The idea of investing money isn’t the most thrilling idea in the world.
Of course, you know that it’s absolutely something that you should do. You know it’s necessary to plan for your financial future. You know investments are part of the much-desired “balanced” financial portfolio.
But wow, investments are boring sometimes, aren’t they?
This is, after all, money that you could spend on all kinds of hugely exciting things… but you’re choosing to lock it away for the future. Yes, it’s a good idea, but few of us undertake an investment without feeling a little like we have lost something. Unless you’re a banker or a hedge fund manager, investments are rarely something to get excited about. Investments are like brushing your teeth; you do it because you have to, and because you fear what might happen if you don’t, but it’s not something you particularly look forward to doing.
So why not spice things up a little bit?
There are plenty of conventional investments to choose from if you decide to go down that route. However, there are plenty of unconventional, unusual, and sometimes downright weird investments that could still offer you a balanced financial portfolio that you can rely on in future-- and perhaps have a little fun in the meantime. If you the sound of this idea, then read on, as we delve into the world of weird and wonderful investments…
Invest In… A Person
Did you know that David Bowie essentially floated himself on the stock market in 1997?
It’s true: he offered “Bowie Bonds” which offered a return for investors via sales and royalties from his substantial back catalog. Many investments snapped the offer up, to the tune of around $55 million, though admittedly the investment hasn’t quite paid off in the way the purchasers might have expected. Thanks to the change in how we consume music, with the shift to streaming denting revenues, the bonds have been close to junk status for some time now-- though will have certainly received a boost following the singer’s untimely death.
While the Bowie Bonds are the most famous example, Bowie is not the only person to have sold stocks in themselves. Plenty of people have offered a stake in their future income to investors. While it’s certainly an unconventional way of making money, if you stumble across someone you believe has real, genuine talent, then throwing a few dollars their way might be the best choice you’d ever made.
Markets are notoriously volatile and the only thing you can be sure about is that investments are never safe, so why not take a punt on a person as part of your investment portfolio? You can usually find offerings on crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter or GoFundMe; have a browse and see if anyone catches your attention.
Invest In… Storage Units
Storage units have long been a part of American life, but did you know they can be hugely beneficial in terms of profits?
Fuelled by TV shows like Storage Wars, usage of storage units among the general populace has grown hugely in recent years. It’s easy to see the attraction of storage units, too. Rather than cluttering up your own home with the junk you don’t directly need but also don’t want to throw away, you take it off site into a storage unit.
Due in no small part to the more transient nature of society, people are relying on these units to store items while they move for work or due to insecure housing conditions. Where there is a need, there’s a potential for a good return on investment. You could look to buy shares in storage units, or even group together with other investors to open a lot of your own-- they’re relatively easy to manage, and can provide a staggeringly good return on investment.
Invest In… Cryptocurrency
There’s no doubt that cryptocurrency has a bad reputation. Ask the average person what they associate the primary cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, with and their answer will usually involve something to do with the Silk Road. However, cryptocurrencies original purpose was nothing to do with illicit transactions-- it was all about financial independence.
At the present time, our banking system is controlled by a global elite. Don’t worry, we’re not about to dive down a route into conspiracy theories and mutterings about how the entire world is controlled by lizards-- but there’s no doubt that the global banking system is a powerful, exclusive network. When that network fails, such as it did during the 2008 banking crisis, then people are powerless to do anything but watch the value of their assets crash.
Bitcoin was setup to try and prevent that in future; to remove the need for a third party -- banks -- to control financial transactions. As one might expect, a rival to the existing banking system has been routinely debased by the existing banking sector, but most of this is -- essentially -- propaganda. Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies offer a genuine alternate banking method, which is why -- despite the smear attempts -- they have risen from strength to strength.
This is a strength that you might want to invest in, especially if you have a distrust of the current banking system. You can go to xcoins.io to purchase coins with relative ease; choose a small amount at first, and then see what happens next. If current trends are anything to go by, the value of your coins will continue to steadily rise-- potentially making you a small fortune as a result.
Invest In… Duck Decoys
Yes, really. Duck decoys.
Here’s the thing: duck decoys are highly sought after by collectors (for some reason), but they’re fairly rare and few companies produce them (for obvious reasons). As a result, a duck decoy can fetch an incredible profit if you manage to buy one from someone who doesn’t realize their value.
For example, a duck decoys can sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars, as reported on forbes.com. That kind of return is definitely worth investigating. Head to your local flea market, scan classifieds, and see if you can find any decoys for a steal. You’ll want to avoid the likes of eBay, as buyers and sellers are more aware of the potential value of the decoys, so the prices are high. Keep it local, scout yard sales, and see what you might be able to find.
Also, remember to take time to marvel at the fact people are paying a year’s wage for a duck decoy. Madness.
Invest In… A Metal Detector
Okay, so it’s not the metal detector itself that is going to make your fortune-- it’s what you might find with it. This is one investment idea that also doubles up as a hobby, and what’s more, you don’t need a huge amount of capital to get started. A cheap detector and a free afternoon on a weekend will more than suffice.
So, the question becomes: what might you find? Metal detector enthusiasts are usually on the lookout for the following:
- Coins. In the UK, it’s not uncommon to find coins that date back the Roman occupation of Britain, which gives an idea of just how easy it is to find old coins that you might otherwise assume are gone forever. Old American coins can be worth a small fortune. There’s even a handy list of the most valuable coins to compare your finds against; some are worth in excess of $1 million-- not a bad return!
- Antique militaria. Spurs from boots or decorative plaques worn by horses in wars; anything related to the battles of yesteryear has the potential to make your fortune. Many amateur metal detectorists assume they need to head to a battlefield to find these items, but you could actually stumble across them anywhere due to the way camps used to move across the country.
- Precious metals. You might not find a coin or set of spurs, but if you find precious metals of any kind, then you make a tidy profit. Beaches are a great place to check for precious metals due to people removing jewelry when swimming, and you should also try hiking trails to see if there’s anything to be found.
While metal detecting might not be a standard investment, it could become rather lucrative if you’re willing to dedicate the time and effort to searching. There’s always the chance that you might find that one incredible piece that’s so valuable, you never need to work again.
If you suspect that typical banking investments aren’t quite your thing, then hopefully the ideas above have given you a few fresh ideas to try. There’s no harm in experimenting with different investment strategies; in fact, it might be beneficial to be choosing a less well-trodden investment path-- there’s less competition for profits. So while weird investments shouldn’t be the entire focus of your financial portfolio, there’s no harm in seeing if they might be able to add that little something extra to your financial future.