How to start, where to invest and how much money you need

“If you have high-interest debts like credit cards or personal loans, pay these off first because those interest savings will be hard to beat with taxed investment earnings.”

A general rule of thumb is to have at least three months of expenses in savings as an emergency fund before starting to invest.

Additionally, people who are saving for a large expense like a house or long holiday should be cautious about investing that pool of money.

“It can be tempting to invest your savings to help things along, but share markets are highly unpredictable in the short term. You don’t want that dream house, car, or holiday ruined because something happened on the other side of the world,” Cardozo says.

“You should aim to be invested for at least five years to help defend against share market volatility.”

94 per cent of Australians aged 24 to 39 are saving money, says CommSec.  Les Hewitt

How much money do I need to start investing?

Investors can technically begin investing with their spare change through round-up investment apps like Raiz and Spaceship.

Investors who use the apps can choose a round-up amount, like $5. Then, when they make a purchase – for example a $3.50 coffee – the difference between the purchase amount and the round-up is invested, in this instance the $1.50.

However, that may not be the right option for people planning to invest large sums of money, financial literacy advocate and Unf*ck Your Finances author Melissa Browne says.

“You want to ensure that any brokerage you’re paying for each investment isn’t eaten up by fees. The ASX suggests [a starting investment sum of] $2000 but, with lower fees inside apps, you might consider $500,” she says.

And if investors are planning to invest with a significant sum of money, it could be worth speaking to a professional, adds Fitzpatricks Private Wealth senior financial adviser Gianna Thomson.

“This is when paying for financial advice will become more valuable,” she says.

The average advised client has $785,205 in funds…

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