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Some amount of SAFE that you don’t need immediate access to as there is a windup period of 1 epoch before your $SAFE will start earning rewards and a 1 epoch cooldown period before your $SAFE is unlocked after unstaking.
No, you can stake as little or as much as you want. It’s recommended to spread your stake across multiple validators. This is to avoid having ‘all your eggs in one basket if a validator stops operating. so your coins still earn rewards. Additionally spreading your Stake helps with the decentralization of the network.
When a validator stops operating your coins are not lost. Just unstake and restake them to start earning rewards again. Because of this, it is important to pick a stable validator so you don't miss out on 2 epochs worth of staking rewards (windup and cooldown period)
There’s no initial cost, but most validators keep a percentage of the staking rewards earned by your stake (called a validator fee or commission). This validator fee is visible before you delegate your stake to a validator.
Most validators charge a commission of anywhere between 8-15%