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Prioritizing financial goals can feel like pitting one dream against another: Would you rather purchase a home or pay off student loans? Would you rather send your kids to college or be able to retire? Would you rather attend a friend’s destination wedding or buy a car? But with smart planning, you can increase the odds of achieving most – if not all – of your aspirations. Here are some common financial goals , and investing strategies that may help turn your plans into reality:
Smaller goals, such as saving for a vehicle down payment, can be a great first investment opportunity. If you’re looking to purchase a car in the next one to three years, there are several relatively safe short- term investments that can help you accumulate a few hundred or a few thousand dollars. Look for investment vehicles with short-term maturity dates or options that allow you to access funds without penalty, such as a Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC)-insured money market account. Also, consider investing in U.S. savings bonds that have a maturity that matches the timeframe in which you want to make the purchase.
Purchases you want to make in the next two to five years, such as making a down payment on a home, can be partially funded by short- or mid-term investments. In addition to the short-term investment options listed above, consider FDIC-insured certificates of deposit (CDs), which can give you a considerable rate of return with relatively low risk, and potentially increase in value the longer your money is invested.
Goals between five to fifteen years in the future, such as funding a child’s college education through a 529 plan, may offer you the opportunity to take a little more risk in your portfolio. Riskier investments, such as stocks, have the potential to offer higher longer-term growth than more conservative investments. For example, investing $200 per month from birth to age 17 could potentially yield almost $80,000 if the return on investment averages about seven percent .
Some of life’s biggest goals, such as retirement, require longer-term planning. From the moment you graduate from college and enter the workforce, you want to put retirement on your financial agenda – the key is finding the right long-term investment strategy for your specific situation. A good rule of thumb is to have a higher ratio of riskier to conservative investments, when you’re younger and then increase the percentage of more conservative and income-generating investments as you age. This can help you get the most return on investment in your younger years when it makes more sense to take financial risks.
By choosing investments that complement specific goals, you can improve the odds of achieving your objectives without compromising the other priorities in your life.
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This information is provided for educational and illustrative purposes only.
Wells Fargo Wealth Management provides products and services through Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., and its various affiliates and subsidiaries.
Generally, CDs may not be withdrawn prior to maturity. CDs are FDIC insured up to $250,000 per depositor per insured depository institution for each account ownership category. CDs may be issued by out of state institutions.
Please consider the investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses carefully before investing in a 529 savings plan. The official statement, which contains this and other information, can be obtained by calling your financial advisor. Read it carefully before you invest.
The strategies discussed may not be suitable for your personal situation, even if it is similar to the example presented. Investors should make their own decisions based on their specific investment objectives and financial circumstances. It should not be assumed that the recommendations made in this situation achieved any of the goals mentioned. This example is hypothetical and does not represent any specific, investments or strategies.