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Smashing Through A Passive Income Milestone

Passive each Passive Income Milestone takes time

I was just online checking my forward dividend income today. I had neglected to put in a raise from Realty Income Corp that allowed me to smash past a passive income milestone. When I started looking at the dividend growth as a great option for building a stream of passive income over time, the idea that the companies that I own giving out regular raises was one of the top concepts that drew me to this strategy.

A New Passive Income Milestone

I input the raise from Realty Income into my spreadsheet (I’m an Excel guy). I have ten shares, which is obviously not an impressive amount. But the raise put me up over $300 in annual anticipated dividend income.

Admittedly, this is not a huge amount of money. I’m now slightly above $300 in my estimated income for the year. That’s just slightly more than $25 a month.

Figuring Passive Income In Hours Worked

Every month when I give a new passive dividend income report, I look at how many hours of work I could theoretically take off by replacing active income with passive income. Every $100 passive income milestone that I pass effectively gives me five hours of freedom, theoretically for life.

With $300 built up, I’m now at 15 hours if I figure that I would need $20 of passive income for ever hour of work. That’s 1 hour, 15 minutes every single month. I would not need to pay any income taxes up to nearly $73,000 of income if the income  is related to qualified dividends. There would be no Social Security taxes coming out. I would not be putting any money into retirement programs.

That’s quite a lot of money coming out on a monthly basis that I don’t even see. Therefore, my current standard of living would not change much, if at all, if I made $20 an hour.

Isn’t This The Slow Way To Build Wealth?

Some of you might wonder if this is the slow way to build wealth, and you’d be right if you think that it is.  Each passive income milestone seems to take a while to hit; however, this is basically the only way to build wealth.

There are tons of get-rich-quick schemes out there. They generally tend to cut wealth rather than build it. Flipping a house can quickly turn into a money pit if you don’t know what you’re doing. Borrowing money to buy pork bellies isn’t any better. You have a better likelihood of getting struck by lightning than you do of hitting the lottery.

Building wealth is kind of like the story of the tortoise and the hare. Those who try the get-rich-quick schemes might look like they’re getting ahead, but they’ll tend to wind up with less wealth than the steady plodders who put away a little bit of their income on a weekly or monthly basis.

I’m thrilled that I’ve smashed through this passive income milestone, but it’s hopefully just one of many more to come.  What milestones do you use to track your progress? Let me know in the comments.

Also, if you’d like to keep up with my progress, be sure to sign up to get updates in the email box at the top of the page or follow me on Twitter.

Disclosure: I am not a licensed financial professional. Be sure to perform due diligence making any investments. I intend my posts for educational and entertainment value only.

Image Credit: African Spurred Tortoise by Photographer 2008, via Wikimedia Commons CC BY-SA 3.0

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Does Your Budget Matter? Build Wealth With Small Sums

Does Your Budget Matter?

When it comes to investing money and building up a nest egg, does your budget matter? It’s commonly assumed that it’s impossible to save for the future unless you have thousands of dollars stashed away. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Today, more than perhaps at any time in history, it is possible to start a nest egg for with minimal expense. Here are some steps to take to build wealth at any income level. Even a dollar a day can really add up over time.

Your Budget Doesn’t Matter: Pay Yourself First

These three words make up a very important piece of advice. When you fail to save money on a monthly basis before you pay all of the bills, it’s likely that there will be nothing left over to save. This savings should be automatic. If your employer allows you to save in a 401k, have the funds taken out before you see them. If you only have access to a savings account, be sure to have a bit taken out of every check. Even $5 or $10 a week can build up over time.

Choose Your Investing Platform

There are many different options when it comes to investing. Your local bank or credit union probably has savings accounts and certificates of deposit that you can use to stash money in the short term. They won’t earn much in the way of interest under most conditions. When you get up to $500 or $1,000 in savings, it’s probably a good idea to move toward a brokerage. While the bank might have a broker that can help you buy stocks and bonds, it’s likely that they’ll charge an arm and a leg.

There are tons of online brokerages, and many of them are discount brokerages in nature. It’s possible to invest via Loyal3 and pay nothing in brokerage transaction fees. I’ve used both Loyal3 and TradeKing for cheap brokerage options.  TradeKing only charges $4.95 for trades and offers options trading.

Think About Index Investing

I’ve personally started using a dividend growth model for investing. I’m looking at the amount of income that my portfolio can provide. If you’re looking more toward capital gains, this might not be the best option for you. Even Warren Buffett told his heirs to invest his estate in index funds. These funds have minimal fees and track an index like the S & P 500. They do not attempt to beat the market like regular mutual funds. Traditional funds that try to beat the overall market tend to charge high fees, and these fees tend to cut down on your actual investment returns.

Warren Buffett and Barack Obama
Warren Buffett and Barack Obama, public domain via Pete Souza

Buffett often points out his optimism for the American economy over the long term. Therefore, he’s committed to investing in America. He’s been pretty successful so far, so it’s probably a good idea to listen to what he thinks about investing.

Look For Additional Income

If you’re asking the question, “Does your budget matter?” because it’s pretty tight, it might be a good idea to look for additional income. This might involve getting a second job. It might involve starting a business as a side hustle. It might involve trying to earn bonuses for opening bank accounts or credit cards. Here are some ways to earn money online without spending a penny.

This additional income, even a few dollars every week, can be the basis for increasing the amount that you have in your nest egg. As the nest egg starts to grow, it will build its own momentum. Many people have talked of building a dividend snowball that starts to grow on its own as more capital and dividends get added to the snowball. Over time, you might l awake to find that your snowball is worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.  Even index funds will tend to pay out dividends that can go toward buying more shares.

Regardless of how much you make, anything above your actual expenses can go toward building wealth. The time to start is today. The younger you are, the more time you have to build your nest egg over time.  The answer to the question at the beginning of the article, Does Your Budget Matter? is a definite no.

Disclaimer: Some of these links are affiliate links that can may compensate me should you sign up for a product or service. Also, I am not an investment professional. This article is intended only for educational and informational purposes, so be sure to perform due diligence before investing in any securities.

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Setting Goals To Achieve Success

Those who fail to plan, plan to fail. This is a common refrain that I’ve heard many times in my life. Another example is the statement that those who aim for nothing will hit it every time. I don’t know about you, but I definitely don’t want to fail to hit anything. This is why I’ve decided to start setting goals. The beginning of a new year is a good time to set up new goals.

Consider How To Get There

The most important step in setting goals is knowing where you want to go in life. Perhaps you want to become an engineer. This would require going to school for an engineering degree. The same goes for becoming a teacher, a lawyer, or a doctor. If you’d rather become an entrepreneur, schooling might not be quite so necessary. There are many successful entrepreneurs who haven’t completed a degree, among them are such billionaires and Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg. However, these innovators had big ideas and the technical know-how to achieve their goals.

Set Up Checkpoints To Measure Success

It’s a good idea to break up major goals into smaller chunks. This is where short-term, medium-term, and long-term goals come into play. In the example of getting an engineering degree, the long-term goal is getting the degree and getting licensed. A good short-term goal might be passing Calculus 1. After getting through the short-term goals, the medium-term goals will become the new short-term goals. Evaluating goals is a constant necessity.

Here are some goals that I’ve been interested in.

Setting Goals for Passive Income Can Lead to Financial Success

I recently read the book Your Money or Your Life by Vicki Robin. Questioning some of the purchases that we frequently make can help us cut expenses that require life energy to pay for. When we make more money than we spend, what’s left over is capital that we can use toward an emergency fund or toward building passive income. I’ve decided after reading up on blogs like Dividend Growth Investor that trying to build up a portfolio of dividend growth stocks like Omega Healthcare Investors and Coca-Cola can provide a growing stream of passive income through growth in the annual dividend payments and through the deployment of additional capital. My long-term goal is building up enough passive income to pay for living expenses. My short-term goal might be to get to $1,000 in forward dividend income by the end of the year.

Setting Goals Can Lead to Passive Income
B&O Stock Certificate, public domain via Wikimedia Commons

Online Earning Could Be A Smart Goal

While it’s possible to build up passive income with many jobs, many people will have a problem having enough excess capital to grow much passive income on their main salary. This is where earning a bit of money on the side can help. This excess money can then go toward savings if it’s not required for paying ordinary living expenses. It’s also possible to earn quite a nice sum from making money online. There are many lists online that offer ways to make money, some without spending a penny. I’ve used these methods to earn thousands over the past few years.

Paying Off Debt

Debt can really be a drag. The more you have, the closer you might be to financial ruin. It’s hard to grow a strong stream of passive income and a solid net worth with massive amounts of debt. Setting goals for paying down debt over time can lead to a great achievement that can definitely aid in your overall financial success.

Achieving Travel Goals

I love to travel. Therefore, some of my goals have to do with visiting some cool places around the US and the world. I had a goal of taking my family to Europe on the cheap, and I was able to do so. However, before I could, I had to figure out a way to pay for most of the trip’s possible expenses with frequent  flyer miles and hotel loyalty points. I achieved this goal with some well-timed credit card signup bonuses like the ones offered on these five credit cards that you could get in 2017.  I’m already strategizing two trips ahead with the credit cards I’m using.

The process of setting and achieving goals can be a great process that can help you gain the success that you’re looking for.  Setting up mileposts along the way can help you gauge how you’re doing in the process. If you don’t set any goals, one thing is certain. You won’t accomplish them.

Have you set any goals this year? Let us know in the comments.

Also, if you’d like to keep up with new posts and ideas for maximizing your resources in life (including time), be sure to sign up for email updates in the box at the top of the page and via our Twitter account @moneyinpajamas.

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Earning Money in Pajamas With Real Estate

One of my favorite sayings is that passive income is the best income.  Passive income is money that you don’t have to put any effort toward earning. It’s money that you get just by waking up in the morning. Passive income would definitely be a form of earning money in pajamas. You might wonder where that idea of earning money in pajamas and real estate investing would come in.

You Can Make Money in Real Estate

When most people think of investing in real estate, they think of the common slumlord who owns a property or ten that they bought to make some money of some poor, unsuspecting college student or fast food employee (sometimes these demographics are one and the same).  This is definitely one way that people have made money in real estate–buy a property with other people’s money and then have your renters pay the loan back. After the property gets paid off, the rent that hopefully continues to come in becomes a solid cash flow, or if you don’t want to continue to deal with renters, you can sell the house off and pocket the cash. At least this is how it’s supposed to work.

Real Estate image. Wikimedia Commons via GregoryJ77, Public Domain

You Can Make Money in Real Estate, But…

Many landlords find that they can make money at times, but there is the issue of finding people to rent out the property, or more importantly, the right people to rent out the property. Some renters will stiff their landlords and fail to pay on a regular basis. If you’ve bought the house and still owe on it, this lack of cash flow from derelict tenants can lead to negative consequences for your budget. Then, if this problem becomes habitual, you might find that it’s necessary to evict the renters.

I don’t know about you, but getting the courts involved does not really sound like passive income to me.  Furthermore, renters are less likely to treat your property with care. Many landlords have found that they have to clean up big messes when their renters move out, be it voluntarily or in a more forcible manner. Some of this cleaning might require some  light construction work. I’m not terribly handy, nor do I like cleaning up messes. How then did I come to decide that I’d like to become a landlord?

Enter the REIT

As I’ve been noting in recent months, I’m investing in equities in an attempt to slow down how much I have to work for money as more of my money goes to work for me on a daily basis. If landlording sounds like a lot of work, it doesn’t have to be. I’ve decided that my real estate investments (at least outside of my own personal residence) will come through Real Estate Investment Trusts, otherwise known as REITs. These companies own properties that they then rent out to make money. The REITs that I’m investing in directly have businesses that tend to sign multi-year leases with annual increases built in as renters. I’ve owned some shares of Omega Healthcare Investors (OHI) for a few months, and I just pulled the trigger on 10 shares of Realty Income Corp (O) this past week.

Both OHI and O pay out healthy dividends at this point. They are also on sale from the levels that they were at in the summer. Additionally, the dividends that these REITs have been paying have also been growing on a regular basis. Where most companies who increase their dividends on a regular basis do so annually, Omega Healthcare Investors has been increasing its dividend on a quarterly basis for the past few years, and Realty Income has been announcing multiple increases each year. Additionally, Realty Income pays out every single month, much like a property that I’d own outright.  That’s 12 payments a year. I’m planning to build up the position over time, so my income should grow from a small beginning.

REITs Can Pay Nice Yields

I’m getting a dividend yield of nearly 4.5 percent on O and nearly 7.5 percent on OHI. I don’t have to find renters. The management of these companies do that for me. I don’t have to clean up for tenants who move out. The companies will do that for me. Finally, I don’t have to evict anyone. The companies will do so should it come to that point. I don’t have to do anything related to management of the property. I get all of the benefits of being a landlord (as well as some of the risks) without actually having to deal with most of the hassles that come with the territory. Of course, there are risks with any investment, but I feel that the passive income that I’ll hopefully be earning while sitting in my recliner or in my office for years or decades to come will pay off big in the long run.

Disclaimer: Long O and OHI, I am not an investment professional. Information on this site is intended for educational/informational/entertainment purposes. It is NOT a recommendation to buy. Please do due diligence before investing in anything at all. 

Reminder: If you’d like to be entered into my drawing for an Amazon.com e-Gift card code that’s closing down on Christmas Eve, be sure to sign up with my email list via MailMunch. This is the popup that shows up when you first visit the site. If you’re interested in the rules for the Amazon giveaway, be sure to check them out here.

 

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November 2016 Passive Dividend Income

Another month is in the books. November 2016 has come and gone. While I’m not terribly happy that the wind is kicking up from the north and bringing cold weather, I am happy that some great companies continue to provide me with money from dividends that I can deploy to buy more income. Over time, I hope to build a nice stash of dividend-paying stocks that could take care of a nice portion of my expenses each and every month.

One of the greatest things about dividends is the fact that they come in whether I work or not. I had a few days off for Thanksgiving, but the companies that I own continued to do their thing, earning revenue that will hopefully be turned into profits, that will in turn come my way in the form of additional dividends. I have made a few sales to pay off some debt over the past couple of months, so I did not get as many dividends as I would have expected in November.  Additionally, Starbucks, which usually pays out in the second month of the quarter, is going to be paying off in early December. I’ll still get paid, just in a different month than usual. In spite of these facts, I busted through the $20 number in a month for the very first time since I started this journey last year. Here are the two payments I received in November 2016:

Taxable accounts:

AT & T (T)                                                                    $7.01

IRA

Omega Healthcare Investors (OHI)        $18.30

TOTAL for November:                                   $25.31

As you can see from the listing above, I not only smashed through the $20 mark, I received a Jackson and a Lincoln along with some change (that’s a $20 and a $5). My $25.31 set a new record for my dividend growth investing history. It now brings my total dividend income for the year up to $141.48, which is well above the $15.08 that I had earned at this time last year. Additionally, I only earned $5.41 in November 2015, so I earned nearly five times the dividend income that I earned in the same month just one short year ago. That’s a pretty impressive increase, from my standpoint, as I would have to earn about $125 next year if I were able to duplicate this jump for 2017. I don’t think I’ll quite get to this point, but it would definitely be nice to achieve.

My estimated dividend income for the next 12 months is now at $252.49. This is more than $20 a month on average, which would allow me to take off slightly more than an hour a month with my estimation that I’d need to replace $20 an hour if I were to live solely off of dividend income.

How did your dividend income shape up for the month of November? Did you have a year-over-year increase? Let me know in the comments.  I have updated my monthly dividend page to reflect these payments.  Also, if you’d like to follow my progress on a monthly basis, be sure to sign up to get updates.

Disclaimers: Long OHI; I am not a financial professional. Information listed in this post does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell. It is intended for educational and informational purposes only. Equities can increase or decrease in value, and losses up to and including all money invested can occur. Consult with a licensed professional before making an investment decisions. 

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October 2016 Passive Dividend Income

Well, another month is nearly in the books. We’re now at the end of October, and now less than two months from Christmas. The market has been up and down over the course of the year, but most people have been able to make money if they’ve stayed invested in dividend-paying stocks. This is the type of investment that I’ve decided upon, as these companies actually pay me to own a part of them.

October was a pretty good month for me, going well in excess of my dividend income from the same month last year.  My dividend income should go up over time, but in the short term, it will probably go down a bit, as I’ve decided to sell most of my taxable holdings. I’ll probably explain this further in another post at a future date. I’ve rolled over a tax-deferred account from a previous employ into a traditional IRA, and I will be putting more money toward that in the future year after reading some really good information on tax-deferral from the Mad Fientist’s web site.  You can look at some cool stuff from the Mad Fientist regarding taxes and super charging your retirement portfolio here and here.  Basically, the less that you pay in taxes means more capital for saving for retirement. Therefore, I’m going to shift my focus up a bit and use my taxable account as more of a (hopefully) growing emergency fund that pays out a growing stream of dividends while I wait to need the money while leaving my IRA (and possibly other tax-deferred accounts) to grow until retirement.

Overall, I had four great companies that paid me over the course of October. Three of these should continue to pay me into the future. I trimmed Coca-Cola, but I completely sold out of Bank of Nova Scotia, although it will be on my radar for future purchases in a tax-deferred account. I’ve decided to utilize Loyal3 for my taxable purchases because of the low (i.e., free) transaction costs. I will also up my average purchase through TradeKing, which charges only $4.95 per purchase, to between $500 and $1,000 per transaction to keep the fee below 1%. You can sign up for TradeKing here and possibly get a $50 bonus after meeting some funding and purchasing requirements. I use TradeKing for my non-Loyal3 purchases.

Without stringing you along, here are the great companies that paid me during the month of October. I’ve broken them down by taxable and retirement accounts.

Taxable Accounts

Coca-Cola (KO)                                       $4.19

Kraft-Heinz (KHC)                                $0.34

Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS)               $5.11

Retirement Plan Dividends

General Electric (GE)                            $4.60

TOTAL Dividends for October       $14.24

These dividends bring my total dividend income for 2016 up to $116.17, and my $14.24 for the current month showed a 144 percent growth rate on a year-over-year basis. I should be ahead of this next year at this point again, if all goes as planned and I am able to continue putting more capital to work over time. Because of the stock sales that I noted earlier, my estimated dividend income for the coming year dropped to $130.31, but again, this should go up and exceed where it was as I make periodic purchases within my IRA. I plan to purchase between $500 and $1,000 a month until my transfer amount runs out. If the market crashes and burns before that, I’ll accelerate the purchases, as the best time to purchase stocks is the same as most as just about any other purchase–when they are on sale.

How did your dividend income look in October? Let me know in the comments.

If you’d like to keep up with my dividend income over time, feel free to go to the top of the page and follow me. You’ll only get emails when I actually make a new post, which is usually around five times in a month. In other words, your inbox will not get inundated with random emails.

Disclosure: I am long all stocks mentioned with the exception of BNS, which I sold in October.

Disclaimer: I am not a licensed financial professional. Be sure to do due diligence before investing in securities. This article is not a recommendation to buy a specific company. It is only for educational/entertainment purposes.

 

 

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September 2016 Passive Dividend Income

Yesterday was September 30, which means that today is a new month. Now that it’s October, I can review the month that was and calculate the dividend income that I earned over the course of the month. This is usually my favorite post of the month, because it keeps me accountable and motivated to see a growing stream of passive income going into the future. As I’ve said many times, passive income is the best income. The third month of the quarter tends to be heavy on the dividend side for most investors who focus on income. This has to do with when the companies that pay out the dividends decide to reward their shareholders.

I put $156 of additional capital to work in my Loyal3 account during the month of September. $145 of this was new capital, while $11 was a deployment of accumulated dividend income into Unilever (UL) stock. I noted this small purchase in my post about using dividend income to buy more dividend income. I did not add any new capital to my TradeKing account, but there was a reinvestment, which I’ll get into below.  I did make a purchase in an IRA, and I’ll be discussing this new account I’ve opened in future months.

Without further ado, here are the companies that paid me during the month of September:

Wal-Mart (WMT):                                         $3.65

Unilever (UL):                                                  $0.17

Kellogg’s (K):                                                    $0.75

McDonald’s (MCD):                                    $3.96

Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.B):                      $10.34

TOTAL for September 2016:               $18.87

This total was a new monthly record, albeit, it was only $0.05 more than the amount I received in June. Part of the reason for this was a strange method that TradeKing used to pay out the RDS.B dividend in June. They paid out in RDS.A shares, but it then seemed that they cashed those out because they went up in value. I earned more than $11.00 in June, when I expected only $10.34.  I’m not complaining by any stretch, but it does explain why there was only a small increase.  My most recent dividend from RDS.B bought me an additional 0.206 shares in RDS.A through the dividend reinvestment.

With my September dividends, I am now up to $101.93 in dividend income for the year.  My forward dividend income for the next 12 months should be right around $228.79, which is nearly $20 per month.  That means that I’m just about to the point where I could replace one hour of work each month from my dividend income alone. In the year-to-year comparison, I earned $16.89 more than I did during the same month last year. This was an increase of 853 percent over just one year, not quite as high as my year-over-year increase for August, but I must say that I’m thrilled with this increase. Hopefully by this time next year, I’ll be way ahead of where I currently am in terms of passive dividend income. How was your dividend income over the past year?

If you’d like to keep up with my dividend income over time, feel free to go to the top of the page and follow me. You’ll only get emails when I actually make a new post, which is usually less than five times in a month. In other words, your inbox will not get inundated with random emails.

Disclosure: I am long all stocks mentioned.

Disclaimer: I am not a licensed financial professional. Be sure to do due diligence before investing in securities. This article is not a recommendation to buy a specific company. It is only for educational/entertainment purposes.

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Using Dividends to Buy More Dividends

One of my long-term goals is to build up a decent amount of wealth that can produce a nice level of passive income over the long haul. While I’m not likely to get to the $1 million per year in passive income, I believe that several thousand, if not tens of thousands in annual income, is definitely doable over the next couple of decades. When trying to earn money in pajamas, one of the best ways to make this happen is through dividend income. This is passive income that accumulates as a return on capital from allowing great companies to use said capital to operate and grow their businesses.  As I’ve said before, passive income is the best income.

Earning more money is always a good thing. The bad thing about earning more money is the time that it usually takes to do so. There are, however, some strategies that can be used to make more money without putting in any additional effort. Investing for dividends is one such strategy. Here is an article that lists three great reasons for investing in dividend paying stocks. The final reason is key. Even stable dividends pay out more over time. “How can this be?” you might be wondering. The answer is simple–COMPOUNDING.

There is one step and one step alone that is required to compound the your gains, provided that the dividend is left stable by the company paying it out. This one step is reinvesting. There are a couple of different avenues that can accomplish the reinvestment of dividends. The first is through a DRIP program. The DRIP stands for Dividend ReInvestment Program, and in this situation, an investor automatically reinvests the dividend into additional shares of the company that originally paid out the dividend. This will basically increase the dividend payout by the annual yield. A dividend yield of 3 percent that gets reinvested will see the annual dividend payment raise by about 3 percent over the course of a year because the number of shares that our hypothetical investor has should increase by about 3 percent. This is an increase in income that’s more than inflation has been over the past few years–all without lifting a finger.

Several brokerages, such as TradeKing, allow you to automatically DRIP your dividends into companies that permit dividend reinvestment. TradeKing is currently offering a $50 bonus for new signups under my referral link listed above.  You would get $50 for meeting the requirements, and I would also get $50. You don’t have to sign up with my link to invest through TradeKing, but I greatly appreciate any support you might feel like giving. This bonus could be used to buy a share or two of many great dividend-paying stocks.

Automatic reinvestment is one strategy, but there is another. I use the DRIP in my Tradeking account, but I have to use the other strategy in my Loyal3 account because DRIPing is not an option. This involves stocking up on dividend payments until a certain minimum amount of cash is reached. The minimum investment through Loyal3 is $10, and I pay no fees for my investments on this site. You can check out my review of Loyal3 here.  Those who invest through a TradeKing, Scwhab, or any other investment account can also pool dividends to diversify. It’s probably best to pool until a decent amount of money is available so that you can keep the transaction cost to a minimum. For example, a share of AT & T costs around $40 a share right now. Through TradeKing, if you were to purchase only one share, you’d pay $4.95 in transaction fees, which effectively adds about 12 percent to your purchase price.  It would also eat up more than the $1.92 in dividend income you’d get in the first year. It would be year three before dividend income would exceed your transaction cost. If you were to hold off until you could buy 10 shares, the transaction fee would drop to slightly more than 1 percent of the purchase price, which will definitely help long-term returns.

loyal3-logo

I decided in January to use my dividends from my Loyal3 account to diversify. Any additional purchases would come from new funds, while dividend income would just sit until I reached $10 in the account. During the first week of April, I reached the requisite level to make my first purchase from my dividend income stash. I decided that I would buy shares of Unilever (UL), which is a massive international consumer goods company that produces everything from butter to deodorant. I again started to pool the dividends after making this small $10 purchase, except now, I would be adding the small dividend from Unilever into the equation. My first payment came in June, and added $0.08 to my account.  Admittedly, this was a very small amount of money, but it allowed me to inch toward another purchase a little bit more quickly.

I hit $13 worth of dividends in my account by the first week of July, as my payment from Coca-Cola pushed me across the necessary $10 threshold. Again, I put the accumulated dividends toward more UL. Last week, I got my second payment from Unilever, and it was up to $0.17 over the course of a quarter, still not a huge amount, but an increase over the course of three months that allows me to edge ever closer to another purchase. This morning, I awoke to find that a dividend payment of nearly $4 from McDonald’s had posted into my account. This brought my account total $11.49, and I made my third purchase of Unilever stock for $11. If all goes according to plan, I will see a payment of around $0.25 for the fourth quarter in December.

I admit that I’ve put more capital toward my account with Loyal3 over the past nine months, but it’s been great to see that my dividends are growing and allowing me to purchase additional dividends. Even if I never added any additional capital to my account, I should be able to grow my dividends as companies decide to give dividend increases and I reinvest my dividends. This is the power of compounding. Of course, I’m hoping to have enough capital available to pay my bills and to invest each and every month going into the future, but seeing additional dividend income come in without doing more than making a few clicks and keystrokes is positive reinforcement. It’s exciting to see my dividend payments going higher and higher over time.

Disclaimer: I am not a financial advisor. This article is not a recommendation to buy any security. It is intended only for educational/entertainment purposes.

I am long all stock listed in this article.

If you’ve found this article interesting, be sure to sign up to receive updates to the site at the top of the page. You can also follow me on Twitter.

African Spurred Tortoise Edited

How Swagbucks Allows Me to Earn Passive Income from Dividends

My very first post on this site more than three years ago touched on the benefits that users could earn from the site SwagBucks (you can sign up here).  The site allows users to complete a number of different tasks that earn a virtual currency known as Swagbucks. This virtual currency is not like Bitcoin in that the value can vary greatly over time. The Swagbucks pretty much have a fixed redemption value of one cent per Swagbuck. This current post is going to show you how you can cash in and start to earn passive income that could literally last for the rest of your life.

Many people who use the site cash in for things like $5 e-gift cards from retailers like Amazon or Walmart. I do not choose to use this redemption option. The coolest of all redemptions, in my estimation, is $25 in PayPal cash. I use the site to earn money in pajamas, and have been putting my PayPal cash to work earning money on the money I earned in my pajamas.

2,500 Swagbucks allow to cash in on PayPal. I can earn these 2,500 Swagbucks in a variety of ways. One of the most common options is by searching on the web. I use the search bar, and the site randomly provides a number of Swagbucks that generally ranges between 4 and 50. Here is a picture of what a “win” looks like:

I scored 11 Swagbucks with this search.
I scored 11 Swagbucks with this search.

 

Answer Surveys

One way that I can earn more Swagbucks is through online surveys. I tend to look at the surveys under “Gold Surveys” the most, as I seem to have more luck getting them to credit. The surveys that pay out 50 Swagbucks for 10 minutes are generally from a site called Opinion Central, and I have had pretty good success from these. They generally take less than the 10 minutes advertised, as well.

I opt for the New Gold Surveys
I usually opt for the New Gold Surveys

Another major way that you can earn Swagbucks in pajamas while watching the TV is by watching videos. There are a couple of options that I’ve found that I can earn quite a few Swagbucks pretty quickly.  I frequently will watch videos by clicking on this dude who’s sitting behind a laptop:

Click on this guy to watch videos that credit on Swagbucks.
Click on this guy to watch videos that credit on Swagbucks.

 

Watch Videos To Earn On Swagbucks

After clicking on laptop guy, you will then be taken to a screen that invites you to watch the videos. You have to scroll through a few (usually between 5 and 10, although sometimes there will be an ad campaign with just one video). This usually pays out 2 Swagbucks, which is admittedly not much, but I can easily scroll through them while watching TV (this is the maximizing spare time for income, folks). Sometimes around Christmas, the process will pay out 3 Swagbucks per task. You would click through all of the videos. I set up my screen to look like this so that I know when to click the green button:

Swagbucks Videos 2

Another easy way to earn a few Swagbucks while watching TV is through nCrave videos. I like the ones that are highlighted here. I use the ones with the swirling arrow icon that’s circled in red:

Encrave Videos can help you earn some Swagbucks with little effort.
nCrave Videos can help you earn some Swagbucks with little effort.

After clicking on the nCrave video, you need to make sure that the “Discovery Mode” is toggled to the green check mark. This will let the carousel of videos play automatically. Again, you won’t get rich overnight from this process, but it’s a few Swagbucks for very little effort. They do add up over time.

Make sure the Discovery Mode is toggled on to automatically cycle through the videos.

Make sure the Discovery Mode is toggled on to automatically cycle through the videos. 

I work on several of these tasks when watching TV on a daily basis. Most months, I am able to cash in at least $25 toward PayPal cash; some months, I cash out $50. When this cash hits my PayPal account, I can then transfer it to my linked back account and then transfer it to a brokerage account. I’ve been transferring it to Loyal3 each month. When it hits Loyal 3, I can then invest with no commission in one of the 60-some companies that this brokerage allows people to invest in. I reviewed how I use Loyal3 hereNote: Loyal3 is no longer a good option, as it is closing down in May 2017. 

Each PayPal cashout will allow me to get around $0.75 per year for life for each $25 I invest (when estimating a dividend yield of 3%). Over the course of the year, I will get around $10 in dividend income, give or take a few dollars, depending upon the companies invested in. This is where the concept gets pretty cool. That $10 in dividend income can then be put into additional stock, and the compounding process can begin.

The money that I earned in pajamas with Swagbucks can then go toward making its own money, which will then make more money. This is the definition of passive income. Over time, even if one or two companies go belly-up (I buy only companies that are paying dividends, and I invest in multiple companies to diversify my risk), I should have a pretty decent amount of income coming in on a quarterly basis. The major factor for success is persistence.  Check out this article on the power of getting just an extra dollar a day to invest.

What Are You Waiting For? Passive Income Is Within Your Reach! 

To get the ball started, you can sign up for Swagbucks here. Please note that should you do so, I could get compensated for referring you. I only share method’s that I’ve used myself that work. I’ve earned more than $1,000 via Swagbucks since signing up, and the majority of this income has been earned by my activity, not referrals. Now the money I’m earning is earning its own passive income. Should you decide to sign up with my link, I appreciate your support. Good luck earning money in pajamas.

If you’ve learned something new from this post, be sure to sign up to follow the blog. I update it fairly frequently with the ways that I’m earning passive income.

African Spurred Tortoise Edited

May 2016 Passive Dividend Earnings

It’s again one of my favorite times of the month–the time that I get to recount my passive dividend income that rolled in over the past 30 (or so) days. The month of May is over, and I again made some money while working on my day job and while sleeping at night. My dividend income was already ahead of all of last year at the end of March. April and May have just added to this amount.

While the amount is not terribly impressive, it’s growing over time, and that’s my goal. My goal is to build up a growing stream of passive income that allows me to handle many of my expenses when I get closer to retirement. Pennies today will grow to dollars tomorrow, and then into hundreds in a few years. My current forward annual dividend income is estimated at a total of $142.90. During the month of May, I was able to earn the following dividends:

Apple (AAPL):                               $2.24

Starbucks (SBUX):                     $0.09

AT & T (T):                                      $6.85

TOTAL for May 2016              $9.18

This dividend income from May brings my annual total to $42.46, which is well above my $20.91 total for all of 2015. I’ve currently more than doubled my annual dividend income.  I earned my first dividend from Starbucks in May, and I was able to add to both my Apple and AT & T payment from February. My dividend from AT & T was reinvested into 0.175 additional shares of the telecom giant. This DRIP will add $0.34 to my annual dividend income. I did not buy any new companies in May, and I am currently invested in a total of 10 companies.

My dividends from May were $2.91 more than my payout in February. This was an increase of 46 percent in just three months. I did not have a dividend payment in May 2015, so my year-over-year increase is not available. This comparison will start to be available in August.  The growth in my passive income is really exciting. I’m looking forward to the day when I can earn hundreds every month from my recliner. How did your dividend income look for May?