Saturday, December 20, 2008

4 goals update - end of 2008

About two years ago my wife and I set 4 long-term goals for our non-registered portfolio. I have these goals indicated on one of my Excel spreadsheets that I use to track my non-registered portfolio. The reason I have them there is so that I can see the 4 goals as a reminder, as well as to check up on my progress regularly. When creating these goals I tried to make them simply stated, specific, challenging, and of course realistic. I last updated my progress on these goals on June 1, 2008 here. Since 2009 is coming fast and my wife is now back at work, I thought a year end update is due to report our progress on these goals.

Goal #1 - Save an average of $1,000 per month to be added to this portfolio
Progress - For 2008 we've saved an average of $1,395 per month for this portfolio (not including these last 10 days or so). This is a tremendous result especially considering my wife has been on maternity leave for the year. I really would have never expected to accomplish this for 2008. It just shows what you can do if you put your mind and commitment to something. I may have to consider revising this $1,000 figure upwards!

Goal #2 - Keep our 'Buy Fee' under 2.0%
Progress - Currently our Buy Fee sits at 1.9%. This is something that is important to me, as I know the impact fees can have in investing. This fee should creep down as the years go by. I would expect the fee to get under 1.0% someday.

Goal #3 - Keep our portfolio dividend yield between 2.0% and 4.0%.
Progress - Currently our portfolio yield is 6.5%. This means that we are being paid 6.5% of the money we have invested annually. We are not meeting our goal in this area. The reasons for this are that a part of our portfolio was purchased to provide some additional income for my wife's maternity leave, and this section is made up of high yielding income trusts. The other reason for this is the extremely poor performance of the stock market. The original intention of this goal was to ensure that I was striking a good balance between growth and income, but I am starting to question the usefulness of this goal as this is really hard to quantify and put a range to.

Goal #4 - Grow our portfolio to $175,000 by February, 2014.
Progress - Currently our portfolio is worth $52,097, including some debt. This is the most difficult goal to gauge progress on. Looks like if we are able to save an average of $1,100 per month average (above all debt repayment), and we get an annual investment return of ~10% we'll meet the goal.


Four Pillars said...

Congrats on making your goals.

Why are your buy fees so high? Do you buy really small lots?

MG (moneygardener) said...

Hi 4P, My fees are so high for 2 reasons. I buy in small lots ($1,200 - $2,000 per trade), and I pay $25/trade at BMO Investorline...for now..The fees will come down significantly within 2 or 3 years.

Dividend Tree said...

Making objective goals is half the journey and you made it. Good luck for 2009.

Janette said...

Be careful not to go upward in your goal in case you decide that being home with the little one is something one of you decides to do. That is a way to save moeny in the long run- IMHO.

Dividends4Life said...

Congratulations! It is great to exceed your goals, particularly in a year like 2008.

#1 was very impressive! I too question the usefulness of #3

Best Wishes,

Four Pillars said...

One word - QUESTRADE! :)