Thursday, December 7, 2017

investments

A few years ago I first discovered the concepts of aggressive saving, frugality, and early retirement. Since then I've read about many different investment approaches on some of the different early retirement blogs.

They seem to vary widely. Some push doing all your own research and sticking money into big economy-anchoring companies with solid histories of growth, value, and dividends. Others are proponents of seemingly endless angles of diversification, to include minerals and precious metals. When we first started exploring the world of investing a few years ago, DH and I started testing the waters with things like mutual funds, index funds, ETFs, C/Ds, even peer-to-peer lending and REITs.

I've learned that many of my rookie choices weren't well thought out. So, once or twice a year I get the motivation to cut losses and clear out some of the more obvious drags on my portfolio. Over the years I've slowly but surely baby-stepped toward elegant and productive simplicity with my investments.

It took a few years of experimenting and reading and re-reading those early retirement blogs for me to finally reach the point of opening a Vanguard account. Now I feel silly for procrastinating on it so long. One thing I've learned about myself and about life in general is that simpler usually works out better. I'm now a fan of sticking almost entirely to mass indexing as it has a winning track record and it fits perfectly with my lazy ethos as I have little patience for deep in-the-weeds research on endless individual companies and mixed fund choices. (Although I will occasionally throw a small amount at an individual company on a whim based on the news and a skim of their stock profile... over the years I've slowly gotten better at intuiting individual stock picks 😊)

While I still have some holdings in things a REIT, an ETF, and stocks of a few individual companies, my current weekly auto-transfers now go only to my Vanguard account, straight into just two funds: VTSAX and VBIAX.

I just love the minimalism of it. No clutter, no fuss, reliable growth.

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