Ryan Harris talks about the right time to invest.

When Is The Right Time To Invest?

Do you have an investment strategy?

Making money without an investment strategy is like an offense in the NFL going to the line of scrimmage without a snap count. 

In every game, there are going to be seventy plays all started by the sound of ‘Hike!’ A common phrase in NFL offense goes, “snap count starts everything.’ Turns out, investing works the same way because timing is all about starting. 

You cannot score a touchdown without snapping the football. You cannot score a touchdown before the football snaps. You cannot kick a game-winning field goal before the football snaps. 

With no snap count, you just stand at the line of scrimmage. 

Without investing your money you are standing at the line of scrimmage missing out on every future opportunity.

NO TIME IS A BAD TIME

No wrong time exists to start investing, especially when it comes to your money. The important thing when thinking about investing is, if you can, then do it. Even the holidays can be a great time to start to invest. So set your snap count and have a precise play in mind to reach your financial goals. 

WAYS TO INVEST

The only factor to consider when timing an investment comes in answering ‘How do you want to invest?’ Can you put a couple of dollars away? Can you buy one less gift the next holiday? Even in saving a dollar, you are investing in your savings and financial future.

Are financial gifts a good choice for you? A friend of mine just purchased a house and asked his family to send money to help with the down payment rather than gifts.

There are all kinds of ways to begin investing, and every time is an opportunity to invest. Do not fall for the excuse that there is no right time for you.

IT’S TIME IN, NOT TIMING 

Make a huge difference in your financial future by investing in yourself and in a mindset that counts your dollars and values. Every dollar you spend, does it help you achieve your financial goals? Are you spending on a need or a want?

Consider what you want to invest in. I have friends who invest in only fixed-income investments, others in stocks they use everyday, and other friends who invest in real estate because they know the field. Others focus on options and stocks because they understand those better. 

The best personal investment for you is something that you know, something that you feel confident in, and something that excites you when you think about it. If real estate does not excite you, consider stocks. Does homeownership excite you? Does investing in your child’s education make you save more? 

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Think about why you are investing. When I was first in the NFL, I invested all of my money so that I could have an income when I retired. Now that I am retired, I want my investments to bring about future financial stability. 

YOU CAN’T AFFORD NOT TO 

Whether I am speaking to corporations or youth, people will often tell me they cannot afford to invest. This excuse mindset is exactly what keeps people in spending and consumption, versus saving and investing. 

Can you save $5?

That is an investment. An investment in your future is as simple as not spending money right now.

LEARN THE RULES OF THE MONEY GAME

Save money. Detox from debt. Own what you buy.

When it comes to money, you create the definition of value.

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You can always save at least a portion of what you earn. Even just saving fifteen cents by cutting out a coupon, or waiting and coupling your purchase are ways for you to invest in your future.

Sometimes investing comes from understanding what is available, or what fits the world of your financial goals. 

I recently helped a friend who was looking at an $800,000 house. I sent them a $450,000 duplex instead. Now they are in the process of buying a duplex that will provide them with income and get them started in an affordable home.

Another friend of mine recently purchased a home and had extensive, expensive renovation plans. I asked him to consider what he actually had to renovate immediately. Now he is renovating as he can afford to, and in the meantime, he is not stretching himself beyond capacity. He has an investment strategy for his house and has savings, even after a great purchase.

AVOID BAD INVESTMENTS

A bad investment is anything outside of your strategy. I am a real estate and fixed-income investor now and was recently offered the opportunity to be an early investor in the next big marijuana wellness corporate retreat. I am not in corporate retreats. That is not my deal. There is no income. Bad investments are everywhere. And every bad investment in your life is one that is outside of your financial goals.

What is your income investment strategy? If you do not know, every investment can be a bad investment. Are you saving for retirement? Great. So anything that makes you money right now is not what you want. You want to defer that growth to enjoy when you transition out of your career. 

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Are you looking to invest in yourself with education? Excellent. What do you need to do to afford those education costs and offset your cost of living? Does adding a roommate allow you to follow your education goals?

Anything that does not contribute to that is a bad investment. It does not mean it is the wrong investment, but it is a bad investment for you. 

Build your investment strategy now.

HAVE A STRATEGY

When I was in my twenties in the NFL, I invested in stocks and was able to handle the amount of risk that stocks bring, as well as enjoy the growth they brought. My investment in stocks, when I had the money, helped me to purchase a house and create savings plans for my children later on. Now, my entire investment mentality is to limit risk. Right now, I love real estate. 

A strategy also helps you avoid the trap of the cool, new investment. 

If you are not an angel investor, strategizing and planning for possible losses, why are you investing in a start-up? Because it sounds cool and you get to go to a conference and be a part of a team that puts a T-shirt on for you? It happens all the time in the NFL.

People rarely know why they are investing. And if you do not, somebody is circling you to try and take advantage. They know that without a strategy, you and your hard-earned money are vulnerable.

Countless people are turned off of investments, including real estate, stocks or start-ups because they failed to have a strategy and ended up having a bad experience. One person recently told me ‘I always thought it was not for me.’

My response to what and when should I invest: “Investing is all about starting. And now is the best time to start.

Without a snap count, your money is not working towards a goal even though you have one. Your money can not be activated even though you have done everything you can to make your money. It does not matter how good of a quarterback or how good a money investor you are, if you do not start investing, growth can never begin.

When does your snap count start? When does your money start playing for you? What is your plan?