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4 Stories, 1 Goal – What Made You Think About Your Financial Future?

As part of the wider 4 Stories, 1 Goal series, we’re taking a look at some of the key questions that our guests answered on investing for later life. 4 Stories, 1 Goal is a free series designed to get people thinking about their financial future – with insights from property investors and industry experts. You can get your free 4 Stories, 1 Goal series here.

When it comes to starting your investment journey, every investor will be driven by a different catalyst. According to our 2018 survey, the top two reasons for investing are unsurprisingly ‘Investing for the Future’ and ‘Making Money’. So where does this leave you? Everyone starts somewhere and whatever your reason, it’s vital to have a clear plan and thorough research.

We spoke to our four guests on what made them start thinking about investing or, in the case of our industry experts, the common catalysts that clients come to them with before deciding on investing.

For Andy Foote, a seasoned investor, his catalyst was a moment during his education when he was 17:

“What made me think about my financial future? Actually, I was about 17 years old and I was in a lecture on a business course, the lecturer came in and said put down your pens and he waved a £10,000 check at us. He said ‘I’ve just come from the bank to pick this up. I’ve been saving for 10 years and it’s the most important lesson I can teach you all today.’

“For an hour we spoke about how he’d been saving £25 a month and he’d only put in something like £3,000 into this ten-year investment and he’d picked up a check for £10,000. We’re talking 1984, so it was a lot of money and this guy was probably earning about £8,000 a year, so, it gave me the idea of creating wealth by saving.”

Maria on the other hand, as a first-time investor, was driven by her work and peers:

“I’m from a property background so at the forefront of my mind is always property from an interest point of view but likewise, from what I’ve helped others do. So looking at short to medium to long-term plans and obviously, it has a knock-on effect and makes you think, okay well what am I doing personally?

“Obviously, pensions aren’t great and it’s looking at that long-term picture, so because of the rate at which the property market is moving at the moment if I leave it much longer, number one, could I afford it? But likewise, what could I do over that amount of time? I suppose that was the main thing that made me think about it, especially in the market that I’ve chosen to invest in. The reality is if I did leave it much longer, say six to eight months, the possibility is that I would be priced out so that was kind of the main motivator initially.”

Raj is a property professional and believes his most commonly seen catalyst is when people come into money:

“I’d say a lot of people decide when they’ve got a large amount of savings, it makes them decide that maybe it’s the time to start investing in property. Sometimes people get a lump sum from their pension, a lot of the time we get people that have got family or friends that have told them about investing in property and I find that’s quite a big catalyst for people to want to get into it as well.”

Similarly, as an independent financial advisor, Laura has experienced a range of catalysts through her clients:

“There tend to be two types of catalysts that get people to start their investment journey. The first one is a market event or something that’s happening in the economy that gets people talking and gets people thinking about what they’re doing with their financial circumstances. The other tends to be something that’s happened in their life, whether that’s a birth, a death, a marriage or a divorce, it’s something that gets them to reassess their financial circumstances and look at what they’re doing going forward.”

Whatever your reason, there’s never been a better time to start thinking about investing for the future, particularly when certain assets such as property are overperforming in terms of returns.

You can learn more about securing your financial future in our new series, ‘4 Stories, 1 Goal.’ You can download the entire series for free here.

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