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Beginner Investors

How do you get started as an investor? Don’t you need to be a wealthy stock trader or a finance whiz? Not at all!

Find out more in the article below about how to get started as an investor

Stocks and shares have outperformed cash 9 out of 10 times in any 10-year period.

Erica's Investment Journey

When Erica joined Charles Stanley, she was new to the world of investing. Before, the biggest roadblock on her path to financial literacy was the language used by most financial institutions, which, she says, 'makes investing feel inaccessible to 'normal' people'.

What started as three ‘Erica’s Investing Journey’ videos, has now grown into a significant resource that is perfect for anyone who is looking to get started – but doesn’t know how to take that leap.

Sustainable Investing in 2022

Eager to make your money work harder for the planet? Find out more about sustainable investing and ESG (Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance).

Misconceptions about investing

Scroll down to find out, and discover additional (properly sourced) facts, statistics and trivia about the misconceptions surrounding investing. We found these interesting, and we hope our readers do, too. Here's a few misconceptions to start with:

  • Most people who don't invest think investing is only for people who know a lot about it
  • Many people think investing is only for people who are 'well off'
  • Most people new to investing don't like the idea of their savings going up or down

Every year, you can shield up to £20,000 into a Stocks and Shares ISA without having to pay any tax on your investments or any interest you earn. But fewer than 1 in 6 UK adults currently hold a Stocks and Shares ISA, despite the fact that it tends to perform much better than a Cash ISA in the long term.

Short-term investing does carry higher risks, as market swings may not work in your favour when you need access to your money. But long-term investing is much more likely to pay off. In any 10-year period in recent history, stocks and shares have delivered better returns than cash 90% of the time.

A ready-made portfolio will include a sensible 'suite' of companies that have a good track record of delivering long-term returns. But you will have to decide how much risk you want to take. If you don't want to be exposed to much volatility, and you'd prefer to have access to your money sooner rather than later, consider a low-risk portfolio. If you're happy to take on a bit more risk, and don't need the money for 5 years or so, consider a medium-risk option. But if you're comfortable with bigger ups and downs and plan to keep your money locked away for many years (7+), you may want to consider a high-risk portfolio.

Ready-made portfolios are a good option for beginner investors because of their simple charging structure. Typically, you'll pay an 'all-in' fee below 1 percent, so it will be easier to understand how the charges will impact on your returns.

To get started, you'll usually be asked a series of short questions. The answers you provide will determine which portfolio (basket of investments) you'll be allocated. And it's as simple as that.

Thanks to new technology, greater competition and the introduction of online platforms and ready-made portfolios, the cost of investing has fallen in recent years. Tax-free allowances for ISAs have also risen significantly - jumping from £11,280 in the 2012-2013 tax year to £20,000 since the 2017-2018 tax year.

The savings limit for Junior ISAs also rose from £4,368 in the 2019-2020 tax year to £9,000 since the 2020-2021 tax year.

If you're looking to get a bit more organised with your finances but don't know where to start, a financial coach might be a good option for you. They can't give you professional advice like a qualified financial adviser would, but you can learn a lot about how to manage your money.

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Charles Stanley

Sponsored Provider

For over 200 years, Charles Stanley has been helping customers achieve their financial goals. We're on a mission to break down the barriers that prevent people from investing, and make it easier for you to get started.

Learn more about investing

Wondering whether you should make your first leap into the world of stocks and shares? But want to learn a bit more first? Explore our article library to find out more about investing.

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Frequently asked questions

Find answers to commonly asked questions about investing for beginners

(***sample questions and answers below***)

Is investing right for me?

Investing is not just for experienced share traders or wealthy people. But it is a long-term commitment. If you want to have access to your money within 3 years, you may be better off keeping it in cash. However, for longer time periods (especially 7 years+), investing in the stock market is likely to deliver better returns.

Now, returns are not guaranteed, but investing over a long time period may help you achieve a number of financial goals, such as:

  • Saving for a mortgage deposit
  • Saving for retirement
  • Saving for your children's education

Article 2 - TBC

How to start investing with a Stocks and Shares ISA

With a Stocks and Shares ISA, you can make your money work harder by generating long-term returns that exceed inflation. You can invest in shares, funds, bonds, investment trusts and other investments, depending on your interests and what your provider offers.

Sponsored articles

Want to learn more about how to get started in investing? Check out these articles, sponsored by Charles Stanley.