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By Brian McKay

If you have a chunk of money hidden away for a rainy day, then you may have considered your options for investment. Investment entails any activity where you put money into something in the hopes of a profitable return. Some forms are much riskier than others, but here are a few ways to invest your money if you are unsure where to start.           

1. Peer-to-Peer Lending

If it is a short-term investment you are after, then peer to peer lending can be a great option for you. Rather than buying a share of a company, you will be simply lending your money to someone else in the hopes that they will one day pay you back in full, with extra on top. It might sound a little crazy, but hear it out…

If you use a platform such as Lending Club, you will be able to screen your loans and earn some hefty returns. The great thing is that if you are a bit sceptical, you only have to lend $25 to start with. You can test the market and see what kind of returns you’d be able to get from your investments. If you spread your money across a lot of different loans, you will be able to get even more returns, and a lower risk too.

2. High Interest Savings Accounts

One of the most simple ways to invest your money and gain a return is to put it into a bank account and let it accrue interest over a period of time. If you pick a particularly high interest savings account, you could be looking to accrue a pretty good sum after a while. Make sure that you shop around and choose a bank you are familiar with, and you should always be able to withdraw your money easily if you ever need to.

3. Credit Card Rewards

Credit cards are a great way of increasing your credit score and earn a little extra cash along the way. If you pick up a cashback credit card, you will earn points as you spend which will mount up to real money. It’s the same concept as a supermarket rewards card, but you can spend your money wherever you like once you’ve built it up.

4. Annuities

Annuities are a great option for certain people who would like to stabilise their money over a period of time. Before you look into taking an annuity, make sure you do your research thoroughly. Take the time to speak to a financial advisor before you go ahead to see what the best option is for you. They are incredibly complex and can trip you up if you don’t 100% know what you are signing up for.

5. Certificate of Deposit

If you want a low risk investment and don’t mind that it is incredibly boring, then you might want to look into a certificate of deposit. Essentially, when you go with a certificate of deposit, you will be putting your money into an account for a specified length of time, and you will in exchange be given a guaranteed return no matter any changes in interest rates during that time. The interest you earn on the investment will depend on the length of time you deposit the money for. It’s very straightforward.

6. Property

One of the most popular forms of investment is in property, and many of us will know someone who does this on the side of their full-time job. Investing in property involves you buying a property at auction, renovating it to a better standard, and then either selling it on for a higher price or renting it out to tenants. You could manage the whole thing yourself, or if you are too busy, you can hire a Property Management Company to help you with it all. It can be a risk, but it is also a great way to earn some extra money.

7. Shares

One of the most infamous types of investment is in the stock market. Investing in a company means that you will buy a share of that company, and hold onto it in the hopes that the value goes up and you can sell it on. A lot of the time if a company has released a new range or product, the share value will rise and you can take advantage of this and sell off while the prices are up. Again, this does hold its own risks, as the company you invest in could go into administration, but it can be a lucrative trade.

8. Vintage Stamps

One of the most collectible items in the world: stamps are a lucrative business to be involved in if you can educate yourself on the finer details. The most rare and highly sort after stamp in the world is a Swedish one which can fetch a hefty value of $3.2 million at auction. If you happen to come across a rare stamp, make sure you go to a specialist to confirm the value of it and then go to auction with your prize. Even more common limited edition stamps can fetch a pretty penny by budding collectors.

9. Self-storage units

If investing in property isn’t for you, you can also invest in storage units. As a rental, you can charge people for the storage space you have to offer and earn a decent bit of extra income alongside your daily job.

10. Rare Coins

Currency is ever-changing, and it is the oldest form of trade in the entire world. Coins are arguably the most popular item to collect in the world, which is why delving into this field could make you a decent amount of extra cash. Make use of the stash of old coins you have in the home and sell them. Most of us have a random drawer with old currency from other countries somewhere in the house, so why not make use of it now? You could find that you will make a great return on these small pieces of metal.