Day trading can be pretty appealing these days, particularly when you think about the trend that’s moving people away from traditional offices anyway. It’s been suggested that half of people will be working from home (or at least working remotely in some capacity) by 2020, and a lot more people already are doing it than two or three years ago. And working from home is one of the perks you can enjoy if you decide to give day trading a shot.
That doesn’t mean that it’s easy. To be an effective enough day trader to support yourself financially, you need to study the markets and learn a whole lot about the ins and outs of investing. But provided you have the relevant skills and knowledge, setting yourself up as a day trader can be relatively straightforward. There are just a few things you’ll need.
A Home Office
It might be a little bit obvious, but this is also the most important thing to take care of if you’re setting up a career as a day trader. You can’t do this job by laying down on the couch with your laptop propped up while you sip coffee and listen to SportsCenter. Rather, you need to designate a room in your house to be a comfortable home office that will help you to be as productive as possible. Home office design tips abound online, and tend to include ideas like letting in natural light and having a few green plants to boost your mood, bringing in comfortable seating to keep you physically satisfied, and getting creative with storage to avoid clutter.
The Right Hardware
Dusting off your old desktop computer might not do the trick if you truly want to be a productive day trader. In fact, when considering day trading equipment, it may be best to view computer replacement as a cost of business. There are always newer, better, and more powerful computers, and it’s best to stay as up-to-date as possible while trading. That doesn’t mean you have to go out and buy the most expensive rig you can find, but starting off with a strong, modern computer and at least one new monitor will put you in a strong position. It should be noted that many serious traders do rely on multiple monitors, simply as a means of viewing more stock charts at any given time.
The Right Software
It probably goes without saying, but half the point of having updated computer hardware is being able to keep up with the latest and most effective software. There are numerous trading platforms you can download (NinjaTrader, Mirror Trader, etc.) that can help you to “view” the market and conduct your buying and selling transactions quickly and securely. There’s no one that is definitively better than the others, but it’s extremely important to find a platform you’re comfortable with, and that represents modern practices and efficiency.
Home Comforts In The Office
This has been all about productivity. But it’s actually counterproductive to try to hole yourself up focusing exclusively on business for the duration of an entire work day. On the other hand, day traders can’t always get up and stretch, or go grab lunch, when they want to. The market dictates activity. That doesn’t mean you can’t take breaks, but it’s a good idea to have a few basic comforts within reach at your desk. A mini-fridge and coffee maker in the room, for instance, can make things a lot easier on you. A small television may be a good idea as well, given that a lot of traders rely on daytime television analyzing the market in real time.
Trading knowledge is still the most important asset you can have. But if you’re considering day trading, addressing these ideas is a great way to set yourself up for success.