Question: I am 27 years old, single, have no kids, and my student loans are being repaid due to my military service. My only expenses are rent and a small number of bills. I have spent the last year saving and reading financial literature and I want to start investing now. What is the most simple and effective way to do so? Ideally I would like something I put a set amount into each month and it grows over time.
Answer: You can open a brokerage account with Fidelity, Schwab, TD Ameritrade, Vanguard etc., connect your checking account to your brokerage account and set up an automatic investment each month into a broadly diversified index mutual fund.
You can also open a robo account with Betterment, Wealthfront, Personal Capital, Schwab, Fidelity, Vanguard etc., also set up an automatic investment program each month. You'll be invested in a basket of index Exchange Traded Funds.
Either way, you'll get the benefits of dollar cost averaging, low cost funds and tax-efficiency, which makes for a pretty ideal combination.