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Deep dive into my portfolio: Fun with numbers & graphs.

Over the last couple of months, I’ve been trying to focus a little more on Asset allocation, geographical diversification and taking as much control of my portfolio as I can by selling some funds and starting to funnel everything into my direct investing portfolio.

I decided it would be fun to do a “deep dive” into my own portfolio.  I had a rough idea of what I held in each fund, what % of my funds are in equity vs real estate – etc – but I thought it would be interesting to dig into each one, and take a look.  I was also curious at what rate my overall portfolio was growing, my monthly dividends were growing, and how my asset allocation changed if I included my house & cabin vs just looking at my investment portfolio.  I also thought it would help if I made it as visual as possible – so I created some charts & graphs to help along the way.

Investment Portfolio Growth:

Let’s start with the basics: Total Investment Portfolio.  When I first started tracking my investments (January 2015), I had a portfolio valued at $160,314.49.  It has been 37 months since I started tracking my journey….let’s see where are now:

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At the time of writing this my investment portfolio sits at: $303,131.11.  In a short 3 year period – I have almost doubled my portfolio value.  Not too shabby – but before I start getting to excited it is important to understand why this happened…

This was due to a few factors:

  • Cash injections (regular bi-weekly automated contributions, and some one off stock purchases)
  • Continued bull market run
  • Got lucky on a few marijuana stocks which I sold/flipped for 300+% gains into some safer stocks.  You can read more about that HERE
  • Dripping/Compounding effect.

I obviously don’t expect to double my portfolio every 3 years, in fact I am somewhat expecting the portfolio to take some big dips over the next few months – or whenever the market decides to correct itself.

The market has been red hot the last few years – and nobody knows when it will come crashing down (but it will – and that’s okay).  If I was closer to retirement, I’d probably be reducing my equity % in my portfolio, and increasing my fixed income % – but I have time on my side.  That said – I did start to wonder how my current portfolio looks in terms of Equities Vs Fixed Income Vs Real Estate.  So let’s take a look.

Asset Allocation/Geographical Allocation:

I decided to look at this in 2 ways – first just looking at my investments, and then including my house & cabin.  I will only include the equity I have in my house (deduct the mortgage) and I will include the full cabin, since it has no mortgage.

Let’s see how it breaks down.

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I am sure 99% of financial advisor’s would cringe at the low fixed income %, however to be honest what worries me most is how over exposed I am to the Canadian market.  In fact, prior to switching one of my Mutual funds to direct investing and swapping it to XAW (All world, EX Canada) my Canadian exposure was closer to 60%.  All my accounts are registered so there are no tax implications right now – or need to have a higher and more preferential Canadian % of equities.  My plan is to slowly try and get to:

  • 30% Canadian Equitiy
  • 50% Foreign Equity
  • 10% Real estate
  • 10% Fixed Income (increasing as I get older)

I was curious to see how much this would change, if I included my real estate (just what I actually own).  Results are:

dividend investing blog personal finance canada

When I include my physical real estate (minus mortgage) the real estate % jumps up to 35% of my assets – which I *THINK* is normal – but I could be way off.  Let me know if these numbers seem about where they should be.

Passive Income:

The number one thing most people online who blog about finances/investing (at least the people I follow) seem to cover/focus on is there monthly dividend/passive income streams.  If I am being honest, I never paid too much attention to my monthly “passive income” and probably still don’t as much as most bloggers I follow.  I’ve always been more interested in overall total portfolio growth/gains.  I always figured – as long as my overall gains are beating the markets, eventually I can switch my portfolio to more income producing assets – and the larger the portfolio – the more income i’ll get.  That said – I’d be lying If I said I didn’t get a thrill from seeing monthly income going up – or seeing a stock I own getting a dividend raise.  Also now that I am getting older I think it is important to start thinking about how much income i’ll need each month and looking for ways to grow my monthly income.

I only have 3 years of data to look at – but I figured I should look at how my monthly dividend income is coming along. Here are two ways to look at it:

Monthly Gains Year over year:

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Total Monthly Dividends:

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*One important thing to note, 40% of my total portfolio is currently in a fund that pays ZERO dividends.  Once I inevitably switch this fund to my direct investing, my monthly dividends should increase substantially (an extra $275-$400 per month depending what I invest it in).

The good news is – that even though monthly passive income hasn’t been a priority for me over the last 3 years – it is still going up each month(for the most part) .  When you look at the year over year growth it looks even better.

Account Allocation:

Lastly, I wanted to look at what types of accounts my investments are held in to get a better understanding of if I am on the right track – specifically from a taxable income in retirement view.  Here is what the numbers say:

Dividend Growth Investing Finance Blog Canada Jordan Maas

My RRSP accounts for over 80% of my total investments, while my spousal RRSP is currently under 2%. If this keeps up – it clearly won’t be the most efficient use of savings in retirement as my taxable income will be pretty high.  Our TFSA’s currently account for 16% of our investments which will be nice in retirement. The kids education fund doesn’t have anything in it yet – as I just opened it – but this will be a focus over the next few years as well.

A couple takeaways:

  • My personal yield is pretty low.  If I look  at my total average dividends paid out last year vs the average value of my portfolio – my personal yield is only 1.7%.  The good news is – I can easily increase this when I need more income by switching my funds with no yield to something that pays a monthly/quarterly dividend.
  • My fixed income allocation is extremely low(2%).  Personally I am okay with this right now, as I consider myself an aggressive investor and I am still fairly young (contrary to what my body says)….but I should start to slowly increase this over the next few years.
  • I would like to reduce my exposure to Canadian Equities – this can be replaced with some fixed income/foreign equity.
  • To ensure maximum tax efficiencies in retirement I need to get my spousal RRSP closer to mine – as well as ensure our TFSA’s are maxed.  I’ve already started the process by reducing my RRSP contributions and increasing what I put into the spousal RRSP.

Some questions for other bloggers/investors:

  • What % of real estate do you hold?  How much if you include your personal residence(s)?
  • What is your personal yield?  Do you focus more on total growth or monthly income growth?
  • Would you be concerned with my high exposure to Canada or low exposure to fixed income?

    I am having dinner with a good friend of mine tomorrow who is a financial advisor. I am very curious to hear his thoughts 🙂

    As always – Any other questions or concerns/comments? Let me know in the comments!

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Well that was easy…How a 1 hour bank appointment will save me over $20,000

On Friday I had an appointment at the bank, it last just over an hour – and it will easily result in savings over over $20,000 over the next 10 years (or less).

How is this possible?  It’s actually a lot simpler than you would think.  All I did was follow through on one of my goals for this year.  I finally decided to transfer my high cost RBC mutual funds to my direct investing account.

At the time of transfer I had the following 2 funds:

RBC GLOBAL DIVIDEND GROWTH FUND

RBC CANADIAN EQUITY INCOME FUND

The RBC Global Dividend Growth Fund was my very first Mutual Fund I ever purchased.  I’ve owned this fund for over 10 years.  This fund has been pretty terrible for me (10 year return of 5.3%) AND has really high fees (2.14%).  Truth be told I’ve been unhappy with this fund for years, but just kept putting off doing something about it.  Now that I am taking things more seriously, and have this website to hold me accountable I finally did something about it.  I plan on replacing this fund with an International/Global ETF.  I am currently trying to decide which low cost fund to replace this with.  So far I am leaning towards one of the funds below- although I plan to do some more research this week:

VANGUARD FTSE GLOBAL ALL CAP EX CANADA INDEX ETF (0.27% MER)

ISHARES CORE MSCI ALL COUNTRY WORLD EX CANADA INDEX ETF (0.22% MER)

Even if I end up choosing the Vanguard fund with a slightly higher MER – I would be paying 1.87% less per year in fees than I currently am.  With my current portfolio amount this would result in yearly savings of  $1215.50.  This savings amount would continue to increase each year as my portfolio increases – but even if we assume I don’t contribute to this account ever again, and it returns 0% for the next 10 years, that means in 10 years I will have saved $12,155.00.  The crazy thing is that this ETF outperformed my high cost mutual fund by close to 4% over the last 3 years as well so not only will I be saving money in fees each year, I should be getting a better return as well.

Truth be told, even with the high MER (1.92%) – I’ve been really happy with the Canadian Equity Income Fund.  It has a 10 year annualized return of 10.4%, and currently pays me a monthly dividend of over $200.  I did a little bit of research and found out that RBC offers Series “D” funds for people who use direct investing.  This is the exact same fund – but with a lower MER.  I decided to transfer this fund to a series D fund rather than liquidate my position.  This will reduce the MER from 1.92 to 1.04.  This is a reduction of 0.88% per year. Based on my current shares this will save me: $572 this year (and even more every following year as my portfolio increases).  Even if I never put another cent into this fund – and it returned 0% for the next 10 years – this would result in savings of $5720 over the next 10 years.

While I was at the bank I also finally set up an RESP for my kids and increased my spousal RRSP contributions by $100 every 2 weeks.  I normally hate these appointments – but I’d say that was a pretty good use of an hour.

If anyone has any recommendations on any low cost global/international ETF’s I’d love to hear them so I can research them this week.  Thanks in advance!

Goodbye 2017. Final 2017 Update, Milestones & 2018 Goals…

2017 is over, and although it seems like it went by extremely fast, I am excited by what was accomplished, and what 2018 has in store for us.

In 2017 the following 3 things happened which shaped the way the year went for me:

  1. My son Isaac was born
  2. Bought our “forever” home
  3. Started this blog to help track my goals, progress and keep me sane

One of my first blog posts I wrote was my goals for 2017, and although I didn’t accomplish all of them, considering I only had 6 months since writing them down I think I did okay.  Here is a quick reminder of what they were – and how I did:

Personal Goals (Completed 4/5)

  1. Start setting goals! PASS
  2. Sell our house & buy a new house PASS
  3. Start a website & keep it updated PASS
  4. Spend more time at home/with family PASS
  5. Try 5 new restaurants (with Amber) FAIL

Oddly enough, the only goal I wasn’t able to accomplish was what would SEEM like one of the easiest.  That said there were multiple times that I did try to get out to new places, a lot of the time she was just too tired, we couldn’t get a sitter, etc.  I guess in 2018 I’ll need to try a bit harder.

Financial Goals (Completed 2/3)

  1. Get Amber “set up” financially PASS
  2. Eliminate all debt (not including mortgage) PASS
  3. Get total portfolio Value to $320,000 by December 31 FAIL

2018 was a pretty good year for the portfolio, and I believe I would have hit all three targets if we hadn’t spent a bit more on the house than we had originally planned.  That said, we love the house and I have no regrets.

Even though my portfolio fell short of the aggressive $320,000 goal I had set, I did hit a new milestone in 2017 as my portfolio finished the year at $301,375.67 which was the first time it broke $300,000!  My portfolio started the year @ $251,880.81 which means I was about 500 dollars away from a yearly increase of $50,000!

My goals for 2018 are going to be short and sweet:

2018 Personal Goals:

  1. Increase the amount of blog posts – and the range of content on this site
  2. Get life insurance &  a will in order
  3. Take the wife to 5 new restaurants (Going to try this again)

2018 Financial Goals:

  1. Sell off my Mutual funds through my bank and replace them with low cost ETF’s and individual stocks
  2. Receive $10,000 in passive dividend income
  3. Increase overall portfolio to $350,000.00

Now onto the fun stuff….December Update:

 

Personal Highlights for December:

  • Celebrated our first Christmas with Isaac
  • Hosted our first ever Christmas Family dinners (40+ people on xmas eve and 30 on Boxing Day).
  • The kids got RIDICULOUSLY spoiled, our house is filled with toys, books, clothes, and more.  We plan on going through a bunch of their old toys, clothes, and donating this month.
  • Isaac has started pulling himself up on the table, and got his first 2 teeth

Financial Highlights:

  • Total investment portfolio broke the $300,000.00 milestone
  • Amber’s TFSA recieved over $100 in dividends for the first time and also recieved more than my TFSA for the first time.
  • Continued bi weekly payments into RRSPs & Spousal RSP.
  • Amber’s TFSA/RRSP are now over $20,500.  (They didn’t exist 6 months ago)

 

Passive Income Update For December 2017.

J’s TFSA:

Diversified Royalty: $9.03 (Dripped 2 new shares)

Lucara Diamond: $7.00 (have since closed this position)

Artis Reit: $49.59 (Dripped 3 new shares)

Plaza Reit: $24.62 (Dripped 6 new shares)

Ambers TFSA:

Chorus Aviation: $10.76 (Dripped 1 share)

Intertape Polymer: $49.49

Alimentation Couche Tard: $11.25

TOTAL TFSA’S:      $202.59

 

RRSP:

Canadian Equity Income Distribution: $213.01

Global Dividend Fund Distribution: $422.33

Total Passive Income July 2017:  $837.93

Portfolio Update:

With the contributions to Amber’s TFSA, my continued bi weekly contributions and this seemingly never-ending bull market our portfolio hit an all time high: $301,375.67!  Looking forward to see what 2018 brings!

 

2017 Goals Update.

One of my first blog posts was about setting goals for 2017.  I also noted that I typically do not set goals, so this would be something a little out of my element.  I am happy to report so far I think I’m doing okay (with most of them).

Below are the goals I set – and a quick note of where I am at.

Personal Goals

  1. Start setting goals! *NAILED IT*
    The big test will be to see if I can achieve any/all of them and more importantly come January 1st If I continue to set goals for next year.
  2. Sell our house & buy a new house: *NAILED IT*
    House sale has closed and we’ve been in our new place for about a month now!  Most of our new furniture has been delivered, and so far we love everything about the new place.  That said – we haven’t had to pay all the new bills yet.
  3. Start a website & keep it updated *GETTING THERE*
    Website is up and running.  Due to the house sale and moving – I wasn’t able to post as much as I would have liked for the last couple of months, but things are back on track now.  October has been my highest traffic month so far, and the month is only half done.
  4. Spend more time at home/with family *GETTING THERE*
    I’ve definitely been spending a lot more time at home – although I wish I could take more credit for this being a conscious decision.  In reality it is likely due to the fact the Jets season has just started, my soccer season hasn’t started yet, we just moved, and I am still getting things organised around the house.  The next couple of months will be the big challenge.
  5. Try 5 new restaurants (with Amber) *SLACKING*
    This is the one area I am going to need to step up my game.  Although we’ve gone out a few times,  I believe we’ve only been to 1 restaurant that Amber hadn’t been to. I still have a couple of months – so I’ll have to get moving on this one if I want to achieve this goal.

 

Financial Goals

  1. Get Amber “set up” Financially *NAILED IT*
     So far we have done the following:
    – Create a joint bank account
    – Set Amber up with Direct Investing & a TFSA
    – Start a Spousal RSP for Amber – and started bi-weekly contributions.
    – Bought 3 new stocks in Ambers TFSA (ATD.B, CHR, & ITP).
    The only area I still need to work on is getting her actually interested in some of this stuff….that will probably be the hardest part.
  2. Eliminate all debt (not including mortgage) *NAILED IT*
      I just got back from the bank – and they confirmed my line of credit has officially been paid off/closed.  My credit card is also completely paid off.  My car is paid off, and my cabin is paid off.  The only debt I currently have is my mortgage on my house (which I don’t really consider debt).
  3. Get total portfolio Value to $320,000 by December 31*WAY BEHIND*
    With only 2 months to go – my portfolio is sitting at $278,000.  I have pretty much come to terms with the fact I wont hit this target – however I think $300,000 might be doable.  There are 3 main reasons I wont hit this goal:1) I paid off my debt very aggressively(Took some profits from my TFSA)
    2) We spent a little bit more on the house than we thought
    3) We underestimated the cost of furnishing a much larger house

    All in all, I’m pretty satisfied with where I am at…just need to step it up and take the wife out a few more times and try and sock away a bit more $$$ before the end of the year!

Jordan Maas Winnipeg Canada Financial Blogger Dividends

Big changes on the horizon

Just wanted to pop in with a quick update.  I haven’t posted anything all month – and it’s definitely not due to a lack of financial or personal activity.  In fact quite the opposite.  In the last couple of weeks we were able to sell our house and buy our new home.  I’ve been trying to get everything sorted and ready for the move.

I get possession of this beauty on September 10th!Vanier FrontVanier EntranceVanier Kitchen 2Vanier Family RoomVanier BathroomVanier Yard

Needless to say we are extremely excited.  We are moving out of our 780 square foot house into a much more spacious home – where the kids will get their own rooms, have a nice backyard to play in, and in an area we both love.  We looked at probably 30-40 houses, and this was the first one that both the wife and I loved.  It was in an area we both wanted to live in & checked off multiple boxes (wet bar, master ensuite, close to family/schools/parks, big fenced back yard, move in ready, etc).

The downside obviously is that I will no longer be mortgage free before I’m 40 (barring any sort of miracles or lottery winnings) and our monthly expenses are going to increase quite a bit.

We’ve also decided to sell our cabin (probably this summer) and I’ve decided that once we are settled from the move I am going to change up my investment plan/style.  (More on that coming in next blog post).

Enjoy the rest of the summer!  I’ll be back in September.