March 2017: Dividend Account Activity


It is time for a look back at my investing month.  This is quickly becoming one of my favorite things to do, as I can use this as an opportunity to look at where I have been, and to plan for where I am headed.

March was a successful month for my newly established dividend fund.

I was able to stick to my investment plan and continue to make regular weekly contributions of $100. As in February, I did not have additional sources of income this month, which I had anticipated. 

However, I did invest an additional $200 into the fund to accelerate a purchase and be able to capture a new quarterly dividend payment when I re-established a position in VEREIT, a REIT with a long history for a newly established company.  

As I noted in my February recap, my savings and investment plan will face stresses that I did not anticipate when creating my 2017 goals.

I had created those goals based on models of income for the past two years.  This year, however, due to a variety of circumstances, my anticipated tax return was only half of what it was last year. 

Therefore, the injection of new money into this account that I had planned for in March did not occur to the extent that I had projected.

Additionally, this puts a lot of pressure on my weekly deposits into the dividend account as I have to balance my investment plan with the realities of daily living expenses, which this included brakes for our 2003 SUV.

At this point I am going to make every effort to maintain my strategy and work toward my annual goal.  But, if things need to change, so be it.  I was carefully budgeted based on having to save for summer - I'm a teacher, and only get paid ten months a year. Once summer is secured, I will have a better idea as to whether or not I can continue the weekly investments.  Right now, it looks tenuous, but we'll see.


That being said, March was a successful month in that I was able to stick to the plan.  

As a result, I can report that:
  • I earned $54.08 in dividend income this month.
  • The projected annual dividend income of the dividend fund increased from $598 to $659.93, a 10.36% increase.  
  • I continued to make weekly $100 contributions to the dividend fund on Mondays through automatic investment.  
  • The fund value increased from $14,847.96 to $15,446.70, a 4.03% increase.
  • I purchased 107 shares of VEREIT REIT (VER) at $8.41 per share.  

While I see all of the above as signs of success, I did get my first notice related to student loans that I took on in order to pay for a second graduate degree.  Those loans, totaling $23,000, will need to be repaid.  Although I am delaying - in the near future I will have to decide how, and when, to pay that back.  

Do I liquidate the dividend fund to pay it off as quickly as possible and start over? 

Do I make monthly payments over time, but then have significantly less new money to invest?

These questions will have to be answered soon.

But for now, things are looking up.  I hope your March was successful!  Please feel free to let us know in the comments below, or email me at dividism@gmail.com.  


Comments

  1. Congrats on the successful month! It's all about striving to stick towards your personal goals and it looks like you did it. It really depends on what percentage you are paying on your student loans. Personally, of the loan rate is low is keep up the dividends as this is opportunity money. If you don't have money in the market you never have a chance to take advantage of the gains. My portfolio is currently up 7.8% this year and that's not even including dividends. Yes I could pay off my mortgage but I'm making more in the market.

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    1. Thanks for reading and commenting. I tend to agree with you. Last year, I had about the same amount saved up in my dividend fund, but life happened and I more or less liquidated it to take down 2 large trees overhanging my house, do the roof, and pay for four grad classes. It killed me to do it, although it was necessary.

      I think I'd rather just pay the interest and chip away at the principal. It's a 5% interest rate - not great, not terrible. I'll see if I can shop that around and get it lowered, but with a raise next year, I'll be able to start paying it down.

      I'd rather not lose momentum building up this fund, even if I am not able to increase my monthly contributions too dramatically until student loans are paid up.

      A few years from now we might be in a position to downsize the house and stay in town, but it depends on how things shake out with my kid's out of district placement.

      Thanks again for checking in. I'm always happy to get another perspective.

      Brian

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