Investment calculator terms defined
- Starting Amount: This is the initial amount of money you have available to invest.
- Additional Contributions: This is the payment amount that you plan to add or contribute to your investment account periodically. It can be monthly or annually.
- Rate of Return: This is the rate at which you expect your invested money to grow.
- Number of years to grow: This is the length of time, in years, that you plan to keep your money invested.
How to use the investment calculator
Our investment calculator is easy to use. Simply follow these steps.
1. Enter how much you plan to invest into the calculator
If you have, say, £2,000 to invest right now, enter that into the ‘Starting Amount’ box.
2. Select the amount you can add each month
If you are planning to add a certain amount of money into your investment account every month, enter that into the ‘Additional Contributions’ box and pick ‘Monthly’ from the drop-down menu.
Alternatively, if you plan to add a lump sum to your account once a year, enter your planned contribution and select ‘Annually’ from the drop-down menu.
3. Choose an expected rate of return
At what rate do you expect your investment to grow each year? This will depend on the type of investment.
Since the FTSE 100 started in 1984, total returns have averaged 7.75% per year. So, if you are planning to invest in an index fund that tracks the FTSE 100, you can use this rate as a starting point.
Keep in mind, however, that past performance is not a reliable indicator of future returns.
Additionally, it doesn’t mean that you can expect your investment to grow by 7.75% (or any other specific rate for that matter) every year. Your investment can go up as well as down, but over the long term, these fluctuations should balance out to leave you in positive growth territory.
Enter the percentage you expect your investment to grow by in the ‘Rate of Return’ box.
4. Select how many years you plan to invest for
The longer you invest, the more time you will have to ride out any potential downturns in the market. A good rule of thumb is to invest your money for at least five years. This will give it the best possible chance of growing.
Enter the number of years you plan to invest for in the ‘Number of years to grow’ box.
Understanding your calculator results
This investment calculator will give you an idea of how your investment might grow over time based on the figures and options you choose and enter.
You can play around with the expected rate of return and your monthly (or annual) contributions to see how they affect your future returns. For example, if you have a specific goal, you can see how much you need to invest based on your specified rate of return.
Don’t forget that these are just projected and not guaranteed returns. Your capital is always at risk when you invest, and you may get back less than you put in.
If you are not sure whether a particular investment is right for you, it’s a good idea to speak to a financial adviser.
Next step with investing in the UK
If you are ready to begin your investment journey, we understand that finding the right share dealing account can be a difficult task. There are so many providers out there, and they all claim to be the best. But which one can you actually trust to give you the best value for your money?
To help you narrow down your choices and hopefully find the account that is best suited to your needs, we’ve reviewed and ranked what we see as some of the top providers of share dealing accounts in the UK.