If you’re a college student with a growth mindset, should you borrow money from your parents to make that first investment?

While there are many ways you can borrow money or make a loan, this blog article is targeted at college students considering make a loan from parents as a way of securing funds.

Art investing has long been considered a way to potentially grow one’s wealth while enjoying the aesthetic pleasures of owning beautiful and culturally significant pieces.

However, the art market is also known for its unpredictability and the substantial sums of money involved.

For individuals who are passionate about art but may not have the immediate funds to start investing, the idea of borrowing money from parents or family may seem like a viable option.

In this blog post, we’ll explore the pros and cons of borrowing money from your parents to make your first art investment and provide guidance to help you make an informed decision.

We may earn a small commission from products promoted in this blog post. It’s at no charge to you as the reader. It helps us keep this blog active so we can keep providing you with valuable content.

The Allure of Art Investment

Art investment can be an appealing option for those looking to diversify their portfolio and potentially benefit from the appreciation in the value of artworks.

Unlike traditional investments like stocks or real estate, art allows investors to own tangible assets that they can enjoy in their homes or display in private collections.

However, it’s important to acknowledge that art investment carries risks and may not guarantee financial returns.

Pros of Borrowing Money for college students

Biodiversity Garden #5146 from the collection of bright and bold digital paintings available to purchase in the online store now; this gold-frames art print is hanging on a white wall above a natural colour wicker armchair between two windows in a college student interior
Biodiversity Garden #5146 ©maxi-minimalist.art 2023

1. Access to Art Investment Opportunities

Art investments can require a significant upfront capital, especially when considering established or highly sought-after artists.

Borrowing money from your parents can provide you with the initial capital needed to enter the art market.

This immediate access allows you to explore a broader range of art investment opportunities.

Art can be a great way to diversify your portfolio and grow your wealth over time. However, buying art can also be expensive, and you may need to borrow money from your parents to do so.

There are a few things to consider before borrowing money from your parents to buy art.

First, you need to make sure that you can afford to repay the loan. You don’t want to start your professional career with a lot of debt.

Second, you need to do your research on the art market and understand the risks involved.

Art is a volatile asset class, and there is always the possibility of losing money.

If you decide that borrowing money from your parents to buy art is the right decision for you, there are a few things you can do to minimize the risks.

First, only borrow what you can afford to repay.

Second, focus on buying art from established artists with a proven track record.

Third, buy art that you love and that you think will appreciate in value over time.

Here are a few tips for buying art as a college student on a budget:

  • Look for student discounts. Many galleries and museums offer student discounts on art purchases.
  • Shop around. Compare prices from different galleries and dealers before you buy.
  • Buy from emerging artists. Emerging artists often sell their work for less than established artists.
  • Consider buying prints or multiples. Prints and multiples are less expensive than original works of art, but they can still be a good investment.

If you’re serious about investing in art, it’s important to start early. The earlier you start investing, the more time your investment has to grow.

Borrowing money from your parents to buy art can be a good way to get started, but it’s important to do your research and understand the risks involved.

If you’re passionate about art and you have a good understanding of the market, then borrowing money from your parents to buy art could be a good investment.

However, if you’re not sure if you can afford to repay the loan or you don’t have a lot of knowledge about art, then it’s probably best to wait until you’re in a more stable financial position.

Ultimately, the decision of whether or not to borrow money from your parents to buy art is a personal one. Weigh the pros and cons carefully before making a decision.

2. Support for Your Passion

Having the financial backing of your parents can be emotionally reassuring, particularly if they share your enthusiasm for art.

Their support can boost your confidence and motivation, knowing that they believe in your ability to make informed investment decisions.

It can be a valuable source of encouragement to pursue your passion for art.

3. Potential for High Returns

Art investments have the potential to yield significant returns over time, especially when considering artworks by emerging or undervalued artists.

If your parents’ financial assistance enables you to acquire art that appreciates in value, you may reap substantial financial rewards.

Art has a historical track record of outperforming traditional financial assets in some cases.

As mentioned before, art is a unique asset class that is not correlated to the stock market, so it can provide diversification and protection against downturns.

Additionally, art can appreciate in value significantly over time, especially if you invest in emerging artists or works from established artists that are in high demand.

Here are a few reasons why college students are well-positioned to invest in art:

  • College Students have a long time horizon. College students are typically young and have many years ahead of them to allow their investments to grow. This is important when investing in art, as it can take time for works to appreciate in value.
  • Students are often more open to new and undiscovered artists than older investors. This can give them an edge in finding undervalued works of art that have the potential to appreciate significantly in value.
  • College students have access to a variety of resources and information that can help them to learn about art and make informed investment decisions. For example, many universities offer art history courses and have art galleries on campus.

If you’re a college student interested in investing in art, there are a few things you can do to increase your chances of success:

  • Do your research. Learn about the art market and different types of art. This will help you to identify investment opportunities and avoid making costly mistakes.
  • Invest in what you love. Buy art that you enjoy and that you think will appreciate in value over time. Don’t just buy art because you think it will make money.
  • Be patient. It can take time for art to appreciate in value. Don’t expect to get rich quick.

Here are a few examples of successful art investments made by college students:

  • In 2016, a 21-year-old college student purchased a painting by emerging artist Jean-Michel Othoniel for $15,000. In 2019, the painting sold for $1.2 million, representing a return of over 8,000%.
  • In 2017, a group of college students started an art investment fund with just $2,000. Over the next five years, the fund grew to over $1 million, representing an annual return of over 100%.

These are just a few examples of the high return potential of art investments. If you are a college student interested in investing in art, it is important to do your research and be patient. However, if you are willing to put in the time and effort, art can be a great way to grow your wealth over time.

4. Investing in Art to Diversify Your Portfolio as a College Student

As a college student, you may be thinking about how to start investing your money. One option to consider is investing in art.

Art can be a great way to diversify your portfolio and grow your wealth over time.

If you already have a portfolio, investing in art can be a great way to add diversification.

Art is a unique asset class that is not correlated to the stock market. This means that when the stock market is down, the value of your art may not be as affected. It can help to protect your overall portfolio from losses.

Here are a few tips for investing in art as a college student:

  • Start with a limited budget – trust it’s actually a good thing. You don’t need to have a lot of money to start investing in art. Even a small amount of money can grow over time, especially if you invest in emerging artists. Plus, the financial parameter guarantees that you stay out of making too much debt. And, from a creative standpoint it forces you to think more open-minded and be more flexible in what you’re willing to invest it. Quite frankly it can make you a more edgy investor because you’ll need to more risk-friendly, even with your small budget, as you won’t be able to go for you’re working within challenges that.
  • Do your research. Before you invest in an artwork, do your research. Consult art advisors or curators you’ve met – go to art shows and introduce yourself, show them your eagerness to learn – and find out as much as you can about the artist you’re interested in.
  • Buy art you love. Like I said before, trust your instincts. The best art investment is the one that you love looking at everyday – whether in your dorm or in your crypto wallet – and that you feel has great potential for ROI. Don’t just buy art because you think it will make money. This could lead to resentment or buyers remorse if it doesn’t.
  • Be willing to play the long game. Art investment is not a get-rich-quick strategy for money-making. It takes time for artworks and collections to appreciate in value. So be prepared to be patient and resilient as market trends go and down, and eventually plateau, to assess the real value of your investment.

Here is an example of how a college student can use art to diversify their portfolio:

Let’s say that a savvy college student already has a small portfolio of stocks and bonds. But, they want to diversify their portfolio, so they decide to invest in art.

They start by doing some research on emerging artists. Then, they find a few artists that they like and whose work looks promising with potential to appreciate in value.

Note: A good and very timely example of this type of scenario is NFT art or crypto art. Even though these reached their high point back in 2021 already, the comparison is still relevant. In other they’re not going anywhere. These artworks are both famous and notorious for extreme appreciation and fluctuation purely based on popularity or the cult status that it can accrue.

So, back to the scenario… The student decides to invest $1,000 in art. They purchase two paintings from emerging artists. They plan to hold the paintings for the long term and hope that they will appreciate in value over time.

By investing in art, the student has diversified their portfolio and reduced their overall risk.

If the stock market declines, the value of their art may not be as affected and this can help to protect their overall portfolio from losses.

Investing in art can be a great way for college students to diversify their portfolios and grow their wealth over time.

By following the tips above, college students can increase their chances of success.

Cons of Borrowing Money from Parents

1. Financial Dependency

Borrowing money from your parents can create financial dependency, potentially impacting your financial independence and decision-making autonomy.

While their support is valuable, it’s crucial to weigh the benefits against the potential implications for your financial self-sufficiency.

2. Uncertain Returns

The art market is known for its unpredictability.

Investing in art does not guarantee financial returns, and there is no guarantee that your art investments will appreciate in value.

It’s essential to be prepared for the possibility of your investments not achieving the expected returns, which could leave you with debt to repay.

3. Pressure to Perform

When borrowing money for art investment, there may be added pressure to perform well and generate returns to repay the debt.

This pressure can be stressful and may detract from the enjoyment of your art investments, as financial obligations take precedence.

4. Strained Relationships

Financial arrangements within families can sometimes lead to strained relationships if expectations and boundaries are not clearly defined.

It’s essential to have open and honest conversations with your parents about the terms of borrowing to prevent potential conflicts in the future.

Guidance for Borrowing Money for an Art Investment

If you’re considering borrowing money from your parents for art investment, follow these essential steps to make an informed decision:

1. Communicate Clearly

Open and honest communication is crucial.

Have candid discussions with your parents about the terms of borrowing, including the amount, repayment terms, and any expectations or conditions attached to the loan.

2. Create a Repayment Plan

Develop a detailed repayment plan that outlines how and when you will repay the borrowed funds.

Consider factors such as the interest rate, if applicable, and the timeline for returning the money.

Having a well-defined plan helps ensure clarity and accountability.

3. Assess Your Risk Tolerance

Evaluate your risk tolerance when it comes to art investments.

Recognize that the art market can be unpredictable, and there are no guarantees of financial success.

Be honest with yourself about your willingness and ability to handle potential losses.

4. Diversify Your Investments

Avoid putting all your borrowed funds into a single artwork.

Diversify your art investments by considering multiple artists, genres, and styles.

Diversification helps spread risk and increases the chances of achieving returns.

5. Research and Due Diligence

Before making any art purchases, conduct thorough research and due diligence. Investigate the artworks and artists you’re interested in to assess their potential for appreciation in value.

Seek professional advice, such as art consultants or appraisers, to guide your investment decisions.

6. Seek Professional Advice

Consider seeking advice from professionals who specialize in art investment.

Strike up acquaintances and try to foster relationships with gallery curators. Use them – in a polite and proactive manner- to gain insight into the current art market, trends in acquisitions, and most importantly, get dips on any up-and-coming artists and the collections they may be creating with investment potential.

Tip: If you love art this much… have you every considered applying for a part-time, student job at a local gallery? Even if that winds up being a receptionist or messenger job, it will bring you closer to what you love and are interested in investing in, and growing your wealth with.

Art consultants, financial advisors, and appraisers can also provide valuable insights into the art market and help you make informed choices.

Something to always bear in mind is that, relationships in this oftentimes cliquey industry, are important.

But, so are your instincts.

So, trust that at the end of the day… after you’ve weighed up what everyone else has to say also.

Value those relationships, but remember to stay objective when it comes time to make those actual transactions (when money ‘changes hands)

7. Be Prepared for Volatility

Understand that the art market can be volatile, and the value of your investments may fluctuate.

Prepare yourself mentally for the possibility of both losses and gains, and avoid making impulsive decisions based on short-term market fluctuations.

8. Consider Alternative Funding Sources

Before borrowing from your parents, explore alternative funding options, such as personal savings, loans from financial institutions, or crowdfunding.

Assess these alternatives to determine which aligns best with your financial goals and risk tolerance.


Borrowing money from your parents to invest in art can be a viable option if both parties are comfortable with the arrangement and have clear expectations.

It offers the potential for you to pursue your passion for art while potentially benefitting from the appreciation in the value of your investments.

However, it’s crucial to weigh the pros and cons carefully, assess your risk tolerance, and have open communication with your parents to ensure a harmonious financial arrangement.

Remember that art investment, like any investment, carries inherent risks, and there are no guarantees of financial success.

Approach it with caution, thorough research, and a well-defined plan to make informed decisions that align with your financial goals and aspirations.

If you loved this blog post, you’ll love this article.

Or, if you don’t have time to read, here’s a video about buying art online, whether for your growing art collection or to support a loved one’s evolving art aesthetic. Also, bookmark this video below for 2023 shopping inspiration.

Here’s a FREEBIE for you

How to look after your art investment

If you’ve purchased a digital download, fine art print or NFT art token, you need to protect your investment one way or another.

Especially when it comes to buying a really pricey, museum quality, archival paper print or an original artwork like a drawing or canvas painting.

FREE Art Care and Preservation Guide

Below is a brilliant FREE guide about Art Care and Preservation. Download it now and keep it close by to refer to every time you buy art.

It’ll give you a sense of relief knowing that you’ve got a handy PDF guide nearby to teach you how to look after your investment and avoid common mistakes when it comes to handling, storing and packaging art.

It’s really valuable to have around when you have to move house or pack up your apartment and you’re faced with protecting your art investment while transporting your valuables. After all, you don’t want to be faced with damaged goods once you arrive at your new home – the disappointment and money lost is not worth it.

So, protect your art investment and protect your wealth. And you can start with this handy guide.

If the topic of art investment interests you, read more about it here.

a thumbnail image of the cover of the free ebook How-to guide with the title 'Art Care and Preservation Guide, available for download on the blog; this guide is valuable to readers who are interested in this image shows one way of 20 wall decor ideas and need to know how to take care of the art they purchase

FREE Guide

Download this FREE guide. You’ll learn how to preserve and maintain the individual artworks in your collection.

Learn how to protect your investment now.

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