High Return Investments for Low Income People

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Betterment is now offering a $25 bonus for all new accounts. There are no minimum balance requirements to sign up and no transaction fees.

High return investment advice

Olivia asked:

Greetings Matt,

Do you know of any investment return situations for lower income people? The best out there for our situation seems to be ShareBuilder, or CDs. The idea of a “side hustle” has crossed my mind as well, like selling on eBay, or writing more extensively. Doing daycare, heavy lifting, anything that ties up the car, etc. are not options. Thanks for putting your mind to this.

Regards, Olivia

If you have debt…

The easiest way to make a high return on your investments is to pay off debt.  If you have high interest debt, focus on paying that off.  When you pay off debt you continually lower the principal value of that debt thus reducing how much your debt costs you each month.  I currently choose debt reduction over investing because I earn more by reducing debt.  When that debt is gone I will shift my focus to building my Emergency Fund and investing in low-cost index funds.

If you have NO debt…

  1. Build a 3 – 6 month Emergency Fund using a high yield savings account by funding it with automatic monthly contributions.  I prefer Capital One 360 as a bank.  You could also go with CDs but then you sacrifice the liquidity of your funds for no added benefit – at the time of writing CD rates are comparable to high yield savings accounts.
  2. If you already have your Emergency Fund in place consider peer-to-peer lending and invest with Lending Club. or Peer to peer lending is one of the most sound investment advice I can give would be
  3. Another wise choice is to focus your efforts on long-term, buy & hold investing using low cost index funds or ETFs.  With income limitations, a wise choice is to invest with Betterment.  Betterment is one of the easiest, most effective ways for the layman to invest in index ETFs, which is really the best investment I know of… and they’re currently offering a $25 bonus for all new accounts, so it’s a great time to check them out.

$25 Betterment Account Bonus

Betterment is now offering a $25 bonus for all new accounts. There are no minimum balance requirements to sign up and no transaction fees.

Save for Emergencies, invest in peer-to-peer loans, and focus on index funds and ETFs.

One of your biggest allies to saving and investing is automatic deposits and automatic rebalancing… which is another reason I suggest you invest with Betterment.  They allow you to set up regular automated contributions, make it easy to determine your risk profile and diversify accordingly, and automatically rebalance your portfolio for you, all for a fee lower then any financial planner will offer.  Good stuff.

Regardless of debt amounts…

You mention starting a “side hustle” – I would recommend you follow through on this.  Making money from a blog is possible, but not easy.  It’s very time consuming and is usually slow to show returns.  Unless you can afford to work for approximately 6 months with no return, then a monetized blog may not be your most lucrative route.

Make sure you choose a business idea you are passionate about.  Life is too short to spend our time doing things we do not like for money.

In Summary…

  1. Pay down debt.
  2. Build your Emergency Fund in a high yield savings account.
  3. Invest in peer-to-peer lending with Lending Club.
  4. Invest in index ETFs with Betterment – automation is your best friend.
  5. Start your own side business you’re passionate about.
If you need debt help or personal finance advice – Ask Matt Jabs.

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Betterment is one of my two favorite ways to earn interest on my savings! They have an awesome program for the Average Joe to save and invest simply and effectively. There are no minimum balance requirements and no transaction fees. Read my Betterment Review or open an account to get started earning now.

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