Best invesments imediate access
The best 'investment', with immediate access is a deposit account. This is a savings account, normally paying (very small, a the moment) interest. Deposit accounts are suitable if you know that you will need the funds with no notice, or at a specific date within the next year or two. Some deposit accounts are 'term' accounts, designed for (for example) one year - and such accounts might not be quite so quick at releasing funds, and you will also lose interest if you withdraw your money early.
Most other investments, though, do not take long to cash in: for unit trusts and stocks and shares ISAs, for example, it would normally be under a week. If you want to invest for the long term, but be able to access your funds reasonably quickly, such an investment might be just right for you. You might also think of having both: a deposit account for immediate access - holding just what you might need, and no more - and an investment such as a stocks and shares ISA for its greater growth potential. | 01.22.11 @ 10:46
I agree with David's comments above, it is indeed important to balance short and long term needs and this is where the distinction between cash and other asset classes begins.
the only reasonable place for short term money wherein the outcome of the investment must be known in advance in order that you can spend it when you want without delay - is cash.
if your budgeted amount to invest will fit within the ISA allowance of £10200 for this year, you can split it up to £5100 in cash for your short term needs and then the balance into the Investment ISA for your longer term needs but as with all investments it is important to ensure that the portfolio is constructed so as to match your attitude to risk and reward. | 01.22.11 @ 14:04
Cash is the only answer. The post office account is probably the best at prsent at 2.9% including an end of year bonus. | 01.22.11 @ 22:00