Investing is for anyone, including Waylon Smit

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From a young age, 31 year-old consultant Waylon Smit knew he wanted to make saving and investing a part of his life. But saving in the normal fixed deposit space with a bank did not provide him with the growth he was looking for. Two years ago he signed on with EasyEquities, bought his first JSE listed share and now manages his own portfolio. When he’s not playing Rugby and promoting LGBT inclusiveness in sport; or spending time with family and friends; Waylon watches as his investment and knowledge in the stock market continues to grow.

I knew I had to be more aggressive with my approach and investing in the JSE would provide me with that potential growth.  Cost, ease of access and the initial capital requirements when I started looking for an investment platform were always my deciding factors. I did not have a lump sum and costs did scare me as I assumed I would have to have big figures, just to start covering costs. When I discovered EasyEquities, the cost made perfect sense (literally 64c per R100 transaction). In addition, I can invest in any share with the amount that I have available because of the fractional shares feature. It blew my mind that investing could be as easy as posting on Facebook or tweeting.

The first shares I bought were Telkom and BHP Billiton – brands that I was already familiar with. At first that was my only strategy – to invest in the brands I knew (mostly top 40 companies) but with time, the EasyEquities team provided information with regards to ETF’s and analysis on companies which helped with my decision making. Now I try and put away a little money every month, and then buy more of the shares I already have. Those Telkom shares have so far given me a lekker return and are up by 38.81%!

I didn’t know what to expect when I bought my first share. I had no clue what I was doing but I knew I wanted my money (the little I had) to grow. I bought a share, and then another and then another and pretty soon I managed my own little portfolio. It is a great feeling, knowing I can do it for myself. The money I’m investing and saving is funds for the medium to long term. Eventually I want to use some of this to help me put down a deposit for a property.

Over the last two years I’ve learnt that it’s important not to overthink or overcomplicate things – especially when you are first starting out. Start with a company you know and support on a daily basis. Don’t panic when you see red figures - they sometimes turn to big green figures. What I love about EasyEquities is how inviting the communication is - there is no jargon which makes it easy to understand. The company also recognise that first time investors need education, so training and seminars are free.

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