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What are the basic steps to investing?

Want to invest but don’t know where to start? The Investments team shares five basic steps for investing.

1. Define your goals

Taking the first step on your investment journey may feel daunting. However, setting clear goals with achievable targets can be a good place to start in the planning process. 'I want to retire at 60 with an after tax income of $50,000 which will last at least 25 years' is one example of a goal.

2. Understand the investment basics

Some of the main things you need to understand include the different asset classes (for example, cash, Australian and global shares, property and fixed interest), how they perform, their relationship between risk and return, and why diversifying your investments (that is, spreading your money across different asset classes to help manage investment risk) is something you should consider.

3. Check your investment strategy options

There are quite a few investment strategies (or styles) that you can use to invest, build wealth and achieve your financial goals faster. But starting a regular investment plan by investing small amounts over time and re-investing distributions back into your investment funds are some simple examples.

4. Decide if you need help from a financial professional

Strategising, keeping up with changes to tax and superannuation regulations, as well as watching market movements and tracking investment performance can all seem like a bit of a minefield. However, working with a professional – such as financial adviser – can help you navigate the complexities of investing as you work towards achieving your financial goals.

5. Start investing

No matter how much time you spend considering your strategies, watching the share markets or planning which funds to put your money into, until you place those investments they can't start working for you. While it’s often said that starting earlier on in life can be beneficial, making a start in investing and allowing yourself as much time to invest as possible can still be helpful.

Want more information?

You can further your financial understanding by visiting our website, where the Colonial First State Investments team shares regular, timely market updates and helpful information on investments. 


Information on this webpage is provided by Avanteos Investments Limited ABN 20 096 259 979, AFSL 245531 (AIL) and Colonial First State Investments Limited ABN 98 002 348 352, AFSL 232468 (CFSIL). It may include general advice but does not consider your individual objectives, financial situation, needs or tax circumstances. You can find the Target Market Determinations (TMD) for our financial products at, which include a description of who a financial product might suit. You should read the Financial Services Guide (FSG) available online for information about our services. This information is based on current requirements and laws as at the date of publication.

Tax considerations are general and based on present tax laws and may be subject to change. You should seek independent, professional tax advice before making any decision based on this information.

AIL and CFSIL are not registered tax (financial) advisers under the Tax Agent Services Act 2009 and you should seek tax advice from a registered tax agent or a registered tax (financial) adviser if you intend to rely on this information to satisfy the liabilities or obligations or claim entitlements that arise under a tax law.