You need to be investing so you can retire. If you’ve yet to start, you need to download Acorns; they make it super easy and you don’t need a huge chunk of change to get started (in fact, all you need to start investing through Acorns is $5!).
What is Acorns?
Acorns is a financial service that helps you invest your money, through an app on your phone. It has a beautiful user interface which makes it easy to see how your money is performing. Unlike large investment firms, you don’t need large sums of cash. Acorns connects to your checking account, “rounds up” your transactions (so if you spend $5.50 at Starbucks, fifty cents will be “rounded up” in to your Acorns account), and invests in the portfolio of your choice. By investing pocket change in stocks, you’ll slowly but surely build up a nice portfolio that works hard for your future.
How do I start investing with Acorns?
It’s simple! First, download the app from either Apple’s App Store or Google’s Play Store. Once you have the Acorns app download to your phone, there are just three more steps until you’re officially a new investor:
- Connect your bank
- Acorns needs to connect to your bank to transfer money. Several of the top banks (like Chase, Bank of America, and Wells Fargo) allow you to sign in with your online banking credentials to connect. If you use a smaller bank, Acorns will initiate a small transfer to verify your account which should show up in a few days. Once you see the test transfer from Acorns, note the amount (it’ll be under a dollar) and head back to the app to verify.
- Answer a few basic questions about yourself
- Acorns needs you to answer a few standard questions before you can get started. Some of the questions will ask if you’re affiliated with a broker dealer, subject to backup withholding by the IRS, and if you are a large shareholder or director of a publicly traded company. Most people will select “none of these apply to me.”
- Become an investor
- You’re about to officially become an investor. Nice! Acorns helps you choose the best portfolio for YOU based on your age, time horizon, income, goals, and risk tolerance.
- Acorns has five different portfolios:
- Conservative (largely government and corporate bonds)
- Moderately Conservative (government and corporate bonds, along with large and small company stocks)
- Moderate (mainly corporate bonds and large and small company stocks)
- Moderately Aggressive (mainly large and small company stocks, along with real estate)
- Aggressive (mostly real estate, small company stocks, and emerging market stocks)
Watch your money grow
You’re all set! Welcome to the world of investing. After a few months, you should have a a couple hundred in your Acorns account (depending on your account settings, of course). You can buy additional shares at anytime through a one-time transfer if you’d like. Or, if you need some cash, you can also sell your shares to have those funds transferred back to your bank account.
While there’s risk with any investment (you can both gain and lose money), we’ve found that Acorns does a great job with investing your funds in the right stocks. They do charge $1 per month to maintain your account, but it’s well worth it (heck, I’d pay more than that).
In close, we recommend using Acorns to start investing. You’ll be glad you did!