At the time this article is being written, real estate is at one of its lowest points in history. The housing market has taken a tremendous hit due to predatory loans, a depressed economy and people who had no business buying houses to begin with. This means tough times for those looking to sell their homes, but it is a great time to buy. Whenever a market is experiencing a low point, those who have patience and money can go to work making their future fortune. The key with real estate--as with almost all investments--is to look at it as something that will pay off in the long run.
While it experiences tremendous highs and lows, a good, sound investment strategy will rarely leave anyone out in the cold over the long haul. Those who invest in the stock market to get rich quick are the ones who are usually left penniless and bitter at the end of the day. Those who make wise investments, scatter their capital and hold on to those investments over a period of 10 to 15 years are the ones who will find themselves--nine times out of 10--in a much better position down the line.
Any time the economy is in a recession, people come out of the woodwork to let everyone know about investing in gold. The reasons behind this are many, but the main one is that gold is considered a safe investment. While it may not bring the investor a great return on her money, it is a "safe haven" against a weakening dollar. Over the years, gold never loses its value, and it is a real investment. It backs our currency and it will always be in demand.
When you invest in a private business, you become what is called an angel investor. This involves giving start-up capital to an entrepreneur who has a small business plan. In exchange, you will either expect a certain percentage of profit, or a share in the company itself. This type of investment can be risky, seeing as how so many small businesses fail within their first five years. However, it can also pay off in ways that other investments cannot, especially if you choose to become partners in the financial gain of the company.
Treasuries are sometimes called government securities, and they are regarded as one of the safest investments an individual can make. This is because the treasury bonds themselves are fully backed by the United States government, so there is no risk of default (unless the entire country sinks into the ocean, which is a singularly unlikely event). These treasuries could include T-Bonds, T-bills, or medium term treasury notes, and they are basically notes against the country's debt obligations. The upside to these treasuries is their safety and the fact that they are exempt from taxation. The downside is that they offer relatively low return.