The Investment Road to Freedom

April 28th, 2014 at 3:54 pm

Loyal3 – Recent Buys

I’ve been using Loyal3 quite a lot this month for the no fee commission trades. Add in the rewards that I earn from buying stocks with my credit card and it is a good way for the small balance investor!

Apple (AAPL) $165 invested for 0.3039 shares.

I had mentioned Apple in a previous post and I’m happy to add these partial shares to my portfolio. With the recent news of a dividend increase and 7:1 split the 0.3688 shares I now own will quickly grow.

Disney (DIS) $80 invested for 1.0165 shares.

This is a first time involvement in Disney stock. It’s another company I love and it has a fantastic history. They pay their dividend once a year in December and I look forward to making Disney a big part of my future. I’ll be going to one of their resorts later this year.

Wal-Mart (WMT) $50 invested for ? shares.

Another first time stock trade this time with the retail giant Wal-Mart. This transaction is still pending so I don’t know how many shares it is for yet. I’ve only been in a Wal-Mart store like 3 times in my life but I’m happy to have them in my portfolio.

 

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April 2nd, 2014 at 8:34 pm

March 2014 – Month In Review

March is normally a month that involves saving for our tax bill the following month and this was no different. We ended up owing $1400+ and much of February and March was spent collecting money together. March was also a month I came across Loyal3 – a commission free broker and I quickly signed up to be a part of that. The current goal of that account is to create a position in Apple though there are other companies that I’m also looking at for this account with Disney and Pepsi the others.

New Purchases: $35

Brought $35 of Apple (AAPL) in my Loyal3 account. This was spread over two trades – 0.0183 shares at $547.67 and 0.0466 shares at $536.96. This added $0.57 to my annual dividend payments.

Sales: None.

Option Trades: None

Dividends: $41.20

  • Ford (F) – $25
  • McDonald’s (MCD) – $16.20

This is my highest month ever for dividends beating December by $2.76!

Deposits: $500.82

Better than last month but way below what I expect. Out of this $500.82, $25.82 went to my 401K, $320 to my Roth IRA, $45 went to my taxable account, $25 went to Lending Club and $85 to Loyal3. Total deposits for the year stand at $1478.17 or an average of $492.72 per month. My goal is $1000 so I need to really pick this up.

 

Investment Road to Freedom fund value:

The fund value stands at $27337.86. +2.10%

The breakdown of the individual accounts show

  • 401k = $11891.25 +0.30%
  • IRA = $5440.57 +8.27%
  • Taxable = $7685.97 +2.06%
  • Other = $1845.80 -7.12%
  • EF = $142.28 +0.40%
  • Lending Club = $247.17 +5.00%
  • Loyal3 = $84.82

Credit Card Debt: $3289.01 -4.27%

I need to work on lowering this.

Car Loan: $30616.38 -1.33%

New Toyota Tundra purchased on Memorial day. I’m looking forward to paying this down.

Mortgage: $174688.28 -0.13%

Our monthly payment is $1210.

Income from Pay: $3892.94

This is my take home amount.

Net-worth: $75989 +8.56%

Nice big increase from last month. At this rate I will easily reach my goal of $85k.

Summary:

It’s been a tough few months but I hope to gain some speed over the coming months. Highlights this month was the dividend income with my best month so far. With the addition of my Loyal3 account I expect to really increase my dividend payments. I’ve been thinking of moving some money around and just paying that credit card off. April I’m going to continue to make Loyal3 buys and maybe look to put some of my cash to use. In my IRA I have $1800 and in my taxable account I have $3300 in cash.

Hope everyone had a great month!

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March 26th, 2014 at 3:42 pm

Loyal3 – A First Step!

While I don’t recall which website I first read about Loyal3 I do recall my reaction to the concept – a commission free broker? Can’t be true! A quick Google search found a forum thread on Mr. Money Mustache and after working my way through that I thought I have to look into this.

  • Buy stock for Free
  • Sell stock for Free
  • Transfer account for Free
  • Use a credit card to purchase stocks and pay no fee. Those credit card rewards…

The above had my attention but I’m not going to write a review about Loyal3. Check out posts by Dividend Growth Investor and WriteYourOwnReality for more info.

So this week I opened a Loyal3 account and took my Wells Fargo Credit Card and made a test transaction.

  • On 3/23 I used my CC to buy $10 of Apple (AAPL). At the time AAPL was at $539.19 though I knew from reading the forums this would not be the price it went through at.
  • On 3/26 my transaction posted and I had purchased 0.0183 shares of Apple at $547.67

I checked my credit card account and I had not been charged a fee. Now 0.0183 shares of AAPL is not much but I’m happy with Loyal3 and over the coming weeks and months I’m going to slowly increase my position in Apple. I love this company. We have two iPhones and an iPad. I’m almost 37 years old and I’m pretty confident Apple will still be a huge company when I’m in my 60’s. Now thanks to Loyal3 I can own them!

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March 12th, 2014 at 8:10 pm

2014 Goals

in: Goals

Ok these are a little late as I have been on a bit of a blogging break lately. 2013 was a big year in which I reached my total fund target of $25,000. It was super close as I only beat it by 6 dollars!

  • Reach $40,000 total fund value

I ended 2013 at $25,006.21 which was a great feeling to have made my goal. This year I’m setting the bar $15k higher. I’ll be 37 next month and these are the years I need to work hard at saving and getting results. Out all my goals I will be most disappointed if I don’t meet this one.

  • Receive $432 or 10% ROI income in Roth IRA

Pretty simple one. I started the year with $4324 in my Roth IRA. This goal will be challenging as the funds in this account are low and my means of income is covered calls, dividends, capital gains and interest.

  • Receive $728 or 10% ROI income in Taxable Account

Same as the Roth IRA though I also do cash secured puts in this account. I started the year with $7284.

  • Receive $1000 in credit card rewards

I like this one as I get rewarded for spending money on everyday items. I have one card that carries a balance with zero interest. I probably should just get this one paid off to get it out of the way. My other cards which I use for everyday use are Amex Starwood, Amex Blue Cash Preferred, Amex Costco and Wells Fargo Visa. These 4 cards never have a balance. The Starwood card has a $65 annual fee, the blue cash preferred a $75 fee and the Costco one comes free with my Costco membership. The Blue cash preferred gets me 6% back at the grocery store and I also use it to buy Petsmart, Amazon and other gift cards so I get 6% on those. Last year I made $828 in rewards.

  • Receive $4 a month interest in Lending Club

I opened my Lending Club account last April and I will admit I was not overly confident. I decided to put $25 a month to it and would see how it goes. So far I’m happy. Last month I made a whopping $1.68 in interest so have quite a bit to go to get to $4 a month.

  • Pay off credit cards ($3435 as of March 2014)

Enough said on this one

  • Save $10,000 for the year

Last year I failed in my goal of saving $12000 for the year as I only reached $9486.14. This year I’m lowering my goal to what I think is an achievable $10k.

  • Reach $85,000 net-worth

If the housing market stays strong I think I can reach this.

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March 11th, 2014 at 8:32 pm

February 2014 – Month In Review

It’s been a while since I posted anything and I’m trying to change that and keep my blog more up to date. Anyway let’s look at last month.

New Purchases: None.

Sales: None.

Option Trades: $30.01

Coca-Cola (KO) – BTC Mar2014 $40 put at $2.90 x 100. This cost me $304.99 after commission. This is in my Taxable account.
Coca-Cola (KO) – STO Aug2014 $40 put at $3.50 x 100. This earned me $335.00 after commission. This is in my Taxable account.

Total option income for 2014 stands at $87.02.

Dividends: None

Total dividends for 2013 stand at $0

Deposits: $327.35

Terrible month! Spent the month saving to pay our taxes which was $1400. Out of this $327.35, $232.35 went to my 401K, $65 to my Roth IRA and $20 went to my taxable account. Total deposits for the year stand at $977.35 or an average of $488.68 per month. My goal is $1000 so I need to really pick this up.

Investment Road to Freedom fund value:

The fund value stands at $26776.03.

The breakdown of the individual accounts show

  • 401k = $11885
  • IRA = $5025
  • Taxable = $7530
  • Other = $1987
  • EF = $141
  • Lending Club = $235

Credit Card Debt: $3435

I need to work on lowering this.

Car Loan: $31030

New Toyota Tundra purchased on Memorial day. I’m looking forward to paying this down.

Mortgage: $174909

Our monthly payment is $1210. We recently refinanced to remove MIP .

Income from Pay: $3963

This is my take home amount.

Income from Credit Card Rewards: $101.96

This is from my Amex Costco card. This cash back reward is issued every February. I hope to break the $1000 in credit card rewards this year.

Net-worth: $69996

At 36 years of age I would have liked to have thought I was worth more than this but when I look back a year ago my net-worth was $28,240. That is a 148% increase!

Summary:

Like I said at the top of this page I aim to update my blog more often. Tomorrow I will post my 2014 goals (a little late I know!) February was a tough month what with saving for taxes. Hope to make up some ground in March

 

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August 28th, 2013 at 10:02 am

Coca-Cola – BTC and STO

Quick Option trade to report from yesterday. I brought to close my Sept2013 $40 strike price put for $2.28 which after commissions cost me $242.98. Every time I buy back an option I want to make sure I have made a profit so I immediately sold a Jan2014 $40 put for $3.06 which after commission earned me $291.01. So this created a net credit for $48.01. This is in my taxable account

Now why did I do this? My original Sept2013 put still had some time left and the stock which is at $38.44 could easily rise back over $40. Well this decision was not driven by the market. No this was driven by my HVAC unit dying over the weekend and me needing $6k for a new one! So I’m basically moving money around the best I can trying to cover those costs. More updates to come on my monthly review.

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August 4th, 2013 at 3:40 pm

July 2013 – Month in Review

My June 2013 month in review had me fall short of reaching a portfolio of $20k but I knew this would be the month to break that barrier. The combination of new deposits, dividend and option income has helped me grow The Investment Road to Freedom fund and I feel like I am gaining momentum. Lets take a look at the month

New Purchases: None.

Sales: None.

Option Trades: $57.01

Coca-Cola (KO) – STO Sept2013 $40 put at $0.72 x 100. This earned me $57.01 after commission. This is in my Taxable account.

Total option income for 2013 stands at $123.16.

Option Trade Expiration Week:

Coca-Cola (KO) – STO JUN2013 $39 put – Expired.

Dividends: $2.24

  • Coca-Cola (KO) – $2.24

Total dividends for 2013 stand at $54.22.

Deposits: $709.80

Out of this figure $309.80 went to my 401K and$400 went to my taxable account. Total deposits for the year stand at $6429.52 or an average of $918.50 per month. My goal is $1000.

Investment Road to Freedom fund value:

The fund value stands at $20892.92 which is up 5.77% from the previous month or an increase of $1139.11.

The breakdown of the individual accounts show

  • 401k = $9607 +6.34%
  • IRA = $3257 +1.37%
  • Taxable = $5717 +8.98%
  • Other = $1753 +3.00%
  • EF = $556 +0.06%

Total Investment Income for 2013 from dividend, options and realized capital gains income: $448.06

Credit Card Debt: $4612.93 -2.77%

I need to work on lowering this.

Loan for Sofa: $73.03 -87.69%

We purchased a new sofa back in September with 12 months free interest. My last payment of $73.03 is pending and this will be paid off probably tomorrow.

Car Loan: $34087.46 -1.44%

New Toyota Tundra purchased on Memorial day. I’m looking forward to paying this down.

Mortgage: $169041 -0.28%

Our monthly payment is $1391. We are currently looking at refinancing so we can remove MIP .

Income from Pay: $3692.08

This is my take home amount.

Income from Credit Card Rewards: $75

$50 is from my American Express card and $25 from FNBO Credit card. I have earned $578.75 in credit card rewards this year.

Net-worth: $28252 +175.71%

Huge increase this month which is mainly down to the rise in house prices though paying down the sofa by $500 certainly helped. Each car payment increases my net-worth by $500 each time as well.

Lending Club:

I’m not including this in my Fund value. I have $100 invested so far in LC across 4 notes. I have just deposited another $25. I have received 8 payments so far – 7 have been completed on-time and 1 in the grace period. These 8 payments have totaled $5.84. Of this $3.80 is principal and $2.04 is interest and I have paid $0.08 in fees. I am looking to invest $25 every month until the end of 2014. At that point I will re-evaluate my view of the Lending Club.

Summary:

Really great month! I was very happy to break the $20k mark for portfolio value. My 2013 goal is $25k  and I think I have a good chance of reaching that. My net-worth took a huge jump due to rising home prices and now with with my equity level where it is I can refi to remove the MIP! Hope everyone had a great month!

 

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