I started impact investing for $50. And it was easy.
Ever since writing about Swell, I’d been wanting to try it myself. I just didn’t have a window of time. But the other day, I found a quick minute and I went for it. I knew that Swell was something I could do myself without a lot of research. As it turns out, it took only $50 and 10 minutes to start impact investing in companies that are supporting progress for our people and planet.
And the fact that there would be no hands in the pot outside of my control (brokers, expense ratios, trading fees, etc.) was a huge plus.
The other huge turn on was the entry: $50 bucks. So I jumped on their page and went over to the Impact Investing Portfolios, just to check them out again. Turns out Green Tech had risen since I wrote about them last week. I’m into Green Tech and I’m ready to invest.
Like anything, you pick a password, wait for that email and you’re off.
1. Goals And Sustainability
First, they ask a few questions about your interests and risk tolerance.
These are all multiple choice, not difficult, and none are dealer breakers.
- What’s your investment time frame?
To be honest, I can’t remember how I answered that.
- If the market dropped significantly tomorrow, what would you do?
I think I said, “buy more.”
You’ll see a screen like this because they also have an IRA. I may check that out later.
2. Personal Info
They ask your details, employment status and net worth (required for SEC reporting purposes).
- It’s optional to enter your liquid net worth and annual income.
I skipped it.
- Employer’s info?
I chose “other” and popped through to the signing page.
3. Legal Formalities
Here sign once with your mouse for a bunch of documents that you can download.
I downloaded them, but I’m just like that.
Give them your social security number (for tax purposes)
..and click! You’re DONE.
Now the fun stuff!
This is where you get to create your mix of funds.
You can choose from:
Like I said, I’m all about green tech, but renewables, water, and waste are next in line. To be honest, I think the healthy-medical-space already has a bit of a head start. That’s the cool thing about impact investing, though. Pick what you’re into, it’s all good. So, this is what I chose:
I may diversify more once I play with it for awhile. (hee hee)
You can change it anytime you want to without being charged any commission fees, ever. Next, they ask you how much you want to invest.
I’m thinking $100 bucks.
Then comes the time to link your bank account.
You can verify your bank account by micro deposit or you can have them send a text. This means that they will deposit some minuscule amounts in my bank account, and when I receive them, I tell Swell what they are.
But for those of you with a US SIM, you can just go for the text method.
True to form – I received an immediate email telling me exactly what to expect and what to do next.
A couple days later, I checked my bank account, saw the tiny deposits, then input the amount of the tiny deposits into a form linked from their email.
And that was that.
Oh, and I also decided to set up recurring investments. You can pick the day of the month, say how much, and it is automatically invested according to your portfolio mix. I chose $50. I’m gonna say right off the bat, this is my definition of user-friendly.
Very simple. Totally transparent. And you can change what you invest in anytime.
It’s not that I’m lazy, I just seem to have an extremely low tolerance for red tape. I’m also pumped because everything I picked keeps going up. Yay! (I know there’s no promise that it will keep going up, but it’s nice to see!). I’ll be tracking this new game and giving updates here on Well Wallet™.
Go, little green line, go!
We are living in an amazing time. I never really viewed investing as fun. It was more like a necessary evil with risks. But this, this is different.
Now to sit back and watch the good guys win.
And make some dollars. Flexible. Swell. Just like a … balloon dog? Ah, I see what you did there.
Oh yeah, Well Wallet™ said they would reimburse me my initial investment to write this investigative article. But I said naw. Where’s the fun in that?