Category Archives: General

How I plan for financial independence!

Ar you planning for Financial Independence? Here's how I am planning for it after a chat with my that about money and financial independenceDo you have an idea for how long you are willing to work before retiring? Are you willing to sell your time for money for most of your life?  Have you thought when you will reach financial independence? This topic came up last week when I was having a chat with my dad. I admitted to my old man that I enjoy my job but it is stressful and I deal with a lot of traffic during my commute. I can’t see myself doing this for another 40 years before being able to slow my life down enough to spend time with my family.

Because of my stressful career, I’m not able to focus on hobbies that I enjoy. These are mainly blogging and tinkering with small electronic projects. There just isn’t enough time to wind down, relax, spend time with my family, and enjoy my hobbies. My dad, now in his early fifties, completely agreed, saying that he doesn’t want to work for another fifteen years either. He’s actively trying to bank money to retire early so that he can quit his job might work better here and focus on the projects that he enjoys doing.

Are you planning to slow down before 65?

In my opinion, we live in a world that moves too fast. We work hard, constantly on the go, and so we should be retiring earlier than the member(s) of previous generations. Where I’m from, most of those people had industrial jobs. There were no emails or cell phones. They got up every morning, did their job, and went home. There was a limited amount of worrying about work. You punched the clock and checked your work issues at the door and went home to relax with your family. Those days are long gone. With modern technological advancements, your employer can and does contact you after you’ve left work for the day. Emails, text messages, phone calls. There are half a dozen ways for your boss to contact you and make you feel obligated to reply or answer immediately. I want and need that after work relaxation. I don’t want to talk to my boss during dinner. And you know what? I shouldn’t have to.

I work in IT tech. Everything that I do while at work has to be done quickly and I’m constantly having to update my skillset and even retrain myself on a monthly basis. I enjoy learning new things but eventually, I’m going to reach the age where I’m going to be overwhelmed to the point where I won’t be able to maintain my current speed of learning and training. On top of that, my pension plan frequently changes. As of the last negotiation, I need to work until 58 before retiring. It’s four more years than what I was supposed to work. I feel like the constant changes to my pension make for an unstable retirement plan. I want and need stability. This is why I’m investing. My goal is to invest to the point where a substantial part of my income is coming from dividends. I want to wake up in the morning and be there for my kid as opposed to worrying about packing a lunch, getting dressed, and dealing with an hour commute.

Here’s is my investment plan for financial independence!

I’m looking to put 50% in ZSP, 25% ZDV, 15% FIE and 10% ZRE. I’m looking to invest 10% of my money into a non-North American ETF but still doing some research. This will bring FIE and ZDV down by 5% each. This is for my core long-term investment plan.

Buying and selling stocks is addicting and a portion of my portfolio will continue to have stocks in it. Sure, it’s pretty much the same as buying a weekly lotto ticket, but I have intentionally allocated some cash into a “fun stock money” section of my portfolio. I personally do not recommend this idea and in my mind, most of it has been written off as a loss. Buying risky stocks is part of the fun of investing and I know that if I don’t allow myself at least a little bit of fun, I’ll never stick to my ETF plan.

Why buying ETF?

Also, since my ETF are free to buy, I can buy regularly without my profits being eaten by the fees. Personally, I feel safer in long term with them. These investments are my plan to generate monthly revenue. Working is exchanging your time for money and my investment will give me money without having to exchange my time for the same money. This is the best way I could see to slow down a bit and make my choice base on my wants and not my money needs.

In the end, my hope is that these investments will bring me to financial independence and I can start making decisions based on what I want to do with my life and how I want to live it. I can live off of $3000 a month after tax. Once I’m able to live the way I want, I would like to travel, focus on writing for my blog, and maybe even starting my own business.

Readers: Are you looking for a path to financial independence?

By the way, you know that you could get your own blog with Bluehost? For $3.95/month, you will have everything you need to start sharing your own experience on your own blog. If you need help to get started, you can look at my How to host your own blog post.

Warning: This post contains affiliate links

 

Some of my thoughts about budgeting!

Some of my thoughts about budgetingAre you budgeting ? Your budget is your eye on your finance. Budgeting help you to see where’s your money is coming from and where’s it’s going out. This should be your first step to see how your  personal finance are doing and the first step if you are trying to get back on the right track from spending too much. If you want to save more money it will help you to know where’s you are spending too much.

Budget like you want to do it

I think everyone should make a budget, but you should budget the way you like to do. There’s not only one way to do a budget. Some are budgeting for a month or year or some like me are budgeting only the money I have in my possession and wait until I receive more money to budget it. Find what method is the best for you. You can use a software, spreadsheet, web base budgeting tools, pen and paper. You can try multiple method and technique to find the one that you will stick with it for a long time no matter what others are saying. Personally, I am using YNAB and I love it, but the software is only for budgeting money you have so if it’s not your budget style don’t use it.

Budget are flexible

A budget is modifiable. Unlike a lot of persons think, a budget should always be modified to represent what you are doing. You’ve got more money ? You’ve got an unexpected expense ? Don’t panic and modify your budget to make it represent what you need to do with your money. In that way, you will have a true budget that represent your real situation and you will continue to budget since you will not feel under pressure from seeing a budget that’s not your reality.

You should budget your debt repayment first and your saving so in that way your debt get paid without being late and you pay yourself first as describe in this old post. This will save you some interest and late fee and your saving will growth before you have spent that money for fun or something you don’t need.

Analyze your old budget

Every couple months you should look back at your old budget and see if you can cut somewhere to save more. The budget will help you to see if you are spending too much on dining out or on some activity. This is your choice where you save money. If you find the amount reasonable and you couldn’t live without doing the activity just keep it and look somewhere else to cut. This way you will keep having fun and keep using the budget without saying that it dictate your life too much.

Budgeting can be overwhelming

If you find budgeting is overwhelming, you can stop doing it for a little time and start back latter. I did that when my kid was born and I was feeling that I didn’t have time to budget my things, but I’ve found myself spending way too much on things that I didn’t need and stop I’ve stopped investing. Now, I came back to budgeting my money and I know that I will continue to do it since I saw what I did wrong when I didn’t budget like overspending.

Readers: are you budgeting ? If yes, what is your method to do it ? If not, why ?

Some of my financial mistake

Financial MistakeEverybody do some mistake in their life. There are people who will admit them and others that will never admit them and make these mistakes again and again. I am one of the first kind so yes I’ve made mistakes in my investment and in my life, but I learned from them. This post will focus on the investment mistake since I have already posted about some of my life mistake I’ve made like the post about wasting money drinking and eating out.

Not following my investment plan

First of all, my first mistake was not following my investment plan. In 2016, I’ve started a Canadian Couch potato plan and shifted it to a dividends investing to a penny stock investment. This is way too much change for a year and I was trying to get rich quick and this almost never happens. So now, I am back to the dividends investing and I will stick to that.

Emotion on penny stock

I’ve lost most of my money with bad call in penny stock mixed with some emotional call like “buy more it will go up, it can’t go down …”. These were risky and I took 500$ to 25$ in less than 3 weeks. I can say that I felt in love with it at the beginning and kept buying shares. One of the investment rules in penny stocks is to never fall in love with a stock.

Invested in a company without a product

After that, I’ve heard about Titan Medical Inc and thought that seems to be a great company with a great future product. However, this company didn’t have any income and were developing a medical robot. Their road map changed and they needed more money so they made some share offering in the market and the price dropped from 1.20 to 0.50. I’ve invested some amount all between these prices. So now my 780 investment have a market value of around 500. I kept them since I already consider this money as lost and they made some change in the company that can bring a better road map or selling a product or being bought. If that happen it going to make some extra money for me else I’ve already considered a lost.

Market research

I’ve also invested in some electronic parts to sell on my own store and on eBay. The mistake is that it’s a niche where most of the user are ready to wait a month to get their parts from China. So I’m kind of stuck with these parts, but I still keep trying to sell them on eBay and if someones need it, they will have to pay a little more than China. I didn’t made a market research before importing some parts. I just looked at eBay and said “hey other seller from Canada charge way more than China, I could make money with that”. I should have looked at how much were already sold and not just at the price of the item. The profit margin is high, but if I’m stuck with these parts for months, it’s not the best since its money sleeping in my basement. At least, I can claim these parts and import fee as a business expense since I register my enterprise and that I’m still trying to sell them.

To resume my mistakes were that I didn’t follow my investment plan, I was too emotional on my penny stock, I invested in a company without product since I learned about it from co-worker and I didn’t do a market research before investing in some product to sell.

Readers: Did you made some mistake on your investment ?

 

Weekend reading – Drip, Missteps, Continuous investment, Snowball

This is my first 2017 weekend reading edition. Here’s my favorite articles from the last week that I had the time to read :

Readers : Have I missed a good article this week ?

Net Worth Nov 2016 Update : $13,221.39 (-$370.04 -2.72%)

Assets Jul-16 Nov-16 Monthly Change
Checking $1,033.58 $185.62 -82.04%
Saving $653.58 $943.55 44.37%
TSFA Investment $1,280.99 $503.28 -60.71%
RRSP Investment $0.00 $0.00 0.00%
House $215,000.00 $215,000.00 0.00%
Car $17,000.00 $15,000.00 -11.76%
Liability      
Mortgage $205,866.04 $203,839.93 -0.98%
Car loan at 0% $13,643.26 $12,328.66 -9.64%
Credit Card $1,867.42 $2,242.47 20.08%
NETWORTH $13,591.43 $13,221.39 -2.72%

First I will have to say that I am sorry for being away from the blog in the last couple months. Life with a baby and all our project were a little bit overwhelming.

I invested a lot of time in a side buisiness website that doesn’t seems to start selling. I can do a nice profit on the stock I’m selling but it’s maybe a too small niche.

For my net worth, as you can see I’ve lost money in the last couple months. My wife was at 50% of her salary since it’s the end of her parental leave and we had to invest some money on the house.

This is a quick update on my net worth and I will try to keep you updated more often. Next update gonna be my portfolio.

How to host your blog on shared hosting

I am not using this method to host my blog, but I have more computer skill than most of the people. I recommended using this method if you want to host a blog without any technical problem or any technical knowledge.

Shared web hosting service refers to a web hosting service where many websites reside on one web server which is administered by the web hosting company. I recommend using Bluehost, it easy to start your on blog on it.

1. Register to Bluehost

Click here to start registering with Bluehost to host your blog.

Click on the “get started now” green button to go to the plan selection.

step 1.1

Once you are on the plan selection section, you have three possibilities. Since you are starting a blog, I recommend using the basic plan. Click on “Select” on the plan you want.step 1.2

Now you have to choose the domain name you want to use and click “next”.step 1.3

For the creation of your account, you have to enter your information.step 1.4

Now you have to select the plan length you want. I recommend 36 months since you will save on long-term and a blog can take couple month to take off and this way you will not stop at the beginning of your blog. But at the end, you choose what you want.  Also, personally I will not take any of their options.step 1.5

Next step is to add your credit card information to pay your plan and click on submit.step 1.6

2. Installing WordPress on your Bluehost hosting

Step 1: This step is really easy. Go to your cPanel (you received the link in your email), scroll to the “MOJO Marketplace” section and choose the “One-Click Installs” button. Click on the WordPress icon in the Blogs section.

mojo-marketplace

Step 2: This will open the installation window. Click on the green “Start” button that will start the WordPress installation process.

Screen-Shot-2014-01-03-at-11.08.47-AM

Step 3: Choose where you want to install WordPress. This can be any domain on your account. Next, click on “Check Domain,” which will make sure the domain is assigned and pointing to your account. You may get a warning that you are overwriting files, but as long as you don’t have another website built yet, you can check the box and continue.

mojo-wordpress-check-domain

Step 4: Show Advanced Options. This section allows you to set up your own username and password for your WordPress install. IT is recommended to use a different username than “admin” and a very strong password. Make sure that the “Automatically create a new database for this installation” box is checked unless you have a database already set up that you want to use.

Step 5: After you’ve read the terms and conditions, check the box indicating that you’ve done so, then click “Install Now.”

mojo-wordpress-install

Step 6: Now you’ll see the progress page, which will show you how far along the installation is. Once WordPress is fully installed, it will provide you with your site URL, the admin login URL, your username, and password. You will get a copy of this information, except your password, in your email as well. Make sure to keep it in a safe place.

mojo-wordpress-install-progress

Now you can log into your WordPress site by going to the admin login URL. Enter your username and password, then click “Log In.” This will take you to your WordPress dashboard. From here, you can control everything to do with your WordPress site, such as creating pages, writing posts, and changing the appearance.

 

Have fun on your own blog 🙂

 

Warning: Links in this post are reference link so I get something when you are using it.

Have you thought about everything before buying your first house ?

Before stopping renting your place, have you thought about everything before buying your first house? We all know the closing fee of becoming an owner, the insurance cost that will be higher and the mortgage payment.  But they are not the only expenses of your first house.

First, you have to think that you need to keep your house in shape. You need to work on it and that cost some money. If you do it yourself you will need new tools to do it and parts or if you don’t do it you will pay someone to do it. Depending on the size of the house you need to do each room every couple year.

Second, you will need some basic utility like lawn mower, shovel for winter and summer.

Third, the emergency funds need to be bigger since a problem can happen in the house and you need to repair it NOW.

Fourth, don’t think you have seen everything at the visit and the inspection. There are some kinds of stuff like the floor you though was OK, but it‘s scratched. You will see all the little problems and big one once you own it. Some will bother you, but nobody will see them.

These are some of the things I thought before buying my house, but I didn’t thought they will be so high expense. For some person, the mortgage payment, will be the same as the rent, but the other fee will not permit them to live in a house. So sometime, renting is not throwing away your money. It can permit you to continue to live well and save some money.

Readers : have you had some unexpected expenses you didn’t think with your first home ?

Pay yourself first

You want to growth your saving fast ? You need to pay yourself first before paying others !Here’s my little experience on why you should pay yourself first. Couples months ago I thought I was paying myself first, but instead, I was budgeting everything at first and kept what left to add to my saving or investment account.

This is the wrong way to do it. With this method, I was over budgeting in a lot of fun category like dining out and was not limiting myself to only what I needed. After couples month, I finished with nothing left to save and I though that would be impossible to cut anything.

Pay yourself first

After seeing that, I started paying myself first and budgeting everything else with what I was left with. This way I lowered my dining out category and my fun money category. These categories became so big that I thought I had the minimum in it, but I had like three times what I really needed. This is one of the reasons why you should pay yourself first and budget after. If you budget before, you only keep growing your spending category and you will be left with nothing to save after couple. It’s easier to budget once the saving is done.

Start slowly

To start paying myself first, I started with a 10$ saving by week and now I am saving between 50$ to 100$ by week. I started with a small amount to be able to do it since I thought I couldn’t cut anything more. And every couple week, I put more than what I’ve put couple weeks ago and lowered my spending slowly. Going slow made myself be comfortable with the fact that I lower my spending and I didn’t really see the difference with the week before. In this way, I didn’t stop to save after a couples weeks like all my past years.

These are my trick I used to save more. Readers, are you paying yourself first?

New Buy : Titan medical inc – TMD.to

Today, I’ve bought 76 stocks of Titan Medical Inc (TMD.TO) at 1.09$ each. I readed about this company and it seems to be promising. They are in the surgeon controled robotic sector, which seems a promising sector in my eye. Also, TMD.TO will make a demo the 16-17 march at a conference in the medical domain so this could help the company to get more visibility.

I was looking to get some risky stock in my portfolio to make it grow and get a better return. I needed to add some risky stock to get this category in my portfolio. Also these risky action, I consider it as day to day trading and some fun money.

Ps : I will post every new stock I buy or sell in the blog.