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Milestone Reached – $300 Month in Dividends

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September was a very good month for dividends! And like most other dividend growth investors, I was very much looking forward to an even better month in December!


My first major milestone was reached in September, when my total dividend payout for the month exceeded $200 for the first time. Last time around, my largest payout was from SeaDrill (SDRL), which paid me $63 in dividends. I have since exited out of that position, and replaced SDRL with McDonald’s (MCD), which also happens to payout in the same month.

September-November were busy months for me, as I made many purchases. I added to positions in: Exelon (EXC), Intel (INTC), Norfolk Southern (NSC), CSX (CSX), Cummins (CMI), and MCD.


By doing so, I had a good feeling that December would be a fabulous month for dividends. 🙂 As it turns out, I was able to cross the $300 milestone for the first time! Here are the payouts for this month:


The total payout was $330.89. I received hefty payouts from two of my larger holdings, EXC and NSC. EXC paid $79.18, and NSC provided $50 in passive income. This helped offset some of the dividends that were lost from selling SDRL. I don’t have any regrets selling SDRL, but it is worth noting that their payout this quarter was a staggering $1.70/share. I previously owned 74 shares or so, so we are talking about $127.50 in passive income. That’s quite a chunk of change right there!

Looking Ahead

The next milestone will be $400/month. This will take some more time to achieve since I haven’t made any acquisitions, outside of recently purchasing some shares of The Southern Company (SO), to help me generate more passive income. However, my recent purchases of Abbott Laboratories (ABT), Kinder Morgan Inc. (KMI), and Air Products and Chemicals (APD) should give my February payout a big boost. I’ll probably fall just short of $200/month, in February.

As for January, things will be slow, as I have very few companies paying out in that part of the rotation. As a matter of fact, I only have Pepsi (PEP) lined up for next month. Although it would be nice to have a more even distribution of dividend payouts, this comes secondary to investing in the right companies at the right value. So, I don’t expect to achieve this type of balance anytime soon, if ever. It just so happens that most of the companies I am interested in investing in payout during the same time.

Overall, I’m very pleased with the progress that the dividend portfolio is making. It’s small victories, such as these milestones, that keep me motivated to keep pushing forward. I can only dream of the day when the passive income stream can return $1000/month. That seems like eons away, so until then, just keep swimming…

{ 31 comments… add one }
  • The StoicNo Gravatar December 29, 2012, 5:39 pm

    Congrats FI. 300 in dividends for the month is nice. 1000 a month will be here before you know it 🙂

    Happy Holidays!

    • FI FighterNo Gravatar December 31, 2012, 1:33 pm


      Thanks! $300/month sure does feel good, and I really do hope that $1000/month “will be here before you know it”.

      Keep up the great work!

  • AllaboutinterestNo Gravatar December 29, 2012, 6:56 pm

    Hey congrats on 300. I should break 500 this month but several companies have accelerated dividends to avoid higher taxes. It could be a while before I see that much again. 1000/month is a great goal that I can’t wait to hit. The key is to stay persistent and not lose focus.

    Take care!

    • FI FighterNo Gravatar December 31, 2012, 1:36 pm


      Thanks! $500/month, that’s awesome! Yeah, I’m sure those special dividends are providing a lot of dividend investors with a nice boost this month. WMT was my only holding to move up the payout, but unfortunately I didn’t receive any special dividends.

      Keep on building that portfolio! I’m sure you’ll get to $1000/month at your rate. Best of luck to you my friend!

  • Compounding IncomeNo Gravatar December 30, 2012, 1:47 am

    Looking good there. Earning $300 passively is simply fantastic. Think about it, you didn’t have to punch in to earn this money. Income investing works! I have a few that will pay on Monday, but it’s looking like a good month for me aswell.

    • FI FighterNo Gravatar December 31, 2012, 1:38 pm


      Thanks! Totally, passive income has gotta be one of the best feelings in the world – to get paid and not have to put in a minute of work! Hard to beat that, I must say.

      Income investing is the way to go! Congrats to you on a great month as well. I really like your recent purchases of KO and LINE. In fact, I bought some LNCO just today.


  • Deacon @ Well Kept WalletNo Gravatar December 30, 2012, 11:10 am

    Way to go! It is amazing what can happen when you set goals and try to make them happen 🙂

    • FI FighterNo Gravatar December 31, 2012, 1:39 pm


      Thanks! Yep, and I believe that’s the key to financial success. Develop a plan and stick with it. It’ll be worth it when you are reaping the rewards many years from now!

      Take care!

  • Brick By Brick Investing | MarvinNo Gravatar December 30, 2012, 11:43 am

    NICE!! I love it man. I’m sure it’s a great feeling, imagine what it will be 10 years from now!

    Not to get too sentimental on you but before starting my blog and being introduced to the blogosphere I was suffering a bout of “financial depression.” I would talk my friends and family about finances and dividend investing hoping they would get as excited as I was and take some action but all I heard was negativity. They would ask “How much money are you making?” In which I would respond (honestly) “A couple hundred here and there.” Then they’d either laugh or scoff… very annoying to say the least (It was DEFINITELY FINANCIAL REJECTION!). I guess if I wasn’t producing 1000% gains overnight it wasn’t worth their time and effort to hear me out.

    But meeting individuals like yourself and seeing your progress motivates me and keeps my mind in the right place. It let’s my wife and I know the sacrifices we’re making now will payoff in the long run.

    Thank you and keep up the good work!

    • MartinNo Gravatar December 30, 2012, 6:03 pm

      Marvin, I had the exact same experience when talking to my friends or relatives. When they heard about 3% (at the time when CDs paid 4-6%) they were laughing. Many times however, these people do not understand the power of compounding and yield on cost, so since their CDs are now at zero-zero-nothing interest rate, some of my ROTH IRA holdings, such as JNJ have yield on cost at 5% and growing. I no longer share my experience with my friends unless they specifically ask. Fortunately I now have friends who understand and are at the same wave…

      • Brick By Brick Investing | MarvinNo Gravatar December 31, 2012, 11:23 am

        It’s reassuring to hear your experience as well. My biggest problem is 15 years from now when I have a nice steady flow of dividend income coming in THAT is when all my family members and friends are going to start coming to me for advice and by then it’s far too late.

        I have adopted the practice of keeping my mouth shut around my peers unless asked specifically.

        I’m holding JNJ as well. Love the stock and the company, I think our payouts will only get fatter as the baby boomer generation continues into retirement.

    • FI FighterNo Gravatar December 31, 2012, 1:44 pm


      Thanks for sharing that story. I can totally relate with you there. Once I discovered dividend investing, I was so excited, I called up my friends and family to let them know about my recent “epiphany”. Like you, I was hoping they would share in my excitement and want to start doing the same for themselves.

      Unfortunately, passive income investing and building for the future are goals that generally don’t resonate well with most folks. It’s a shame really, b/c so many people will be better off later, simply if they started caring now!

      I also feel very fortunate to have run into other like minded individuals like yourself! It’s reassuring to know that this type of community does exist (even if it’s through the internet), and it definitely helps keep me motivated to move forward.

      Keep up the great work!

  • HankNo Gravatar December 30, 2012, 2:19 pm

    Did you see any temporary increases in special dividends in your portfolio thanks to the Fiscal Cliff and Congress’ inactivity?

    • FI FighterNo Gravatar December 31, 2012, 1:47 pm


      WMT moved up its payout to December, but other than that, no. I didn’t receive any special dividends, so all the Fiscal Cliff noise really didn’t impact my portfolio in the slightest bit.

      Take care!

  • MartinNo Gravatar December 30, 2012, 5:59 pm

    Congrats man! I am at the beginning of the path and I have my goal to reach $100 a month in dividends in 2013. It took you about three months to go from 200 to 300, that is an amazing result. I’ll see how quickly I will get to my goal. Good job.

    • FI FighterNo Gravatar December 31, 2012, 1:49 pm


      Thanks! Good luck on your goal of reaching $100/month in 2013. Reaching these milestones is an awesome feeling!

      Yeah, I was able to go from $200 to $300 in 3 months since I made so many purchases in September-November timeframe. Most of my purchases were with companies that paid out in the March/June/September/December. I received a nice yearly bonus from work, which made a lot of this possible.

      Best wishes!

  • JC @ PassiveIncomePursuitNo Gravatar December 30, 2012, 6:11 pm

    Keep at it FI! I also passed a milestone in December which is awesome. Of course passing the milestone was due to 2 companies accelerating their 1Q payment to December, but I’ll take it. I would have been about $10 short if they didn’t pay earlier. Based on my forward 12-month dividends I’m going to average almost $150 per month in dividends for 2013. It’s a good feeling to be able to cross some milestones off. Best wishes for 2013.

    • FI FighterNo Gravatar December 31, 2012, 1:54 pm


      Thanks! 2012 has been a great year for the both of us! $150/month is excellent progress. Right now, I’m projecting ~$2308/year in 2013. This is around $192/month. What’s even better to know is that these numbers will increase as we stick to our plan and make more purchases.

      Best wishes in 2013! I hope you (and your portfolio) have a tremendous year!

      Take care!

  • Dividend MantraNo Gravatar December 30, 2012, 6:34 pm


    That’s awesome! You’re going to be passing $500/mo before you know it. Keep it up.

    December was a big month for some of us due to a few accelerated payments, so January is going to be a bit of a bummer, but as long as the dollars hit my account that’s all that matters for me.

    I sense 2013 is going to be a big year. As the dividend payouts rise it gives us even more firepower with which to allocate.

    Best wishes!

    • FI FighterNo Gravatar December 31, 2012, 1:59 pm


      Thanks! Yeah, December was kind to a lot of us dividend investors. I’m also expecting a much slower month in January. But like you said, all that matters is that the cash hits your account.

      I sure hope 2013 turns out to be a big year for us! For myself, I like to think of 2012 as the “Starting Point”, since it was Year 1. I’m thinking about calling 2013 the year of “The Grind”. I know work will be difficult, hence the term, but I really do hope that large strides will be made in the dividend portfolio.

      Keep up the great work and best wishes!

  • Into IndependenceNo Gravatar January 1, 2013, 3:04 pm

    Congratulations on your milestone. I have primarily been a Vanguard index fund investor for my 401k and Roth IRA’s (spouse and I) over my investing career. It’s great to see compounding at work after 18+ years of investing ! I recently started directing taxable funds to a individual stock dividend growth strategy. It’s definitely exciting and I look forward to the day my taxable dividends reach $300 per month. The $300 could pay a couple of utility bills per month 🙂 Happy New Year

    • FI FighterNo Gravatar January 3, 2013, 8:51 am


      Thanks! I also use Vanguard for my retirement funds and I love their index funds! Very low expense ratios, and solid offerings. In fact, I’m really starting to see the compounding put to work in my retirement account (it’s been about 4-5 years or so).

      For someone seeking early FI (and who is frugal), $300 will really go a long, long ways towards paying down the monthly bills. Good luck to you on your journey!

      Best wishes!

  • Dividend Growth MachineNo Gravatar January 4, 2013, 7:48 pm

    Excellent — I love to see that kind of progress! $300 will soon become $400, then $500 per month, and so on… it’s a highly motivational aspect of dividend growth investing. Keep up the good work!

    • FI FighterNo Gravatar January 6, 2013, 9:02 pm


      Thanks! Yep, I love the progress and can’t wait for that snowball to grow into a mighty avalanche someday!

      Best wishes!

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