April 2016 Passive Dividend Income

Another month has come and gone. Today is the first day of May, and on this past Friday, I got my last dividend notification for the month of April. I’m now about nine months into the dividend growth investing journey. My goal is to build up passive income over time so that I can enjoy a reasonable retirement in a couple of decades. I believe that long-standing dividend payers who have solid cash flows should be reasonable investments for the long term.

I added a couple of small positions over the past month, but neither of these has paid out a dividend yet. I started pooling my dividends in my Loyal3 account in January, and I reached $10 early in April. I then immediately put that $10 to work in a very small starting position in Unilever PLC. My hope is that my growing stream of dividends will enable me to add to this small start each quarter to start with. As my core positions add more in dividend payments, I plan to increase the frequency of these purchases in UL.

I also cashed out some more funds from Swagbucks and started with a $25 position in Starbucks (SBUX). My hope is to alternate Swagbucks payments and build up some smaller positions. Starbucks does not pay a huge dividend at this point, but the company has been increasing its payout rapidly over the past few years. Additionally, the company is still in the growth phase, so I’m hoping that my eventual yield on cost is much higher than my current ~1.4 percent.

I received three dividend payments during the month of April, so without further ado, here they are:

Coca-Cola (KO):                         $2.95

Wal-Mart (WMT):                       $2.48

Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS):     $3.47

Total dividend payments for March:   $8.90

Dividend income for 2016:                      $33.28

My payment from BNS was subject to a 15 percent withholding tax, so only $2.95 went into my DRIP. This purchased another 0.057 shares of BNS, and it will add about $0.12 to my annual dividend income, although this will vary because of foreign exchange rates. I put the other dividends toward the aforementioned  purchase of Unilever. My current forward dividend income for the next 12 months should be right around $131.67 (although this is possibly a slight bit off because of the BNS forex issue). This way more than the grand total of $0 that I expected in yearly dividends at this same time last year. Earning dividends is truly earning money in pajamas. I do no more work after earning the capital. Then my capital goes to work for me.

If you want to keep up with my progress or learn about my other life hacking achievements and goals, be sure to sign up to follow the blog.

Disclaimer: I am not a licensed financial professional. Please use the information on this site for educational/entertainment purposes only. Be sure to check with a financial professional before purchasing equities.

Disclaimer 2: I may receive compensation if you decide to sign up for any of my affiliate links. This post mentions Swagbucks. I usually get $25 worth of PayPal cash each month from this site, and I use it to buy more stocks that then earn me more dividends that can then go and buy more stocks that then pay more dividends…and so forth. Should you choose to sign up, I thank you for your support.

A Trip to Europe on the Cheap

This is a blog about earning money without putting in time in an office, a fast food joint, or on a construction site. I aim to earn money from home so that I don’t have to spend more time away from the house. I definitely believe that there is more to life than money, but that more money can make life easier and open up options that are not available without it. I believe that a personal finance blog can be a great opportunity to show people hacks that can make their lives better. While earning money in pajamas can improve life, it’s also possible to get some great experiences without spending much. Last year, I wrote a post on how to save massive amounts of money on great trips with frequent flyer miles and hotel points.

Last month, I was able to cash in a load of these points and miles to get a deeply discounted trip to Europe. I cashed in 240,000 American Airlines Aadvantage miles to get six (count ’em, six) off-season tickets to Europe. These came from a couple of American Airlines sign-up bonuses and a couple of bonuses from the old US Airways card. I had long had Paris on my bucket list, and chose to visit the French capital on my vacation. One of the coolest things about the American Airlines award tickets is the ability to purchase one-way awards. Therefore, I decided that it would be a great opportunity to visit another European city in the process. I had to make sure that the tickets were on American Airlines flights (not with a partner like British Airways) because of fuel surcharges that are pretty massive on partner flights. I checked out tickets for my available dates to see if Rome, Barcelona, or Dublin would work. I struck out on each of these, but was able to land a flight to Madrid. Four of the tickets would leave from one city and two would leave from another airport substantially to the east of where I would be flying out of.  The total cost of each of these flights was less than $90–the cost of taxes that are required even with an award flight.

Eiffel TowerObligatory picture of the Eiffel Tour, or Le Tour Eiffel as the French call it, taken from my personal phone. 

Because my flights to and from Europe had what is called in the industry an open jaw, I had to get from Madrid to Paris. I did not have enough points to get the flight for taxes. Therefore, I checked on Expedia, and I was able to land flights for less than $70 each on Iberia Airlines. I could have gotten a slightly cheaper flight on a budget carrier, but these flights nickel and dime passengers with fees for just about anything, including carry-on bags. The total cost of six tickets from the US to Madrid, Madrid to Paris, and Paris to the US was right around $1,000 total. That’s the power of points and miles.

The Royal Palace in MadridThe Royal Palace in Madrid, again, taken by me

I then had to deal with getting lodging while in Europe. I only had a night to spend in Spain before a trip to Paris. I was able to get two rooms at a Holiday Inn Express in the Madrid area for free with IHG points. I then needed five nights in Paris. I was just short of the 280,000 points that I needed to get two rooms at the Marriott Charles de Gualle Airport hotel. I wound up spending $87.50 for the points I needed to put me over the top. Two rooms, one of which was upgraded to a family room upon arrival, for five nights cost a total of $87.50. Altogether, lodging and airfare for six people was slightly more than $1,000. That’s hard to beat. Of course, there were other expenses that added up over the trip, including food, tickets to Disneyland Paris, Versailles, the Louvre, ground transportation, and a day trip to Madrid and Toledo. Overall, it was a great trip, and it cost a fraction of what it might have had I attempted to pay the rack rate. While this was not a result of earning money in pajamas, it was an instance where taking advantage of opportunities that were available got me some great memories at a great discount.

A few credit card applications, meeting some spending bonuses buying stuff that I would be buying anyway, and cashing in the points I earned were all it took to take a dream vacation to Europe. Please note that I only recommend this for people who are able to pay off their cards on a monthly basis, as interest payments can quickly take away any benefit that the points provide and lead to massive amounts of debt. Proceed with caution if you have a spending problem. Also, remember that it’s important to actually have a good credit score to qualify for the bonuses.

If you’ve found this post useful, be sure to follow the blog to get the latest updates.

March 2016 Passive Dividend Income

The month of March has ended, and it’s one of my most favorite times of the month–time to update my monthly dividend income. My previous monthly record was just a whisker shy of reaching double figures (a Hamilton in US currency terms), and as the third month of the quarter seems to be the most popular for companies that pay out dividends, I was expecting to finally hit this level for the first time, about eight months after receiving my first dividend payment of a whopping $0.64 from Apple back in August. The month’s payments did not disappoint. Here they are:

Kellogg’s (K)                               $0.57

McDonald’s (MCD)                   $2.71

Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.B)      $10.34

TOTAL dividend income for March 2016:     $13.62 

Dividend income for 2016:                               $24.38

This total might not seem like much, but it’s money that I didn’t have to work for. It’s also $13.62 more than I was making in passive income just 8 months ago. Over time, this money should start to add up. My payment from Shell went toward DRIPping 0.23 shares in RDS.A. I’m not sure why it went toward the A shares as opposed to the B shares, but this additional purchase should add $0.86 toward my annualized dividend income, which is now estimated at $124.18. Dividend income is passive income, which is the best type of income. My other dividends are sitting in my Loyal3 account waiting to be deployed when I reach $10 or more so that I can diversify into another great company. This should happen next week after April payments from Coca-Cola and Wal-Mart.

During the month of March, I also added $25 purchases toward Apple and Wal-Mart stock in my Loyal3 account and 4 additional whole shares of AT & T in my TradeKing account. These purchases are additional building blocks toward financial freedom. You can open a TradeKing account here and receive a $50 bonus for signing up, funding an account, and making a minimum number of trades.  Some of my capital for stock purchases comes from my use of SwagBucks. Every time I get $25 in PayPal cash from SwagBucks, I transfer it to my bank and then one of my brokerage accounts. You can sign up for SwagBucks here. I earn money just for searching and watching videos, and it’s money I earn while simultaneously watching TV–definitely an example of maximizing time to earn money in pajamas.

Disclaimer: I am not a licensed financial professional. Please use the information on this site for educational/entertainment purposes only. Be sure to check with a financial professional before purchasing equities.

Disclaimer 2: I may receive compensation if you decide to sign up for any of my affiliate links. Should you choose to do so, I thank you for your support.

February 2016 Passive Dividend Income

Well, it’s my favorite time of the month. It’s time to look back and see how much passive income I was able to get from owning high-quality companies during the month of February. I owned no individual dividend stocks at this time last year, so anything is infinitely better than what I got from dividends in February 2015. I was able to deploy a little bit of capital over the month, so my income will hopefully grow even more in future months. I earned two dividends in February, and here they are, without further ado:

Apple (AAPL)                    $1.40

AT & T (T)                          $4.87

TOTAL for February:    $6.27

This was up from $5.41 in the second month of the last quarter, which was an increase of nearly 16 percent over the past three months. My AT & T dividend purchased 0.135 additional shares, which will add about $0.26 to my dividend payout when T forwards money to my DRIP in May. My total dividend income thus far in 2016 is up to $10.75, which is $10.75 ahead of this time last year. I also added some capital to Apple since the last payout, and it should grow. March should be a good month, as I will get paid by three different companies, including my largest holding. I should cross over the $10 mark for a single month for the first time. Hopefully, I can add a couple of zeros to this in the not-too-distant future.

I’m hoping to cross $10 of dividend income in my Loyal3 account that I can then use to open up another position. Starbucks (SBUX), Disney (DIS), or Unilever (UL) are the most likely subjects for this new position, but I’m waiting until I can make the purchase to decide for sure. Unilever has a higher dividend yield at the moment, and they sell stuff that people buy every day. However, the other two are likely to be able to grow their dividends more rapidly in the future because of low payouts. What would be the best buy in this circumstance? Let me know your thoughts?

I’m Making More Money with No Effort!

Last week was a great week on the earning money in pajamas front. As I preach over and over again, the best income is passive income, because it’s the me of today benefiting from the decisions that the me of ten years ago or a few weeks ago made. Not one, but two, companies in which I hold a small stake decided to increase their dividend payouts–on the same day, no less. This was a doubly great day. Now, I don’t profess to have a massive stash of income-producing stocks, as I’m just getting started on this dividend income journey, but regardless, any time that I get a raise for any reason whatsoever, I’m pretty happy.

Most of my raises have come from doing a good job as an employee or because I’ve changed jobs. This raise came from doing basically nothing other than investing in companies that have done a good job of building up massive cash flows that are enough to pay off a portion of the cash flow to their investors on a regular basis. My hope is that over time, I can build a growing stream of dividend income that allows me to work less as I get older.

Here are the dividend increases that I got last week:

Coca-Cola increased its quarterly dividend from $0.33 per share to $0.35 per share. This will add $0.58 to my annual forward dividend income based upon the slightly more than 7 shares that I currently hold. This is not a massive increase, but should I be able to add capital on a regular basis to where I have say 100 shares, this would be compounded to a much bigger benefit. The goal is small additions to my passive income stream compounding into a much larger income stream in the future.

Wal-Mart also announced a dividend increase. This one was only about 2 percent, as it was $0.01 per quarter. This added $0.18 to my annual dividend income based upon the ~4.5 shares that I currently hold. Many people would look at 18 cents and think whoop-de-doo. That’s nothing. They would be right, but 18 cents this year added to more capital, buying even more stock, and paying more dividends that increase by another penny or two on a quarterly basis can really add up over time. Warren Buffet did not start out a billionaire. I just read last week that he’s amassed 99 percent of his net worth after the age of 50. That’s pretty amazing to say the least. I’m hoping to amass quite a bit more than 99 percent of my net worth after age 40.

I have some money in the hopper that’s ready to buy some more stock through Loyal3, and I’m about to reach enough Swagbucks to get $25 more through PayPal that I can then use toward another stock purchase. I usually make my money with Swagbucks by letting videos play while I’m vegging out. It’s not a massive pile of cash, but it’s added up to nearly $1,000 over the past 3 years at a rate of about one $25 PayPal increment each month. You, too, can sign up for Swagbucks with my referral link and start earning toward cash through PayPal.

I’m letting my dividends grow in my Loyal3 account until they reach $10, and then I’m going to open another position with only my dividends. I’m also planning to add capital on a regular basis to increase my dividend payouts. It’s pretty exciting stuff to say the least. The only question is what new company to start investing in. Onward and upward as I attempt to make more passive income.

Disclaimer: I am not a licensed financial professional. This post is intended only for entertainment/educational purposes. Please consult with your financial advisor before purchasing securities.

January 2016 Passive Dividend Income

The first month of the year ended yesterday. I’m working on building up a passive income stream that can provide additional funding when it comes time to retire in addition to Social Security and any pension funds that I’m able to get. Dividends that consistently grow are a good sign that a company has adequate income to build their business and provide monetary benefits to its shareholders.

In the past six months, I’ve been able to build small positions in eight different companies that pay dividends each quarter. In January, two of my companies paid out dividends to me. I own a few shares of Wal-Mart (WMT) stock in an account with Loyal3. I also own a few shares of stock in the Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS) in a TradeKing account. The former pays cash into my account, while the latter allows me to automatically reinvest my dividends. This means that my BNS dividends should grow each quarter (at least in Canadian funds) without my doing anything else. I earned infinitely more in dividend income this month than I did at this time last year, as I was not investing in dividend-paying stocks. Any income whatsoever is an improvement over last January’s total of a big, fat goose egg. Without further ado, here is my dividend income for January 2016:

Wal-Mart (WMT)                            $1.48

Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS)          $3.00

TOTAL for January:                    $4.48

My BNS dividend purchased an additional 0.065 shares of stock in the company, which should add approximately $0.14 to my dividend next quarter given a similar exchange rate. I’ll be looking to add additional shares as funding comes available.

My $4.48 is not a massive amount of money, and it would allow me to take about 15 minutes off if I were to try and use my passive income to replace active income at this point. However, it’s a start, and as it’s been said many times before, the journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step. I’ve taken more than the first step, but I’m early in the journey and hope to add shares and passive income going forward. At this point, my forward dividend income is nearly $109. Hopefully, this will grow to $250 or more by the end of the year.  I’ve added this income summary to my monthly dividend income page.

January 2016 Stock Purchases

With the month of January just about over, it’s time to look back over the month and review my stock purchases for the month. I was able to deploy some capital toward earning my favorite type of income–passive income. I’m a long way from being able to successfully support myself on passive income, but Rome was not built in a day and everyone has to start somewhere.

I made five separate purchases in my Loyal3 account over the month. These took place on three different days. I’m working on topping off all of my companies to have $300 of capital invested in each. I’d already reached that level with my first stock (Wal-Mart/WMT), and I then started to work with the rest of these stocks. My second purchase was Apple (AAPL), and two purchases this month brought me up to $300 invested. I purchased an additional 1.0394 shares of the tech behemoth. This additional purchase added a total of $2.16 of further dividend income going forward.

My next purchase was on the same day as my second Apple purchase. This purchase went toward Coca-Cola (KO) stock. My investment in KO brought me up to $300 invested in this as well, so three of my five companies have now reached this level. I was able to deploy enough capital to add 1.5326 shares to my stash of Coke stock and $2.02 to my forward expected dividend income.

My last two Loyal3 purchases did not allow me to reach my goal of $300 in the final two companies. I was able to buy 0.4468 shares of McDonald’s (MCD) and 0.2248 shares of Kellogg’s (K). At the current dividend rate that these companies provide, the purchases added $1.59 and $0.45 to my forward dividend income, respectively. Overall, these purchases should bring an additional $6.22 to my expected dividend income for the year.

My final purchase of the month came in my TradeKing account (sign up for a TradeKing account, and we could both get a free $50 added to our accounts provided you meet the requirements). With the recent drop in energy stocks, I decided to double down on my holdings in Royal Dutch Shell B shares (RDS.B). I was able to purchase 5 shares at an average cost of $41.04 with the $4.95 transaction expense added into the cost basis. This purchase added $18.80 to my estimated dividend income for the year. While this might be a bit risky as the cost of oil continues to lag near decade-long lows, it’s not likely that Shell is going anywhere and management has gone on record that they will pay the same dividend for 2016. Additionally, there’s not been a dividend cut since the end of WWII, and that’s a long time. When the cost of the black gold finally does go up, there is a chance for some serious capital appreciation in my Shell holdings.

Going forward with these purchases, my total dividend income for the year should be approximately $108.79 (BNS pays in Canadian dollars, so this could be off a bit because of exchange rates).  This is more than $25 more than I would have expected to make just a month earlier. Should I be able to keep up this rate over the course of the year, I’ll add about $300 to my estimated dividend income.

While this might not seem like a huge amount of money, it’s a start to a journey that began with my first purchase of $100 of Wal-Mart stock in my Loyal3 account. I now have positions in 8 different companies and hope to add 2 or 3 more this year to my portfolio. My goal is to consistently add capital to my stash so that my passive income can grow exponentially over time. I’ve set a goal of getting my forward income up to $250 by the end of the year. It’s not quite as much as the number noted above, because I’m not likely to buy much with a yield as high as Shell currently has. This will definitely be money that I’ve been able to earn while doing just about nothing at all while others work (and spend) to make this money for me. How much have you decided to set your goal for? I’ll be updating my first month of dividend income for the year 2016 in the next few days.

Disclaimer: I am not a licensed financial professional. Please use the information on this site for educational/entertainment purposes only. Be sure to check with a financial professional before purchasing equities.

Disclaimer 2: I may receive compensation if you decide to sign up for any of my affiliate links. Should you choose to do so, I thank you for your support.

Passive Dividend Income for December 2015

The month of December is just about over, as is the year 2015. I started out the year with basically no expectation of passive income from dividends, and I’ve now deployed enough capital to get to the place that I expect at least $83 next year from dividends without adding a single dollar to what I’ve already invested.

I have been able to invest in companies that provide dividends on a schedule that ensures that I should not miss a month of getting at least a little bit of passive income going forward. Passive income is the best income, as I’m able to earn it every month while at work, while sleeping, and while lounging around the house. The companies that I’ve allowed to put my money to work have many employees that work around the clock and around the world to make money, a portion of which the companies are able to return to me each quarter.

A couple of the companies I’ve invested in have given me good news in the last couple of months with dividend raises, which means that my capital will pay out even more over the next year. McDonald’s raised its dividend payment from $0.85 per quarter to $0.89 a quarter, and AT & T raised its dividend from $0.47 to $0.48 each quarter. These raises are 4.7 percent and 2.1 percent, respectively. I was able to experience one of these raises during December, so without further ado, here are my passive dividend earnings for the month of December 2015:

Kellogg’s (K):                              $0.47

McDonald’s (MCD):                  $1.66

Coca-Cola (KO):                        $1.90

Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.B):     $5.64

TOTAL DIVIDENDS for 12/15 $9.67

This $9.67 in a single month is a new record for me, nearly doubling my previous record of $5.41 in November. Also, this dividend income brings my final total for dividend income for 2015 to $20.91. This might not seem like too much, but it is more than $0. It’s been said many times that the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, and I’m hoping that this $20 in 2015 will grow exponentially in 2016. Any income that I get for the first seven months of the new year will be infinitely better than the amount that I got in the first seven months of 2015, when I earned $0 in dividend income. No one knows which way the market will go in 2016, but I plan on deploying additional capital that will hopefully grow my passive income.

How much were you able to earn in passive income in December or in the year of 2015?

Recent Stock Purchases for Passive Income

I’ve had the opportunity to make a couple of purchases this month that have added passive income to my forward dividend income. These two companies have been hit hard by the market in recent weeks, in spite of being major cash cows. These two companies are Wal-Mart and Apple. My goal is to get $300 of capital invested in all of my companies, and my recent purchases in Wally World have gotten me to this position. All of my purchases were through Loyal3, so I incurred no transaction fees on these purchases.

Overall, I made two separate purchases in Wal-Mart (WMT) that deployed enough capital to buy an additional 1.5405 shares of the retail giant. With the current dividend payment of $1.96 per share, this adds a total of $3.02 of forward income. Of course, Wal-Mart is likely to announce a dividend increase within the next couple of months to keep its streak of around four decades of dividend growth in tact.

My other purchase was a small $12 deployment into Apple (AAPL) stock. This capital purchased only 0.1120 shares of the tech giant, but it will add an additional $0.23 in forward annual dividend payments based upon the current dividend of $2.08 per share. Again, it is likely that Apple will announce a dividend increase at some point in the coming year. Previous raises seem to come with the May payment if recent history is any indicator.

Combined, these purchases will add $3.25 to my forward dividend income. Along with a recently announced $0.01 per quarter raise that was announced by AT & T, my estimated forward dividend income for 2016 is up to $83.77 (about 4 hours of freedom based upon an estimated $20 of net income per hour of work). This should go up as I make additional purchases during the next year. My hope is to get my estimated income for 2017 to more than $200, but this will remain to be seen as I come into additional capital to deploy or as companies might pull a Kinder Morgan and cut their dividends. (I was fortunate not to have bought any KMI before the drop, and I’ve not bought any since.) I believe that my current stable, with the exception of Royal Dutch Shell should be safe, but the market and profits can shift pretty quickly. My next post will update my final dividend income update for 2015. Here’s to a great 2016.

November 2015 Passive Dividend Income

One of the best ways to earn money in pajamas is through dividend income. This is truly passive income, as other people work hard to make money on capital that I’ve deployed. I worked hard to earn the initial capital, but I do not have to put in any additional effort to earn this income, other than a few clicks of the mouse and a few keystrokes to buy stock. While there is risk inherent with buying stocks, it’s unlikely that every dividend stock that I’ve bought will go belly-up in the very near term. Spreading the risk across several different companies is a great way to mitigate some of the risk.

November is now finished, and one of my favorite posts for the past several months is the post that allows me to look back at the growth of my passive dividend income over time. I’m building this income up with the deployment of $25 here or $100 there into high-quality companies that pay me to allow them the use of my capital. I received two “checks” (AKA dividend payments) during the month of November. While most dividend investors will not set any records during this month of the quarter, I did because of the addition of a new payer. Back in August, I earned my first dividend from Apple (AAPL). I earned a slightly increased dividend from Apple, but I also added income from AT &T (T). Here are the amounts that I earned over the month:

Apple (AAPL)                              $0.71

AT &T (T)                                    $4.70

November TOTAL:                    $5.41

TOTAL for 2015:                        $11.24

The $4.70 payment was reinvested into more AT & T stock, and bought me an additional 0.14 shares, adding $0.26 to my estimated dividend income for the next year. This is dividend growth that is totally passive on my part.  Next month, December, is setting up to pay me a record number of dividend payments with a record income. I’m looking forward to the next update as a result. How much dividend income did you earn in your pajamas last month?