For the average investor, mutual funds are a great way to gain exposure to the equity markets. However, there is another option that allows you to invest small amounts of money regularly without having to make a lump sum investment: Systematic Investment Plans or SIPs. In this article, we will take a look at what SIPs are, how to start SIP investment and compare them with mutual funds.
What is SIP?
A Systematic Investment Plan (SIP) is a smart and hassle-free mode for investing money in mutual funds.
A SIP is an investment plan that helps you to build a portfolio over a period of time. It is a simple, systematic and disciplined approach to investing in mutual funds. With a SIP, you can invest small amounts at regular intervals (e.g., monthly) in different schemes of your choice.
This way you can start building wealth for your retirement needs or any other goal with ease and convenience by investing through systematic investment plans (SIPs).
What are mutual funds?
Mutual funds are a pool of money collected from many investors and invested in stocks, bonds and other securities. Each investor owns shares of the mutual fund. Mutual funds are managed by professionals who decide which securities to buy or sell for the fund. The main advantage of mutual funds is that they spread your risk over multiple investments (funds).
Mutual funds offer the benefit of diversification, which means reducing risk by spreading your money across many different investments (stocks, bonds, etc.). This can help you to avoid losing too much money if one or two stocks don’t go well but still have some return on your overall portfolio.
Learn more about mutual funds.
SIP and Mutual Funds
Look at it this way:
Mutual fund is a product. SIP (Systematic Investment Plan) is a plan or mode of investing in that product.
Since an SIP is set up to invest small amounts of money on a regular basis, it gives you more control over your investments.
Besides being easy to set up, buying units at regular intervals also helps create discipline when investing money into shares and bonds which are traded every day on stock exchanges across the world.
Which is more profitable: SIP or mutual fund?
SIP is more cost-effective than mutual funds.
Here are the reasons:
- The SIP investment strategy involves regular savings and investments that give you an optimum benefit of compounding.
- Mutual funds charge an expense ratio as well as a commission on every transaction made during your investment period. On the other hand, when you invest through SIPs, there are no commissions involved.
- Most mutual funds have an entry load while some have exit loads too. However, with SIPs neither entry nor exit loads are charged by banks or financial institutions.
Entry load in mutual funds is the fee charged from an investor while entering a scheme or joining the company as an investor.
Exit load in mutual funds is a fee charged by the mutual fund houses if investors exit a scheme partially or fully within a certain period from the date of investment.
This means that investing through SIPs helps lower your overall expenses and is more cost efficient compared to investing in mutual funds directly without using a SIP framework.
Is SIP safe?
When you invest through SIP, you can rest assured that your money is safe. The amount invested every month, for example, is transferred to the mutual fund company’s bank account and remains there till it reaches maturity. Thereafter, the money is paid out to you as per your directions.
SIPs are also a convenient way for investors who don’t have enough money lying around but still want to make periodic investments into mutual funds in order to create wealth over time; investing through SIPs allows them to do so without any fuss or headache. However, there is a need for continuous monitoring.
Also because an investor doesn’t need large sums upfront when they start investing using this method, it provides an excellent opportunity for people who want some basic financial security without much risk involved.
We have learnt that a SIP is a smart and hassle-free mode of investing money in mutual funds. It allows you to invest on a regular basis, which is much more effective than investing a lump sum in one go. With this plan, for instance, you can save yourself from the regret of not having invested in mutual funds when the stock market was at its peak.