Milestone Reached – $200 Month in Dividends

by FI Fighter on September 30, 2012

in Progress

September was a very good month for dividends. After receiving my last payment from Pepsi (PEP), I’ve gone ahead and tallied up the total for the month- $229.38. This is a personal best, and the first time the portfolio has gone over $200 in a month. Here are the payouts for September:

Year to date, the dividend portfolio has generated $662.57. The first dividend payout was in March, so this works out to be $94.65/month. I am getting very close to reaching $100/month, which was one of my original goals when starting out with dividend investing. I am confident I will be able to reach this milestone by the end of the year (I am expecting an even bigger payout in December due to all the recent purchases ;)).

This is very encouraging news as I am now starting to reap some of the rewards for all the hard work. In general, I think it takes a lot of discipline to invest on a monthly basis – especially when each transaction averages out to be $1000 to $2000. When you stop and think about it, this is a large chunk of cash that could easily fund a lot of toys! If I didn’t put so much money into the market each month, I could easily live a life of luxuries and have the best stuff: big screen tv’s, blu rays, DirecTV, Sunday NFL Ticket, expensive vacations, the latest smartphones, laptops, etc. Or I could do even “better” and finance the latest BMW or Audi.

But I don’t. Instead, I live a life of minimal material consumption. I take more pleasure in enjoying and appreciating the simple things in life: Exercising, hiking on a sunny afternoon, spending time with family, or having a $3 midnight coffee with friends gives me all the highs I need.

With that said, I’d also like to take the time out and say “thank you” to the bloggers/readers over in both the dividend investing and financial independence communities for their continued inspiration and encouragement. There are many others out there who are doing an even better job of saving and investing than myself. I learn a lot from these people on a daily basis, and some of the best blogs can be found on the sidebar under “Inspiration”. Please check them out.

In closing, here’s hoping that this is just the first, of many more milestones to come!

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

1 HenryNo Gravatar September 30, 2012 at 5:52 pm

Great work FI! $200 is really impressive, at this rate the next round of dividiends will be even higher. Happy investing, cheers!

Reply

2 FI FighterNo Gravatar September 30, 2012 at 8:58 pm

Henry,

Thanks for the comment. $200 in a month is a personal best so far. Like with most worthwhile endeavors, now it’s time to aim for the next goal and get better. The re-invested shares and any increases in dividend payouts will only help make the task easier. So, I’m definitely looking forward to the compounding effect taking flight and becoming more pronounced over the years.

Best wishes!

Reply

3 Dividend MantraNo Gravatar September 30, 2012 at 6:09 pm

FI Fighter,

Great news, congratulations! I reached this milestone myself not that long ago. It feels great to know that the plan is working!

I hear you on the alternative – living the life of luxury. It is sometimes amazing when you sit down and think about it that we’re investing thousands of dollars per month for a sunnier tomorrow. To some, that’s crazy. To me, it’s a wonderful plan. Besides, I probably enjoy buying dividend growth stocks as much, or more than, someone else enjoys buying the latest toy. And, my purchase provides everlasting joy, while a gadget becomes old and useless after a while.

Keep up the great work. Your next milestone will be $300!

Best wishes!

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4 FI FighterNo Gravatar September 30, 2012 at 9:10 pm

DM,

$200/month might not sound like much to most everyday folks, but dividend investors like us are well suited to appreciate this type of progress. It really is a great feeling! I liken it to reaching mile 2 of a marathon – you know you still have ways to go, but it’s gratifying to know that you now have 2 less miles to have to worry about moving forward.

When I first started investing, I’ll admit it was a bit painful to watch so much money “vanish” into thin air. Over time, I’ve actually come to look forward to payday, knowing it marks the day I’m allowed to transfer more funds to my brokerage account. I’m totally with you – once you look at the big picture, it’s easy to convince yourself you are making the right moves.

I also agree on expensive gadgets providing limited amounts of fulfillment. A lot of consumption is made in our society to compensate or offset a lot of the undesirables we face everyday: crummy job, long hours, bad commute, etc. However, if we focus on other worthwhile goals: fitness, good health, meaningful relationships, etc. then it’s easy to realize that this type of mass consumption is not necessary at all. If you can find true happiness, the material excess just becomes extraneous, and ultimately old and useless, like you pointed out.

Can’t wait till I reach $300!. The next goal will be to hit $100/month and then hopefully $200/month by the end of next year. I know, I’m looking ways ahead, but these type of goals provide further motivation.

Take care!

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5 The StoicNo Gravatar September 30, 2012 at 6:58 pm

Congrats! These little milestones go a long way in keeping us focused. You’re not missing out on anything by passing up the “toys”. After a while it doesn’t take long to see that it is a huge waste. Desires are limitless if you let them.

Hope you have a great October.

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6 FI FighterNo Gravatar September 30, 2012 at 9:21 pm

The Stoic,

Great point! I definitely agree that the human capacity for WANT is much greater than we can ever satiate. The key is to realize that this type of lifestyle is not sustainable, and ultimately not fulfilling either.

These little milestones might not seems like a big deal at first glance, but by stringing along a continuum of these “little successes”, we will inch ever closer to the ultimate goal – financial independence.

“Rome wasn’t built in a day”
“The journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step”
“Nothing worth doing is ever easy”

And so on 🙂

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7 Compounding IncomeNo Gravatar October 1, 2012 at 2:45 am

Man you’re really on a roll. I’m taking it to mean you’ve accomplished all this in less than a year, that’s astounding! You’re well on your way to an early retirement, that portfolio is going to be a monster a year from now. When we don’t get wrapped in consumerism it’s amazing what can happen, even for low income earners like me 🙂

Did RIG discontinue the dividend? I can’t find any information on it. What are your thoughts on Transocean?

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8 FI FighterNo Gravatar October 2, 2012 at 10:10 pm

CI,

I started the dividend portfolio this year, but did have a bulk of the money (about 30k) on the sidelines. I slowly started easing into new positions, but it’s only recently that I’ve had to incorporate fresh paychecks to fund each purchase.

So, the initial progress was rapid, but unfortunately I won’t be able to contribute such large amounts for each purchase moving forward. I think the key is to build on the consistency and constantly work on building a growing income stream.

Thanks for the encouragement; I really do hope the portfolio becomes a monster soon 🙂

In regards to RIG, yes, they suspended the dividend this year. When I started my position, they had yet to announce the cut. In general, I feel like Transocean is a very beat up stock due to the unresolved Macondo oil spill issues and Brazil banishment. Just recently, a judge partially suspended the injunction order that required the company to stop operating in Brazil within 30 days. The day this was announced, the stock jumped up 4%.

As it relates to dividend investing, I would steer clear from RIG. It’s uncertain if, or when the dividend will be reinstated. The share price hasn’t been moving anywhere either. It remains a holding of mine only as a speculative play. If I needed any immediate capital, RIG would be the first stock to go.

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9 JC @ PassiveIncomePursuitNo Gravatar October 1, 2012 at 5:42 am

Congrats on passing $200 in dividends for the month. I’ve still got some work to do to hit that mark but with another purchase I should pass that with December’s payouts.

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10 FI FighterNo Gravatar October 2, 2012 at 10:15 pm

JC,

Thanks! $200 might not seem like much to many people, but I’m very excited about reaching this mark.

Looks like you are amassing quite a formidable portfolio, and are well on your way. Hopefully you get to the $200 mark in December. I’m also very much looking forward to the payouts that month, as I invested quite a bit in railroad stocks last month.

Cheers!

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11 Dividend Growth MachineNo Gravatar October 2, 2012 at 4:47 pm

Congratulations on reaching the milestone! $200 in dividends in a single month is excellent. Keep up the good work!

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12 FI FighterNo Gravatar October 2, 2012 at 10:16 pm

DGM,

Thanks for the kinds words! I’m doing my best and will turn to blogs such as yours for continued motivation.

Best wishes!

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13 SamirNo Gravatar October 5, 2012 at 8:11 am

Congratulations, FI! Doesn’t it feel great to reach a milestone? And now that you have reached $200 in dividend income for the month, doesn’t it make you want to push that much harder to reach the next milestone? Keep up the great work and I’ll be looking forward to your next update.

Take care!

-Samir

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14 FI FighterNo Gravatar October 6, 2012 at 12:13 pm

Samir,

Thanks for the kind words. Yes, it definitely is a wonderful feeling reaching a milestone. Plus it makes you want to achieve even more knowing that the compounding will have a larger role moving forward.

You had another outstanding month, quickly approaching $400 in dividends. Keep it up and you’ll be pass $2000 and be closing in on $3000 before you know it!

Cheers!

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15 Dividend Growth InvestorNo Gravatar December 11, 2012 at 10:27 am

You know, this is equivalent to one week worth of work that someone on a minimum wage earns. In a few more years, if you can earn $800/month in dividends, this would mean that you are making same amount that some people spend 40 hours/week working. And best part is your dividend income would likely grow faster than inflation, and does not take 40 hours/week.

Good luck in your dividend investing endeavours. You are definitely on track to retire early.

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16 FI FighterNo Gravatar December 11, 2012 at 8:06 pm

DGI,

Thanks for the encouragement! Reaching $800 in dividend income each month seems like a far away pipe dream atm. But I’m just going to keep doing the best I can and hope for the best 😉

Best wishes!

Reply

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