Sunday, April 30, 2017

2017 Goals (1st Quarter Update)

 2017 GOALS (1st Quarter Update)

Overall, whether the increases are big or small, the main goal is to keep move forward. I've been writing both annual and long-term goals since my early twenties. I can say with confidence that our family would not be were we are today without having accomplished the short term goals along the way. Sure, like everyone else, there were setbacks along the way.  But the goals have always helped us get back on track.  They keep us accountable and help ensure that we always progress.

2017 has been a great year so far.  Hope it has been the same for you and your family. With three full months behind us, below is where we stand with our goals as of March 31, 2017:

1.  Earn $3,550 in dividend income.

  • 1st quarter: $818.70
2.  Increase projected annual dividend income to $3,750.

  • 1st quarter: $3,133 
3.  Bring value of dividend stocks accounts to $90,000 total.

  • 1st quarter: $75,045.81

4.  Write at least 100 posts (8.33 posts/month).

  • 1st quarter: 22 posts
5   Reach 575,000 total hits by end of the year.

  • 1st quarter: 484,861 hits
6.  Reach 1,800 Twitter followers by end of the year.

  • 1st quarter: 1,631 followers
7.  Reach 400 all-time earnings from Google AdSense.

  • 1st quarter: $294.28

8.  Increase value of retirement accounts to $500,000.

  • 1st quarter: $468,092
9.  Increase Net Worth to $675,000 (excluding home equity).

  • 1st quarter: $647,754
10.Reduce mortgage balance to $270,000.

  • 1st quarter: $285,424

11.  Try out 12 "new" restaurants/dessert place.

  • 1st quarter: $5 new restaurants
12.  Go on 26 "new" hikes (1 every other week).

  • 1st quarter: 15 new hikes completed

13.  Visit 3 new parks.

  • 1st quarter: 1 new park visited

14.  Volunteer for two project/event (ex. beach clean up, clear hiking trail, race event, serve food, etc.)

  • 1st quarter: 0 volunteer project/event completed

15.  Get kids outside more - A total of 52 activities (run, walk, hike, etc.) as a family, with a minimum of 1 mile and 30 minutes each.

  • 1st quarter: 8 activities completed

Below is a landing page for our 2017 goals (with quarterly updates provided).  Please feel free to follow along and see our progress!!

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Mortgage Balance (UPDATE) - APRIL 2017

If you have viewed our family's Net Worth Page, you probably already know that it does not include the equity in our home.  Although, we do realize that it is technically part of our overall net worth, we decided that since our home equity is not an asset that we can count on for income (unless we sell and buy something cheaper) we would exclude it from our net worth calculation.

For the purpose of this blog, we are more interested in documenting our loan balance rather than our home equity.  With that said, we will use the current Zillow value as our estimated home value and use it to figure out the percentage we owe on our home. For those interested, we will include the amount of our home equity, but know that we are less concerned with the equity since we have no plans to cash out or otherwise sell our home. Our main goal is to pay off our home on or before my retirement date. 

According to Zillow, our home is currently worth: $831,799 (up $7,036 in the last 30-days according to Zillow). I don't understand Zillow and I don't think I ever will.  Last month, I posted that our home was worth $846,208 according to Zillow.  This month, our home value went down roughly $15K, however, Zillow site states that it is up $7,036 in last 30-days. Say what *&%?

Mortgage Balance (As of April 1st):
$285,424 (down $1,911 from our post last month)

Percentage Owed:
34.3% (up .4% from our post last month)

Home Equity:
$546,375 (down $12,498 from our post last month)
Mortgage Background:
For those that have not read the Preface on our home equity, we currently hold a 15-year fixed rate mortgage at the incredibly low rate of 2.875%.  My goal is to retire within 10 years and 2 months (122 months) so we are setting out to pay off our mortgage on or before my retirement date. Right now we are a few months behind the target retirement date. Currently, we have approximately 11  years and 0 months (132 months) left on our mortgage.  Nevertheless, I would like to have it paid off in another 10 years (or less). If we accomplish that, I plan to use the last few years to aggressively build our passive income to help supplement our retirement and defer tapping into the 457K as long as we can so it can continue to grow. 

Right now we are not putting any extra money towards the principal given our low 2.875% interest rate. We feel that we could make our money grow faster by investing it and while keeping the money more liquid. At a certain point, maybe in 6-9 years, we may consider using money from our investment accounts to wipe out the remaining mortgage balance.  Until then, we will continue to grow that money outside, rather than have it locked into our home.
Click on the link below to view our mortgage balance history:

Wednesday, April 12, 2017


Below is a recap of the dividends/partnership distributions that we received from our family's dividend stocks portfolio –  March 2017 (recap).


During the past month, our family received dividends/partnership distributions from a total of 26 companies/ETFs/Partnerships!! The total monies received from those 26 companies/ETFs/Partnerships was: $305.01

Below is a breakdown of the dividends/partnership distributions received this past month:

3/01/17 - WF (Wells Fargo & Co): $7.60
3/01/17 - ENB (Enbridge Inc): $12.73
3/01/17 - AFL (Aflac Inc): $6.45
3/02/17 - HCP (HCP Inc): $3.33
3/10/17 - TGT (Target Corp): $3.60
3/10/17 - IBM (International Business Machines Corp): $8.40
3/10/17 - XOM (Exxon Mobil Corp): $8.25

3/10/17 - EXC (Exelon Corp): $19.63
3/10/17 - EMR (Emerson Electric Co): $16.80
3/10/17 - CVX (Chevron Corp): $19.44
3/13/17 - MMM (3M Co
): $3.53
3/14/17 - JNJ (Johnson & Johnson): $3.20
3/15/17 - UL (Unilever Plc): $4.07
3/15/17 - IP (International Paper Co): $4.63
3/17/17 - ESV (Ensco Plc): $2.31
3/17/17 - FLO (Flower Foods Inc): $5.28
3/20/17 - VFC (VF Corp): $6.30
3/27/17 - BBL (BHP Billiton Plc): $75.20
3/28/17 - RDS.B (Royal Dutch Shell Plc): $21.62
3/29/17 - EDIV (Spdr S7P Emerging Markets ETF): $3.86
3/30/17 - TROW (T Rowe Price Group Inc): $4.56
3/30/17 - GILD (Gilead Sciences Inc): $7.80
3/31/17 - VTR (Ventas Inc): $4.65
3/31/17 - UNP (Union Pacific Corp): $12.71
3/31/17 - NOV (National Oilwell Varco): $2.25
3/31/17 - FTR (Frontier Communications Corp): $36.81



In case you interested, our family's dividend stocks portfolio 
may be found by clicking on the link below: