What Is Solana Coin (SOL)?

Solana Coin (SOL): A Guide to the NFT & DeFi Coin

Many crypto investors are hoping their cryptocurrency portfolios will go to the moon. But with the growth of Solana (SOL), perhaps they should be aiming for the sun (“sol” in Spanish), instead.

Solana is a relatively new cryptocurrency that, until recently, didn’t garner much attention. And given that there are so many new types of cryptocurrency out there, with more hitting the market seemingly every day, it’s hard to blame investors for missing it.

But Solana is now on most crypto traders’ radar. But what is Solana, what does it have to do with blockchain, and how can you invest in it? We’ll cover it all below.

What is Solana Crypto?

Solana is a platform built on a blockchain network that allows users to build decentralized applications. In that respect, it’s similar to (and also rivals) Ethereum, which is designed to do more or less the same thing.

Solana utilizes a proof-of-stake blockchain system — as opposed to Bitcoin’s proof-of-work model — to validate and secure its network. Solana’s native token is called SOL, and the network’s main purpose is to handle smart contracts, which allows it to facilitate transactions of SOL and other assets, like non-fungible tokens (NFTs). It’s fast and secure, thanks in part to its distinct “proof of history” concept, which makes it attractive to those in the crypto space.

Recommended: What Are NFTs (Non-fungible Tokens)?

History of Solana

Solana dates back to November 2017, when founder Anatoly Yakovenko published a paper describing the “proof of history” concept, which timestamps each transaction, so they’re recorded on the blockchain chronologically. The goal: to create faster transaction times.

In February of 2018, Yakovenko and colleagues Greg Fitzgerald and Stephen Akridge launched a prototype of the project, originally called Loom. It was soon rebranded “Solana” after the small town in California where the three men had lived for a few years.

From there, the project grew legs and found funding, and in a few years it has become one of the better-known blockchain networks and cryptocurrencies.

Solana’s Price Surge

Solana wasn’t a big market-mover for some time. But that changed during late summer of 2021. In mid-August, Solana’s price was around $44, but by September 8, it peaked at nearly $215 — a roughly 489% increase. It did come down a bit shortly after, however.

As of late September 2021, SOL’s price is bouncing around between $140 and $160, and its market capitalization, or market cap, is roughly $43.5 billion. But, as any crypto investor knows, that can change quickly.

This surge in price is one of the reasons that Solana has become a household name for crypto investors.

Features of Solana That Make it Unique

So, what exactly makes Solana such a big deal? The answer is that it’s faster and cheaper to use than its competitors, including Ethereum. Solana can handle more transactions than Ethereum can, and it can process those transactions more quickly.

Solana’s proof-of-history feature plays a big role in speeding up consensus on the blockchain. Proof of history acts as a sort of clock that creates timestamps and moves transactions faster to get recorded on the blockchain.

How Does Solana Work?

Solana uses a proof-of-stake validation system in conjunction with a couple of components called “tower consensus” and “verifiable delay record”, timestamping transactions and efficiently recording them in blocks on the blockchain.

Solana sequences and organizes data, and then verifies and confirms it, using its timestamp ability. The timestamp feature also frees up nodes to start creating the next block in the blockchain, without worrying about keeping order among the transactions in the queue. The network already knows the correct order because of the timestamp.

As a result, the entire network can move along at a speedier pace.

What Does Solana Do?

The Solana blockchain has a couple of key potential use cases.

1.    It could be used to create a decentralized finance (DeFi) network. Traditional financial networks sometimes use intermediaries and outdated protocols — two areas where Solana believes it can modernize and make more efficient and transparent. In fact, many DeFi projects are already using Solana’s network to do just that.

2.    It could create NFT marketplaces. NFT investors and collectors are using Solana to create digital marketplaces. Solana was even the official blockchain of Lollapalooza, which created its own “Lolla NFT Marketplace ” specifically for artists and fans at the event.

As for Solana Coin’s use cases, they can primarily be used to stake, or pay transaction fees on the network — similar to Ether.

Solana Benefits and Disadvantages

Solana has pros and cons, like all other cryptocurrencies and networks. Here are the highlights.

Benefits of Solana

•   Transaction speed: Speed is the biggest advantage that the Solana network has over similar networks.

•   Scalability: The network’s design is built to overcome congestion issues, thanks to timestamps. That scalability gives it an advantage over other networks, which are more likely to get log-jammed by slow transaction speeds.

•   Economies of scale: Solana has a big user base, with millions of users already on the network, and a goal of reaching a billion users overall.

Disadvantages of Solana

•   Beta stage: For prospective investors, it’s worth knowing that the project is still in beta.

•   Network outages: In September, the Solana Network saw a transaction overload and was out of service for more than 16 hours. So there are still some kinks to work out.

Solana vs. Ethereum

How does Solana stack up against Ethereum? It’s often referred to as an “Ethereum killer.” It all comes back to the fact that Solana was designed to excel where Ethereum falls short in terms of speed and costs.

Recommended: What is Ethereum and How Does it Work?

Solana’s throughput is 50,000 transactions per second (TPS), with average block times of 0.4 seconds. The average cost per transaction is $0.00025. Compare that to Ethereum: Throughput is 15 TPS, and average transaction costs are more than $3.70, depending on network congestion.

How to Invest in Solana

Getting started investing in Solana is relatively easy. You can sign up for and use a crypto exchange to buy Solana Coins. This is the easiest and most low-effort way to add Solana to a crypto portfolio. From there, it’s a matter of transferring your holdings to a crypto wallet.

Solana Staking

Another way to get your hands on Solana is by staking. Staking is a process that involves “locking up” your coins or tokens and earning rewards. The Solana network supports staking (not all networks do). Assuming your wallet is supported by the network, you can delegate your coins to stake either through an exchange or on your own.

Recommended: A Guide to Crypto Staking

The Takeaway

Solana may still be technically in its beta stage four years after it was created, but thanks to its proof of history concept, it’s getting a lot of attention for being faster and cheaper than competitor Ethereum.

For investors looking to trade Solana, SoFi Invest® may be a good place to start. With SoFi, you can trade cryptocurrency like Solana, Enjin Coin, Bitcoin, Cardano, Litecoin, and more.

Find out how to invest in crypto with SoFi Invest.

Photo credit: iStock/PeopleImages


SoFi Invest®
The information provided is not meant to provide investment or financial advice. Investment decisions should be based on an individual’s specific financial needs, goals and risk profile. SoFi can’t guarantee future financial performance. Advisory services offered through SoFi Wealth, LLC. SoFi Securities, LLC, member FINRA / SIPC . SoFi Invest refers to the three investment and trading platforms operated by Social Finance, Inc. and its affiliates (described below). Individual customer accounts may be subject to the terms applicable to one or more of the platforms below.
1) Automated Investing—The Automated Investing platform is owned by SoFi Wealth LLC, an SEC Registered Investment Advisor (“Sofi Wealth“). Brokerage services are provided to SoFi Wealth LLC by SoFi Securities LLC, an affiliated SEC registered broker dealer and member FINRA/SIPC, (“Sofi Securities).
2) Active Investing—The Active Investing platform is owned by SoFi Securities LLC. Clearing and custody of all securities are provided by APEX Clearing Corporation.
3) Cryptocurrency is offered by SoFi Digital Assets, LLC, a FinCEN registered Money Service Business.
For additional disclosures related to the SoFi Invest platforms described above, including state licensure of Sofi Digital Assets, LLC, please visit www.sofi.com/legal. Neither the Investment Advisor Representatives of SoFi Wealth, nor the Registered Representatives of SoFi Securities are compensated for the sale of any product or service sold through any SoFi Invest platform. Information related to lending products contained herein should not be construed as an offer or pre-qualification for any loan product offered by SoFi Lending Corp and/or its affiliates.
Crypto: Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies aren’t endorsed or guaranteed by any government, are volatile, and involve a high degree of risk. Consumer protection and securities laws don’t regulate cryptocurrencies to the same degree as traditional brokerage and investment products. Research and knowledge are essential prerequisites before engaging with any cryptocurrency. US regulators, including FINRA , the SEC , and the CFPB , have issued public advisories concerning digital asset risk. Cryptocurrency purchases should not be made with funds drawn from financial products including student loans, personal loans, mortgage refinancing, savings, retirement funds or traditional investments. Limitations apply to trading certain crypto assets and may not be available to residents of all states.
Third Party Brand Mentions: No brands or products mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.
External Websites: The information and analysis provided through hyperlinks to third party websites, while believed to be accurate, cannot be guaranteed by SoFi. Links are provided for informational purposes and should not be viewed as an endorsement.
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What Is Enjin Coin (ENJ)? A Beginner's Guide

What Is Enjin Coin (ENJ)? A Beginner’s Guide

Crypto investors have an increasing number of choices lately — including Enjin Coin (ENJ), which launched during the summer of 2018.

Unlike many other crypto investing options on the market, Enjin Coin (also referred to as ENJ crypto) is a bit different in that it was designed for a specific purpose: To help the gaming community and to manage digital or virtual assets.

Here’s everything curious investors and crypto fans need to know about Enjin Coin.

What Is Enjin Coin?

Enjin Coin , or ENJ, is a cryptocurrency created and designed by a software company called Enjin . Enjin’s software allows users to create virtual goods — like NFTs, or non-fungible tokens — on the Ethereum blockchain network.

While that may require some background reading about Ethereum’s blockchain network and NFTs, what you should know is that Enjin’s software is designed to create and manage in-game goods and assets. In effect, Enjin makes it easier and more efficient for participants in certain virtual worlds to create in-game assets, and to transact them.

Enjin Coin, or ENJ, then, is the native token to the Enjin network.

Recommended: What is a Crypto Token?

How Does Enjin Work?

The basic idea behind Enjin Coin is that blockchain can smooth out the process of transacting in-game or virtual assets. Much like blockchain can do the same in the real world with other assets (think of Ripple and XRP, which is designed to help facilitate financial transactions), ENJ is used to manage virtual inventories.

If it all sounds a bit meta — a virtual currency designed for virtual assets — that’s because it is. As for how it actually works, Enjin has software development kits (SDKs) that allow game developers to “mint.” Using SDKs, developers can create virtual items inside of games or applications. These created items are given a corresponding value in ENJ, which makes it easy to trade and or sell them via Enjin’s marketplace.

Because each asset has a value in ENJ, which is a traded cryptocurrency, it also has a real-life value, too. These digital assets are, in effect, NFTs, and can be traded for many times their initial values.

Developers who want to create in-game assets can start out by purchasing ENJ from an exchange, “minting” an item, trading or selling it in-game, or even “melting” it — which means turning the item back into ENJ.

While Enjin Coin is designed to function and incorporate blockchain-backed swapping systems in video games or virtual worlds, it can be used in other ways, too. For instance, sports teams or clubs may be able to use it to mint digital assets to hand out as rewards.

Example of ENJ Crypto in Action

Here’s a simplified, hypothetical example of how Enjin coin works in the real (well, virtual) world:

Say you’re a game developer, and you’re actively playing, participating in, and developing an MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role-playing game). You want to create a special weapon for the game, a longsword, and decide to buy some ENJ from a crypto exchange to do so.

You make the purchase, and with your ENJ, you “mint” the longsword using an SDK, a corresponding programming interface created by Enjin to help build and deploy the asset into the game.

Once created, the longsword also has a value equal to, say 10 ENJ. You sell the longsword to another player on Enjin Coin’s marketplace, banking 10 ENJ. You decide you’d like to accumulate more ENJ, so you trade a shield in your inventory for a spear that you plan to “melt” — which is, as you might remember, like liquidating an asset for its ENJ value.

You melt the spear and collect 5 ENJ. Now, you have 15 total ENJ, that you can either use to create more in-game assets or sell on an exchange.

While this is a very simplified version of Enjin Coin in action, it should give you the gist of the cryptocurrency’s use cycle.

Enjin Coin: Benefits and Disadvantages

As with any cryptocurrency, Enjin has its benefits and drawbacks. Here are a few:

Benefits of Enjin Coin

•   Unlimited potential: The gaming industry (and virtual world-building in particular) is big and growing. That means there’s a lot of potential runway for Enjin Coin ahead.

•   Relatively affordable price: For crypto investors, ENJ is still affordable for almost anyone — unlike Bitcoin or Ethereum. (See more on price in the next section.)

•   A large, built-in community: Enjin already has marketplaces operating and integrated, with many participants. The fact that it’s been so widely adopted may be an indication that won’t just disappear overnight.

Disadvantages of Enjin Coin

•   No easy mining: Enjin doesn’t operate on its own blockchain, so it can’t be mined directly — at least not easily.

•   No physical backup: As with all other cryptocurrencies, there’s no physical asset or commodity to backup Enjin Coin.

•   Technical know-how: Crypto isn’t easy to understand, and Enjin Coin is no different. That’s particularly true if you plan to use it to create NFTs or assets — you’d need to do some studying before you could put it all together.

Enjin Coin Price

While Enjin Coin isn’t dirt-cheap like some coins on the exchanges, it hasn’t reached astronomical levels, either. As of mid-to-late September 2021, it’s trading at around $1.25.

Over the past year, its price has fluctuated in a big way. At the end of 2020, Enjin Coin’s price hovered around $0.15, then it saw a big spike in the spring, topping $3.45 at one point. Since then, it’s come down and has mostly stayed between $1 and $2.25 ever since.

Enjin Coin Staking

Further, some exchanges and platforms do allow users to stake Enjin Coin, if you know where to look. But by and large, it seems that most larger exchanges don’t give users and investors the option to stake ENJ.

Recommended: What is Staking Crypto?

That said, Enjin is rolling out a new ecosystem called Efinity, which will also have its own cryptocurrency, Efinity Token (EFI). As a part of that ecosystem, Enjin Coin can be staked to earn Efinity Tokens.

How to Invest in Enjin

Now for the big question: How do investors get their hands on Enjin Coin? If you’ve invested in any other cryptocurrencies before, it should be a familiar path.

For most investors, investing in Enjin Coin is pretty much the same as another cryptocurrency. The process is as easy as picking a crypto exchange, opening an account, funding it, then placing an order and transferring your holdings to your crypto wallet.

You can also swap your ENJ tokens for others on some decentralized exchanges, but again, for most investors, sticking to a large, trusted exchange is probably the way to go.

Recommended: Centralized vs. Decentralized Exchanges: Six Differences to Consider

The Takeaway

There are many types of cryptocurrencies out there, and the list seems to be growing each and every day. Enjin Coin is a relatively new coin with some fairly unique use cases, and it may be of particular interest to crypto investors who are into gaming and the gaming industry.

As with all investments — crypto or otherwise — it’s always wise to consider any risks before making a purchase. Once you make your decision, take the next step with SoFi Invest®, where you can trade cryptocurrency like Enjin Coin, Bitcoin, Cardano, Litecoin, Ethereum and more.

Find out how to get started with SoFi today.

Photo credit: iStock/svetikd


SoFi Invest®
The information provided is not meant to provide investment or financial advice. Investment decisions should be based on an individual’s specific financial needs, goals and risk profile. SoFi can’t guarantee future financial performance. Advisory services offered through SoFi Wealth, LLC. SoFi Securities, LLC, member FINRA / SIPC . SoFi Invest refers to the three investment and trading platforms operated by Social Finance, Inc. and its affiliates (described below). Individual customer accounts may be subject to the terms applicable to one or more of the platforms below.
1) Automated Investing—The Automated Investing platform is owned by SoFi Wealth LLC, an SEC Registered Investment Advisor (“Sofi Wealth“). Brokerage services are provided to SoFi Wealth LLC by SoFi Securities LLC, an affiliated SEC registered broker dealer and member FINRA/SIPC, (“Sofi Securities).
2) Active Investing—The Active Investing platform is owned by SoFi Securities LLC. Clearing and custody of all securities are provided by APEX Clearing Corporation.
3) Cryptocurrency is offered by SoFi Digital Assets, LLC, a FinCEN registered Money Service Business.
For additional disclosures related to the SoFi Invest platforms described above, including state licensure of Sofi Digital Assets, LLC, please visit www.sofi.com/legal. Neither the Investment Advisor Representatives of SoFi Wealth, nor the Registered Representatives of SoFi Securities are compensated for the sale of any product or service sold through any SoFi Invest platform. Information related to lending products contained herein should not be construed as an offer or pre-qualification for any loan product offered by SoFi Lending Corp and/or its affiliates.
Crypto: Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies aren’t endorsed or guaranteed by any government, are volatile, and involve a high degree of risk. Consumer protection and securities laws don’t regulate cryptocurrencies to the same degree as traditional brokerage and investment products. Research and knowledge are essential prerequisites before engaging with any cryptocurrency. US regulators, including FINRA , the SEC , and the CFPB , have issued public advisories concerning digital asset risk. Cryptocurrency purchases should not be made with funds drawn from financial products including student loans, personal loans, mortgage refinancing, savings, retirement funds or traditional investments. Limitations apply to trading certain crypto assets and may not be available to residents of all states.
Third Party Brand Mentions: No brands or products mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.
External Websites: The information and analysis provided through hyperlinks to third party websites, while believed to be accurate, cannot be guaranteed by SoFi. Links are provided for informational purposes and should not be viewed as an endorsement.
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50 Fall Housing Projects to Tackle This Year

25 Fall Home Projects to Tackle This Year

If you own your own home, fall is an opportune time to get your house ready for the winter months ahead.

Whether it’s as simple as ensuring your weatherstripping is up to snuff around windows and doors or as involved as replacing older windows or an aging roof, we’ve got you covered.

Here’s a checklist of 25 fall home improvement and maintenance projects that will ensure that your house is snug all winter long.

Related: The Ultimate House Maintenance Checklist

1. Door & Window Seals

It’s easy for cold air to slip in around doors and windows that don’t have sufficient weatherstripping. To keep your ongoing heating costs in check, it’s smart to take a look at all of your doors and windows to ensure the seals are tight. Fixing any issues could wind up saving you some serious money over time.

2. Furnace Inspection

There’s not a lot worse than finding out on the coldest day of the year that your HVAC system needs repairs. Instead of waiting for a problem, it’s almost always a good idea to have your furnace inspected annually.

3. Air Ducts

This isn’t something you likely need to do every year, but it is smart to have your HVAC ducts cleaned regularly so the system is operating as efficiently as possible.

4. Gutters

Whether you do it yourself or hire a pro, having your gutters cleaned after the leaves have fallen can ensure that your roofline remains leak-free during the winter months.

5. Exposed or Rotting Wood

Whether it’s on your deck, around your foundation, or under your gutters, wood that is no longer properly sealed can take a beating during winter months. You can save yourself serious headaches by repairing, replacing, or sealing any exposed wood.

6. Roof inspection & Repair

A leaking roof is no one’s idea of a good time and is among the most common home repairs. Having an older roof inspected can help to spot minor problems before they turn into major issues. And in colder climates, some roof repairs could need to wait months for warmer weather before they can take place.

7. New Insulation

If you’re like a lot of people, you don’t check the insulation of your attic and eaves regularly, if ever. Having the proper depth of insulation can provide most homeowners with significant savings when it comes to heating and cooling costs.

8. Lawn Winterization

Your lawn will be greener earlier in the spring if you fertilize it in the fall.

Recommended: How to Winterize a House

9. All Those Leaves

While you don’t want leaves in your gutters or on your lawn, having them in your garden and flower beds can actually help protect plants against damage from cold weather by insulating them. A leaf bed also provides a home for early insects which help feed migratory birds in spring and spares landfills from tons of waste.

10. Critter Blockers

All those pipes and tubes and whatnots coming into our homes often mean little cracks and crevices that insects and even vermin can enter in search of warmth. It can be smart to inspect and seal these crevices before the weather turns significantly colder.

11. Storing Summer Clothes & Bedding

If you live in a cooler climate and you have the storage room, putting your shorts, beachwear, and lighter bed covers in storage over the winter can be a nice way to keep closets feeling fresh and organized.

12. Chimney Inspection/Cleaning

There’s nothing like sitting in front of a roaring fire on a cold winter day — unless, of course, your fireplace is billowing smoke back into your house. You can nip any problems in the bud by having your fireplace inspected and cleaned annually.

13. Spring Bulb Planting

If you love tulips, daffodils, and other flowers that grow from bulbs, now’s the perfect time to set them in your garden. They love a good freeze over the winter.

If you want to add trees or shrubs, you can look up the shipping schedule for your hardiness zone at the Arbor Day Foundation.

14. Perennial Care

Not only will mulch keep your beds looking neat and tidy during colder months, it can help insulate plants from the cold.

15. Outdoor Faucets

Now’s a great time to check your faucets to see if washers and all other parts are in good working order. And if you live in colder climates, it could be a good idea to install a frost-free hydrant to help protect your pipes against breakage during freezing weather.

16. Ceiling Fans

This is an easy one to forget. If you have ceiling fans, it’s smart to switch their direction for colder months. By reversing the direction of your fans, you can help to disperse warm air throughout your rooms.

17. Yard Tools

To keep your lawnmower, leaf blower, and any other gas-powered tools in good working order, clean them up before storing them for the season.

18. Trees & Shrubs

Pruning can be especially important for flowering trees and shrubs that only flower on new growth. It can also help to ensure that unhealthy branches are removed before heavy snow and ice coat them and possibly break them.

19. Carpet & Rug Cleaning

You’re likely going to be spending a lot more time indoors during the winter months, so why not freshen up your surroundings with a good carpet and rug cleaning? Your allergies will thank you!

20. Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Detectors

A lot of people advise doing this whenever there’s a time change, and that can be a really smart way to remember to do it. Whatever your preference, making sure that these appliances are in good working order when you and your family are indoors more frequently can help ensure everyone’s health and safety.

21. Patio Furniture & Grilling Equipment

Covering your outdoor furniture and grill can lengthen their lives.

22. Snow Removal

If you live where it snows regularly, it’s smart to go ahead and prepare now. Having your snowblower serviced, buying salt or snowmelt products, ensuring that your snow shovels are in good shape, and lining up a snow removal service are all things you can do now to avoid problems when the snow has begun to fall.

23. Older Doors & Windows

If you’re still living with single-pane windows, it may be time to upgrade. Double- or even triple-pane windows can pay for themselves in just a few years. They can be far superior in keeping out both the cold and heat, thus reducing your heating and cooling bills. The same is true for older doors that may not be well insulated or have single-pane windows in them.

24. Programmable Thermostat

It may seem like a little thing, but turning your heat down every night can wind up saving you money. Remembering to do it, however … Why not make it easy on yourself and install a programmable thermostat that remembers for you?

25. A Fresh Coat of Paint

If you’re going to be spending more time indoors, why not make it somewhere you love? A fresh coat of paint can do wonders to spruce up almost any room. And the cost of painting a house is an inexpensive project most homeowners can typically complete in a weekend.

Recommended: The Top Home Improvements to Increase Your Home’s Value

The Takeaway

As the leaves change, it might be time for homeowners to turn over a new … leaf and consider home improvement projects that have gone by the wayside. A seasonal to-do list can ensure that your home is comfy, cozy, and safe for winter and beyond.

Might a personal loan for home improvements, or anything, come in handy?

SoFi offers fixed-rate unsecured personal loans of $5,000 to $100,000 with absolutely no fees.

It’s easy to check your rate.

Photo credit: iStock/JavenLin


SoFi Loan Products
SoFi loans are originated by SoFi Lending Corp. or an affiliate (dba SoFi), a lender licensed by the Department of Financial Protection and Innovation under the California Financing Law, license # 6054612; NMLS # 1121636 . For additional product-specific legal and licensing information, see SoFi.com/legal.

Financial Tips & Strategies: The tips provided on this website are of a general nature and do not take into account your specific objectives, financial situation, and needs. You should always consider their appropriateness given your own circumstances.
External Websites: The information and analysis provided through hyperlinks to third party websites, while believed to be accurate, cannot be guaranteed by SoFi. Links are provided for informational purposes and should not be viewed as an endorsement.
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How to Build Wealth In Your 30s

While you may have established your career once you reach your 30s, it’s still not that easy to build wealth.
Suddenly, you’ve often got a host of other financial priorities like paying down debt, saving for your first home, paying for childcare.

But making sure your money is working for you while you’re working matters, especially if one of your big-picture financial goals involves building wealth over the long term (and it should). Saving money is a good start but more importantly, your 30s are a prime time to develop a consistent investing habit.

Your 30s are a great opportunity to learn new money skills and establish better money habits. Once you’ve done that, you’ll be one step closer to reaching your retirement goals.

What Does Wealth Mean to You?

One way to motivate yourself to build wealth in your 30s is by thinking about the opportunities that it can create. Retiring early or being able to enjoy bucket-list vacations with your family, for example, are the kinds of things you’ll need to build up wealth to enjoy.

Beyond that, building wealth means that you don’t have to stress about covering unexpected expenses or how you’ll make the bills if you’re unable to work for a period of time.

Investing in your 30s, even if you have to start small, can help create financial security. The more thought you give to how you manage your money in your 30s, the better when it comes to improving your financial health.

So if you haven’t selected a target savings number for retirement yet, run the numbers through a retirement calculator to get a ballpark figure. Then you can formulate a plan for reaching that goal.

Recommended: How to Build Wealth at Any Age

6 Tips to Building Wealth in Your 30s

Curious about how to build wealth in your 30s? These tips can help you figure out how to save money in your 30s, even if you’re starting from zero.

1. Set up a Rainy Day Fund

One of the biggest lessons you’ll learn in your 30s is that life doesn’t always go as planned. It’s important to have a nice cushion of cash to land on, should any bad news come your way: a job loss, a medical emergency, a car repair.

Not having the money for these unexpected expenses can threaten your financial security. To prevent such shocks, sock away at least three-to-six months’ worth of savings that can cover your everyday living expenses, from rent on down.

2. Pump Up Your 401(k)

If your company offers a 401(k) plan, consider it an opportunity for investing in your 30s while potentially reducing your current taxes. This is especially true if your employer offers a match (though matching is typically only offered if you contribute a certain amount). The match is essentially free money, so you should take full advantage of it, if possible.

Aim to increase your contributions on a regular basis. This could be once a year or twice a year, and especially whenever you get a bonus or a raise. Some plans allow you to do this automatically at certain pre-decided intervals. Simply clicking a button will save you the agony of reconsidering changing your mind.

3. Consider Other Retirement Funds

If you don’t have access to a 401(k), there are other options that can help fund your future and help you with building wealth in your 30s.

Even if you contribute to a 401(k), you may benefit from these additional options. For example, if you’re already maxing out your 401(k), you might continue saving for retirement with an Individual Retirement Account (IRA).

Recommended: IRA vs. 401(k): What’s the Difference?

Depending on your income, you may qualify to contribute to a Roth IRA, which lets you contribute post-tax income (that means you can’t write it off) up to a certain amount each year. You can withdraw IRA and 401(k) funds starting at 59 ½.

Recommended: Explaining 401(k) Early Withdrawal Penalties

In addition to tax-advantaged accounts, you might consider opening a taxable investment account to make the most of money in your 30s.With taxable accounts, you don’t get the same tax breaks that you would with a 401(k) or IRA. But you’re not restricted by annual contribution limits or restrictions around withdrawals, so you can continue growing wealth in your 30s at your own pace as your income allows.

4. Open a Health Savings Account (HSA)

If you have access to a Health Savings Account this could be a valuable resource for building wealth in your 30s. For those who qualify, this is a personal savings account where you can sock away tax-advantaged money to pay for out-of-pocket medical costs. These could include doctor’s office visits, buying glasses, dental care, and prescriptions.

The money you save is pre-tax, and it grows tax-free. Also, you don’t have to pay taxes on any money you withdraw from your HSA , as long as it’s for a qualified medical expense.

You’ll need to be enrolled in a high deductible health plan to be eligible for an HSA. If your company offers health insurance, talk to your plan administrator or benefits coordinator to find out whether an HSA is an option.

5. Give Yourself Goals

One of the best ways to build wealth in your 30s involves setting clear financial goals. For example, you might use the S.M.A.R.T. method to create money goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, timely and realistic.

Then, start working toward those goals, whether it’s sticking to a budget or paying down your credit card or auto loan. Once you experience the satisfaction of meeting these goals, you’ll be able to think bigger or longer term for your next goal.

6. Check Your Risk Level

Investing is about understanding risk, knowing how much risk you’re prepared to take, and choosing the types of investments that are right for you.

If you’re working out how to build wealth in your 30s, consider two things: Risk tolerance and risk capacity. Your risk tolerance reflects the amount of risk you’re comfortable taking. Risk capacity, meanwhile, is a measure of how much risk you need to take to meet your investment goals.

As a general rule of thumb, the younger you are the more risk you can take on. That’s because you have more time until retirement to smooth out market highs and lows. Investing consistently through the ups and downs using dollar-cost averaging can help you generate steady returns over time.

If you’re not sure what level of risk you’re comfortable with, taking a free risk assessment or investing risk questionnaire can help. This can give you a starting point for determining which type of asset allocation will work best for your needs, based on your age and appetite for risk.

The Takeaway

Investing in your 30s to build wealth can seem intimidating but there are tools that can help. SoFi Invest® is an online investment account that can help you start navigating how to build wealth in your 30s.

Whether you’re into automated investing or taking a more active investing approach, SoFi members get one-on-one access to financial advisors to answer questions. Our team of credentialed financial planners is here to work with you (over the phone or online, at your convenience), and develop a plan that best suits you. And your goals can change as you and your life change—we’ll be there for that too.

Learn more about opening a SoFi Invest account today.


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The information provided is not meant to provide investment or financial advice. Investment decisions should be based on an individual’s specific financial needs, goals and risk profile. SoFi can’t guarantee future financial performance. Advisory services offered through SoFi Wealth, LLC. SoFi Securities, LLC, member FINRA / SIPC . SoFi Invest refers to the three investment and trading platforms operated by Social Finance, Inc. and its affiliates (described below). Individual customer accounts may be subject to the terms applicable to one or more of the platforms below.
1) Automated Investing—The Automated Investing platform is owned by SoFi Wealth LLC, an SEC Registered Investment Advisor (“Sofi Wealth“). Brokerage services are provided to SoFi Wealth LLC by SoFi Securities LLC, an affiliated SEC registered broker dealer and member FINRA/SIPC, (“Sofi Securities).
2) Active Investing—The Active Investing platform is owned by SoFi Securities LLC. Clearing and custody of all securities are provided by APEX Clearing Corporation.
3) Cryptocurrency is offered by SoFi Digital Assets, LLC, a FinCEN registered Money Service Business.
For additional disclosures related to the SoFi Invest platforms described above, including state licensure of Sofi Digital Assets, LLC, please visit www.sofi.com/legal. Neither the Investment Advisor Representatives of SoFi Wealth, nor the Registered Representatives of SoFi Securities are compensated for the sale of any product or service sold through any SoFi Invest platform. Information related to lending products contained herein should not be construed as an offer or pre-qualification for any loan product offered by SoFi Lending Corp and/or its affiliates.
External Websites: The information and analysis provided through hyperlinks to third party websites, while believed to be accurate, cannot be guaranteed by SoFi. Links are provided for informational purposes and should not be viewed as an endorsement.
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Investing in Growth Funds

A growth fund or growth stock mutual fund is invested primarily in growth stocks and focused on capital appreciation, in other words: profit.

Just as growth investing is a certain investing style, a growth fund is a specific type of mutual fund or exchange-traded fund (ETF) that reflects this more aggressive investment style. Growth funds primarily include shares of growth stocks, but can also include bonds or other investments designed specifically with higher returns in mind.

Unlike some value stock funds, growth funds rarely pay dividends. Instead, investors make money on the appreciation of the underlying stocks. Since growth mutual funds are considered riskier investments — with a higher risk of loss along with a higher potential for gains — holding these funds for the longer term may help mitigate the short-term impact of price volatility.

Recommended: Value Stocks vs Growth Stocks: Key Differences to Know

Before you decide whether growth funds would suit your strategy, it may help to learn more about how they work, as well as some of the pros and cons of these funds.

What Is Growth Investing?

Growth investing is a strategy that focuses on increasing an investor’s capital or earnings. For this reason, growth investors may invest in younger or smaller companies which are said to be in a growth phase, and whose earnings are expected to increase at an above-average rate compared to their industry sector or the overall market.

Growth stocks aren’t always new companies, though. Larger, more established companies can also fall into this category, assuming they are poised for expansion. Big companies could be in a growth phase due any number of factors, e.g., technological advances, a shift in strategy, a movement into new markets, acquisitions, and so on.

How much growth can you expect to get from good growth stock mutual funds? As with any mutual fund, the performance of these funds depends on their underlying assets and, in the case of actively managed funds, their portfolio managers’ strategies.

There are also growth index funds, which are passively managed. A growth index fund is a growth stock mutual fund that tracks the performance of a particular stock index that’s focused on growth (e.g., the CRSP Large Growth Index or CRSP Small Cap Growth Index).

To give you an example of how growth funds compare to the domestic equity market as a whole, the U.S. stock market had an average return of 9.2% over the past 10 years, according to research by Goldman Sachs, as of July 2020. For context, here is the performance of five growth mutual funds and ETFs over the last 10 years. These funds were ranked either Gold or Silver according to the Morningstar Analyst Rating for Funds, as of May 5, 2021. The Morningstar Analyst Rating is predicated on different metrics that assess a fund’s performance relative to its peers and its benchmark index.

Fund Name Total Net Assets 10-year avg. annual return
Growth Fund of America
(AGTHX) from American Funds, as of 10/01/21
$289.9 billion 16.79%
iShares Core S&P U.S. Growth ETF (IUSG) , as of 08/31/21 $12.25 billion 18.30%
Vanguard Mega Cap Growth ETF (MGK) , as of 08/31/21 $12.8 billion 19.82%
SPDR Portfolio S&P 500 Growth ETF (SPYG) , as of 08/31/21 $13.6 billion 18.68%
Vanguard Small-Cap Growth Index Fund (VSGAX) , as of 09/30/21 $38.1 billion 16.36%

As you can see, the returns of growth funds reflect an aggressive growth strategy and fund composition — but remember that growth investing can be volatile since companies typically take some risks in order to expand. Also, some growth companies can get a lot of media or investor attention, which can contribute to price swings as investors buy and sell shares with the hope of seeing a profit.

Examples of Growth Stocks

Market capitalization — which indicates the number of outstanding shares a company has multiplied by its price per share — is not a specific hallmark or characteristic of growth stocks. Growth stocks can be large-cap corporations, mid-cap, or smaller companies. That said, most growth funds generally tilt toward larger companies.

Large-cap companies can scale their manufacturing to produce more products at cheaper prices, which increases their potential. Plus, big companies tend to reinvest the money they make into research and development, acquisitions, or expansion.

Information technology companies are often the largest holdings in U.S. growth mutual funds, but these funds may also hold healthcare and consumer discretionary stocks as well.

Smaller companies also have a lot of growth potential, as noted above — and some small-cap companies may be in the initial startup phase, which can sometimes generate outsize growth. And many mid-cap companies have been around longer and may have the ability to adapt to new market needs.

Benefits of Investing in Growth Mutual Funds

There are a few good reasons to consider growth stock mutual funds, and portfolio diversification is at the top of the list. It would be expensive for most individual investors to achieve the level of diversification offered by a pooled investment like a growth mutual fund. Investing in a single fund gives investors exposure to a wide range of stocks in different sectors.

Growth funds may also have long-term potential. For instance, growth stocks are more likely to see returns during an economic boom cycle, when many companies are growing and thriving.

While investors may not be able to count on dividend income from a growth mutual fund, they still stand a good chance of being able to sell the fund for more than what they paid for it. Whether that’s attractive to you can depend on your overall investment objectives, time horizon and risk tolerance.

Downside of Growth Mutual Funds

Like any other investment, there are potential drawbacks to keep in mind with growth stocks and their growth fund counterparts.

While growth stocks can potentially increase in value more quickly than other stocks, this also makes them a potentially risky and more volatile investment. A good growth stock mutual fund might return 18% one year and 6% the next. That kind of volatility isn’t for everyone.

In order for a growth stock to keep growing, the company must continue to earn money. This is challenging for any company to maintain over a long period of time. If there’s a recession, if a company has an unforeseen loss, or can’t continue to grow, the value of the stock will go down.

To manage this risk, investors may choose to hold growth stocks and growth mutual funds for the five to 10 years, so that they can ride out market fluctuations and potentially be more likely to make a profit.

It’s also important to keep in mind that some growth stocks could become overvalued by the market, which might impact a growth fund’s performance. In this scenario, an investor might buy shares in a growth fund, hoping for solid returns. But if one or more of the underlying companies in those funds ends up being overvalued, the stock’s performance might fall below investor expectations.

Evaluating a Company’s Potential for Growth

Assessing a company’s potential for growth, either in the near or long term, is not an exact science. But it’s important to consider how likely a company is to grow when determining whether it’s a good fit for a growth portfolio. This typically involves looking at several key metrics, including:

•  Return on Equity (ROE). Return on equity is used to measure company performance. It’s calculated by dividing net income by shareholder equity over a set time period.

•  Earnings Per Share (EPS). Earnings per share represents a company’s total profit divided by its total number of outstanding shares. EPS is used to measure a company’s profitability.

•  Price to Earnings to Growth (PEG). The price to earnings to growth ratio represents the price to earnings (P/E) ratio of a stock divided by the growth rate of its earnings over a set time period. Growth funds tend to have a higher P/E ratio (price to earnings ratio), which is the cost of a company’s stock relative to its earnings-per-share (EPS) than other funds. This can make them more expensive, but their potential for growth might make the extra cost worth it.

When using these and other metrics to measure a company’s growth potential, it’s important to understand how to interpret them. For example, a company that has a higher earnings per share is generally viewed as being more profitable. Likewise, a high price to earnings ratio is considered to be an indicator of continued growth.

But investors should also consider how sustainable the outlook for profitability and growth truly is, given the context of a company’s revenue, debt, and cash flows.

Buying Growth Mutual Funds

When choosing which growth stocks or growth funds to invest in, there are several factors investors may choose to consider. These include:

•  Historical performance

•  Stocks and other securities held in the fund

•  Cost and potential earnings

Growth funds can often — but not always — be identified by the word growth in their name. Some investors might choose to put their money in blended funds, which combine growth stocks with less risky holdings. These funds allow investors to benefit from some of the upsides of growth funds without quite as much risk.

Certain growth funds are exchange-traded funds, or ETFs. Like any ETF, these funds can be traded during the day like stocks.

It’s important for investors to understand the risks before investing in any stock or fund, and to build a diversified portfolio of assets in order to mitigate risk. With a diversified portfolio, investors hold both riskier assets and safer assets, in an effort to reap the benefits of growth without losing too much along the way. It’s also vital to remember that past performance is not a guaranteed indicator of how well a stock or growth fund will perform in the future.

Investing for Growth or Value?

Growth investing and value investing are couched as different styles of investing, yet they share a similar profit-driven focus — just a different means of getting there. With growth investing, the overarching goal is to invest in companies that have solid potential for growth. With value investing, the goal instead is to find companies that have been undervalued by the market — and hopefully see them increase in value.

A value investor may seek out companies that they believe are bargains based on current market price. They then invest in these companies, either by purchasing individual shares or through value mutual funds, and hold onto those investments over time. The end goal is to eventually sell their shares for a profit down the line.

In addition to eventual capital appreciation, value stocks can also pay dividends to investors. Value stocks are typically more likely to be established companies rather than newer ones. The most important thing to know with value investing vs. growth investing is how to avoid a value trap. This is a company that appears to be undervalued, but actually has a correct valuation. The trap comes into play when an investor buys in, expecting the stock’s price to rise over time, only to be disappointed by a price that stays the same or worse, declines.

Determining When to Invest in Growth Mutual Funds

Dollar cost averaging is a way to invest small amounts of money consistently over time, rather than attempting to time the market, which helps investors to limit their risk exposure. However, if there is a stock market correction, it can be a good time to pick up some extra assets while they’re at particularly low prices.

Growth stocks tend to do well during bull markets, so while they may not see significant gains during a recession, they are still good long-term investments to pick up before the next economic boom.

The Takeaway

Growth stocks have a primary goal of capital appreciation. These stocks are expected to grow more quickly than other stocks in the market, and because of this, growth mutual funds are considered riskier investments than other mutual funds, with a high risk of loss along with a higher potential for gain.

Growth funds holdings tend to have a higher P/E ratio (price to earnings ratio), which can make them more expensive investments, but their quick growth can make the extra cost worth it.

These types of funds are more likely to see returns during an economic boom cycle, vs a recession. During a recession or economic downturn, companies may not have the cash or earnings to be able to invest in growth, and the value of the stocks the fund could go down.

Investors who know the basics of growth mutual funds may be interested in adding some of these assets, or other types of mutual funds and ETFs, to their investment portfolio. It’s easy to do when you open an online trading account with SoFi Invest®. With SoFi, investors can track favorite stocks, stay up to date on the latest market news, and purchase investments right from their phone.

SoFi Invest also gives investors the ability to keep track of their expenses and set financial goals. When you join SoFi, a team of professional financial advisors is available to answer your questions and help you create a personalized investment plan.

Learn how to get started investing with SoFi Invest.


SoFi Invest®
The information provided is not meant to provide investment or financial advice. Investment decisions should be based on an individual’s specific financial needs, goals and risk profile. SoFi can’t guarantee future financial performance. Advisory services offered through SoFi Wealth, LLC. SoFi Securities, LLC, member FINRA / SIPC . SoFi Invest refers to the three investment and trading platforms operated by Social Finance, Inc. and its affiliates (described below). Individual customer accounts may be subject to the terms applicable to one or more of the platforms below.
1) Automated Investing—The Automated Investing platform is owned by SoFi Wealth LLC, an SEC Registered Investment Advisor (“Sofi Wealth“). Brokerage services are provided to SoFi Wealth LLC by SoFi Securities LLC, an affiliated SEC registered broker dealer and member FINRA/SIPC, (“Sofi Securities).
2) Active Investing—The Active Investing platform is owned by SoFi Securities LLC. Clearing and custody of all securities are provided by APEX Clearing Corporation.
3) Cryptocurrency is offered by SoFi Digital Assets, LLC, a FinCEN registered Money Service Business.
For additional disclosures related to the SoFi Invest platforms described above, including state licensure of Sofi Digital Assets, LLC, please visit www.sofi.com/legal. Neither the Investment Advisor Representatives of SoFi Wealth, nor the Registered Representatives of SoFi Securities are compensated for the sale of any product or service sold through any SoFi Invest platform. Information related to lending products contained herein should not be construed as an offer or pre-qualification for any loan product offered by SoFi Lending Corp and/or its affiliates.
Investment Risk: Diversification can help reduce some investment risk. It cannot guarantee profit, or fully protect in a down market.
Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs): Investors should carefully consider the information contained in the prospectus, which contains the Fund’s investment objectives, risks, charges, expenses, and other relevant information. You may obtain a prospectus from the Fund company’s website or by email customer service at [email protected] Please read the prospectus carefully prior to investing. Shares of ETFs must be bought and sold at market price, which can vary significantly from the Fund’s net asset value (NAV). Investment returns are subject to market volatility and shares may be worth more or less their original value when redeemed. The diversification of an ETF will not protect against loss. An ETF may not achieve its stated investment objective. Rebalancing and other activities within the fund may be subject to tax consequences.

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