Planning for the Future
Here's an unusual post for me...a serious one. I'm trying to figure out the whole retirement/savings/investment for the future thing. It's not that I haven't thought about it before, but circumstances have been such that I really couldn't focus on it too much until now. A 401K is a duh, but that isn't enough, and I need to seek advice on some strategies that will work for me. I need to find more out about exactly WHAT to invest IN. The pro and cons of CD's, money market, IRA's, stocks/bonds - and so on and so forth. Is real estate still a good investment? It doesn't seem so in this economy, but I don't know. Should I be aggressive, should I be conservative, a little of both? I know to diversify, but how? I had a financial planner help me out with the different stocks to diversify in for my 401K, but it gets pricey to go much further than that, and I would rather invest the money rather than pay someone too much to give me opinions. The stock market is volatile of course, and I don't know much about it, so it frightens me. I'm doing some research, but it can get confusing and it takes a lot of time I don't have. At present I don't have much to work with, but I anticipate with hope that things will change later and want to be ready and educated so as to not make poor decisions. Right now it is important for me to work on getting out of debt of course, but I want to be proactive in saving as well.
Does anyone out there have any general advice? What do you do? I don't expect details from strangers on the internet of course, but if anyone has any practical advice I would love to hear your thoughts.