I Saved $100 on Electricity Bill

I got my electricity bill in the mail and was really surprised to see how much I saved. I saved a $100 on my hydro bill by doing a few tricks and today I would like to share with you what I did.

Before I get down to more details, let me tell you what it takes to save on electricity. You need to isolate your place so the cold air doesn’t come in and the hot air doesn’t come out. That’s the basic rule.

Here’s what I did.

I isolated my windows and my patio door and reduced hot water consumption.

Trick #1

Portfolio Value Update - January 2019

Portfolio Value
Everybody is aware that January was a pretty good month so I won’t be wasting your time sugar-coating it how good it was. On January 31, 2019 my investment portfolio was valued at $65,596. The value increased by $5,470 from previous month. This was the best monthly increase of all times. Main reason for the increase – stocks went up. To be honest, I did not expect the market to rebound so fast.

Dividends received in January 2019: $320.40
Dividends received in January 2018: $240.83
Year-Over-Year Dividend Growth: $79.57 or 33%
Year-To-Date Dividend Income: $320.40

One of the activities that I enjoy is to sit down with my cup of coffee and calculate all the dividends that I received during the month. This is the third month in a row that I received over $300. All dividends are reinvested into dividend paying stocks.

My Investment City

Hey guys! I used this picture from the game called SimCity and I tried to apply all of my investments on the map. My investment philosophy is very simple. I invest in businesses that people use everyday. As years go by, my investments will grow and so is the city.

Here is My Investment City. And for the fun of it, I'm challenging you to do the same. Pick a downtown picture that you like, plug in your investment companies, and post it on your blog. This will take some time, but it's fun to see all your investments laid out on the map.

3 Dividend Raises (QSR, CT, FN)

Restaurant Brands International (TSE:QSR) announced a dividend increase of 5 cents per share and the stock went up by $6. I’m not sure why the market is so excited about this increase. This increase was expected and it should have been already reflected in the share price. The dividend increase represents 11.11 percent. I have 11 shares of QSR, meaning my yearly dividend income will be increased by $2.75 if calculated in Canadian currency.

The company just paid a quarterly dividend in January, consequently the increase will be reflected in April’s payout.

Apart from QSR dividend increase, CT REIT (TSE:CRT.UN.TO) and First National (TSE:FN.TO) also raised their dividends by 3.97% and 2.75% respectively. With 220 shares of CT and 85 shares of FN in my portfolio, my yearly dividend income will be increased by $6.36 and $4.32.

Combined dividend increases will add $13.43 per year of free cash flow. That equals to $275 of fresh capital that I did not have to invest to increase my income. That's the power of compound growth!

These increases are small, but as long as I get them, they will help me reach my 2019 dividend goals.

Let me know if you own any of the stocks that I mentioned above. It’s time to celebrate!

February 2019 Stocks Consideration

So far the month of January of 2019 was the exact opposite of December 2018. This is a perfect “V” shape rebound. Anybody who does swing trading are laughing all the way to the bank. It’s certainly will be harder to pick good quality stocks after a recent bull run. Some stocks are up 10% or more within a month. Great deals go fast! 

Anyway, prior to market rebound, bank and energy stocks were trading at historically low valuations. I made a buy list of what I wanted to buy in 2019. The list is not big, but these are the companies that I still don’t have in my portfolio – TD, BNS, BMO, ENB, BIP.UN, and BEP.UN

All of those stocks are lot higher now.

Toronto Dominion Bank (TD) is up by 9% from $66 to $72 per share.

Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS) is up by 10.6% from $66 to $73 per share.

Bank of Montreal (BMO) is up by 11.6% from $86 to $96 per share.

Enbridge (ENB) is up by 17.5% from $40 to $47 per share.

Brookfield Infrastructure (BIP/UN) is up by 13.3% from $45 to $51 per share.

Brookfield Renewables (BEP/UB) is up by 8.8% from $34 to $37 per share.

Some stocks are still good deals but not great deals. Hopefully there will be a little correction in February to buy these stocks cheaper.

Meanwhile, looking at my portfolio, I identified a few lagging positions that did not appreciate as much. I have small positions in Freehold Royalties, Artis, and Cominar.

Freehold Royalties leases land to operators and collect royalties in return. It’s an interesting business because they earn money regardless of how the oil price is doing. There are less risk involved compared to drillers. I own 25 shares of FRU and my average cost is $14.21. Right now the shares are trading below $9 and it would be a great opportunity for me to average down on my cost basis. I can potentially reduce my average to $10. 

Artis REIT is another small position that I have. I have 70 shares and my cost average cost is $13.76 per share. These days, Artis is trading at around $10. I have a chance to double my position and lower my cost average to $12. 

Cominar is one of my favorite undervalued REIT. I only have 70 shares of Cominar and my average cost is $18.08 per share. I particularly favor the company for its industrial and retail properties. At the moment, Cominar is trading at $12 per share. I can double my investment in Cominar and reduce my cost average to $15 per share.

So these are the three potential companies that I can average down in February if bank and energy stocks don’t pull back.