No More Waffles lives! The past month I haven’t been active much because of work commitments, a general lack of writing pleasure and a short holiday, but I can’t stop publishing my passive income through dividend growth investing, now can I? Soon after launching this blog last year, I started sharing my dividend income to maintain my motivation, but also to inspire others to follow a similar journey.
Contrary to my writing efforts, the dividends haven’t stopped doing their thing. Not a week went by without some company or another forwarding me a piece of their profits, effectively generating a never-ending stream of passive income. My invested savings continue to work tirelessly for me even when I don’t want to.
It’s now exactly one year ago since I received my very first dividend income from American fast-food giant McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD) – and what a year it’s been. For example, last month I noticed that by saving and investing aggressively I was already closing in on this year’s dividend goal of €500. Even the quaint state of the stock market can’t bring down the positive feeling I get when I’m looking at that number.
Speak of the devil, the stock market – many of you thought I had given up on financial independence because of the downturn in the markets, but nothing could be further from the truth. What’s more, I decided to average down on a couple of stocks and I initiated a new position in Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE:CAT) after its massive decline during the past couple of weeks.
And I’m unlikely to stop there – perseverance is the only variable fully within my control, after all! Reduced stock prices simply mean that your money works that much harder for you when you invest it in companies with solid business fundamentals, so that’s what I’ll continue to do for the foreseeable future.
Be that as it may, let’s stick to the here and now, and see what September brought me in terms of free-of-work dividends.
September was absolutely massive in terms of income, almost trumping Europe-heavy May, which still is my best month to date. When considering that most companies paid me a quarterly or bi-annual dividend back then, that’s a tall order. Nevertheless, I managed to make almost €110 in passive income.
Most of this month’s payments came from the beaten-up oil sector and miner BHP Billiton (LON:BLT), one of the companies I decided to average down on. However, these higher risk investments and big payments are balanced out throughout the year by consumer defensive and healthcare stocks like Unilever (LON:ULVR) and Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ), two of my biggest holdings.
All dividends below are listed in Euros, and are after foreign withholding taxes and a 25% income tax levied by the Belgian federal government.
|08/09||JNJ||Johnson & Johnson||8.35|
|10/09||IBM||International Business Machines Corp.||4.33|
|21/09||RDSB||Royal Dutch Shell||18.77|
|25/09||RB||Reckitt Benckiser plc.||5.00|
|29/09||BLT||BHP Billiton plc.||43.72|
What’s not to love about the numbers above? Like I’ve mentioned earlier, the incoming capital provides me a ton of mental sustenance in the current market environment – I’m not going to lie, seeing your net worth drop by almost double digit numbers in one week isn’t very fun.
To me, the past month has shown once again the personal finance is, in fact, very personal indeed. The short-term success of incoming dividends reinforces my commitment to the long-term idea behind financial independence, which is one of the reasons why I like dividend growth investing so much – emphasis on “I”.
Ha, it’s year-over-year comparison time! I’ve waited a long time to finally compare my income from last year to this year’s numbers, but we’re finally here.
In anticipation of this milestone I updated the graph below in August already so you can now clearly see the increase – or decrease, of course – from last year. As it turns out, the dividend income from September 2014 isn’t anywhere near what I’m pulling in now because of an 837% jump.
As a result of September’s large numbers, my average monthly income for 2015 also took a strong leap forward, from a little under €40 last month to over €48 now. Basically, I now receive enough income on average to feed myself for two weeks every month. And if the dividend growth rate of the companies I’m invested in increases at a faster pace than inflation, these numbers will continue to grow all on their own.
The previous paragraph nicely leads into the last one of this post. The mathematicians among you have probably noticed that an average income of 48 Euros in 2015 multiplied by twelve months is more than the previously mentioned €500 goal for this year. Indeed, I have already crossed my 2015 income goal!
I still can’t believe how fast and swiftly I’ve managed to accumulate €584 in passive income already, but numbers don’t lie of course. If you had told me on New Year’s Eve I’d crush my goal with four months to spare, I would have given you a one-way ticket to the neirest loony bin, yet here we are – who is the silly person now, huh?
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I truly feel like I’ve already won the Win for Life lottery. All I need is enough time and a small portion of luck – anything is better than odds of one in a million! – to carry my financial independence journey through.
With the power of compounding interest and continued saving backing me up, my current passive income level only needs enough time to grow to a high enough level so that it can systain my current lifestyle. And time I’ve got in spades at 26 years of age.
Thank you once again for reading and for your continued support. I especially appreciate the personal messages I’ve received the over past few weeks – I’m trying to get back to all of you as soon as possible.