Its my favorite time of the month! I love the first week of a new month because I get to write an article on all the success I had in the previous month. This is the time when I really get to think back and reflect on the decisions I have made and analyze the current position of my Independence Fund. I'm super happy with the progress I have made year to date and am getting closer and closer to achieving my goals which are having a total fund value of $20,000 and having the funds diversified amongst 10 great quality dividend stocks.
It just keeps me on track when I can see my progress and look back at how far I have come already! It truly has taken me a ton of diligence and dedication to get to where i'm at in such a short amount of time. My yearly salary was only $42,000 a year which is not much at all. The best part is that I was almost able to save and invest half of that in a single year! I'm really looking forward to when my portfolio begins snowballing with all the dividend payout increases that I should be receiving soon!
I'm not expecting any amazing numbers but I would be really happy with an overall dividend payout increase spread out amonsgt all my holdings of 5%. which would come out to be roughly $33.81 at my current investments. I know $33 doesn't seem like a large increase but, when you factor in time and diligence of saving into the mix, you are left with one great outcome, MORE MONEY! Again, this is free money that is given to you just by being a shareholder.
It seems like a weird concept but, let me tell you, last month was an amazing month. I broke the $100 milestone for dividends received in a single month! It is honestly the best feeling to see those dividends roll in!
I was very sad to say that I let go of another one of my holdings. As a long term dividend investor it is always sad to have to let go of an investment after not even holding onto it for a year. Ideally when I purchase into a stock I really plan to hold onto it for the long haul of at least 10 years. I know 10 years seems like a long amount of time but, if the company you are purchasing into doesn't seem like it will be able to sustain steady growth and revenue increases to sustain it's dividend then, you mind as well look somewhere else to park your hard earned money.
I have only had to let go of two companies this year. The first one was IBM which i was able to get away with on the upside of $200. The other most recent sale was of WFC. I really loved this company. they had solid growth and a great track record of providing steady dividend pay out and growth through the years. The most recent scandal really made me question if I wanted to stay with a company that allowed this to happen for 5 years straight without anyone putting an end to it until they were found out. I ended up parting ways with WFC at a lose of $200. although, if you take into account the dividends I received from them it was a little less of a lose.
I know that I definitely made the right move parting ways with WFC. I didn't let my emotions get the best of me and I swallowed my pride and sold it. I kept thinking to my self the usual thoughts that investors struggle with. "oh, it'll bounce back and then I'll sell", "I was up on the trade and I can't sell for where I entered in at". These are basic emotions that traders deal with everyday. I was able to overcome these emotions with the simple fact that this company could sink even lower then where it is now and I really don't want to stay invested in a company that is dishonest to it's own customers.
With the proceeds from the sale of WFC I was able to diversify my holdings a bit more and purchased two great companies by splitting the proceeds in half. I always trade with increments of no less then $1,000 to limit the percentage that I pay in trading fees as, these do add up over time.
The two companies I purchase into were Royal Bank of Canada (RY) and Abbivie (ABBV). You can read more about the fun (here)
I'm super excited about the growth and dividend payout of these two companies and am very happy to have added them to my Independence Fund.
Let's take a look at the overall growth progress from August.
Independence Fund Growth Chart
It wasn't the best month I've ever had but, I was able to increase the Fund by $735, or 4.66%. As long as I continue to contribute to my Independence Fund and grow my Dividend Income, it will be a great month!
One of my continuing goals is to contribute at least $1,000 fresh capital into the Fund every month. I have a fresh transfer of $1,000 cash sitting in the fund ready to go whenever I pull the trigger. I'm most likely going to be adding to one of my current portfolio postilions depending on the direction of the market in the next couple weeks. I will not be creating a watch list as I have some great companies right now that I would really like to get a bit more capital into before expanding the holdings of the portfolio more.
Next year I'm going to try to add to my goal of having 20 company holdings by the end of the year. I know this seems like a lot to manage but, I'm really aiming to receive steady dividend payments every month instead of receiving large sums in a few months through out the year.
I'm really looking forward to the next couple months. I will be receiving some nice dividend payouts in November along with my companies RSU payout that I receive in company stock every year. I'm expecting to receive roughly $1,200 in SBUX stock that will be added to my portfolio.
I also have some other very exciting news to share about my financial future. My LTV ratio on my home has finally hit 78%. This means that I will no longer be required to pay PMI every month. This will reduce my monthly set bills by $44.80 a month which is a great amount! Whoo Hoo for monthly savings!
A few other exciting things that happened last month was that I received a 15.74% pay increase at work! This bumps me up to a great new salary of $49,600. This will definitely help with my retirement goals and contribute to my ongoing success of the portfolio! My Bi-weekly paycheck health insurance premium also dropped by a whopping $7 which is another $14 a paycheck. It doesn't seem like much but that combined with my PMI adds up to be $58.80 which is a nice chunk of change I'm saving.
With my new pay increase at work I'm really hoping that it will allow me to save even more next year and set and even more aggressive savings rate then I had this year. We shall see.
Hopefully everyone else month went smoothly and they were able to make some great gains!
As always, thanks for stopping by and reading. let me know of any small wins you may have received last month in the comments below!
Image courtesy of lekkyjustdoit at FreeDigitalPhotos.net