No savings at 50? I’d use Warren Buffett’s methods to invest

Following Warren Buffett’s approach to investing could lead to higher returns. It may even help to bring an early retirement a step closer.

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Warren Buffett’s investment strategy has been hugely successful for many years. The billionaire investor’s long-term approach and purchase of high-quality companies trading at low prices has allowed him to outperform the stock market.

Following a similar approach could help to build a retirement nest egg over the coming years. Many shares appear to offer good value for money right now. So today could be the right time to start that process. Even from a standing start at age 50.

Warren Buffett’s long-term approach

One of the key parts of Buffett’s approach to investing is his long-term outlook. He avoids short-term fads. Instead, he seeks to maximise returns over many years, and even decades. In doing so, he provides his portfolio holdings with the time they need to deliver on their potential. His strategy also allows compounding to have maximum impact on portfolio value.

An new investor aged 50 may not have as much time to build a retirement nest egg as someone just starting their career. However, they’re likely to have 15+ years left of working until they retire. As such, they still have a long time horizon. Enough time to maybe be able to follow Buffett’s lead in using a buy-and-hold strategy to improve their financial position.

Investing money in high-quality stocks at low prices

Another facet of Warren Buffett’s investment strategy that could be useful to many investors is his focus on buying undervalued shares. This doesn’t mean he buys cheap shares in low-quality companies. Or that he seeks to buy the best stocks at any price. Instead, he combines the two approaches to purchase high-quality stocks when they trade at low prices.

In many cases, those low prices are caused by weak operating conditions prompted by a tough economic period. History shows such conditions are unlikely to last in perpetuity. Certainly since the economy has always recovered from its challenges to post improving growth rates. As such, buying companies with solid financial positions and wide economic moats while they experience temporary challenges could be a sound move.

Investing for retirement

Using Warren Buffett’s strategy could lead to impressive returns that beat the stock market’s performance over the long run. Even if an investor matches the 8-10% annual total returns of indexes such as the FTSE 100 and S&P 500 over recent decades, they could build a surprisingly large portfolio by retirement.

For example, investing £1,000 per month over 15 years at a 9% return would produce a portfolio valued at £381,000. From this, a 4% annual passive income could be drawn that would amount to over £15,000 per year.

By following Warren Buffett’s strategy it’s possible to beat such returns in the coming years to produce a larger nest egg. And a more generous income that could even lead to an early retirement.

Should you invest, the value of your investment may rise or fall and your capital is at risk. Before investing, your individual circumstances should be assessed. Consider taking independent financial advice.

Views expressed on the companies mentioned in this article are those of the writer and therefore may differ from the official recommendations we make in our subscription services such as Share Advisor, Hidden Winners and Pro. Here at The Motley Fool we believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.

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