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5 tips to take your investing to the next level

You want to invest, but you’ve got to pick up the kids from school. Life gets hectic, and sometimes it’s hard to make investing a top priority. Jeff Holzmann, busy father and managing director of iintoo, a real estate investment company, offers tips that can take your investing to the next level.

Learn the macro trends

You don’t need to know why stocks are volatile, just that they are. How well you understand global inflation isn’t going to influence the outcome of your investment, Holzmann said. “What it will do, is give you sort of peace of mind that you understand — at least to some level — what it is that you’re accomplishing.”

Buy what you know

“Nobody wants to feel like an idiot,” Holzmann says. “So the ability to articulate why you invested in a certain company, in a certain industry, whether it went up or down, is going to make you feel better about that whole process.”

This has been one of Warren Buffett’s core tenets of investing. He wrote this in a shareholder letter in 1996: “What an investor needs is the ability to correctly evaluate selected businesses. Note that word ‘selected’: You don’t have to be an expert on every company, or even many. You only have to be able to evaluate companies within your circle of competence.”

Consider real estate

The population is growing. Every year, more and more people need housing, and Holzmann says that is good news for real estate investors.

“Over the span of the last hundred years, globally speaking, an investment in real estate — and commercial grade real estate at that — was probably one of your best investments, if you were able to pull it off,” Holzmann said. Crowdfunding has opened the game of commercial real estate investing to a new audience of people.

Avoid trends

If you’re hearing about an investment on Instagram, or from your auto mechanic, it’s probably too late for you to get in on that trend.

“When you start hearing it from the average Joe, it probably means there’s a lot of early adopters in it before you who are waiting for you to liquidate their position,” says Holzmann.

Think about bitcoin — it reached a huge peak not that long ago, but it’s been around for several years. If you were a very early adopter, you probably saw a huge gain if you sold at the peak. But if you invested on the upswing, there’s a chance you lost out in the recent downturn.

Diversify

Holding multiple types of assets — stocks, bonds, real estate, cryptocurrencies, etc. — helps alleviate the risk of holding just one. If the stock market takes a nosedive, holding bonds or real estate can help keep your entire portfolio from tanking with the markets.

“There are so many unknowns and different variables in the market that nobody can really guarantee any type of outcome,” Holzmann says. “So having a diversified portfolio with different asset classes that behave differently minimizes or lowers your overall risk, and it is very highly recommended.”

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