The idea of savings and investments is to get your money working you. Regular savings accounts are a low risk option, but obviously offer only a small interest rate, meaning your hard earned cash isn’t really doing much for you.
Another option is to invest in stock market funds, which — over the past 20 years — has proved to being a very good move, especially funds based in emerging markets.
But this is not the case now. It seems there isn’t a single location or fund type that hasn’t been eroded by the last 3 or 4 years of economic problems. Obviously, the general advice is to hang in there as you’re looking "long term". That is all well and good but, like anyone, you want your money working for you now, and not watch as your hard earned cash drips away by events which are beyond your control.
This is where property could well be a good option.
Buying property to develop and then sell isn’t as attractive as it used to be in most cases, what with house prices freezing and — in some cases — dropping. So an attractive approach may well be the buy to let option.
We are in a period where people are struggling to secure mortgages and so are having to rent. But we are also at a time whereby, if you are in a position to buy and get a mortgage, then property prices are low, and so it is a buyers market in that sense.
It may well be that you are able to buy property at a good price, and then rent it out at a decent rate. If house prices begin to recover then this only places you in a stronger position. If things stay the same for a long period, you aren’t any worse off.
In times of uncertainty, bricks and mortar feel even more safe and secure. Something real you can see and touch for your money invested, and I think we need that comfort and security which the markets just aren’t offering at present.
North Wales already offers a lot more for your money than other areas of the UK, and when you also consider the state of the housing market at present, I feel there are real opportunities for people looking to buy to let in North Wales.