Investing means putting your money into something with the potential to gain value over time; stocks, bonds, mutual funds, etc. With that potential for growth comes risk – the potential for it to lose value as well. Investing can be done in a 401(k) or IRA for retirement, a 529 plan for college, or a regular brokerage account. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages and where you invest can matter almost as much as what you invest in come tax time. Investing is used for long term goals; like retirement or college for your kids. You don’t need access to the money soon so your priorities are different.