I am a 40-year-old postal worker and dividend investor from Ontario, Canada. I created this blog in order to track the growth of my dividend income, as well as my monthly employment income and expenses. I will also post about things related to frugal living: for instance, ways that I keep my living expenses down, frugal buys that I’m particularly excited about, and any contests that I have won.
I grew up in your typical middle-class household. We weren’t poor, but we were single-income. It wasn’t until university that I started thinking about money. By the end of my first year of university, I was so broke that my parents had to deposit money into my account so that I could buy a train ticket home when the semester ended. I have never been a big spender, but I didn’t know how to budget either. I started my second year of university with the sudden awareness that money didn’t grow on trees! I started tracking my spending, and tried to cut out the unnecessary spending.
When I started my third year of university, I needed to take out a student loan. I had been lucky until that point because my parents had started an RESP for me when I was six and I hadn’t needed to borrow anything until then. Suddenly I was $2500 in debt. I got my student loan in a lump sum at the beginning of September. I calculated how much I’d need for the first semester and put the rest into a redeemable GIC, which I cashed out at the beginning of my second semester. For the first time in my life, I paid attention to the concept of using money to make money.
I didn’t venture into the stock market until 2005, which was five years after graduation. When I first got my degree, I was too focused on paying off my student loans (which were up to about $12,000) and trying to find a steady job. I lived at home and didn’t pay rent so the student loans were gone by 2003. And in 2004 I finally secured a permanent position at the post office! I signed up on iTRADE the following year (and finally moved out of my parents’ basement).
I started off as a buy-and-hold investor. I didn’t know much about the stock market and I based my decisions on buy/sell recommendations that I found on various websites. I made money on some stocks, lost money on others. By 2013, I was getting impatient and decided to try day trading. I did great that first year. I made $30,000! Then the market tanked. And I lost just over $100,000. That is what led me to dividend investing. I’ve come to the realization that “slow and steady” is the best approach -at least for me- and it’s probably what I should have done all along.
I now focus on good, solid companies that pay a dividend. I reinvest my dividends every month, and add whatever money I have left from my paychecks. Three years from now, my dividend income should equal my expenses. And in five years, my dividend income should be high enough that I can afford to quit my job and live off my dividends! I hope to track my progress with this blog.