I'm very new into this world of investing and finances. It all started when I learned about the Acorns iPhone app and I've been reading up and listening to podcasts about investing. I've learned about the power of compounding and I want to have a good amount of money when I reach around 60 years old.
So I'm 32, single, and have been in Australia for 3 years now. I'm a photography assistant and will be transitioning to a full-time photographer in the next 1.5-2 years. I earn around $80-100K/year as an assistant, and I should be earning more once I'm a full-time photographer.
I've been investing in lots of equipment (lighting, digital and cameras) for the past year or so, and I have been saving up some money too. I currently have a $5K in cash emergency funds, I regularly put a few hundred dollars monthly into my superannuation fund, and also have a little over $4K set aside that I want to put into long term investing.
I'm looking for something to continuously put around $200-500/month over the next 15-20 years (or more), alongside my superannuation.
I still have a lot of reading to do, but my impression so far is that Index funds sound really smart. It doesn't take much brain power (so I can focus on photography career), and costs are low.
There is also a lot of people saying that ETFs are great too because there is a lower starting fee, but from what I can gather you pay a small amount for transactions (to buy), so to me that eats into my money.
So my situation is where do you guys think I should put my initial $5,000 (once my $4K reaches that), should I look more into ETFs or an Index Fund?
I'm hoping to maybe have (1) my superannuation, (2) index fund (or funds), and then (3) maybe some property when I retire. It sounds like a smart diversified way to head into retirement.
My gut feeling says Index Funds, but I would like to hear from you guys.