Career & Money

How To Kick-Start Your Investing Journey, According To 4 People Who Have Done It

By Urban List Writers
23rd Mar 2021

If you’re here it means you’re either curious about starting to invest, or you’ve started, but you’re not entirely sure what you should be doing. With only 1 in 5 Australians investing, and a measly 23% of those aged below 40 years of age, it’s no wonder so many of us are scared to take the plunge.

We believe anyone at any age should feel empowered to grow their wealth and live their best life now and in the future, which is why we’ve partnered with our Fintech friends at Pearler. They are passionate about making investing easy for young Australians, creating their very own platform that’s helping them make their investing debut with ease. 

Whether you need some help from Pearler to get you started or you need some encouragement from others who have lived and breathed the experience, here are four stories to help inspire your investing journey. 

Justin Baldori

25, Aviation Project Manager
 

What inspired you to start investing?

I started watching some YouTube videos and reading books about long-term wealth creation and how to use compound interest in the stock market to grow wealth over time. I was confused why young people weren’t really taking advantage of investing and this motivated me to learn as much as I could and hopefully get my friends on board. I’ve gotten so into it I’ve even made my own Youtube channel about all things stocks and finance.

Were you nervous to make the leap into investing?

100%! It was such a new thing to me at the time and was hard to find a lot of quality information. Once I made my first investment all these ‘worries’ went away and that was the start of this insane journey. Like anything, taking the first step towards a goal is always the hardest, whether that’s starting at the gym, creating a side hustle, or in this case investing, but just starting is the best thing you can ever do.

How long have you been investing?

Approx five years and I’ve only scratched the surface of what I can learn as an investor. This is only the start of my investing journey and during that time I have learned so much from other investors all over the world on the same journey as me.

Have you had a positive journey? How has it made you feel?

I’d say 99% positive and 1% negative. It has been an incredible journey so far, I’ve made lifelong friends through investing and learned so much about the economy, individual businesses and most importantly long-term wealth creation. As for the 1% negative… well, it would be nice if stocks always went up.

What's one investing misconception? 

That you have to be mega-rich and spend all day and night studying charts, trading and in the end you will probably lose it all. We are constantly fed how crazy and scary the stock market is through movies, news and horror speculative investing stories, but the truth is, you can start investing with a couple of bucks through micro-investing, or broad-based market tracking ETFs, and this can all be done on your iPhone.

What would be your advice to others like you who are looking to start investing?

Two things: firstly, an investment in yourself is the best investment you will ever make. Take the time to learn from as many people as you can who have embarked on their investing journey. And secondly, think long term.

Sophie Oddo

27, Content Producer
 

What inspired you to start investing?

To be completely honest, I’ve only really just got a handle on my finances in the last year or so. I had some credit card debt that had been hanging around like a bad smell for many years. So, when I finally got rid of it and was able to start properly saving, I felt empowered. I was on a roll and I wanted to explore other avenues that could help me to continue to grow my wealth and save.

Were you nervous to make the leap into investing?

Initially yes, but then I found out about Pearler through a colleague, which really changed it all for me. I am pretty lazy when it comes to anything to do with adulting or life-admin, so the thought of speaking to a stockbroker or having to do excessive research or anything remotely time-consuming was a huge deterrent for me. 

How long have you been investing?

My journey has only just begun! While it’s early days, I feel very excited at the thought of what my financial future now has the potential to hold, compared to only a couple of months ago.

Have you had a positive journey? How has it made you feel?

Everything I have experienced so far has been very positive. Pearler has made the process so seamless and it allows me to rarely even think about it—which was a big win for me. There’s enough going on in my day-to-day life that the idea of constantly checking the stock market or looking at how my money was traveling was a really exhausting thought. I feel really empowered that I am doing something that will help me to live my best life in years to come. I really feel like I'm adulting, and I'm not even really doing anything—it’s great.

What's one investing misconception? 

Probably that you have to be rich to invest—I am living proof this is a myth! This is particularly true in the sense of the Pearler platform as you can set a deposit amount for as frequently or infrequently as you want. For example, I have a set amount I deposit into Pearler every fortnightly payday. Then when my account reaches $1,000, it invests it into my chosen portfolio. BOOM!

What would be your advice to others like you who are looking to start investing?

My advice would be to start young. I feel loads of regret that I didn’t implement a long-term investing strategy when I started working at 17. I try not to lament too much about what could have been but it’s definitely something I feel that everyone should get into from a young age. If only they taught this shit in high school, right?

Virginia Krantz

26, Business Analyst


What inspired you to start investing?

I landed my first job waiting tables in high school and started working full-time at 20 while I completed my degree part-time. Living at home while I studied, I was able to save a lot of what I earned—I didn’t have many expenses as a 20-year-old apart from a bottle of Passion Pop on the weekend and the occasional splurge on a couple of Sportsgirl dresses.

After a few years of saving, it felt like such a waste to have my hard-earned money wasting away in a bank account and accruing approximately 31 cents interest per quarter.

Were you nervous to make the leap into investing?

I am a fairly risk-averse person and like to have a sense of control, so the thought of putting my money somewhere where it’s at the whim of the market and the broader economic sentiment was quite scary. It was a big deal for me at the time. Because of this, I wasn’t prepared to get into short-term or high-risk investments. Instead, I sought advice from a stockbroker and provided my investment time frame (which was five years).

The stockbroker cost me a little bit in terms of fees but that cost was entirely worthwhile for me to get advice from an expert, rather than myself who was not willing to put in regular research into what’s happening in the market—I’d rather spend that time looking at memes.

Ultimately, I invested in a managed fund. My money was pooled together with other investors - instead of owning the investments myself, the managed fund owns the underlying investments, and an investment manager buys and sells the assets on my behalf. Essentially, by buying into the fund you’re getting shares in many companies. To me, this was a safer option because if one stock out of 100 in their managed fund drops dramatically, that will have less of an impact compared to investing in individual stocks.

How long have you been investing?

I’ve been in a fortunate enough position to have invested for five years, and recently cashed out my stocks for a profit.

Have you had a positive journey? How has it made you feel?

Overall, I’ve had a positive journey with investing and if I could do it all again, I wouldn’t change the decisions I made. While it’s easy to look at the stocks after you’ve sold and thought ‘Why didn’t I wait one more month before cashing out?’, but you have to be comfortable with the fact that you can never be sure of the best time to sell. Time in the market is better than timing the market. While it’s possible that I could have made more money if I chose shorter-term, higher-risk investments, I was completely satisfied with the path I took because it allowed me to sleep easy at night.

Another reason I used a stockbroker is that I wasn’t prepared to invest my time to be constantly looking at the stock market. It is a stockbroker’s job to be monitoring the updates and they can advise you when it’s a good time to sell your stocks.

What's one investing misconception?

I held the perception that in order to invest I had to be a cigar-smoking, whisky-drinking businessman who is often seen scrolling through the stocks on their iPhone. When investing on a mid-to-long timeframe, you also don’t have to pay attention to every little dip and bump in the market along the way.

What would be your advice to others like you who are looking to start investing?
Invest with what you feel comfortable with. Don’t feel pressured to invest all your savings at once. Dip a toe in the market and start with a small investment, you can always add more money later.

Dylan Smith

22, Site Engineer


What inspired you to start investing?

Lots of my friends and people at work used to talk about their stocks. I guess I felt like it was something that I also wanted to do but was unsure about the right time or stocks to invest in.

I guess the moment that inspired me to invest was during the COVID-19 crash at the start of 2020. From what everyone had told me and what I had read, this was the best time to invest.

Were you nervous to make the leap into investing?

Yes, extremely nervous. It’s quite nerve-racking purchasing stocks with money you have saved by slaving away over the past few years.

Have you had a positive journey? How has it made you feel?

At this point, it has been positive. This is not only because the stocks I have bought have done well but also from the feeling that the investments I am making now will help me in the long run—for example buying a house, retirement, etc.

What's one investing misconception? 

Many people believe that the market is volatile, unstable and you could lose your investment. This may be true if you are looking to sell your shares in the next few years, or buy into penny stocks. However, for more long term investments—like seven to 10 years and over—into index funds or blue-chip stocks, the market has always rebounded from economic downturns and provide consistent, long-term returns

What would be your advice to others like you who are looking to start investing?

Firstly, research into finding a broker with the lowest fees. Secondly, diversify your investment—don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Thirdly, many brokers will offer free trading for a period of time or up to a certain value. This is great when you first start investing as it allows you to diversify your investment across different sectors without paying multiple brokerage fees. And lastly, invest in an index fund and forget about your stocks—just imagine it’s still in the bank but in this case, you’re earning far more interest over the long run.

This article is sponsored by Pearler and proudly endorsed by Urban List. Thank you for supporting the sponsors who make Urban List possible. Click here for more information on our editorial policy.

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