Tuesday, 4 March 2014

The Beginning

Until very recently I believed that investing in the money markets was an obscure science, its secrets only accessible if you were prepared to become a numbers “bore”, obsessed with charts and percentages. Left brain stuff, even geekier than the world of IT in which I spend my days. Dull, cold and devoid of creativity.
But I've had to reconsider. I've realised that I need to take a serious look at how this investing business works because I dearly want to retire before I'm 66 and I won't be able to do that unless I get my savings into some sort of order. The only way I'll fund early retirement is to grow them as much as possible inside a S&S ISA for the next 5 - 8 years. I need to take what I already have and nourish it, so that I have enough to be able to stop work at 60 (give or take a couple of years) and defer taking my pension until state retirement age.

So I've made a start. Three months ago I started reading, researching and gathering together the basic ingredients - knowledge and cash. Now I'm ready to start putting together my own particular recipe for success. Some would call this mixture a "portfolio". I like to think of it as being more like a magic potion, carefully blended from a little bit of this and a little bit of that (wing of bat and eye of toad) with all the ingredients coming together to form a powerful whole. 

My ultimate aim is to concoct a potion capable of turning the base metal of pounds and pennies into the gold of "time to call my own". I'm pretty sure I won't get it right first time but, fingers crossed, I'll learn from my mistakes, adjust the balance when needed, keep my stirring hand steady and come out the other side with something that works.


  1. Love all the alchemy references - brilliant!

  2. Hi Cerridwen, Congrats on starting your investing journey. I realise this post is from some months ago, but I somehow came across it just a few days ago.

    I was just re-reading the post, but something made me wonder. How old are you? Because it may be worth using a SIPP for your retirement plans. In my own case, I am 33 and I have a SIPP, which I make the minimum contribution per month that the broker allows (£80). I also have an S & S ISA, which I try to put £100+ per month into.

    You'll get £20 tax back on top of every £80 you put into the S & S ISA, and you can start making withdrawals from age 55 (or 57, or more, depending on how old you are!).

    Just thought I'd mention it, in case you had not thought about taking advantage of the tax back contributions.

  3. Hi Theres Value. I did start a SIPP shortly after the new pension rules were announced last March and I'm currently paying as much as I can afford into as I'm 55 and want to retire before 60 but keep my Local Government pension deferred until I'm 63.

    Very many thanks for your comment. All suggestions gratefully received. :-)

  4. That's brilliant. In this case, it's worth trying to put in as much as possible, unless you might need to access some of the cash before then? In the latter case, then an ISA is perfect I guess.

    Like your blog, can't believe I only just came across it.


  5. Thanks again tv. I'm actually 55 now so I'm filling the SIPP as fast as I am able. :-)