Quick Guide to Investing

Before you invest.

You don’t need a degree in economics or in-depth knowledge of financial markets to invest. In fact, it’s the people who make the simplest plans and stick with them who often turn out to be the most successful investors. All you really need is a specific goal or two – like retirement or a new home – along with the discipline to invest even just a small amount each month towards that goal. This guide is designed to make the process of investing a little less intimidating – offering information, insights and resources to help you make more informed decisions.

Investing Rules of Thumb

  1. Have a specific goal. Investing "just to make money" often leads to frustration 
  2. Risk sounds scary, but some risk is necessary to reap rewards 
  3. Stock market investing works best over the long term, so try not to make snap decisions based on daily or weekly gains and losses 
  4. Take more risks for long-term goals, and be more conservative for short-term goals 
  5. Consider opening a separate savings account to hold funds earmarked for investments

How this quick guide to investing is organized.

There’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all approach to investing. We all have different goals and time horizons, behaviors, biases and fears. So for those just getting started with investing, it’s important to understand these factors before you begin. To help you, we’ve divided this guide into four sections; each requiring only a few minutes to review:


Set goals

Find out how to set measurable goals and start on the path toward achieving them.


Determine your risk tolerance

Identify the right types of investments to meet your goals without keeping you up at night.


Choose investments

Navigate the vast array of individual investments to find the best fit for your needs.


Monitor your progress

Learn how to make sure your portfolio keeps up as your needs and circumstances change.

In each section, we offer calculators, worksheets and clear action steps that will help you focus on the investment concepts that matter most, and get you on the road to investment success.

What questions do you have about investing?

So much about investing is personal, that there are no universal answers to even the most common questions such as:

  • Which types of investments are right for me?
  • How much investment risk should I take?
  • Will investing affect my taxes?
  • How should I allocate my money between retirement and non-retirement savings?

That’s why talking with an advisor can be so important. Call 877.962.9032 and get connected with a SunTrust Investment Service advisor (STIS) who can answer these and any other questions about investing.

This simple calculator allows you to see how investing just a small amount each month can have a dramatic impact on your savings over time.


Contact the STIS Client Advisory Center

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Investing & Retirement Resource Center

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    Faced with the potential to live 30+ years in retirement, the traditional approach to retirement income may no longer make sense.

  • Big Life Change? Three Retirement Rules of Thumb to Follow

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  • Staying on Track with Your Retirement Investments

    Investing for your retirement over the long term takes a little knowledge and discipline. Though there can be no guarantee that any investment strategy will be successful—and all investing involves risk—there are ways to help yourself build your retirement cushion.

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