Searching for safe high-yield investments is often an exercise in futility. Promotions that tout investments with high returns typically include warnings that these investments are high-risk — which means that you could lose most, if not all, your investment.
With low-risk investments, the returns are usually low as well. Between the two extremes, the best safe investments with high returns carry some reasonable risk in exchange for a higher return. Deciding what the safest investment is for you hinges on your financial needs and goals. Read on to find 10 investment options that are both safe and effective.
Types of Safe Investment Options
GOBankingRates compiled a list of 10 investment options that meet both savings objectives of maximizing returns and minimizing risk. Find out which one works best for your savings strategy. Here are 10 safe investments with high returns:
1. Certificates of Deposit
Considered safe investments, a CD is a savings account with a higher interest rate. The primary difference is that you agree not to cash out your CD for a specific period, such as six months, in exchange for the higher interest rate. Using a deposit broker rather than going directly to a bank can get you an even higher interest rate.
2. Online Checking and Savings Accounts
Your money management strategy likely includes a checking and savings account. Perhaps the safest way to invest money is to find a financial intuition that pays a higher interest rate on such accounts. An online account is an easy option if you don’t need to go to a physical location to do your banking.
3. Money Market Funds
A money market fund is a pool of securities, such as municipal bonds or corporate bonds, which you invest in through a fund manager. The rate of return is usually higher than a regular bank account, but the risk of loss is lessened by the pool of investments. Also, you don’t have to figure out where to invest your money because the fund manager does this for you.
Because there are a seemingly endless variety of money market funds offered through different banks and credit unions, however, deciding on the safest investment for you requires careful research.
Find Out: 9 Safe Stocks for First-Time Investors
4. Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities
TIPS is an investment bond issued by the federal government which protects your investment from inflation. Even though the interest rate offered might be low, the federal government guarantees that your investment will rise with the inflation rate regardless of the interest rate. TIPS might be one of the best safe investments because it’s backed by the federal government and unlikely to fail.
5. US Savings Bonds
Like TIPS, these bonds are issued by the federal government and considered one of the safest place to invest money. You can also obtain some inflation protection depending on which type of bond you purchase for your investment. The bonds are purchased directly from the Department of the Treasury. The best way to invest money is to open a TreasuryDirect account online.
6. Peer-to-Peer Lending
For investors who are able and willing to take some risk, investing in a peer-to-peer lending program can provide a higher return. Various online companies, such as LendingClub, offer the tools and services needed to set up this investment. You will be able to screen potential borrowers and decide what loans to make on your own or to pool your funds with other investors to spread the risk.
7. Real Estate Investment Trusts
Investing in real estate is a wise investment strategy. REITs are designed to allow individuals to invest in large-scale properties, such as shopping malls and apartments. REITs invest in these properties to operate them, rather than develop or sell them. Individuals purchase a share of the REITs to share in the income earned on the properties. Several types of REITs exist, some of which allow you to pool your funds with other investors so that you can get involved with a lower starting investment. Like a money market fund, you don’t need to decide what to invest in because the REIT manager does this for you.
Annuities might be useful for your investment strategy depending on your desire for retirement security, death benefits or tax-deferred growth. But these types of investments are complex, and determining where to invest money safely probably requires the services of a financial planner or insurance expert.
9. Credit Card Rewards
Using a credit card that provides cash-back rewards is a possible investment strategy. You can earn the rewards just by purchasing the items you usually need with the credit card rather than with a debit card or cash. But this can only work as a type of safe money investment if you’re diligent in paying off your credit card bill every month.
10. Pay Off Credit Card Debt
Although it might not seem to fall within the purview of secure investments, paying off your credit card balance might be one. If you’re paying double-digit interest on that balance, money in an account paying only 2 or 3 percent interest would be better spent removing the credit card debt. It will also allow you to utilize the cash reward benefits.
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