Even just hearing that word conjures up all kinds of warm and fuzzy feelings for me.
I remember playing the board game Monopoly as a kid. My favorite Chance card was the one where Mr. Monopoly (or Rich Uncle Pennybags) collected his bank dividend of $50.
I thought that was so neat. Collecting money for nothing. Growing up as poor as I did, it seemed like a pipe dream as a child.
Well, it’s no pipe dream.
But it is a dream; it’s a dream of a lifestyle that almost anyone can live, as I’ve proven out over the years.
Mr. Monopoly sits on my shelf at home, reminding me every day of just how far I’ve come…
And I did so with no particular advantage(s) over anyone else. I grew up in a crack house in Detroit. My parents abandoned me. I have no college degree. I worked at a car dealership making ~$50,000 per year – until I didn’t.
Those six years of my life I set aside to aggressively save and intelligently invest my capital resulted in financial freedom at 33 years old – which is how I became Mr. Free At 33.
That financial freedom is underpinned by the five-figure and growing passive dividend income my FIRE Fund generates on my behalf.
I aptly named my portfolio the FIRE Fund because it allows me FI/RE (financial independence/retired early).
The Fund is a portfolio built on the tenets of dividend growth investing, whereby I allocate my capital almost exclusively toward high-quality stocks that have lengthy track records of paying rising dividends year after year.
These are world-class businesses. Because of that, they tend to rake in more profit year in and year out. And because shareholders are ultimately the collective owners of any publicly-traded company, growing dividends are our rightful share of that growing profit.
Well, the growing dividends that are sent my way by the businesses I own a slice of are enough to cover my basic personal expenses in life, meaning I don’t need to ever have a job again. Haven’t had one since turning 32 years old. And I have no plans to ever have one again.
What you’ll soon see is the tangible manifestation of all of these concepts I write about.
The table below lists every dividend I received (as well as each respective company that paid it) from the preceding month.
This is real cash money, folks. Every time a dividend comes in, that’s real-life money I can use to do whatever I want with. Now we all know why Mr. Monopoly loved to kick back with a cigar, like a boss.
When you’re collecting a dividend a day, you are a boss!
Without further ado…
|The Coca-Cola Co. (KO)||$54.60|
|Genuine Parts Company (GPC)||$3.60|
|Nike Inc. (NKE)||$1.00|
|PPL Corp. (PPL)||$8.20|
|Novo Nordisk A/S (NVO)||$24.18|
|Kimberly-Clark Corp. (KMB)||$20.00|
|South Jersey Industries Inc. (SJI)||$14.00|
|Omnicom Group Inc. (OMC)||$6.00|
|Altria Group Inc. (MO)||$56.00|
|Illinois Tool Works Inc. (ITW)||$27.30|
|Philip Morris International Inc. (PM)||$107.00|
|Diageo PLC (DEO)||$35.00|
|Ventas, Inc. (VTR)||$47.40|
|Medtronic PLC (MDT)||$17.02|
|Realty Income Corp. (O)||$20.85|
|Cardinal Health Inc. (CAH)||$13.87|
|EPR Properties (EPR)||$14.40|
|Main Street Capital Corporation (MAIN)||$22.80|
|Pebblebrook Hotel Trust (PEB)||$24.70|
|Stag Industrial Inc. (STAG)||$13.02|
|STORE Capital Corp. (STOR)||$12.40|
|W.P. Carey Inc. (WPC)||$76.13|
|Chubb Ltd. (CB)||$10.65|
|Cisco Systems, Inc. (CSCO)||$18.15|
|Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS)||$50.93|
|Armanino Foods of Dinstinction Inc. (AMNF)||$30.38|
|Chatham Lodging Trust (CLDT)||$15.95|
|Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD)||$31.36|
Just for reference, a great resource for tracking your portfolio and everything related to it is Personal Capital.
Another fine month where I collected hundreds of dollars for doing nothing other than holding on to small pieces of great businesses.
I suck at most things in life, but doing nothing isn’t terribly difficult. I’ve proven to be quite adept at it.
In all seriousness, though, it’s a phenomenal feeling to know that millions of employees are out there working hard to ensure these companies get their products and/or services out there, which ensures growing profit, which in turn ensures my growing dividend income. I’m very grateful for that.
The employees are high quality. The companies are high quality. The dividends are high quality.
And that translates into a high-quality lifestyle that’s possible via high-quality freedom.
This month’s dividend income is 13.8% higher than the $682.73 I collected in April 2017. The total amount of dividend income I’ve collected in 2018 is now up to $3,850.29.
Almost 14% YOY dividend growth is more than acceptable for me, seeing as how my portfolio is basically in “maintenance mode” from here on out. What that means is, I’m no longer aggressively investing thousands of dollars per month into stocks so that I can chase financial independence. Money is just a means to an end for me, not the end-all and be-all to life.
Much of that YOY dividend growth thus occurred due to the dividend raises these companies handed out over the past year, which means my snowball is snowballing. Snowballs like to snowball. It’s what they do. I just get out of the way and let it roll.
Almost 28 different businesses sent me money in April. And that’s a relatively light month for me. Being able to concentrate on almost anything other than money, because these companies have got me covered, is such a freeing feeling. It’s indescribable. And invaluable.
What I love about these reports is that they show that a few dollars here and there add up. You don’t need to have hundreds of dollars coming in from any one investment in order to pay your bills. Even just a $10.00 check here and there can make a big difference in your life. This is especially true when you’re broadly diversified, which protects you against any small but simultaneous number of adverse events.
Another great month, folks. I’m incredibly blessed.
I hope all of you also had a fantastic April!
Full disclosure: I’m long all aforementioned stocks.
How was your month? How much dividend income did you collect? Is your dividend income (and the growth of it) living up to expectations?
Thanks for reading.
Image courtesy of: bplanet at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.
P.S. If you’d also like to collect five-figure dividend income and reach FIRE, check out some phenomenal resources that personally helped me become financially independent in my early 30s!