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A Beginner’s Guide to Investing in Wine

A Beginner’s Guide to Investing in Wine

Experts say “invest in what you know.” Well for me, one of the things I know and love is wine. I’m sure the rest of you winos reading this understand. One thing that you might not have known until now, is that it is possible to make some money off of your love affair with this fermented beverage from the gods.

Investing in wine is certainly not a new concept, however, it is one that is trending a bit more now that a push to get more Americans investing has begun. Interest in the stock market has seen a significant drop given the economic rough patch our nation hit back in 2008. However, it remains an important part of building the high risk/high potential funds you need to supplement retirement savings.

If you’re a wino looking to diversify your investment portfolio with a commodity investment, investing in wine could be a good option. Here is a beginner’s guide to investing in wine that might help you determine whether or not it’s a solid prospect for your next addition to your portfolio.

1. Start a sufficient savings

As you probably already know, investing in wine isn’t quite as simple as heading to the store to purchase a bottle slightly above the price you’d already buy then waiting for it to grow in value. Determining how much you’re planning to invest in wine depends on whether you’re doing it for the love of wine or the potential for serious money.

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If you’d prefer to simply start collecting the wines you enjoy out of your pure love of wine, Investopedia recommends treating your collection like a baseball card or stamp collection where you pick up wines that interest you as you go. Although the payout might not be as grand this way, you could still end up with some delicious wines to drink if they don’t sell.

2. Be prepared to wait

When it comes to investing in wine, you have to be patient for the right time to buy. You have to carry out research on what vintages and wine producers have done well in the past and what is expected to happen in the future. For example, the past few vintages of Bordeaux wine have not been great and an investment could have been a bad decision. However, last year thanks to the “Rule of Fives”, this year is looking like a great year to invest in Bordeaux according to wine experts.

Unlike certain stock investments, wine can take a while to grow in value. Although this might seem like downfall for some investors, it actually could be a good thing for investors who are getting in the game early and have the precious gift of time on their sides.

According to MarketWatch, investments in wine can take 10-20 years to yield a return. If you’re looking to diversify your investments to supplement your retirement funds, this might not be an issue. If you’re looking for quick money, wine is probably not your best bet.

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    3. Look into professional storage options

    Storing wine that is intended for investment on your own is very risky. In order for wine to rise to its full potential, it must be stored at a temperature that is cool, but not too cool, in a dark area that doesn’t see much light, and away from shaking and excessive humidity. You could purchase a wine cooler, but experts in wine investing highly recommend professional storage in order to achieve higher perceived value upon selling. If you choose to go with a professional storage service, there are online guides that can help you find them in your area.

    If you choose to take the gamble and store your wines on your own, the Wine Spectator offers up a pretty solid guide to help you out.

    4. Purchase at least three bottles to get going

    According to Wine Folly, serious investors should plan to purchase at least three bottles to get started. These bottles should add up to at least $8,000 in value. This is recommended because when you consider the sizable cost of storing, insuring, and ultimately selling your wine, it becomes clearer that you should invest a sizable amount upfront to make the return worth the hassle.

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    But, as I also mentioned above, it’s possible that you’d prefer to take a more modest approach to investing in wine and treat your collection more like a passion project rather than a serious money maker. If this is the case, you’ll more than likely want to buy at your own discretion.

    5. Understand market risks

    As with all investments, investing in wine comes with a certain degree of risk. As a commodity investment, you might notice that the market is a bit more volatile than others due to industry changes. This is why diversification in your investment portfolio is so important. You simply cannot rely on one form of investing alone whether it be wine, stocks, or even your 401(k).

    As with any market you plan to enter, you should do your research to understand where the market for wine investment has been, where it currently sits, and where it might be headed in the future. This will give you a better idea of where your potential risks and benefits lie.

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      Now that you’ve got the basic information, does investing in wine sound like something you might be interested in adding to your investment portfolio? If so, use the resources throughout this post to learn a little more about the process. I might also recommend reaching out to an industry expert or two to find out how he or she got started and gather some professional insight. You never know, your love of wine could turn into a profitable skill if you play your cards right!

      Featured photo credit: perfectinsider via perfectinsider.com

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      Last Updated on September 2, 2020

      How to Set Financial Goals and Actually Meet Them

      How to Set Financial Goals and Actually Meet Them

      Personal finances can push anyone to the point of extreme anxiety and worry. Easier said than done, planning finances is not an egg meant for everyone’s basket. That’s why most of us are often living pay check to pay check. But did anyone tell you that it is actually not a tough task to meet your financial goals?

      In this article, we will explore ways to set financial goals and actually meet them with ease.

      4 Steps to Setting Financial Goals

      Though setting financial goals might seem to be a daunting task, if one has the will and clarity of thought, it is rather easy. Try using these steps to get you started.

      1. Be Clear About the Objectives

      Any goal without a clear objective is nothing more than a pipe dream, and this couldn’t be more true for financial matters.

      It is often said that savings is nothing but deferred consumption. Therefore, if you are saving today, then you should be crystal clear about what it’s for. It could be anything, including your child’s education, retirement, marriage, that dream vacation, fancy car, etc.

      Once the objective is clear, put a monetary value to that objective and the time frame. The important point at this step of goal setting is to list all the objectives that you foresee in the future and put a value to each.

      2. Keep Goals Realistic

      It’s good to be an optimistic person but being a Pollyanna is not desirable. Similarly, while it might be a good thing to keep your financial goals a bit aggressive, going beyond what you can realistically achieve will definitely hurt your chances of making meaningful progress.

      It’s important that you keep your goals realistic, as it will help you stay the course and keep you motivated throughout the journey.

      3. Account for Inflation

      Ronald Reagan once said: “Inflation is as violent as a mugger, as frightening as an armed robber and as deadly as a hitman.” This quote sums up what inflation could do your financial goals.

      Therefore, account for inflation[1] whenever you are putting a monetary value to a financial objective that is far into the future.

      For example, if one of your financial goal is your son’s college education, which is 15 years from now, then inflation would increase the monetary burden by more than 50% if inflation is a mere 3%. Always account for this to avoid falling short of your goals.

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      4. Short Term Vs Long Term

      Just like every calorie is not the same, the approach to achieving every financial goal will not be the same. It’s important to bifurcate goals into short-term and long-term.

      As a rule of thumb, any financial goal that is due in next 3 years should be termed as a short-term goal. Any longer duration goals are to be classified as long-term goals. This bifurcation of goals into short-term vs long-term will help in choosing the right investment instrument to achieve them.

      By now, you should be ready with your list of financial goals. Now, it’s time to go all out and achieve them.

      How to Achieve Your Financial Goals

      Whenever we talk about chasing any financial goal, it is usually a two-step process:

      • Ensuring healthy savings
      • Making smart investments

      You will need to save enough and invest those savings wisely so that they grow over a period of time to help you achieve goals.

      Ensuring Healthy Savings

      Self-realization is the best form of realization, and unless you decide what your current financial position is, you aren’t heading anywhere.

      This is the focal point from where you start your journey of achieving financial goals.

      1. Track Expenses

      The first and the foremost thing to be done is to track your spending. Use any of the expense tracking mobile apps to record your expenses. Once you start doing it diligently, you will be surprised by how small expenses add up to a sizable amount.

      Also categorize those expenses into different buckets so that you know which bucket is eating most of your pay check. This record keeping will pave the way for cutting down on un-wanted expenses and pumping up your savings rate.

      If you’re not sure where to start when tracking expenses, this article may be able to help.

      2. Pay Yourself First

      Generally, savings come after all the expenses have been taken care of. This is a classic mistake when setting financial goals. We pay ourselves last!

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      Ideally, this should be planned upside down. We should be paying ourselves first and then to the world, i.e. we should be taking out the planned saving amount first and manage all the expenses from the rest.

      The best way to actually implement this is to put the savings on automatic mode, i.e. money flowing automatically into different financial instruments (mutual funds, retirement accounts, etc) every month.

      Taking the automatic route will help release some control and compel us to manage what’s left, increasing the savings rate.

      3. Make a Plan and Vow to Stick With It

      Learning to create a budget is the best way to get around the uncertainty that financial plans always pose. Decide in advance how spending has to be organized

      Nowadays, several money management apps can help you do this automatically.

      At first, you may not be able to stick to your plans completely, but don’t let that become a reason why you stop budgeting entirely.

      Make use of technology solutions you like. Explore options and alternatives that let you make use of the available wallet options, and choose the one that suits you the most. In time, you will get accustomed to making use of these solutions.

      You will find that they make it simpler for you to follow your plan, which would have been difficult otherwise.

      4. Make Savings a Habit and Not a Goal

      In the book Nudge, authors Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein advocate that, in order to achieve any goal, it should be broken down into habits since habits are more intuitive for people to adapt to.

      Make savings a habit rather than a goal. While it might seem to be counterintuitive to many, there are some deft ways of doing it. For example:

      • Always eat out (if at all) during weekdays rather than weekends. Weekends are more expensive.
      • If you are a travel buff, try to travel during off-season. You’ll spend significantly less.
      • If you go shopping, always look out for coupons and see where can you get the best deal.

      The key point is to imbibe the action that results in savings rather than on the savings itself, which is the outcome. Focusing on the outcome will bring out the feeling of sacrifice, which will be harder to sustain over a period of time.

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      5. Talk About It

      Sticking to the saving schedule (to achieve financial goals) is not an easy journey. There will be many distractions from those who are not aligned with your mission.

      Therefore, in order to stay the course, surround yourself with people who are also on the same bandwagon. Daily discussions with them will keep you motivated to move forward.

      6. Maintain a Journal

      For some people, writing helps a great deal in making sure that they achieve what they plan.

      If you are one of them, maintain a proper journal, where you write down your goals and also jot down the extent to which you managed to meet them. This will help you in reviewing how far you have come and which goals you have met.

      When you have a written commitment on paper, you are going to feel more energized to follow the plan and stick to it. Moreover, it is going to be a lot easier for you to track your progress.

      Making Smart Investments

      Savings by themselves don’t take anyone too far. However, savings, when invested wisely, can do wonders.

      1. Consult a Financial Advisor

      Investment doesn’t come naturally to most of us, so it’s wise to consult a financial advisor.

      Talk to him/her about your financial goals and savings, and then seek advice for the best investment instruments to achieve your goals.

      2. Choose Your Investment Instrument Wisely

      Though your financial advisor will suggest the best investment instruments, it doesn’t hurt to know a bit about the common ones, like a savings account, Roth IRA, and others.

      Just like “no one is born a criminal,” no investment instrument is bad or good. It is the application of that instrument that makes all the difference[2].

      As a general rule, for all your short-term financial goals, choose an investment instrument that has debt nature, for example fixed deposits, debt mutual funds, etc. The reason for going for debt instruments is that chances of capital loss is less compared to equity instruments.

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      3. Compounding Is the Eighth Wonder

      Einstein once remarked about compounding:

      “Compound interest is the eighth wonder of the world. He who understands it, earns it… He who doesn’t… Pays it.”

      Use compound interest when setting financial goals

        Make friends with this wonder kid. The sooner you become friends with it, the quicker you will reach closer to your financial goals.

        Start saving early so that time is on your side to help you bear the fruits of compounding.

        4. Measure, Measure, Measure

        All of us do good when it comes to earning more per month but fail miserably when it comes to measuring the investments and taking stock of how our investments are doing.

        If we don’t measure progress at the right times, we are shooting in the dark. We won’t know if our saving rate is appropriate or not, whether the financial advisor is doing a decent job, or whether we are moving closer to our target.

        Measure everything. If you can’t measure it all yourself, ask your financial advisor to do it for you. But do it!

        The Bottom Line

        Managing your extra money to achieve your short and long-term financial goals

        and live a debt-free life is doable for anyone who is willing to put in the time and effort. Use the tips above to get you started on your path to setting financial goals.

        More Tips on Financial Goals

        Featured photo credit: Micheile Henderson via unsplash.com

        Reference

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