This is going to be another short article today. I am still swamped with dog sitting business. I love that so many people are getting vaccinated and traveling. I also love that almost everyone decided to get a dog in the last year and a half. The only downside is that I’m constantly doing meet and greets, and booking appointments. I had two meet and greets yesterday and during one, I had an emergency last-minute request from someone who needed to travel for work, but their dog regular sitter was on vacation.
After more than a year of very few dogs to sit it is an overwhelming, but a welcome change.
In any case, I didn’t intend to write about dog sitting today. We can save that for the May financial update that should come out early next week. Instead, I want to talk about investing your kids’ money.
I started an investment account with Robinhood when the kids were 2-3 year old. In July that will be exactly 5 years ago. It’s a perfect time to look back and see how that decision went.
I don’t like to invest other people’s money. There’s just too much risk if it doesn’t work out. Fortunately, a 2 and 3 year old weren’t going to feel too much one way or the other.
I could waste a lot of words to build suspence before giving you the results, but I wasted that opportunity in the article’s title. Here’s how they’ve done:
For full disclosure, the results include a little free stock from Robinhood from referring friends (and website visitors). If you sign up here, you’ll help make a couple of kids very happy as they’ll get some free stock… and you will too.
No worries if you don’t sign up, because they are already very happy with the growth of their money. They are starting to figure out how money works, but grasped the idea that twice as much money is better a while back.
I should be open and say that there’s no guarantees that you’ll double your money when you invest via the Robinhood brokerage. The brokerage doesn’t make your money double, the investment choices do. The rule of 72 would indicate that they’ve made 14.5% interest per year. My kids have been lucky with that great bull market and I expect things will slow down in the future.
They’ve been mostly in the US total market (via Vanguard’s VTI ETF), but sometimes I buy some fun stuff for them like a gaming conference company or a little Dogecoin. That’s the advantage of having free trades with Robinhood. Five years ago, brokerages offering free trades were rare, but they are more common now.
The other thing I should note is that Robinhood doesn’t have custodial accounts for kids. I had to put the account in my name and I’ll have to pay taxes on it when it’s sold and distributed to the kids. Hopefully, since they are long-term capital gains, they won’t be so bad. Since having separate accounts was difficult, I simply added the same money from each kid whenever I do a cash deposit. This way they’ll each own 50% of the account.