In Canada, Discussions, Money

Sherry’s Money Thoughts & Ramblings as of late

THIS CITY IS VERY BABY & CHILD UNFRIENDLY

It is not until you have a child and a stroller that you realize just how much Montreal hates children and disabled persons.

Stairs, no matter how low, are freakin’ everywhere

You want to go into a shop? Oh that’s nice… you’ll have to carry a stroller with a sleeping 30lb toddler in it with a diaper bag of at least 25lbs up 5 steps first.

Could the stairs have been avoided? Or a ramp put in? OF COURSE.. but why would we do that?

The best is when they have stores underground or in the sub-basement level and you need to try and get DOWN into the store and there’s no space to rest the stroller.

No railings for children to hold

Baby Bun INSISTS on walking up and down stairs by himself but he can’t reach the rails for the adults, and instead has to touch the grimy, disgusting, pee-stained sides of concrete stairs to walk up.

*shudder*

Changing tables in bathrooms with space for a stroller? LOL

Or bathroom stalls that are so tiny and narrow I can’t go to the bathroom while Baby Bun is in there with me (I refuse to leave him outside where strangers can snatch him while I am doing my bidness).

Doors that are easily opened with one hand while wrangling a stroller? DOUBLE LOL!!!

How about we wish for unicorns too?

I always hunt for the automatic door openers and half the time they’re broken *facepalm*

Emergency elevator buttons at eye-level of curious toddlers

I understand needing them there for people in wheelchairs to reach too, but can we put in buttons that CALL people instead of stopping the entire elevator or causing things to flash red like a siren?


Seriously though, children are a fact of life. Why are we so far behind the times?

AM STILL NOT WORKING

I’m still not working. I have had a contract prospect or two that hasn’t panned out for various reasons (political mostly), but I’m basically writing off 2016.

If I don’t work, I won’t cry about it. No point. *shrug*

It’s not like I’m dying for money anyway, I still have a decent amount n my company to draw from as a salary for the next year and a half, so I should just chill the eff out.

family-mother-children-father-parenting-feet

I am saying this mostly because Baby Bun is getting cuter and more verbose these days, but growing up so quick that the other day I was sitting there watching him play with his truck and I realized just how big he was compared to the first day he was born as a little squealing, wrinkled mess the size of a teddy bear.

CANADA’S ECONOMY IS SCARING ME

Ever since writing this quick post on bristling about the PM’s wife asking for more help to work on charities and answer mail, I started summing up all the things that are freaking me out about my country:

Oil prices are still heavily depressed.

I see slight increases happening but.. wow. This is scary as it seriously affects oil-driven economies like the ones out west.

In a way it is good and bad.

I’m glad it revealed how short-sighted it is to be chasing profits for a mono-industry than it is to be diversified across multiple revenue streams, much like in any household.

Now we can see just how dependent we were on oil as a driver.

Housing bubble is still growing bigger.

I have a neighbour trying to sell his old apartment in a very desirable area, and has already dropped the price 35% since listing it.

Now he is considering renovations.

I secretly think if he wants to unload it, he needs to drop it another $100K to rock bottom & let it go to get his money back.

Unfortunately people are so personally invested in their renovated properties and can’t see that the money is being locked into a non-performing asset (no renters in there).

He doesn’t want renters either. I don’t get it.

Something about tying up money if there is a renter in there?

I thought renting gave you income. I’m confused with their logic, but maybe I’m not seeing the whole picture.

Can a landlord help explain how you would ever need to tie up additional assets in a rental property aside from the property itself?

We are $1.65 in debt to $1 in disposable income

Does this freak out no one?

Factor in people like my partner and I, a few neighbours I know, who have ZERO DEBT and it means people out there are carrying our share, or $3.30 in debt to every $1 of disposable income.

I think I may have met a few of them, so I wrote a quick beginner’s guide for Canadians on basic savings, money and investing.

THROWING MY ENERGY INTO A DIVIDEND PORTFOLIO

I’ve decided my new goal that is attainable and actually interesting to me, is to have a dividend income of $50,000.

(Why $50,000? Because I can get away with paying $200 in taxes then.)

You’d be surprised how interested I am in that these days, particularly after having Baby Bun.

Right now my dividend income hovers around $6000, but I can definitely increase it if I redirected my energies towards it.

If I put every penny into a dividend income, I should be able to hit $25,000 a year, but I don’t want to do that because I still want a healthy portion to be in index funds rather than individual stocks paying dividends.

Photograph-Travel-Toronto-Ontario-Canada-Skyview-Landscape-Toronto-Buildings-Skyline

That said, I am also waiting for Canada’s economy to pick up for oil in particular so I can sell my index funds concentrated on oil for a capital profit and re-invest the money into dividend-producing stocks instead.

Yes, within the index funds for oil I have plenty of companies that pay a dividend but it is nothing like investing in individual ones.

My strategy for picking good dividend stocks is simple: Big companies that are very unlikely to go out of business. This means: banks, energy, liquor, telecommunications.

Now, the dividend yield has to be sustainable but also high enough to replace my income without a lot of capital invested. I came up with this chart:

Dividend Yield Capital Required
2% $2,500,000
3% $1,666,667
4% $1,250,000
5% $1,000,000
6% $833,333

A lot of stable companies pay a sustainable dividend yield of around 2% – 3%, so really I need to bank away $1.5 million – $2.5 million to reach this goal.

I plan on this as my guiding principle:

RRSP

  • Index funds
  • $USD investments in index funds

TFSA

  • Dividend producing stocks
  • Any stock for capital gains

Margin

  • Dividend producing stocks

I need to re-organize and transfer some holdings from Margin to RRSP and do a little cleanup in 2017 when I have more contribution room in my RRSP, but this is the plan.

I also need oil to go back up so I can sell those funds and reinvest the money into my plan above. 🙂

This is the Waiting Game I am playing right now.


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Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

Am my own Sugar Daddy. Am a millionaire at 36 after getting out of $60K of student debt in 18 months, a little over a decade earlier, using TheBudgetingTool.com. I have worked 50% of my career (taking 1-2 year breaks), and quadrupled my income within 2 years of graduating, going from $65K to $260K with an average lifetime savings rate of 50%. I have 11 side incomes that are on track in 2020 to make me $50K - $75K. I could retire today if I wanted, but love my work-life balance as a freelancing consultant in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). I am all about balance - between time and money, and also enjoying my money. I also post daily on Instagram @saverspender.

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6 Comments

  1. Ramona @ Personal Finance Today

    I’m lucky daughter never liked the stroller too much anyway. So we’d go with her in a Baby Bjorn Carrier, which made it easier to carry her around. As for working with a baby/toddler? Pretty rough, indeed 😀

    Reply
    1. sherry@savespendsplurge.com

      VERY rough. I’m having a hell of a time.

      Reply
  2. Jane

    Hi there – I am also a dividend investor (up to $6500/year in dividends but like you I want more!). Anyhow, a lot of great dividend stocks are not Canadian. I think you have this covered by saying your dividend stocks will also be held in your margin account, but just in case if you do plan on US dividend stocks keep them away from your TFSA or off the bat you’ll lose 15% on witholding tax.

    Reply
    1. sherry@savespendsplurge.com

      Yes!

      1. Great dividend stocks I know, are not Canadian. I am hoping to find some that are good. Focusing on banks, telecommunications..

      2. U.S. dividend stocks if I plan on buying any will be in my RRSP for sure for the tax treaty… I need to move my US dollar amounts into my RRSP next year to re-organize my holdings.

      Reply
  3. Taylor Lee @ Yuppie Millennial

    I realized how disabled-unfriendly my city was when I sprained my ankle a couple years back. Hoo-boy getting onto the subway each morning was quite the obstacle course, not to mention most folks won’t let you have their seats, even in the handicap designated areas!

    “He doesn’t want renters either. I don’t get it. Something about tying up money if there is a renter in there?”

    My interpretation is that he doesn’t want his equity tied up in this house generally. If he has a renter, I assume there’d be a lease and it’d impede his ability to sell.

    I’m scared for y’all up there. The rent:home price ratios I’ve seen for Vancouver and Toronto have been staggering (i.e. not as much increases in rent corresponding to the huge increases in purchase price). And while I’m pretty optimistic oil will rebound a bit within a couple years, long-term I think renewables are going to erode the market (if they haven’t already).

    Reply
    1. sherry@savespendsplurge.com

      1. People are RUDE. But they are also really really nice. I’ve had more than once, young men and even little BOYS ask me if I need help with Baby Bun going up and down the stairs with my things. Some people have even kindly taken Baby Bun’s hand to help him down the stairs which I am both grateful and scared of. LOL.

      2. OK… I guess. But just recently he let a family member move in to live there, so… now there’s a non-renter in there after years of sitting empty.

      3. Vancouver and Toronto are insane. I’m just waiting for it to implode. Montreal and the rest of the country has been moderate, and Calgary because of oil has just gone down the drain.

      Reply

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