Investors can't turn back time, but they can plan for the future with a diversified mix of yield-bearing assets. Now that certain segments of the economy are slowing, it's instructive and potentially profitable to consider ways to allocate $10,000 with a long-term view.

But even with carte blanche to let my imagination run wild with a wad of pretend money, it still made sense to stick to my value-investing principles while also focusing on attractive dividend payouts. With that in mind, consider any or all of these starting-from-scratch stock picks for your own real-life portfolio.

Try some rental REITs

The largest holding of my $10,000 account would be dedicated to real estate investment trusts, or REITs. But before you bemoan a presumptive 2023 housing market crash, consider that not all REITs focus on houses, offices, or storage complexes.

If high interest rates have made homeownership unaffordable for many people, some displaced individuals and families will move into apartments. Hence, the allure of apartment REITs as an investment.

I would narrow down the field to a handful of big players in this niche, with an emphasis on relatively larger market caps, above average forward dividend yields and moderate 12-month trailing price-to-earnings (P/E) ratios. Thus, each of the following would get a $1,000 allocation:

  • Camden Property Trust (CPT 0.30%), 14.3 P/E, 3.7% yield
  • Equity Residential (EQR 0.68%), 21.9 P/E, 4.2% yield
  • AvalonBay Communities (AVB 0.97%), 19.5 P/E, 4% yield
  • Mid-America Apartment (MAA 0.55%), 30.2 P/E, 3.3% yield

Fuel your financial future with energy stocks

Geopolitical strife could buoy fossil-fuel prices for years to come. This isn't great news for consumers, but there's a long-term opportunity for folks who would rather sidestep oil and natural gas futures, and instead buy well-known energy giants.

It makes sense to allocate $1,000 each to these three oil and gas producers, all of which are generous dividend payers:

  • BP (BP -0.56%)no TTM P/E, 4.2% yield 
  • ExxonMobil (XOM -0.88%)9.3 P/E, 3.3% yield
  • Chevron (CVX -0.87%)10.6 P/E, 3.2% yield

There's a diversification angle here because all three of these fossil-fuel drillers also have interests in renewable energy. In particular, BP says it is committing more than 40% of its invested capital toward bioenergy, EV charging, renewables, and hydrogen by 2025.  Knowing this, perhaps investors might be willing to forgive the U.K.-based energy giant for lacking a trailing 12-month P/E ratio; after all, BP beat Wall Street's forecast with a massive $8.2 billion third-quarter profit.

In any case, all three of these energy picks have dived headfirst into the deep end of the renewables/clean-fuel pool. Last year, ExxonMobil announced plans to invest more than $15 billion in initiatives to lower greenhouse gas emissions over five years.

And Chevron's Renewable Energy Group intends to ramp up its renewable-fuels production capacity to 100,000 barrels per day by 2030.

Achieve stability with utilities

Lastly, I'd round out my $10,000 portfolio with three equal $1,000 allocations to utilities stocks. The primary objective would be to reduce overall volatility while still focusing on needs over wants (modern society wouldn't function too well without electricity) and maintaining the dividend-darling motif.

Although there are any number of worth contenders, I winnowed my utilities finalists down to three picks:

  • Southern Company (SO -0.52%), 20.8 P/E, 4.3% yield
  • Duke Energy (DUK -0.26%), 19.7 P/E, 4.3% yield
  • Consolidated Edison (ED -0.21%), 19.2 P/E, 3.6% yield

Come to think of it, I might actually reduce my exposure to Southern and Duke Energy somewhat in order to increase my Consolidated Edison stake to $1,500. All three are solid American utilities giants, but Consolidated Edison posted particularly impressive top- and bottom-line beats in its third-quarter results.