Where to invest my initial investment

Hi all,

I’m new to Freetrade and investment in general, if you guys had £250 to get started in Freetrade where would you invest? It can be stocks or ETFs whatever maximises or makes more sense in terms of charges etc.

I know it’s not much but i want to play a bit first, understand the ins-and-outs before committing a bigger sum.

Thanks in advance for your time.


If you only have 250£ definitely ETFs.

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Hey Will

There are some good threads on the topics below here you might like:

And this one has some really great ideas from the community:


I’ve got a few friends and family into investing. I’ve invited about 5 people onto Freetrade now and what I normally say is just put a tenner in and buy any stock(s) that you think are interesting. I think this is a good, low risk way of just getting some experience of the investing process, e.g. how you buy a stock, how much the charges are, what does stock ownership look like, how can you track your return. - Make your own judgement, though.

Then personally I just read articles, watch youtube videos and discuss with people on forums about stocks and general investing. For me I don’t think I’ll ever put my main savings into a personal stock pick, I just see this as a way to have some fun with a small percentage of my savings and learn at the same time. Most of my savings are in index funds, in an ISA.


Good luck. As Stefano says ETF’s, back what you know and believe in. Keep putting the bulk of your money in to ETF’s and when Freetrade offer fractional buying try and build a small% of your portfoilio in individual stocks.

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Conservative (with a small c) investor viewpoint here.

You don’t say if you have any savings at this point in time. If you don’t, I would be inclined to open a Marcus savings account and pay in to that until at least one month’s pay is banked before looking at investing. It’s useful to have something to fall back on that isn’t your investments, because there’s every chance that emergency could come along while your investments are in a dip. Better to have the savings account so you can ride out the dip then make a loss and miss out on future gains.

But as for Freetrade, at £250 a month I’d be looking at ETFs. I’d keep putting it in to VWRL until I had a good few grand there. Personally I’d be wary of picking individual stocks at that level; granted, with great risks come great rewards, but also great losses. A bad pick or two could wipe out all gains and more, but an ETF (should) keep ticking upward over time).

I’d want to have a good few grand in ETFs before looking at individual stocks, and I’d also diversify with different ETFs first too (VUSA for US exposure, VMID for FTSE 250 exposure, for example).

It might be an interesting exercise to keep a shadow portfolio, where every time you’re investing in ETFs you also make a pretend investment in what you might pick if you were looking at individual stocks. This could be a spreadsheet you keep yourself and update manually or using various integrations available, or it could be a website where you can build and track portfolios. That will allow you to see over time how your pretend performance compares to your actual performance (in my case, it demonstrated I wasn’t the greatest at making individual picks!) and means that when you do come to pick individual stocks later, you do have some experience (even if it was pretend) to call upon.


Just buy VWRL and forget about it


My favourite ETF is Nasdaq 100.
It behaves like a big tech stock.

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I would add to conservative view above - getting rid of any expensive debt would be my starting point. Then get that emergency cash fund in place, doing this was probably my best investment move over the last few years. Having the ability to ride out cash flow issues with your emergency fund means you won’t be a forced seller of your investments.

I would also have a good think about your financial goals and where investing in the stock market fits into this. This should help you determine your risk appetite, which should in turn help you think about where you’d like to invest.

Lastly, don’t buy anything based on the views of random people on the internet. Take a look at what happened to Thomas Cook, or Patisserie Valerie. Do you own research, and lots of it.

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Labour investor viewpoint here: use 10x leverage on eToro to buy utilities companies. :smile:

Seriously though, as @ukcz says: just buy VWRL. If you must buy something more exotic, have a look at investment trusts like SMT. Just because you can buy a dozen individual companies with £250 on Freetrade, without incurring hefty fees, doesn’t mean you should.


Very much agree with this.

Just to example it. If you don’t have an emergency fund what happens when you need to sell your funds to pay an emergency bill? Are you happy to wait the 4-5 days for those funds to be available? And are you happy to sell them if they’re down 20% (you’d have to to pay the bill).

But as a compromise as it’s sometimes good to get your feet wet, assuming you dont have an emergency fund, you could split the difference half in an emergency find half in investments.

As for what investment, if you’ve never invested before I usually think it’s a good idea to put some money in a decent fund like VRWL (FTSE All-World) that’s been mentioned or VUSA (S&P 500) and get an idea of how things work.

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I don’t think it matters too much what you invest in initially - a regular saving habit matters a lot more in the beginning, till your investments earn more than your salary.

Advice depends very much on your situation but as general advice, something like:

  1. Set up a standing order to save what you can afford every month
  2. Save 2 x monthly salary in cash in an easy access account
  3. Next slowly save 10 x monthly salary in an index tracker with low fees
  4. Then consider the categories in the insights tab
  5. Then consider riskier investments like individual shares or crowdfunding, but appreciate the higher risk of losing all your money
  6. Try to invest for decades, not trade

It’s fine obviously to experiment before you have a lot with some small short term bets on individual shares, but important to recognise that you are unlikely to beat the market and are just having fun. If you don’t believe that set aside a small proportion to trade with like this and track your success honestly vs an index over a few years (hopefully at some point you can do this in freetrade).

The most important thing you can do right now is set up monthly savings - what asset you save in is of lesser importance initially IMO as long as it is not a very risky asset or one with high fees.


Great advice, thanks for that.

Just a bit of background. The reason I want to start invest is because i know that money sat on my bank account won’t grow.

I have set a new strategy for my money and invest must be part of it. I have an emergency savings which are on an ISA. I basically have 4 x Salary as emergency (I never touch that money, it is as it doesnt exist). I also have my personal pension which I want to start paying a bit more into it for my retirement (i’m still on my 30s by the way).

I was looking to invest my disposable income which i dont really need. I’m looking to long term investment 5+ 10 + years wont bother me at all. Also i’m willing to take the risk with this money.

Let me know if any of the above information would change the advice you just gave me.

Thanks very much.

4x salary wow well done. That’s way too conservative for me. 1 year if even would do me. Cash is a terrible asset to hoard as it produces little or no return in a savings account. Long gone are the days of the 6%+ savings account

I wonder if that’s 4 months…

4x’s salary in cash seems like madness.

Oh maybe haha. I’m raring to get on the pints for a work thing heads not in the game :joy: 12 minutes of sitting on a call saying nothing

When I think of salary I would always consider that yearly as well

Just buy VWRL.

Wait ten years.


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Yes, it’s 4 x salary in months. Not years. :joy::joy::joy:If it was years I would had invested in on properties most likely. :blush:



Start with ETFs as they say. You will learn by doing!