A prudent person saves money throughout his/her life and invests it intelligently. Saving should begin as soon as you get your first pay cheque. Once you have a sizeable amount, start investing, because you have to make your money work for you. But do remember, investments need to be reviewed from time to time. In fact, every time you reach a milestone in life, you should take a re-look at your investments. Your life changes whenever something significant happens. This change should be reflected in your investments as well. In short, do not be rigid about your investments – keep them open for review.
Take a look at some of life’s important milestones when you need to revisit your investments.
1. Landing A Job
When you are a student, your approach to money and investments is different. In all likelihood, you will be largely dependent on your parents for financial support. But your life’s reality changes drastically as soon as you get your first job. You are now on your own, responsible for your finances and your investments. This is the time to chart out your own course. You need to start your own bank account, have a clear idea of income and outgo, and figure out the best investment options. The first and foremost thing to do is to purchase term insurance. By safeguarding your life, you are displaying responsible behavior, which will go a long way in securing your future.
When you are single, your expenses are only your problem. But when you get married, you have a responsibility to your spouse. Marriage is a huge game-changer, especially in India, and it calls for serious thought to money matters. You need to sit with your spouse and figure out the best investment options. A savings account may not be good enough, post-marriage.
Now its time to be more serious about money, therefore, you need to opt for term insurance, health insurance, and fixed deposits. In case you already term insurance, increase your coverage. In case you don’t, make it a point to purchase one after tying the knot. But before making your decision, it’s vital that you compare and purchase the best term insurance available in the market. Look for the term insurance benefits offered by insurers like Max Life Insurance while making your final decision.
Depending on your risk appetite, you might also want to go for equity investments and mutual funds.
Having a child immediately puts your resources under strain. Suddenly, expenses will shoot up. And worse, they will keep on going up and up! This is the time in life when you have to seriously re-consider your long-term financial strategy. The best way to deal with this situation is to dedicate more funds to insurance. You will need to take a child savings plan from a reputed insurer. Besides, you might want to increase your term insurance coverage to ensure the safety of your family. You might need more liquidity to meet the additional expenses. Have a detailed discussion with your better half and find your way.
4. Home Purchase
Buying a home is a big step in anybody’s life. In all probability, it will involve a long-term mortgage. You will need to start planning for your home loan well in advance, which would also entail a review of your overall investments. In order to pay your home loan EMIs, you might need to liquidate some of your asset classes, close an FD or sell off some stocks. Remember that this is not the time to take risks. You need to be more conservative in your approach to money and investments. Furthermore, you should also consider increasing your term coverage at this point. This is important, especially, to save your loved ones from the financial hardships and the burden of home loan EMIs in case of your untimely demise.
Retirement changes your life drastically. Your income suddenly stops, and that can hit you hard. If you retire from government service, you would get a pension, of course, but it is not the same as getting a full salary. This is the time to review your investments seriously. When you are approaching retirement, it is best to liquidate all long-term investments, buy a retirement plan from a renowned insurer, and keep a healthy bank balance. In fact, you should take a retirement plan (ULIP-based) much before you actually retire.
The Last Words
Finally, do remember to include tax considerations in every investment decision you take. If you make it a habit to review your investments from time to time, even when there is no specific reason to do so, you will have a better idea of where you stand, and what changes you might need to make going forward.
Do not confuse reviewing investments with changing your mode of investment. It is quite possible that upon review, you will find that you do not need to make a change. The thing to remember is that you should revisit your investments from time to time. Whether you make a change or not will depend on what you discover, post review.