Making your first investment
Plum is a finance savvy chatbot that uses AI to help you manage your money and be better off. In ‘Investment Academy’, find everything you need to know if you want to start investing with Plum. You can also join our Facebook group of people investing with Plum for more tips and advice from real users.
You have heard us mention investing A LOT lately at Plum, but how does it actually work? In this article we take you through the steps to making your first investment with Plum.
1) Opening an Account
Plum gives you the choice to open an individual savings account (ISA), which is tax exempt, or a General Investment Account (GIA), if you have already opened an ISA elsewhere.
To open an account, you must be aged over 18 years old and be a UK resident. Remember, tax treatment is dependent on your individual circumstances and may be subject to change in the future.
2) Pick a fund
Once you've opened an account, you can select one, or multiple, of the expertly managed funds we provide. We offer 6 funds options which we've split into two categories:
- 3 Basic Funds Good for first-time investors. These mix stocks (higher potential return) and bonds (lower risk).
- 3 Advanced Funds Choose between themes of companies and markets that matter to you. These funds consist only of stocks.
- Conservative Well-diversified fund with 20% stocks and 80% bonds
- Balanced Well-diversified fund with 60% stocks and 40% bonds
- Growth Well-diversified fund with 80% stocks and 20% bonds
- Tech Invest in Technology stocks (like Google and Apple)
- Ethical Invest in companies selected for their Social Responsibility
- Emerging Markets Invest in growth of new giants in Asia and Africa
Opening an account and selecting one or multiple funds takes around 5 minutes. That’s right, just 5 minutes and you can call yourself an investor!
3) Put Money In
You can put £1 in or £10.000, ask Plum to "Invest" and the amount you would like to deposit - just like manual savings. Within about a week, your money will be invested and you can start tracking the returns. There are no transaction fees for depositing.
Soon, you'll be able to automatically put money in straight from your bank just like automatic savings 👀
(4) Seeing what's going on
You can find out how your investments are doing in a few ways. See your progress at a glance in the home menu, get a good overview on your portfolio page, or see the progress of individual funds by selecting ‘overview’ on the funds card. Because we love reports (who doesn’t) on a quarterly basis you'll also get a report which gives you a comprehensive overview of your holdings, returns and fees paid.
(5) Taking Money out
Investing should be a long-term affair, but if you want to take money out, you can instruct Plum to withdraw at any time. It should take about a week for your funds to be sold and for the cash to be on it's way back to you. There are no fees for withdrawing.
(6) Any fees?
Plum Investing isn’t free, so it is important you consider how much you are investing to make sure it is worth it for you.
So that we can keep our lights on Plum charges £1 a month to allow you to invest. Good news this will only be charged monthly from October 2018 - we are giving you a few months free to give investing a go - so if you invest now you will get a few months for free 🎉 To give you a bit of extra time to build up your investments, this fee is waived for the first month.
There are also fund fees (0.32%-1.1% of the value of the fund) which go to the fund providers rather than Plum itself. You can find fund fees in the fund pages, these are deducted automatically from your holdings.
(7) More questions?
If you have any further questions, our helpcentre has a section on investing, and our support team is always around to offer a helping hand, just type 'chat to human' into Plum.