I’m going to briefly discuss Betterment, a new option in the investment market. More detailed analysis of all the great things Betterment has to offer is available over at Modest Money. For now we’ll cover the basics of Betterments “set it and forget it” approach or, in the words of their CEO, “what you should be doing”.
Betterment has been around since 2008, but has made a lot of headway in the investment marketplace in this time. In short, Betterment is an “online financial advisor that provides optimized investment returns for individual, IRA, Roth IRA & rollover 401(k) accounts”. Recommended for investors with $10,000 to $10,000,000 to put in, Betterment has put together packages of diversified ETFs to provide maximum maximum returns and minimal risk for its customers. There is no tinkering required on your part.
Because Betterment can manage your money with little or no input on your part, their model has been described as fully automated. This is a great option for busy people or those without decades of experience in the investment world. They make an emphasis on design and usability, so that with a free Betterment account, you’ll be able to interact with your financial information with intuitive and accurate graphical representations. Because of the simplicity of use and the high returns they offer, Betterment is a great option for newer or first time investors, particularly those without huge amounts of riches to invest.
Once you’ve signed up and your money is in their hands, your funds will be invested into 6 varied stock EFTs: 25% Vanguard Total Stock Market, 25% iShares S&P 500 Value Index, 25% Vanguard Europe Pacific, 10% Vanguard Emerging Markets, 8% iShares Russell Midcap Value Index, and 7% iShares Russell 2000 Value Index. With bonds, your funds will be split evenly between iShares Barclays TIPS Bond Fund and iShares Barclays 1-3 Year Treasury Bond FUN. Betterment gives you the benefit of a intelligently diversified investment portfolio automatically. If you lack the expertise to organize and optimal portfolio on your own, or if you fear your own tendency to overly involve yourself, Betterment gives you exactly what you need.
Since you aren’t intimately involved in the gory details of your investments, what involvement do you have? This is where Betterment’s design prowess really shines, more so than much of the competition. With your free account you get your own Dashboard, a visual representation of exactly how your money is doing. You’ll be able to set up specific financial goals. Betterment will automatically show you exactly what you will have to do to meet those goals within certain time limits. Betterment costs slightly more than similar market options, but the level of investment security they provide is worth it. You’ll see your initial investment grow predictably and reliably over time. Betterment is built to provide this service without all the guesswork that other options leave you with.
Betterment is one of the best options on the market for new investors, particularly those with new or modest investment capital. Learn more about how Betterment can change your financial life for the better with security and reliability. For a detailed review and an exclusive interview with Betterment’s CEO Jon Stein, check out the Betterment review on Modest Money.