A non traditional investment is any investment that you make outside the real estate or financial markets. Common non traditional investments includes stamps, art and antiques. Non traditional investments have many benefits compared to other types of investments but they also carry their own problems. I generally do not recommend that people invest in non traditional investments since you need to be very knowledgeable to be able to invest successfully and avoid scams.
Benefits of non traditional investments
Many people chose to invest in non traditional investments due to the fact that they are not registered and it is impossible for the government and IRS to know about your non traditional investments unless the purchases have been made in a public auction. Art and other investments allow you to hide large sums of money.
Another benefit of non traditional investments are that they often are easy to bring with you. It is can be easier to bring a piece of art to another country then it is to transfer cash. This have made none traditional investments very popular among criminals that do not want to carry large sums of cash. There are however many legitimate reasons to invest in none traditional investments as well.
None traditional investments can be very profitable. A lot of investments will see a large increase in value over the years. It is also often possible to find undervalued objects in flea markets, auctions etc. You will need to know a lot about the type of non traditional investment that you investment to be successful. But if you do know a lot you will be able to spot value that most other people are unable to see.
Scams and fake
A problem with non traditional investments is that there are a lot of fakes on the market and a lot of scam artist who are going to want to sell you fakes. There are also a lot of people who have been fooled that are trying to sell fakes that they think is real. All this makes it a very dangerous market to be involved with unless you have the skill and knowledge required to be able to spot fakes yourself. You can reduce the risk by only trading with reputable dealers but there have been a large number of cases where very reputable dealers have sold fake art, antiques etc. I recommend that you never trust any seller 100% and always confirm for yourself that the object you want to buy is genuine. Either by examining it yourself or by hiring an expert on that exact object.
It is very easy to end up with a home full of fakes unless you are careful.
The market prices for many types of none traditional investments are volatile and it can quickly go up and down in value. An object that was worth USD 100 last year might only be worth half that this year. It is very important to try to predict the trends or to invest in less volatile objects . Remember that even high end art might go down in value. Do not invest all your money in one type of object.