School started at the beginning of September, and it’s been a little crazy for me.
I’m currently in my first year of my integrated graduate studies, and I’m taking a few additional credits to fill the rest of my generals for my bachelor’s degree at the same time.
I also have a couple other projects I’m working on, which means that I have less time to write than I would prefer. I’m thinking that my dividend income updates will probably end up coming more towards the middle of the month instead of the beginning from now on.
September Dividend Totals
So how did September turn out for us? I’d say it wasn’t too bad, all things considered. We received dividends from four different companies; BAC, ARCC, DNP, and SSI. In addition to our dividends from each of these companies, we also received a dividend from our brokerage account, all of which together totaled to $24.85.
March, June, September and December are some of our smaller months, but I’m really pleased with this month because our income jumped to almost $25, which is a few bucks more than we normally get. For comparison, we received $22.92 in June, so this month is an increase of 8.4% relative to that.
I’m hoping that the upward trend we saw this month will continue and that we’ll break $25 in December. As it stands, our dividend income this September was almost $10 more and 57% higher than last year, when we only earned $15.83.
As much as I wish we earned as much this month as we did in July, I’m still happy because we’re heading in the right direction. One day we’ll have enough dividend income to cover our expenses, and I can’t wait for that day to come.
Our Yearly Dividends
As of September, we were 75% of the way finished with the year, so how are we doing on our goal to receive $400 in dividends? As a matter of fact, we’re doing pretty good. So far, we’ve received a total of $319.41 in dividend income during 2017, putting us at 79.85% of the way to our yearly goal.
Sounds awesome, right?
Well, it gets better. I’ve done the math, and we should hit our yearly goal in October, since I’m expecting we’ll receive at least $94.27 in dividends, putting us at $413.68. Seems to me we’re about to knock this one out of the park!
So how about our forward dividend income?
At the end of this year, our goal is to have a forward dividend income of $500 dollars, and we’re so close it almost hurts. Right now, our forward income is $499.55, so we’re a measly $0.45 away from hitting our goal.
When I started dividend investing three years ago, I never thought I’d be able to say that. I know a few other dividend bloggers have hit that mark much quicker than we have, but that’s not what amazes me. The fact that we’ve been able to create a stream of passive income that large while we’ve been in school is, personally, one of the best things we’ve accomplished. It represents an investment in our future that will pay dividends for years to come. Pun intended.
Making up for lost time
Also, I mentioned last month that we’ve had to halt contributions to our portfolio because of a few changes to our financial situation. I wish that weren’t the case, but my wife and I have been talking and we’ve come up with a plan to make the most of it.
It’s called our tax return.
Thanks to our son being born, we now qualify for several tax benefits we didn’t before. As an accounting student, I’ve had a little exposure to taxes, so I went ahead and estimated our tax return based on a few assumptions about our earnings. The number I’ve come up with has varied a bit, but the lowest amount I think we can reasonably expect to receive is $5,000.
Our plan is to use a bit of that money to buy a new laptop for my wife, a GMAT prep course for myself, and dump somewhere around $1,500-$2,500 into our portfolio. We also plan to use the rest to replenish our savings, depending on the actual amount we get.
I’d rather that we were saving a regular amount every month, but a lump sum that large will make up for what we’ve missed out for an then some, so I’ll take it.