Saturday, October 31, 2015

September 2015 Expenses and Savings

Income & Expenses
September the bills from the birth of our child came rolling in.  Even as I write this I am still getting bills from the hospital in October.  Even though I saved to be able to pay the deductible I got lost in the rest of the explanation of my medical benefits.  Basically I learned HSA's suck.  Especially the ones with a high deductible.

When I switched jobs I looked at the regular health insurance where you do a copay and the insurance company covers the rest.  I added up the higher monthly costs for those and the HSA (monthly cost plus the $5500 deductible.)  The HSA was $1000 cheaper per year and my company puts up to $1600 into the HSA if you get a physical and do some other online activities to learn about better health.

Sounds good right?  Well even after you pay the $5500 out of pocket (I saved for that) you still have to pay %20 of anything on top of that up to $12,000.  What??  Yeah that is crazy.  Basically I am footing most of the bill for anything and paying the insurance company monthly on top of that.  I think HAS's work if you're in good health and you can accumulate money in it and invest.




Now looking at my expenses we can see the big yellow blob that was so big Excel decided not to label it.  On top of my usual mandatory expenses was a large chunk of healthcare costs.  Everything else was pretty much the same. 

Two items continue to be over budget though.  Childcare (clothes, diapers, etc.) was $200 and my wants category.  I found with tiredness comes lack of energy to cook dinner after a full day of work.  I find myself bringing home takeout and pizza at least once a week and buying more frozen prepared meals at the grocery store.  I don't get home until 6:30 PM most work nights so I need something fast before the kids have to get ready for school and in bed.  I do try to do a big meal on Sunday so I can have leftovers at least once during the week.  So that helps some. 

Savings & Summary




This month was a big drop in my savings rate.  Most of it was planned for and I will do better healthcare planning next year knowing what I know now about my HSA.  I remember my first kid was $500 dollar copay.  My last kid has so far cost me $7000+.  Things certainly have changed in 15 years!  I am appreciative that I have a job and can afford insurance.  I definitely sympathize with those who do not have any or poor health insurance.  This is a system that definitely needs fixing.  Either that or I am moving to Canada. :-)

Happy saving,

DFG

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

September 2015 Dividends


Another great month of not working for money (well at least from dividends collected.)  I still had to go to work to earn a living for the family and generate additional cash to invest on dividend growth stocks.

The stocks listed below are ones that deposited money into my account or were reinvested during this month.  I do not count dividends I having received yet (kinda like stock, not worth much until you sell them.)



Company
Held In
Dividend Paid (Qtr)
Amount Received
Shares of life purchased
September
CVX
IRA
1.07
9.83
0.1312
6th straight quarter without an increase!
MSFT
IRA
0.31
7.69
0.1785

TGT
IRA
0.56
9.87
0.1279
Yeah 7.6% increase!
ED
IRA
0.65
51.46
0.8215

ORI
IRA
0.185
19.64
1.2438

MCD
IRA
0.85
9.47
0.0964

RIG
IRA
Who cares ->
8.57

Sold/last dividend
MCY
IRA
0.618
65.43
1.2752

UHT
IRA
0.64
68.44
1.4525

COP
Taxable
0.74
9.08

1.3% increase
IBM
Taxable
1.3
5.27


VNR
Taxable
0.118
0.27


HRZN
Taxable
0.115
6.99


NUS
Taxable
0.35
8.15


CTL
Taxable
0.54
9.3

No increase since 2013, ha why did I buy this?
FTR
Taxable
0.105
11.17

At least they had an increase in 2014
HMN
Taxable
0.25
8.74



I realize I still have some stocks that should never have been purchased in the first place (VNR, HRZN, CTL and FTR to name a few from this month.)  Either they haven't cut their dividend yet or the cost to sell them is more than they are worth.  Until I dispose of them I am more than happy to continue to collect money from them while I spend my time with the baby and the rest of my family.

My YOY dividend income took another nose dive.  This is what happens when you don't do your research and buy companies with high yields.  Sure I collected the dividends for a year or so but once they cut or stopped it completely I lost that income and the stock took a big hit.  All in all I lost money on those bets and have since learned a big lesson. 

Some questions I now ask myself like many other DGI are:

Is the dividend sustainable?
Do they have a track record of increasing the dividend for more than one economic cycle?
Is earnings increasing enough so that the dividend can also increase?

Any good increases for you this month?

Happy dividend collecting,
DFG