The funny thing about investments like Bitcoin, Ether, Litecoin, and others is that people always think they’re too late. Back in December, you remember hearing many folks saying, “I wish I had bought Bitcoin when it cost $6,000.” Bizarrely, now that it does cost just over $6,000, these folks are hardly there to buy Bitcoin.
The fact is, as Tom Lee – one of the only voices from the world of mainstream finance – states, cryptocurrency is a “multi-decade story.” He’s confident that the price is going up and recently said that it mattered little whether the coin was worth $20,000 or $25,000 by the end of the year. By this logic, what does it matter if you manage to buy in right at the bottom, at the exact point a reversal occurs or a few percentage points above it?
If you’re planning on buying into Bitcoin and selling it just a few months later then sure, your entry point is going to be vital. However, as most people are treating it as a speculative investment, surely the best strategy is to buy a little with some money that you can afford to do without and simply ride it out for a few years. In this scenario, it really doesn’t matter if you caught the very bottom. Besides, unless you’re willing to invest many, many hours into chart reading, technical analysis, and research, you’re almost certainly going to miss the bottom anyway.
Why Should You Own Cryptocurrency Anyway?
Personally, the advice of Coinbase vice-president Adam White stating that “every person should own a little bit of digital currency,” seems sound. At the end of the day, Bitcoin particularly is the first permission-less, unconfiscatable, and completely decentralized asset. With this in mind, why shouldn’t you buy a fraction (yes, you don’t have to buy whole Bitcoins) of a Bitcoin?
Bitcoin is shaping up to be this generation’s store of value, and time looks set to prove this true. Think about gold, and you will realize the qualities that make gold useful (mostly its scarcity) are even more locked in. Bitcoin has a fixed 21 million units. There is no telling how much gold there is. Space exploration could uncover 21 billion tons of the stuff next year. What will that do to the price of your investment?
Then there’s the fact that Bitcoin is almost infinitely divisible, easy and cheap to move, and convenient to store in a way that is much more secure than gold ever could be. It’s still very early days for this financial revolution. If you think you’ve missed the boat on Bitcoin, you really couldn’t be further from the truth!
So, if all this has convinced you and you want to get hold of some Bitcoin, you might be wondering how to buy some. Fortunately, we’re going to tell you how right now.
Brokerage Type Services
One of the most common ways to get exposure to Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is to use a brokerage-type service. There are quite a few of these around and they usually accept a range of different fiat currencies and deposit options. You can even buy Bitcoin using a credit card at some.
The thing that makes brokerage services fantastic is that they’re just so easy to use. It’s literally like making any other purchase online. You register an account, upload your payment details and hit “buy.”
Some of the biggest names in cryptocurrency brokerage services are Coinbase and CEX.IO.
Another way to buy some Bitcoin is to use a typical exchange service. These are a little bit more confusing to use than the brokerage-type services. However, if you’re just wanting to buy a few hundred to a few thousand dollars’ worth of Bitcoin or other cryptos, it’s still straightforward enough.
There are loads of exchange platforms around. Some are known as crypto-to-crypto exchanges and others are fiat-to-crypto exchanges. For now, you can ignore the former category. Crypto-to-crypto exchanges are for those people who already have some Bitcoin or other digital asset and want to swap it for a different one.
If you’re looking to get your first exposure to cryptocurrency, you’re going to want to find a fiat-to-crypto exchange. Examples of these include Gemini, CoinbasePro, and CEX.IO again. CEX.IO actually offer both a brokerage-type service and a traditional exchange platform, which makes it suitable for both beginners and seasoned traders. This also makes it an ideal place to get started to buy and sell Bitcoin as well as making an initial investment. Top it all, CEX.IO allows for various fiat currencies to be swapped for crypto coins of your choice. It is no wonder that over 2.5 million users all around the globe trust their service.
Another way to get exposure to cryptocurrency for the first time is to use a peer-to-peer marketplace. Peer-to-peer markets operate more like a classified adverts site than a currency exchange. At popular markets, you’ll see many different users offering buy and sell adverts. The great thing about these adverts is that each user will offer an array of funding options that they’re happy to accept. You can even use eWallet services such as Neteller and Skrill with some of the sellers there. Other traders will happily accept cash in person. One of the largest and longest-running peer-to-peer marketplaces is LocalBitcoins.
The Most Important Rule of Cryptocurrency
That’s all there is to it! Getting hold of even $10 worth of Bitcoin (remember, it is divisible) is easy using any of the above services. However, before signing off, it’s important to stress one thing.
It is vital that you take your cryptocurrency off the platform you bought it from as soon as you receive it. Setup a desktop wallet whilst you look for more secure options (hardware or paper wallets). The ultimate rule of cryptocurrency is “if you don’t own your private key to the wallet that your funds are stored on, you don’t own the cryptocurrency.” The entire premise of cryptocurrency is that it doesn’t rely on you trusting third parties. That is literally the point of the financial innovation! So be the master of your own financial security.