Tips for a 16 year old wanting to invest

14 Replies

Not sure if you’re working now, but I assume you’re still in school, so get a part time job, don’t spend foolishly, and save as much as you can. During that time, read books, forums, listen to the podcasts, etc. When you are ready to buy, consider a 2-4 family instead of just a single family house. It would still be a residential loan, but you’d have 1-3 other tenants paying your mortgage and you could potentially live for free and still make a profit each month.  They call it “house hacking” on here. Search that and you’ll find a ton of useful info. 

Also, if you’re school offers a trade school for half the day, take a building/construction or HVAC or electrical class. It will come in handy when you buy a house. 

I wish I was smart enough to start when I was 16...I probably could’ve been “retired” now at 32. 

@Henry Davis

At 16 I was already paper trading in the stock market. Basically its a program that gives you fake money, and simulates buying/selling stocks using Real Time Market price. 

I would definitely read up on how economics work; very boring to some, but I find it really interesting.

I wouldn't recommend this route, but this is what I did:

Started learning about economics, investments, taxes, etc at age 15. Joined military at age 17 and saved almost everything I earned. Invested/traded in the stock market, now I am 24 and I can technically get out of the military and sit for the rest of my life (until the stock market crash), but I am now getting into Real Estate. Remember, rich people normally have more than 3 income: one active income and the rest passive. 

On track to retire at age 40 making twice as much as my parents that clears six figs in just passive income alone. 

Reason why I don't recommend it is due to the fact that you will probably be the only one with the mindset of investing in the military. Most don't think about it until they get close to getting out. Even though there are tons of benefit being in and the perks we get with banks are incredible. It's easier to learn and get into something when those around you are doing it also. On top of that, if you have others with like minded near you, networking gets a whole lot easier. Don't take school for granted (even though I turned down full ride scholarships to join the military). I think majority of it is useless since you can research it on your own, but the world does not think so and time to time you will get awesome teachers that can give you advise (trust but verify everything). 

There is no such thing as working too hard. I use to only sleep 3-4 hrs a day due to military duty, schooling, investing, and researching/learning. I still do at times, but if you want it; you got to earn it.

@Chris Szepessy Yes I have bought and read a handful of real estate books in the last few months, and I have listened to the BP podcast for a few months as well. One of the ideas I had was to house hack properties whilst studying in university or working, I plan to live in each property for a year or so, then buying another and repeating the process.
@Ezekiel Racelis I agree about learning as much as I can, this is why i chose to study economics at school, and I hope to study accounting and finance at university. This will hopefully prepare me for some aspects of investing and I also really enjoy the subject. I don’t plan to join the military once I get out of school, I want to either go to university or get and accounting apprenticeship. My ideal plan is to house hack properties for the 5 years or so after I leave school, my goal is to make 6 figures at roughly 35 years old.
Originally posted by @Henry Davis :
@Ezekiel Racelis I agree about learning as much as I can, this is why i chose to study economics at school, and I hope to study accounting and finance at university. This will hopefully prepare me for some aspects of investing and I also really enjoy the subject.

I don’t plan to join the military once I get out of school, I want to either go to university or get and accounting apprenticeship. My ideal plan is to house hack properties for the 5 years or so after I leave school, my goal is to make 6 figures at roughly 35 years old.

 That's a great plan! Six fig at 35 years old is not that hard to reach. IF you mean by six figs on just RE alone, then yes that would be very difficult. If you don't have full cash to pay for a house up front, you will need at least 25 properties cash flowing at least $200 a month after expenses and reserves have been taken out of the gross profit. After about 10 properties, you would need to start getting creative on how to finance the properties. Or have saved all the cash flow to buy houses out right. 

Good Luck! Wish I was at your age researching about RE. Great age to start!

@Ezekiel Racelis Yes I meant 6 figures with not just RE, but I hope to quit my job and make create a business out of investing, and I feel I would like to expand into apartment blocks as well. These are just initial thoughts, nothing is set in stone yet, as I learn more and more my plan will improve.

There's nothing wrong with college, but just be careful with the amount of student loan debt you could wind up with. You said accounting, so there's probably a good chance you can get a job when you graduate. I know a lot of people who have 4 year degrees and are waiters/waitresses or working a close to minimum wage job because they couldn't find a job in their field of study. Having $100,000+ worth of student loans can really set you back in your investing. Just something to keep in mind...

First piece of advice is never think there is an easy way to become wealthy. Don’t buy any of these guru’s programs saying they will teach you how to invest with no money down. Forget that stuff, and focus on your income. A high W2 income (JOB) is your greatest asset in the beginning. I never went to college. I’m doing well, but I’d be a lot further along in my real estate career if I had a higher paying job when I was younger. Go to college but make sure to get a degree that is in high demand, and try to minimize student loan debt as much as possible. Then live below your means and invest the surplus.

@Jonathan Hulen Your point on income is very helpful! Before I had the attitude that a job would hold me back from investing becaise it would take up too much time, but you changed my mindset to now realising a job with a good income will help me find deals and therefore help me invest. Do u think getting into investing by house hacking the first handful of properties is the best way to get started? Or do you think there is a better alternative. My initial thoughts are that house hacking allows you to invest sooner, as you can put 10% down, instead of a larger 20-25%. I also feel that having 2 or 3 other tenants pay most or all of the mortgage would allow me to save lots of money, helping find future deals.

If getting a higher education is in your future first save to pay for it. You will have a solid leg up on your future if you are not burdened with student loans. That should be your first priority.

What are some of your strengths? 

Depending on your skills, you may be better jumping into real estate immediately or going to college and getting a degree with a starting 6-figure salary or after a couple years of experience. Then use your salary to give you capital needed for real estate investing and start purchasing real estate to transition out of your W2 job.

Real estate investing is much easier when you have capital and can easily qualify for loans.

@Henry Davis a job will only hold you back once you’ve gotten to the point where you can buy multiple deals a month. You are many many years from that point. Banks like to see a solid W2 income. Unfortunately in order to escape the rat race, you first have to join the rat race. As far as house hacking it’s a great strategy as long as you make sure the property will cashflow positive once you move out. That’s how I got my duplex. I put $10,000 down on a $200,000 purchase.