Here are some spring cleaning tips to spruce up investor portfolios!
Spring clean your finances
With the arrival of spring and the start of National Spring Cleaning Week, now is the time to declutter, clean and organise your finances to improve your chances of meeting your goals.
Revisit your goals
The first thing to do when spring cleaning is to evaluate what you own and why you own it. This may mean some rebalancing; that is, buying and selling holdings to ensure that the mix of assets and exposure to different markets fits your objectives. Think of your portfolio like you do your wardrobe – take a hard look at your underperformers. It’s easy to hold onto underperforming stocks in the hope that they will turn around and prove us right, much like holding on to an item of clothing in case it comes back in fashion! Continuing to hold these positions can be part of a strategy of hope and every investment should serve a purpose. Make sure you have a specific goal in mind to help you see whether your investments meet that. Use this as a chance to cut off your portfolio’s dead branches and plant that money into something with a better chance of blossoming.
Deal with your debt
If you’re still making credit card payments from purchases made over Christmas, then now is the time to address any outgoings that may be putting you in the red. Websites like Money Saving Expert are a good place to start with help on how to manage and pay off existing debt. Even better, start looking at how you can boost your income by selling clothes and household items on eBay or local selling sites.
Take a look at your budget
Summer will be here before we know it, and that means lunches with friends, day trips with the kids, flights, hotels… the list goes on. Now is a good time to create a budget and stick to it. Be clear about what you have incoming, be honest about your outgoings and set a target of how much you want to put aside each month. Figure out what works best for you in regards to tracking your spending. You can do this on computer spreadsheets, budgeting apps or even on the back of an envelope!
Look to the future
It’s important to have long and short-term goals to consider when looking at reallocating your investment gains from higher rated funds and companies to lower rated ones. If you do find yourself tweaking your own portfolio and evaluating performance, try not to base your choices on big macro trends or making impulsive decisions. Giving too much weight to recent returns is a particular hazard – investors often move money from lagging investments to winning ones, but that means buying high and selling low, so make sure you are looking back at long-term performance.
Plant something new
Now you have weeded out the investments that no longer fulfil your goals, you can think about planting some new ideas in your portfolio. Why not consider a responsible investment and allow your money to grow for you while benefitting the planet? There are many products available; investing in future growth trends such as renewable energy, sustainable water & waste and sustainable cities to name just a few.
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