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4 investment opportunities you probably hadn’t thought of

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If traditional investment opportunities are failing toy float your financial boat, it could be time to look beyond cliché investment options and consider potentially lucrative ‘alternative’ investments.

Alternative investment refers to those opportunities that don’t fall under the umbrella of shares, bonds, and mainstream property or cash. Beyond these traditional classes of assets exists a seemingly endless list of unusual investment opportunities, available to any investor looking to explore a range of unique options.

You may not be in the financial ranks of wealth management firms like Investment Quorum’s clients yet, but a smart alternative investment could get you closer to your financial goals. Below is a list of four unexpected, and exciting, examples.

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Wine

It’s not uncommon to arrive at home after a long day of work and find sanctuary in a glass of your favourite wine or, let’s be honest, whatever bottle is at hand. However, your need for wine could double up as a happy investment.

Old favourites such as the main châteaux of Bordeaux, a wine which makes up roughly 75% of investments in the fine wine market, have a reliable and steady profit margin. With wines like these that have a good vintage and provenance, you’re likely to end up with a sizeable return on your investment.

With a little guidance, as well as a heap of willpower, fine wine investment can prove to be an extremely lucrative investment opportunity. Just remember to always check the vintage and try your best to stick to the most impressive years.

canada-159585_1280Citizenship

In exchange for an investment in their government fund or real estate, some countries will offer you the opportunity to gain citizenship. This doesn’t just mean the expansion of your passport portfolio. Gaining citizenship in particular countries can also bring a wealth of benefits relating to tax, migration, working abroad, and visa-free travel.

The process of various citizenship by investment programmes tend to differ, and the minimum investment necessary to request citizenship can vary greatly from country to country. Canada’s Citizenship by investment programme will set you back a whopping CAD 800,000. At the other end of the spectrum, Dominica, a small Caribbean island, offer one of the cheapest citizenship by investment programmes anywhere in the world.

Grenada is another Caribbean island that offers a competitively priced citizenship by investment scheme. They offer similar benefits to Dominica’s programme and accept a real estate investment of USD 350,000.

Citizenship by investment can be a great investment for retirees with a lump sum of money and the desire to move somewhere warmer, without the hassle of constantly applying for visas. If you’ve got the means it can be a great route to retiring in style and/or an innovative way to expand your business enterprise.

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Number Plates

The UK number plate ‘1D’ was auctioned for the substantial sum of £352,000 in 2009, one year before the conception of the pop group One Direction. The already staggering value has now undoubtedly increased tenfold since the combination ‘1D’ dramatically rose in pop culture significance.

But why spend £300,000+ for a number plate, just on the off-chance that a group of pubescent boys will later choose to use it as the name for their band and shoot to stardom unfathomable? The ‘1D’ plate may seem an extreme example, but it can be easy to take advantage of pop culture references by purchasing relevant number plates and watching the value grow.

The term ‘bae’ is currently an extremely popular pop culture acronym for before anyone else. It is used frequently as a genuine term of endearment or ironically by those mocking its use. The line between the two is extremely fine. Currently on Click4Reg, the number plate BAE 4V (translated to bae for you) sells for £975, MIII BAE (my bae) sells for £675, and F4 BAE (for bae) sells for £471.

Not only are these a completely viable gift option for your other half, especially if they’re guilty of using this word frequently, but it’s entirely possible that they could provide a nice little return on an investment.

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Art

In 2014, sales in the art market reached a record £37bn. This demonstrated that the global art market is booming and subsequently, and understandably, increased interest in art investment.

The Arts Council gives around £500 million a year to public institutions, such as the Tate Modern, to buy and display art. Art collectors are also often keen to buy works of upcoming artists, those rising in fame and prominence. The demand for fine and contemporary art is always high and in terms of artists, you’re spoilt for choice. There are over 1 million artists in the UK alone, and at any one time around 100 have ‘superstar’ status.

If contemporary art is your forte and you are confident you can identify the next Jean-Michel Basquiat or Jeff Koons, buying art is a highly recommended form of alternative investment. For those seeking inspiration to start, consider exploring growing talents like  the highly stylised Dubai based artist Owais Husain, the colour loving Rosie Irvine, or the constellation-like works of James R. Eads

However, be realistic. Potential art investors are warned that knowledge is the key to making smart investments in this specialised market. Without expert understanding you can easily make significant financial losses.

If your end goal is resale then the trick is to buy early in an artist’s career. Artists tend to be at least in their 40s before they can demand highly respectable prices for their work and by investing in young talent you’re investing in a their potential. Some good advice is to look for artists just starting to be displayed in public spaces and to get to know the artists themselves in order to get a sense of their ambition and passion. It’s also important to remember that artists don’t need to churn out art frequently to be in demand, sometimes less is more if the quality is high and the style is unique.

 

 

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