retire! It’s not like investing those extras into a platform like Robinhood would give you the accessibility to sell those stocks and have that money back in your account within the week.
What do you mean “That’s totally how that works?” like, can we get a fact-checker or something in here so I get this information before?
Okay, but I mean what about the risks! You could lose all of your money! What happens when the stock market crashes? I mean, we are in the middle of a global pandemic here! When the stock market goes down you are actively losing money if you are invested in the stock market, right?
So you’re telling me that you have to sell stocks to actually realize a loss? So what happens if you don’t sell them? You at least are losing some of your equities right? NO!? What do you mean NO?? You have the same amount of equities no matter what happens with the market? So there’s no way to actually lose any money if you don’t sell when stocks are down??
FINE! But we are officially in a bear market! You can’t make money in a bear market! That literally means that the stock market is going down!
The last time we had a bear market was 2009, right? The housing market crash, like people, lost their homes. We’ve had HOW MUCH of a return since then??? An AVERAGE of 15.28%???
Okay, enough with the inner dialogue here. To wrap this up, we have a lot of reasons not to invest in the stock market. Whether it be fear, lack of available funds, the misconception that it’s too complicated, or that it’s only for the rich. You have the ability to take the tools that the rich are using to get richer and use that same tool to level the playing field.
I invest because I want to make every frugal decision worth more than it’s face value. I want to see my money make more money. I don’t want to save money in one place of my life just to buy something else with it. I want to let those savings grow so that I can buy my future through early retirement, and I hope some of you feel the same.
If you have concerns or questions, feel free to leave a comment below or email me a firstname.lastname@example.org. We can absolutely walk through your personal obstacles to get you moving toward a financially independent future.