Set some goals

Before you start investing, set some specific savings and investment goals. These give you something to work towards, and let you tailor investments to your objectives.

Determine your goals

Some people have a very clear idea of what they want to achieve and how to get there. For others who are less certain, the first step to setting goals is to jot down a few ideas about what you would like to achieve over different time frames – the short, medium and longer term.

Short term goals – up to 3 years

When we talk about investing, the short term is usually around 1-3 years. So your goals over that timeframe could look something like this:

  • Establish a budget that helps you spend less than you earn

  • Start a regular savings plan

  • Buy a new car

  • Save for a holiday

Medium term goals – 3-5 years

Next, think about what you would like to achieve over the medium term – that’s the next 3-5 years. Over this period, your goals may include:

  • Grow a deposit for a first home

  • Be in a financial position to start a family

  • Take the family on an extended overseas holiday

The long term – 5 or more years

Finally, your long term goals will reflect what you would like to achieve over five or more years. These may include:

  • Give your children a quality education at your choice of school

  • Upgrade to a larger home

  • Enjoy a comfortable retirement

Your goals may change over time

The goals we’ve suggested here are just a guide. Your personal goals will vary according to your lifestyle, your priorities and your life stage. 

And they will change – not just because you’re getting older but because of your ongoing life experiences and changing personal preferences. The main point is that with a set of objectives in place you have a good starting point to develop a plan of action to achieve your goals – even if these goals are refined over time.

Next: The value of good financial advice

When it comes to financial advice, some want to do it all themselves, some want confirmation on decisions already made and others want a specialist who can help them along the way.

Discover how BT can help you manage your portfolio of investments, visit our Investments solutions page

Learn what can be involved with buying and selling investments and discover how easy it can be to become an investor.
We explain some of the things you might need to know to put together a portfolio of investments that reflect your goals, life stage and comfort with risk.
Investing can help you grow your capital. It also offers the potential to generate another source of income – that means extra money to live on or reinvest.