What Is The Biggest Investing Mistake You Will Never Make Again?

What is the biggest, or most regrettable, investing mistake you will never make again?
Either something that you had done (or not done), or wished you had done (or not done).

This is not to humiliate anyone.
But I would like to (try to) avoid getting myself into unnecessary investment pain.
And perhaps reading mistakes that other people have made might be really helpful.
It might help other people in the group as well.

Thank you very much for sharing.

Comments

  • +33 votes

    Did somebody say crypto? 😁

    • +9 votes

      you regret buying crypto, or not buying crypto?

      • +16 votes

        I regret selling some as I thought it was diving but all I did was reduce the amount I owned because it bounced fast.

        • +1 vote

          But if one day it comes crashing down and you havent sell them, you may look at today and be thankful that you have sold some when the price is higher.

          • +7 votes

            @jejepz: No I bought back in and have 5x what I originally invested.

            • +1 vote

              @Mechz: gotta realise those losses!

              •  

                @dinna89: That's called a 'wash sale' and reporting it as a loss is considered tax fraud.

      • +1 vote

        For anyone with crypto…the answer is both of these, and buying crypto
        ;)

    • +70 votes

      I sold all my bitcoin to fund a new mining rig years ago, then ran into financial trouble. I was so relieved that my 2,000 bitcoin gave me $8k to get through a real rough patch…

      I didn't keep any of them. Not a single one.

      edit: And I'm so happy I basically got $8k for free and still am, that saved my skin at the time. The dreams on what I could have done with $100m don't go away though.

      • +15 votes

        It's nearly $150m atm…

        • +166 votes

          Thanks, that makes me feel better.

          • +22 votes

            @freefall101: would you really have held onto them much past 10, 20 30 k?

            • +1 vote

              @Calam05: This.

            • +1 vote

              @Calam05: Some I would have. Actual plan was to build a $10kish mining rig to rebuild those 2k coins (and pay off what I was inevitably going to put on the credit card). I had a bit of faith in bitcoin, mostly because it was amazing for black market transactions (always a good sign it'll make money). I lived in Northern Canada, I was bored and playing with crypto was more fun than anything. Selling everything was a once off thing to upgrade and never to be repeated.

              Granted, I had nowhere near $75k per BTC faith. Might have made a couple of mil if I stuck at it the way I was planning.

            •  

              @Calam05: Well the idea is not to sell them all.

              When they hit 1k you sell 100, get $100k. When they hit 5k you sell another 100 get $500k, etc

              He wouldn't end up with $150m now but could easily have $20m and still 100's of Bitcoin left to sell later

            •  

              @Calam05: If he follow the 80/20 rule, then he would still has 20BTC left … 20 x 50k USD = 100k USD

      • +8 votes

        F

      • +3 votes

        look lets be honest you probably would of sold it at 20k

        • +4 votes

          That's still 40m though. Yeeeesh.

      •  

        $100m mining rig, nice!

      • +11 votes

        "ATO just joined the chat"

      •  

        But if you didnt sell and get that 8k you needed you could be dead (you said rough patch) or homeless and loose your usb.

        So you won't have your 150mil anyways.

      • +3 votes

        if it makes you feel better, I've got a couple of hundred million sitting in landfill somewhere - the hard drive had click of death and at the time (when bitcoin could be comfortably mined for fun on a standard PC using just the CPU) it didn't have anything valuable on it…

        I'm glad you got to get some enjoyment/use out of your coins though

    • +1 vote

      Why everyone saying crypto? There are many coin which didn't make it, many people have lost money. It is very rare to make lots of money from crypto.

      •  

        the volatility and the potential for insanely rapid peaks combined with the insanely rapid troughs that the commenters above you have referred to.

  • +194 votes

    Don't ever invest or do business with friends or family.

    • +1 vote

      This for sure.

    •  

      Yes this, wise words indeed. The main reason is that if things go bad, not only do you 'do your dough', you can also end up irrevocably ruining your relationships with the friends/family involved.

      • +1 vote

        If you can't trust your friends/family enough to do business with them, there's no relationship to ruin. It's already ruined.

        Make better friends. I've lent money, started businesses, and transferred all my savings to family and friends multiple times.

        If a relationship is worth less than money, it's not worth having.

        • +18 votes

          It's not just about not trusting people, or friends/family screwing each other over.

          If the business or the investment go bad, which does happen, it can definitely affect the relationship.

          The point is you're not only risking your money but you risk the relationship.

          • +4 votes

            @Harold Halfprice: correct, you don't necessarily need to end up badly either, like someone stuffed you up on purpose, but you might have different goals.

            example (buy an investment property with a friend)
            you might wanna get rid of the mortgage ASAP, while your friend or family is happy to pay it in 30 years.
            you can't buy a new place, because the bank won't give you creadit, as you're still on the hook for their slice

            That affected your life quite considerably, yet, nobody did anything on purpose

        • +4 votes

          It's also really easy in a business, for both partners to expect amazing work from their friend (no need to draw up a contract, he won't screw me over!)… and then, feel like they are doing all the hard work, while the other person is slacking off (because you see every detail of your own part, and just the results of theirs).

          If that happens, you end up disliking your "lazy" friend for taking advantage of you. Boom: one friendship lost for no reason.

        •  

          Well said

    • +13 votes

      So flawed. I know many people who run successful businesses with friends or family and who have made a lot of money as a result and their relationships are still super strong and positive.

      It just comes down to the person themselves who you do business with and it can be hard to know until you are in a tight spot who has real integrity and who is a shitty person.

      Better advice is “don’t do business with someone unless you’ve been in a situation which has really tested them and/or your relationship and you have seen how they reacted”.

      •  

        Bingo.

        If people took idiomatic expressions literally, then Play with Fire would look like this.

        I’m fairly sure, most people that read the line, were able to read between the lines🤞 ;)

      •  

        Running a successful business is not really the problem though.

        It's the unsuccessful businesses that cause the pain.

        •  

          Generally the unsuccessful business are started by people who should never be running businesses in the first place!

          Yes, things go wrong in business all the time but I’ve seen smart families and friends who have loyalty and integrity work through challenges together and win great end outcomes. It’s the people who lack those core values that end up screwing others over in tough times. Again, if you do your due diligence before getting into business you will know who to avoid.

          •  

            @GourmetFoodie:

            Generally the unsuccessful business are started by people who should never be running businesses in the first place!

            Thats not true at all - it is always risk vs reward.

            Most successful business people will have had several failed ventures on the road to success.

    • +2 votes

      Plenty of family members are willing to take a less profitable route to help a family member out and keep more of the wealth generated in the family, vs hiring an expert and generating even more wealth just for themselves.

    •  

      Damn right!

    • +4 votes

      Spot on, I gave $50k to relatives to help starting up their business. They promised to return within months as they were getting a business loan. Been three years now and there is no sign of money!

    • +1 vote

      I learnt that one the hard way…twice!

    •  

      I believe I have mentioned before on here about my experience. I had a successful professional career… went to uni etc and was doing ok. Approached by parents to take over family business after two years as they wanted to retire. Sold our city apartment and put off buying a family home (I have four kids. A 1yo and another on the way at the time they approached me) to put everything into funding cashflow for the business. I believed we would be "better off" buying the business vs short term capital growth in property. Multiple disputes and nine years later, we had come close but things have always shifted at the very last moment. Sill no family home. Folks have done very well since I tripled sales in first 2 years. They have nothing to do with the business operationally and show very little interest other than counting the beans.

      It has cost me and my family everything. I would have considered my greater family to be quite close and supportive until money became involved. In theory it shouldn't be this way, but it is and I never would have seen it coming. Didn't think twice about trust issues. After all they were my parents right!

      I would love to move on but unable to take any reduction in income to ensure I can best support my family. Had I stayed in my career job I would have been on a higher income than I am now. In terms of returning to the career, its not really an option as it takes years for career progression to earn equivalent money, not to mention challenges of retraining and obtaining registration in the field after a long hiatus.

      Not bloody worth it!

      • +1 vote

        I don’t get this. If you tripled sales why are you not raking in money? You margins must be crap if this is the case except you claim your parents have done well? I thought you bought out the business so why are they claiming profits from it? And you say you kept going for 9 years?

        If you were not walking away from day 1 with a MINIMUM 200-300k p.a, your problem is not doing business with family, your problem was staying in an unprofitable business. I’ve seen this time and time again. That’s why I always say for most people being a “wage slave” is the smartest business decision you will make. Most small business owners are working insane hours only to walk away with an average salary at the end of the day.

      •  

        So if you sold the family home to put cash into the business then you ensured the business structure entitled you to that equity right? Or is it a loan from a related party that will sit on the balance sheet forever?

  • +3 votes

    I did one of those Timbercorp investments. Got a chunk back from gst and some from the liquidators. But most down the drain… did not have a taxable gain to offset the loss.

    • +1 vote

      Yeah, lots got sucked into that one. Follow the money to see why.

      • +1 vote

        I'm glad I didn't borrow money like many did

    •  

      Can’t you just carry the capital loss forward when you do make a gain?

  • +48 votes

    I heard the top few are:
    Don't get married
    Don't have kids
    Don't get a divorce
    Don't buy a high yield investment Car
    Don't buy a Euro Car

    • -30 votes

      Kids are the biggest waste of money, but the rest of your list can actually be enjoyable.

      • +67 votes

        How many divorces have you enjoyed so far?

        • +3 votes

          If your relationship is at the stage where a divorce is the only option, then it is the only option.

          • +1 vote

            @Blargman2001: like what bezos and gates did

          • +1 vote

            @Blargman2001: A divorce is never the only option, you can stay together and make each other miserable for life. You might even find some joy in it

      • +79 votes

        Kids are only a waste of money if you raise them to be shitheads.

        Raise them right and they'll look after you when you get old, bury you, and fight for every cause you believed in.

        • +31 votes

          Plus they provide so much entertainment and love.

        • +1 vote

          Yeah you have to get married and have kids so they can get married and have kids so they can get married and have kids…

        • +3 votes

          fight for every cause you believed in.

          Not after getting brainwashed at school for 12 years!

          •  

            @Blue Cat: When you realise the world isn’t what it is, you try to explain it to those not seen it, they’ll think you are nuts and may even become hostile to you - Allegory of the cave.

          • -1 vote

            @Blue Cat: You I hate it when they make friends with kids from other races
            /s

          •  

            @Blue Cat: Parent and teacher - I'll have a little army fighting for my causes.

      • +1 vote

        Tell that to your parents.

      •  

        Did your parents tell you that?

        •  

          Did your parents tell you that?

          It’s the other way, his parents told him that actually. Lol

      • +1 vote

        I enjoy my kids.

    •  

      Getting married early is a real positive financially. As you can start saving early and use the saving to earn compound interests.

      • +4 votes

        Assuming that your spouse is working and/or has some source of income.

        • +4 votes

          Why would you date/marry an unemployed person?

          • +14 votes
            • +1 vote

              @Kooratz: Fair call

            • +2 votes

              @Kooratz: Not worth it if they can't also help the family eventually.

              Winning the partner lottery, by having a partner who is supportive of your goals and vice versa is probably the best investment anyone can make.

              It's one-sided love if you have to do everything.

          • +1 vote

            @redfox1200: Do you even know what simping is?

      • +3 votes

        For some, that's the quickest way to lose 50% of your assets. It could be even higher.

        To top it off, it's not a tax-deductible loss either!

    •  

      I only tick one out of those 5 so i guess life’s good 😂😂

    • +1 vote

      Having kids is the best thing on this earth - for that it is worth the risk of getting married!

      • +1 vote

        Absolutely. I would forgo all my wealth for the joy that family brings.

      • +20 votes

        tl;dr

  • +1 vote

    options. short term at least

  • +13 votes

    When I click 'Show' that appears after "The Disinfo Assassin's" comment above, it does not 'show', and instead just disappears. Does anyone know why this is?

    • +25 votes

      No but I'm jealous that you don't have to see that wall of text.

    • +4 votes

      There is about 14gb of text… you might just have to wait until it downloads…

      • +2 votes

        I have been here a long time…. But I ain't never seen anything like it before

    • +1 vote

      My phone does this. You have to wait, probably takes a few minutes to download that wall of text.

    • +13 votes

      It doesn't disappear as such but turns in to a collapsed comment. Look closely and there's a "+" to expand it just above follow's post

      • +1 vote

        Thanks whites, this was the answer/solution .. it wasn't about 'waiting for it to load'.

    • +4 votes

      The site is coded to hide rubbish.

  • +60 votes

    Waited over 10 years for the property bubble to burst. It never did.

    •  

      Every time I hear someone say they are waiting for property prices to come down I face palm, then I speak to them a few years later with a mortgage twice the size the one they would have had a few years earlier.

      • +1 vote

        The problem with this is that, politics aside, the Australian market is extremely overvalued. There's only one thing propping the Aussie market from a well overdue crash, and that's politicians distorting the market.

        Now you might feel smug that the market hasn't popped yet. But it will. And you won't be proudly telling everyone how wrong you were when that happens.

        To quote Michael Burry:

        I may have been early, but I'm not wrong.