In investing, as in so many other areas of life, you need to know when to hold ‘em – and when to fold ‘em. And sometimes, as King Solomon learned, you need good advice from experts like Jason Hartman to know the difference.
According to an account in the Biblical Book of Kings, when Solomon ascended to the throne of his father David, he prayed for wisdom – for the discernment to make good decisions. Likening himself to a small child who knows nothing, he asked for help. When you’re weighing options about your investment choices, you may feel a bit like that small child, needing guidance and direction.
The first step toward making a sound decision is preparation. In order to get the help you need, you need to know what you don’t know. So it’s important to do your homework and learn all you can about the direction you’re considering. For example, if you want to invest in real estate, research the current state of the housing market, learn the terms and investigate the markets you’re interested in.
It can seem that everyone is an expert, weighing in with personal experiences and advice. While it can be helpful to talk to others who are already doing what you want to do, consider the source of what you hear and evaluate whether it’s really relevant to your situation – and whether it relates to the research you’ve already done. A friend of a friend who made a bad investment in Chicago may not be relevant to you in another city and time.
When you’ve learned all you can, it’s time to evaluate what you’ve learned and what you still need to know. This kind of preparation can help you make the most of your work with an investment expert who can guide you toward realizing your goals. Write down all the questions you can think of, as well as all the contradictory information you’ve received and the pros and cons of what direction you’re considering.
Finally, clarify your vision of your goal. In asking for help, Solomon’s goal was clear: to have a discerning heart to make the best judgments he could. You should be able to state what you hope to achieve: a stable retirement income? A diversified portfolio to help provide for your family? This kind of clarity will help direct your decisions and avoid wrong turns – and will also help your adviser chart the best course.
King Solomon understood the wisdom of seeking expert help to make critical decisions. For newcomers to the world of investing, Jason Hartman offers that kind of expert advice and assistance on making the right choices for your investment goals. And, like the king learned, making the most of that assistance is a smart strategy indeed. (Top image: Flickr/MDGovpics)
The Solomon Success Team