John J. Bowman Jr Accountant, John J. Bowman Jr. Accountant, personal finance

3 Things to Consider Before Investing in Stocks

As an increasing number of books, websites, and apps introduce the stock market to the general public, more people find the stock market to be accessible. Even though software and guides have streamlined the process, adequate research is essential for anyone hoping to get into the stock game. It’s crucial to keep numbers in mind, but nuggets of advice are equally important. Whether you’re a first-time investor or seasoned stock aficionado, the following three tips are important to keep in mind.

You have to set goals

Throwing your cash in random directions and hoping something sticks is the exact opposite of what a good investor should do. Look into the industries that interest you and seek out key players and up-and-coming competitors. Then, develop a strategy by deciding how much money you’ll invest total, and how much each investment will be. It’s best to start simpleif you don’t have much investing experience, which means you should stick to regular investments and establish a well-researched foundation. Once you’ve started that foundation, give yourself a timeframe before you check on those stocks again—as you’ll see in the next section, obsessing over the numbers is going to hinder you.

You have to keep a level head

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett has maintained for years that the buy-and-hold strategy is the best option for any investor. Real-time updates cause dramatic fluctuations to the stock market. While sudden drops in stock rates are worrisome, a goal-focused investor should be safe, even if rates are down. This is especially key in the short-term, as split-second decisions can be dangerous for the success of an investor’s stock portfolio. A volatile market is one in which long-term negative changes come into play. A short-term downturn is not necessarily a cause for alarm.

You have to diversify your investments

Don’t just invest in a bunch of businesses from one industry. Check out a few industries and businesses of interest to you, and ask yourself whether they fit in with your overall goals and budget. A diverse portfolio reduces the overall effect of a downturn on your portfolio. This may not be doable early into your investing journey, but as your portfolio grows and your investing confidence improves, diversification is going to be important.

This article was originally published at JBowmanAccountant.org.

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blog, John J. Bowman Jr. Accountant, personal finance, Uncategorized

Tips When Buying Your First Home

Buying a home is an exciting, yet stressful process.  You’re making one of the largest purchases you’ll ever make, and you want to ensure you’re going about things the right way.  For first time home buyers, this may seem even more difficult, since you aren’t exactly familiar with the process and everything that comes with it.  Additionally, depending on your state, the buying process may vary, to it’s important to be aware of any local differences. Generally, however, there are a few good tips to consider when buying your first home:

Enquire About Your Mortgage Options

As a first time home buyer, your mortgage options are one of the most important parts of your entire buying process.  Your mortgage loan determines the type of home you can afford (price wise), and how long you’ll be paying for it, depending on the amount of your down payment.  Keep in mind, your downpayment affects how much you need to borrow in your mortgage loan, so the more you have in your down payment, the better. However, for first time home buyers, down payments requirements also differ sometimes from that of someone who’s owned a home before.  Either way, find out what option works best for you, and work on your mortgage from there.

Start Saving Early

To ensure you have a solid down payment, you definitely want to start saving as early as possible.  Whether you’re putting down a “traditional” down payment of 20%, or taking advantage of a first time home buyer program, with a down payment as little as 3%, you will likely need a nice lump sum saved to cover the downpayment and closing costs…

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John J. Bowman Jr. Accountant, personal finance, Uncategorized

Increasing Your Savings Account Contributions

We frequently talk about ways to manage your credit score, combat debt, and be financially free.  One of the best ways to work towards financial freedom is having a savings account and directly contributing to it regularly.  A savings account is a great way to budget your money, and give yourself a nice fund for your future and any major life events that might come your way, such as purchasing your first home, or sending your child to college.  If you already have a savings account, you may want to find ways to increase your contributions. Here are a few key ways to do so:

Evaluate Expenses

Always evaluate your expenses before you get into forming your plan.  The amount of money you save will likely be based partially on how much you’re spending per month.  So you’ll want to calculate your monthly bills, and how much you spend on any other monthly expenses, such as food, gas, dry cleaning, etc.  If you’re finding your spending habits are extreme and are preventing you from regularly contributing to your savings account, find ways to cut back on things that may not be that necessary or important.

Set Achievable Goals

The first step in creating any solid savings plan is setting goals that are realistic and achievable.  You’ll want to base these goals on your current finances; how much money you bring in a month, versus your spending and expenses.  Once you have figured that out, set goals that make sense with your finances, whether that’s a specific portion of your paycheck per week or working on a monthly basis…

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To continue reading please visit jbowmanaccountant.info

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personal finance

Investment Firms You Should Know

Making any investment has to be done with a lot of care, and the investment firm whose services you use should be one with a good reputation. Choosing the best investment firm for your individual needs is not the easiest thing to do and requires a good deal of consideration before you actually select the firm that’s right for you.

To learn more about the best investment firms out there, I have compiled a list of some of the best firms in the world. Each one is known for providing exceptional service. Remember, though, this list is just a starting point. Make sure to conduct more research before selecting a firm.

Vanguard

Vanguard is one of the best investment firms around. It offers its services to both individual investors and financial institutions. When you opt for the services of Vanguard, you get to access your retirement plans very easily in addition to various other investments like mutual funds, ETF’s and personal IRA’s.

Fidelity

Fidelity is another a well-known investment firm whose services you can opt for if you are an individual investor. The firm provides services in the areas of IRA’s, retirement funds, and mutual funds Fidelity is well known for the fact that its services are inexpensive.

TD Ameritrade

TD Ameritrade is a good firm to invest with if you want to learn how to manage your money properly. This firm gives you an extensive range of investment and fund choices, lots of video guides, commission free ETF’s, and online courses that can be hugely beneficial for your financial needs.

Boglehead

Boglehead is the right firm to invest with if you want individualized or personalized advice in the area of finance. In order to invest with Boglehad, you need to become a part of the Bogle community and allow Bogle officials to help you make smart investments for the long term.

DIY Option

DIY Option is an investment firm where you get to come across investment brokers who tell you how to manage your money for a very low fee. Additionally, there are no huge service fees to dole out, and you get tips on how to manage your funds on your own without any external assistance.

If you keep the above options in mind, you will be in a good position to select the services of the right investment firm for your financial requirements and manage your money in the best possible way.

 

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