Time Is Always Right For Goal-Based Investing
The author of The Chronicles of Narnia famously said, “You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” And this is true for everyone, both old and young. All of us have goals in life, and they range from short-term to very long-term. For instance, you may want to purchase the latest iPhone in the market – that is a short-term goal you may wish to accomplish over the next month or so. You may also want to retire at 45 and travel the world for the next five years. Based on your current age, this could be a medium or long-term goal. Others may want to purchase a car, or start farming or learn a new hobby – there is no limitation on the number of goals or dreams you can have. However, there is one thing that every goal requires – adequate time and surplus funding to help realise it. Suppose you wish to purchase an iPhone next month, child wedding after 10 years or a retirement monthly cash flow 20 years down the line. What is the one thing in common here? You need money to make this happen. And, in your investment journey towards realising your goals, asset allocation can be your best friend.
Setting your goals
Whichever phase of your life you may be in, you need to have a clear understanding of your goals, as well as the time frame you wish to achieve them in as per the time frame, the goals are classified as important or urgent. if you wish to purchase a house 10 years down the line, just thinking about the goal will not lead to its fruition. You also need to figure out how to accomplish that goal. You may plan to take a home loan, but you still have to put up a certain amount of corpus to qualify for the loan. This is where goal setting comes into play.
Asset allocation to the rescue
Asset allocation involves the practice of diversifying your portfolio in an attempt to secure the highest possible returns, at the lowest possible risk. Based on your investor profile, and the time frame for achieving your goals, you can allocate your corpus to a variety of assets. Suppose you wish to have a corpus of 1.50 crore (current value 75 lakh) rupees to purchase a house after 10 years. You can start working towards this goal by creating an investment portfolio featuring a mix of equity, debt, and other assets, in line with your risk appetite.
If you are young and do not mind facing higher risk in the quest for higher returns, you can allocate a larger portion of your portfolio to equities, and leave a small portion in the comparatively safer debt category. Alternatively, if you are saving and investing for a short-term goal, it is better to stick to debt funds, since these keep your money safe while offering stable returns. An important aspect to remember here is that, the closer you get to your goals, lower should be your portfolio risk. This is because the equity market is known for its volatility, and you may end up facing major losses in an unfavourable situation. With the goal nearby, you may not have enough time to recoup your losses. For instance, if you are 25 years old, and want to create a corpus of one crore over the next 10 years, you can allocate a larger part of your portfolio to equities. As you near the completion of the goal, you can shift your corpus from equity to debt funds or from more aggressive equity lesser aggressive equity , to keep it secure. This routine rebalancing is the key for Financial freedom journey as there can be change of goals with amount with time frame.
Selecting the optimal schemes
Based on your goals, and the time frame, you can choose from a wide variety of schemes, including equity, debt and hybrid funds. To zero in on the scheme most suitable for your needs, you must assess your personal attributes, risk appetite, return expectation and the time frame for realising the goal. As a means to make it easier for the investor, there are solution based schemes like multi-asset or balanced advantage category scheme that an investor can opt for. Here, the fund manager, depending on the relative attractiveness of the various asset classes, the fund manager will do the needful in terms of rebalancing. As a result, an investor need not worry about rebalancing.
To conclude, investors can make use of a variety of mutual funds to meet their financial goals. In this journey, with optimal asset allocation, you can ensure that nothing ever comes in the way of achieving your goals.