While there are a lot of guides on investing out there, there isn’t a lot of them that specifically teach students how to invest. We wouldn’t blame them though. One reason might be that students don’t have much income and always need more money than they actually have and tend to be younger than the average population.
If you’re a student, this doesn’t mean investing isn’t for you. Actually, you should invest and take it even seriously. Why?
You want to give yourself a headstart.
When you start life after school, especially in these times, there aren’t enough jobs that will pay you what you should be making right out of the gate. You’ll need money to support yourself for a while, capital to purchase your bright ideas, funds to pursue graduate school or even travel. That means you need to start now to put money away. When you finish school, when everyone else is in dire straits, you’ll be prepared.
You want to learn these useful skills early
Warren Buffett said he started investing at 11 years old and he wasted the first 11 years of his life. Investing is one of the most crucial skills you can ever have for a successful life and the earlier you learn it the better you get mistakes out of the way and adopt great habits that will help you do well. You learn to do by doing.
Now that we’ve established at least two good reasons why you should start investing as a student it’s time for us to tackle the how. So how should you invest as a student invest?
A little at a time.
Every time you spend money in school, put money away for your investments. It doesn’t have to be a lot and you could put away the same amount you spent. Rise wallet allows you to even keep that in USD right on the app for whenever you’re ready to invest it. Over time those little amounts are going to keep adding up and once they start earning returns you’re going to want to keep them going. As they say, little drops of water make an ocean.
Take a cut out of your pocket money right at the beginning
Sometimes it’s easier to decide on a fixed (advisably small) percentage of your pocket money at the beginning of the semester and put that into your investments. Put it where you can’t touch it. Then try to live on the rest.
Earn a side income and invest it
The first thing you should realize is that once you commit to investing every dime you make, your mind starts looking for ways to make money so you have funds to invest. There’s a lot more opportunity to make money in school than you know. You can start a tutoring gig, do deliveries or sell items, clothes, food etc to your mates. Some people look down on you if you’re working while in school; pay them no mind because this isn’t about ego and showing off. This is about setting yourself up for the future. So, be humble and do your thing and let the skills and habits you build as well as the money you’re putting away be your satisfaction.
Invest in your learning
Far more important than the money you put away in school is the knowledge you gain. What’s the most valuable skill you can acquire that will increase your earning power in the future? Now that you have time. Please learn it. Programming? Business skills, Excel? Public Speaking? Learn it.
Also read books about investing, financial planning, and join groups that discuss this. Join our investment group here and start following the conversations, books of the month, advice sessions etc so that you become very knowledgeable even before you start making money. Your investments in yourself pay the best interest. Don’t wait for your school or only rely on what they teach.
People don’t think of this as an investment but it is. Working exposes you to skills, networks, opportunities and industries that will build your value even before you graduate. It helps you gain clarity about where you want to go after school. It gets you a foot in the door to amazing companies. And now that the internet allows it you can absolutely do all that work without leaving your campus. Ask companies to let you write for them, from home. Do data tasks, from home. By the time you finish school you either have a job waiting, points on your resume or clarity about what you want to or don’t want to do. Either way, you’ll have a lot more value to bring.
So there you have it. The five ways you can invest as a student. Don’t forget to join our investment community, download Rise Vest and start building your future finances today. We are signing up affiliates who want to help us spread the word about Rise and earn a commission.