Investing for beginners in the UK can be a confusing and scary concept, with money on the line, having a full understanding is essential but difficult. 

Once you start throwing around jargon, the concept of stock markets and the idea of losing money, investing as a beginner in the UK feels like a pipe dream. But choosing to invest your money in an old piggy bank simply doesn’t yield the same results as putting your money into different types of investments. 

Long-term investments are usually a better option if you’re saving for the future, as in five to ten years, a stock market investment has the potential for much greater rewards than simply putting your cash in a pot and leaving it.

Investing your money as a beginner protects your cash from losing value due to inflation, future-proofing it for your benefit.

MoneyBright wants to help you take full advantage of the benefits of investing your money. So, if you’re looking for tips for investing for beginners in the UK, we’re here to get you on the right track. In this article, we will talk you through the ins and outs of investing for beginners in the UK, including:

  • What is investing?
  • Choosing an amount you’d like to invest
  • Deciding on the type(s) of investments you’d like to make
  • Choose an investment platform
  • Be prepared for ups and downs

What is investing?

Before you can get started, as a beginner in investing, it’s good to know what you’re getting yourself into.

Investing is a way of putting a certain amount of your money into a space with the main focus being to increase the value over a long period. 

Once the value of your investment begins to grow, the positive returns on your investments will generate an income. However, as is the same for all investments, the opposite could happen. An investment does have the potential to not yield results, and you could see the value of your assets fall and lose the initial investment you made. 

All of this is to reach financial goals, whether you’re looking to save for retirement, a specific life event such as buying a home or you just want to diversify your income. Regardless, investments can be a great way to achieve these goals, but having a strong start is best.

Choose an amount you’d like to invest. 

Investing is something you should only do if you have the money to do it. You don’t have to have hundreds of pounds to spare, but investing money that could be put towards existing debt or an emergency savings pot isn’t always a good idea. If you’re not 100% sure that you should be investing, we recommend seeking personal financial advice so that any steps you take from here are right for you. 

As a result, having an amount of money decided upon is the best way to make sure you’re not risking any cash that you might end up needing. This number varies from person to person, but it should always be an amount that you can afford to lose.

MoneyBright top tip:

We recommend having some savings to one side before you begin your investment journey. Money put into investments is long-term and if you face a difficult financial situation, having readily accessible emergency cash is better than harming your investments by taking money out early. 


Decide on the type(s) of investments you’d like to make.

Investing as a beginner isn’t always straightforward, and you’ll have several options to get your head around and choose from before you can begin.

There are four main types of investments: 

  • Stocks and shares: Sometimes known as an equity investment, investing in stocks and shares is achieved by buying a stake in a company directly or through a fund. 
  • Cash: Savings built up in a bank account
  • Bonds: A bond is an IOU that pays its holder interest in exchange for a loan to the bond issuer. If the issuer is the UK government, the bond is known as a ‘gilt’. Companies also issue IOUs known as ‘corporate bonds’.
  • Property: This type of investment is a physical one made up of a building, usually with the hope that the building’s value will rise or you can create an income through renting it out.

Choose an investment platform

Before you can start to make progress as a beginner, you’ll first need to pick your platform and then your investments. Having an investment platform is one of the most accessible ways to start investing for beginners in the UK. It’s cheap and easy to manage, and these platforms act as an online shop for buying and selling investment shares and funds.

The best part about these platforms is they often have plenty of advice and guides for you to get stuck into, helping you to not just grow your investment’s value, but also your knowledge. However, they do charge a fee, so keep an eye out for the potential hidden costs.

If you’re looking for some more support in your investment management, check out our reviews of the best investment apps for beginners.

Be prepared for ups and downs

Of course, investment isn’t always positive. The more you’d like to earn from your investments, the more you’ll have to risk. So a general rule that is good to follow when investing as a beginner in the UK is don’t put all your eggs in one basket. 

Diversifying and ensuring you can afford to lose the money you’ve invested will help you in the long run. Choosing different industries and companies to invest in will also protect you. However, if you’d like to see a return in less than five years, try to keep your investments as safe as possible, as investing is usually a longer-term activity. 

You can also consistently review your portfolio, however, don’t react too quickly if you see a negative result. Investments are a rollercoaster and it can be tempting to sell or buy shares in an instant due to a current trend. 

Instead, reviewing your investments can highlight an ongoing trend that shows it is either a positive or negative investment, helping you to guide future decisions with more clarity.


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