Elizabeth and I don't mind cooking, but it's not something we relish.
Actually, it's not even the cooking... mostly it's the cleanup.
And while we're somewhat capable in the kitchen, we've found we really love using our crock-pot.
For us, we've found 2-3 recipes where we can throw just a few ingredients in there, turn in on for several hours, and dinner is served.
And there's only one pot to cleanup after too.
One of our favorites is a low-carb chicken tortilla soup (without any tortillas). We can make it and typically get 3-4 meals out of it.
It's DELICIOUS. Even more so as the weather outside is starting to get cooler.
Which got me to thinking...
Wouldn't be great if there were a crock-pot version of investing?
Turns out, there is.
In fact, I'm using this crock-pot approach in my personal 401k account.
I own one mutual fund that in turn owns a handful of underlying mutual funds which collectively own thousands of stocks and bonds around the globe.
Will this crock-pot investment approach have the same results as a delicately prepared and personalized portfolio?
Don't know, don't care.
Can't see - nor can we control - the future.
I'm not making any investment recommendations here.
But I do want to highlight the fact that investing can - and should - be as simple and inexpensive as possible.
Sure, if you own say, 2-3 ETFs in your portfolio it provides opportunities to strategically rebalance your portfolio as well as utilize tax-loss harvesting in non-retirement accounts.
But this crock-pot approach handles rebalancing automatically and in the case of my personal 401k, there's no benefit to tax-loss harvesting since it's a tax-deferred account.
I've owned this single fund in my 401k since it became an available option several years ago.
My contributions go in and it's on auto-pilot. I don't look at it or worry about it.
If you manage your own investments, you might also consider a crock-pot investment strategy with part or all of your portfolio.
Again, I don't know how it will work out over time compared to the tinkering, timing, and picking that many professionals and consumers seem so enamored with, but I have a good hunch - and history and reams of research support - that it will work out just fine.
If you want to check out a great example of this crock-pot approach to investing, I think the Vanguard LifeStrategy Funds are a solid solution.
And these aren't "target date funds" which I'm generally not a fan of.
The LifeStrategy come in four flavors ranging from lower risk (less stocks) to higher risk (more stocks). I have my entire 401k in one of these funds.
Does this mean one of these funds is right for you?
I can't say without knowing more about you and your situation, but based on all the financial "junk food" I see on a regular basis, I think these could be a nice addition to your investment menu.
Simple, inexpensive, and tasty (financially speaking)!
Links & things
Stress testing your financial plan is important because we want to make sure it's resilient no matter what future markets may throw at us. With that in mind, check out the next installment in my planning in public video series where we continue to look at how to stress test Lillian's financial plan:
As I've shared with you before, I don't love the word "goals" in the context of your financial plan. Many people I talk to don't really seem to love the idea either. Nevertheless, "goals" seems to be an accepted part of the financial planning lingo and I continue to use it myself. But what if there were another, perhaps better approach to the concept of goals? (and be sure to read through to the end for the wonderful Charlie Munger quote)
Thank you, as always, for reading.
And if you have any questions or an idea for a future newsletter, blog post, or YouTube video, I'd love your input.
Just hit reply - I read (and appreciate) every email you send.
Until next Wednesday,