Smart Ways To Spend An Extra $1000
It is not often that any of us sees an extra $1000. But if you get your hands on that amount of extra cash the next obvious questions becomes: what do you do with it? You will probably be tempted to pay down your credit card or other bills. You may even think of stashing it in the bank as part of your ‘rainy day’ fund.
However, there are other things to be done with such cash. Investing it can be as prudent a financial move as saving it or paying bills. Kiplinger has set out 32 smart ways to spend $1000. An article in its recent issue includes some intelligent advice on making the money work for you. Here is one of the best recommendations:
Build a High-Yield ETF Portfolio
This package of three exchange-traded funds yields 4.5%. Start with three shares of junk-bond fund iShares iBoxx $ High Yield Corporate Bond (HYG, $90, 5.2% yield). Add 10 shares of iShares US Preferred Stock ETF (PFF, $39, 5.6%), which invests in preferred stocks—stock-bond hybrids that pay fixed dividends.
Finally, buy four shares of Vanguard REIT ETF (VNQ, $81, 2.5%). This fund tracks an index of real estate investment trusts that own malls, hotels, apartments and other kinds of property. (Money-saving hint: If you have a brokerage account at Fidelity, you can buy the two iShares ETFs commission-free. Likewise for Vanguard brokerage clients and the Vanguard ETF.)
The full list of Kiplinger recommendations can of can be read here. It includes everything from investment funds that have a record of high-yield returns to charity foundations doing work worthy of financial support. You should really take a moment to consider what you want to do with your extra cash.
In truth, $1000 is not a large sum of money. If you were to unexpectedly received an extra million dollars in cash, you would probably take greater care in how you spent it. But $1000 is not in this league. It is therefore much easier to blow it, because it’s not so much money that it can’t be made again.
You must, however, resist this impulse. In fact, if you receive the money in the form of a check I would advise putting it away for a while until you’ve figured out how you want to spend it. If the money is sent to you through direct deposit, don’t touch it until you’ve likewise sorted through all your options.
About Christopher Reid Chris was born in Washington, D.C. and lives in Britain. He works as a blogger, essayist, and novelist. His first book, Tea with Maureen, has just been published.