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Friday, December 18, 2015

Goals for 2016

With a week to go before Christmas, I think it is a good time to set new goals for DivGro for 2016!

2015 has been a busy year for DivGro and I've achieved some challenging goals. I increased projected annual dividend income from $4,900 to about $8,000, some $500 above my 2015 goal. Also, 2015 dividend income stands at $7,700, which easily beats my goal of $6,000 for the year.

I'm on track to achieve several of the other goals I set for 2015, which is great news! Although I'll miss out on a couple of my goals, I consider that as inspiration to try harder next year. Of course, if you easily achieve all the goal you've set, perhaps they were not challenging enough!

Before listing my 2016 goals, I'd like to state some assumptions and commitments:
  • Reduced recurring investments of $2,000 per month ($24,000 for 2016).
  • Continue to reinvest dividends, on average at least $800 per month (at least $9,600 in 2016).
  • Deposit premium article income from Seeking Alpha monthly.
  • Deposit "passive" income earned via Google Adsense biannually.
  • Assume initial yield on cost (YoC) averaging 4% and annual dividend increases of 7%.
Here are my 2016 goals:

1. Increase projected annual dividend income to $12,000

DivGro's projected annual dividend income (PADI) is about $8,000, which is $500 above my 2015 goal of $7,500. I'm still transferring stocks from my Scottrade account to DivGro, which should add about $2,000 in additional PADI. Assuming a liberal 7% increase in dividends for existing investments, PADI should grow to $10,700.

New investments totaling $24,000 and reinvested dividends totaling $10,700 should afford an additional $1,388 in PADI (assuming initial YoC averaging 4%).

The total of $12,088 ($10,700 + $1,388) is $88 over the listed 2016 goal.

Although $12,000 does not seem to be a stretching goal, I'm arguing that it is. I'll be selling some stocks I no longer believe should be in my portfolio, which will decrease PADI significantly. In particular, the total reduction could be as much as $1,500!

PADI of $12,000 means that DivGro will generate an average of $1,000 per month starting in 2017, which would be fantastic!

2. Earn $10,800 in dividend income.

My new goal of earning $10,800 in dividend income is an 80% increase over this year's goal of $6,000.

This goal will be very challenging, again because I plan to sell some riskier stocks that will reduce DivGro's dividend income by as much as $1,500.

I'm hoping to make up any shortfall with occasional bonus deposits and with income received from Seeking Alpha and Adsense.

3. Write 120 articles, including 52 premium articles for Seeking Alpha and 8 articles for DivNet.

I'm on track to reach my 2015 goal of writing 104 articles. The new goal implies writing 10 articles per month, which will be quite challenging. My subgoals of writing 52 premium articles for Seeking Alpha and 8 articles for The DIV-Net are stretching goals, too.

So far this year, I've published 40 premium articles at Seeking Alpha and 5 articles at The DIV-Net.

My motivation for publishing articles at Seeking Alpha and The DivNet is to network more actively with other investors focused on dividend growth investing. The wider audience and increased traffic to DivGro is a welcome bonus.

DivGro's page views are approaching 360,000, an average of 10,000 page views a month since I started DivGro in January 2013. In comparison, page views on Seeking Alpha total about 192,000 over the past 12 months, or 16,000 page views a month on average.

4. Hike from Johannesburg to Cape Town and back • Lose one stone 

This year, I attempted to hike a distance equivalent to hiking from San Francisco to Seattle and back. Whether I achieve that goal is still uncertain, but I'm quite close! On the other hand, I easily achieved my goal of climbing the world's tallest building, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, 30 times! That's the equivalent of 4,890 floors...

Unfortunately, my goal of losing 3 stone (19.05 kg or 42 pounds) was a big fail, despite the increased exercise from the other goals.

So, this year, I'm going to have a more modest goal of losing (just) one stone! I'd like to target midyear (1 July) to reach that goal, then try to sustain that weight level throughout the rest of the year. I believe this is a more realistic goal for me, given my lifestyle and age.

To help achieve my weight loss goal, I'm increasing my hiking goal to 2,795 kilometers (1,737 miles), which is the equivalent to hiking from Johannesburg to Cape Town and back. That represents a modest increase of 7% over this year's goal of hiking from San Francisco to Seattle and back.

Why hike from Johannesburg to Cape Town and back? Well, I grew up near Johannesburg and my sister now lives near Cape Town...

Thanks for reading! Are you setting stretching goals for 2016? Feel free to share your goals and to comment on mine! All the best for 2016 and thanks for your support!


  1. Great goals DivGro...good luck with your goal of bring in $10.8K in dividends. Would be a great milestone indeed! One of our goals this coming year will be to join the Seeking Alpha network and contribute premium articles.

    Best of luck accomplishing each and every one of these goals! AFFJ

    1. Thanks, AFFJ -- looking forward to reading your goals. And it would be great to see your articles at Seeking Alpha. Take care and best of luck to you and the family!

  2. Excellent goals and that's awesome to see your goal at just under $11k. Adding another digit is always welcomed! I'm glad that I'll be able to set goals for 2016 although there's still a lot of things in flux for the year. I'll probably be a bit conservative with my estimates for 2016 but if I'm ahead of target by the end of June I'll just bump up the goals. Best of luck exceeding all of these goals!

    1. Thanks, PIP!

      In setting goals, I try to be bold. The assumption is, of course, that things stay more-or-less as they are and I wouldn't need to deal with an unexpected curve ball. If something happens that compromises my goals, I'll try to deal with it in the best way possible. In the past few years with DivGro, I've found that setting really stretching goals drives me to (try to) achieve them.

      Of course, if one lives with some uncertainty, its probably better to set conservative goals and boost them later. I'm looking forward to seeing your goals!


  3. Great goals! What a huge dividend goal increase. That's awesome! I did have a question, which you might may have already addressed in a different blog post. You mentioned that you are transferring some stocks from your Scottrade to DivGro. What exactly do you mean by that? Is that just a distinction that you make for your dividend growth investing stocks or an actual different brokerage account outside of the Scottrades, Schwabs, eTrades, etcs of the world? Thanks!

    I'm looking forward to doing a 2016 goals post soon. The dividend cuts by KMI and KKR sure cut my forward income, but I'm hoping to recover quickly with more available capital to invest throughout 2016.

    1. Hi Scott, thanks for visiting and commenting!

      I'm transferring virtually. I'm not actually moving my stocks from Scottrade to another brokerage. My Scottrade account used to have more speculative stocks. Throughout this year, though, I've sold all of those and ended up retaining only dividend paying stocks. So, now I'll manage those stocks as if they're part of DivGro, using my dividend growth investment strategy. BTW, my DivGro portfolio already is spread between two accounts at FolioInvesting... once is a regular brokerage account, the other is an IRA.

      I hate dividend cuts, so I can imagine how you feel about KMI and KKR. Best of luck recovering from that -- and I look forward to reading about your 2016 goals!

  4. Some great set of goals, FerdiS. Wishing you the best in hitting that magical $12K forward annual income by the end of next year. I cant wait until i hit that number.


    1. Thanks R2R -- $12K is, as you say, a magical number! Its hard to believe that I managed to get to a goal like that in just 3-4 years of dividend growth investing. We have a lot to be thankful for!

      Take care, and I hope to see a goals post from you soon, too!

  5. 5-figures dividend income is amazing. The snowballing effect is really working well for you.

    . 2016 I'm shooting for $6k, which bring exactly $500/month in dividend income. A living wage for a broke college student standard. But even that would be a stretch. It'd require me to invest at least $40k and some serious dividend growth.

    1. Thanks, Vivianne -- its been quite a journey so far! I have lots to be thankful for. $6k seems like a great goal to shoot for. Best of luck with that. I believe in setting stretching goals to help focus all my attention on accomplishing them.

      Take care and thanks for commenting!

  6. DivGro

    You've set nice 2016 goals, I like your dividend income goal for the year - $10,800.for me it is great and I can retire easy with that amount of dividend income.

    Merry Christmas

    Sharon - Divorcedff

    1. Thanks, Sharon -- unfortunately, for where we live, $10,800 in dividend income is not enough to retire with. I'll have to work hard for the next several years to get to a comfortable level. When I started this blog, I had a 10-year goal. I'm only 3 years into it...

  7. Some great goals and congrats on getting this far! I particularly like how specific you've been with the figures and that hike sounds great.

    Good luck and a happy New Year to you and your family.

    1. Thanks, Jenna L -- happy new year to you and your's, too!

      I like to set very specific, measurable goals so I can express progress towards achieving the goals in some way, usually as a percentage. That way, I easily can see where more attention may be needed.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  8. Impressive achievement.. I want to know whether you are are monetizing this blog?? Is it earning good annual income?

    1. Thanks, Dividend Growth Bunny! The only way I'm monetizing this blog (currently) is through Google Adsense. The earnings are not great, less than a dollar a day at this time. I'll need much more traffic to earn "good income"!

      Thanks for visiting!


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