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Whether you’re putting away some savings for the first time or are ready to start investing, you’ll have questions. Maybe you’re wondering where you should be putting your money? Or how much risk you should take on?

How can we manage to save anything when costs are rising all around us?

This is where a little trick called ’paying yourself first’ works wonders. You set your savings aside as soon as you’re paid, automatically to a separate account. But it’s easy to see how with inflation and rising costs that we may find ourselves slipping backwards and dipping into savings or even going into debt. We really need to make sure every single dollar has its job to do in our budgets. Here’s more on paying yourself first, plus some tips for making your money go further.

The share and bond markets have been all over the place. Is investing even a good idea?

We all have so much information at our fingertips, including on the markets and their effect on our balances. But that’s not always a good thing – especially when we can see our balance fall that much more often. It can put us off investing entirely. Yet this is all part of investing – we’re buying productive assets whose value can go up and down. The key is to have a long-term plan in place and stick to it. And when markets are down, you’ll be buying assets that are on sale. Here’s more on investing in our world of uncertainty.

How can I save when I'm living payday to payday?

Sometimes saving’s just not possible when you’re doing it tough. That said, many of us tend to inflate our lifestyles to be in line with our pay, no matter how much it is. We spend as much as we earn, and then some (using debt). A spending plan helps, as well as what’s called ‘paying yourself first’. The idea is, before you pay everyone else, you automatically tuck money away, even just a small amount. This way it goes to your goals – not someone else’s. Here's more on paying yourself first

How do I start investing with little money?

These days as little as $5 can get you started. Investing platforms such as Sharesies, Hatch, InvestNow or Kernel have lowered the barriers to getting started with investing. You no longer need steep amounts of money just to begin. To start though, it helps to map out your spending plan (aka your budget) so that you can flow more money towards your investing. The more you do, the better results you can get. Here's where to start your plan

I’ve got money in the bank getting next to no interest. But I have no idea about investing – help!

We feel your pain – everyone goes on about compound interest and all that, but if there’s not much around to compound (and it’s still getting taxed), you get nowhere.

And if you were trying to live off your savings like retirees do, it becomes even more challenging. This is why investing is part of everyone’s future, and why many of us are having a go with shares these days. The way to start investing is to learn some basics and give it a go. Now we’re not encouraging everyone to take too many risks (no sense losing sleep over this), but investing can help your money keep growing so you get something back into your pocket. Here’s where to start with investing.

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How do I get started investing?

It may sound a bit intimidating, but if you’ve got KiwiSaver or even a savings account, you’re already an investor. It’s like going shopping to buy stuff – except it’s for assets that can grow in value… and grow our money.

Still wondering?

If you’d like to discuss your own situation (even anonymously) or need further advice, contact MoneyTalks.

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Call 0800 345 123

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