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BEGINNERS GUIDE TO GETTING STARTED

HOW I GOT STARTED

When it comes to Bitcoin and Cryptocurrencies in general, I for one am not an expert. I first heard of Bitcoin around 2013 when my flatmate at the time had bought a few of bitcoins for around £30 and it had risen sharply to the lofty heights of £90 and he felt it was time to cash out and drive off into the sunset with his profits.

After hearing this, I spent a few afternoons at my work desk researching and looking at ways to buy my first Bitcoin. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to bring myself to trust any of these websites with my personal details and after a few reassuring words from a senior colleague that Bitcoin would never last, I dropped my initial pursuit of Bitcoin.

Bitcoin price 2007 to 2017 info-graph
Bitcoin Growth From 2009 – 2017

Over the next few years, I would again hear Bitcoin mentioned in conversation, or in the news and hear how much it had risen. Always making a mental note to do some more research on how to buy Bitcoin, again this never really materialised until around June of 2017. I did some googling and found a couple of websites called Coinbase and Blockchain. They both had some decent online reviews and looked legit. When you buy your first Bitcoin, it’s going to confuse the hell out of you. You first need to buy the Bitcoin, then you need to keep that Bitcoin safe. But how? Paper Wallets, Online Wallets, Hardware Wallets…Did I just buy a Bitcoin or a Tamagotchi??

My cryptocurrency portfolio is worth 80% less from its all-time high back in January 2018

Coinbase Bitcoin Wallet
Coinbase – Sign-up & Earn $10 of Free Bitcoin

I ended up registering an account with both Blockchain and Coinbase, getting locked out of one account because they couldn’t verify my details and then buying £10 or £20 worth and then getting hit with international bank charges because I had sent money in exchange for Bitcoin to Denmark. I can remember panicking at one point because I hadn’t received my Bitcoin and phoning my bank to see if money had been taken out my account because I might have been scammed. I’m sure I’m not the only one that has felt this fear when buying Bitcoin for the first time.

Warning! This Is Not Financial Advise!

What I share with you are not recommendations, the crypto world moves fast and things can change quickly. Nor do I recommend buying Bitcoin, so please don’t take anything I say as financial advice. My crypto portfolio is worth 80% less from its all-time high back in January 2018. Fortunately, cryptocurrencies only make up a small proportion of my financial portfolio, with my largest holding in residential property. I have yet to sell any cryptocurrencies and looking to HODL (Hold On for Dear Life) for the foreseeable. of these are some websites I have used personally

HOW TO GET STARTED

Like me, for many their first introduction to buying their first Bitcoin is Coinbase. Coinbase is one of the easiest and most trusted places to buy, sell, and manage your digital currency. You can easily exchange your fiat for cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum or Litecoin in around 32 countries. Depending on your location, Coinbase accepts bank transfers, debit and credit cards.

Coinbase

Coinbase Tutorial 2019
Coinbase Guide
One of the bonus to signing up with Coinbase is they give you $10 worth of free Bitcoin when you deposit $100.

Blockchain.com

Another popular option is buying through Blockchain.com

Blockchain.com how to guide
Blockchain.com Guide

Unfortunately, that isn’t the end of the journey for you. Now you have some Bitcoin, you may feel the need to buy him some friends such as Ethereum, Litecoin or Ripple. This isn’t something you’re going to get your head around in one evening searching on Google, it takes time and that why Bitcoin and cryptocurrency are still not mainstream. Just think back when you got your first PC and using dial-up broadband or how your mum and dad used to use one finger to hammer the keyboard when typing an email. It becomes less daunting and somehow becomes a thing you just do.

list of altcoins - Coin Market Cap
Coin Market Cap – Top 6 Cryptocurrencies (2019)

BUYING ALT-COINS

When signing up to the likes of Coinbase and Blockchain you will be limited to the coins you can purchase. If you want to buy any of the 100s of coins available, you will need to sign-up to an exchange. Two of the exchanges I have used are Binance & Bittrex, both of these exchanges are trusted within the community. However, I will highly recommend not leaving your crypto on these exchanges. Do bear in mind that every time you send crypto to and from an exchange, it will cost you. This, as well as exchange fees, can quickly eat into any profits.

Binance exchange has quickly become one of the most popular and trusted cryptocurrency exchanges for altcoins. Like any other exchange, if you’re new to the world of crypto (or trading) the website may seem a little daunting initially, with many unfamiliar features or terms. But if you’re serious about getting into buying or trading you will need a trusted exchange and at the moment Binance is number 1.

Binance Exchange

binance exchange tutorial
Binance Tutorial

PROTECT YOUR INVESTMENT

Once you have purchased your Bitcoin or Alt-coins you will need to make sure your investment is safe and secure. There are a few ways you can do this, such as a Paper or Desktop Wallets and the most secure way a Hardware Wallet. I use a mixture of wallets to store my crypto assets. The Exodus wallet is my go-to desktop wallet. Although I have both Ledger Nano s and Trezor hardware wallets, I prefer the Ledger.

Hardware Wallet

Ledger Nano S if you’re serious about investing into crypto, I would highly recommend investing in a hardware wallet such as a Ledger Nano S, Trezor or Keep Key. My favourite hardware wallet and most popular is the Ledger Nano S.

The Ledger Nano S can store a number of different cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ripple and ERC20 tokens (Ethereum based cryptocurrencies). One of its best features is its ability to connect to MyEtherWallet or MyCrypto which (especially when used in conjunction) many consider being the most secure/safest way to store your Ethereum and ERC20 tokens.

Ledger Nano S

How to setup a ledger nano s
Ledger Nano S Hardware Wallet
The Ledger Nano S can be purchased directly from LedgerWallet.com or Amazon.com

Please Note: when buying a hardware wallet make sure you buy your wallet from a trusted supplier. If you buy a hardware wallet that has been tamped with, you may lose your crypto assets.

Desktop Wallet

Exodus Wallet

Exodus Desktop & Mobile Wallet
Exodus Desktop and Mobile Cryptocurrency Wallet

Paper Wallet

Paper wallet tutorial

Guide to Buying & Storing Crypto
Buy & Store Bitcoin & Alt-coins Safely & Securely