Chatter Around the World – 46

Chatter Around the World is a weekly link update of economics, investing, dividends and personal finance articles that have caught my eye. In these weekly updates, I also capture my blog updates and news related to my holdings.

The Starbucks World Domination

New Blog Posts

Let’s dive into the links that caught my attention this week.

Updates from My Portfolio Holdings

General Reads

Dividend Reads

Dividend Stock Analysis

< All Previous Weekly Links

Have a wonderful weekend.

Cineplex Inc (CGX.TO) Dividend Increase

Cineplex Inc (CGX.TO) announced that it will be raising its dividend by 4.2% from an annual $1.44 per share to $1.50 per share. The dividend increase is effective immediately; and since Cineplex pays its dividends monthly, shareholders will see a hike in dividends starting this month. The new dividend rate results in an annualized yield of 3.74% based on yesterday’s closing price.

Cineplex has increased dividends since it converted from income trust to a corporation in 2011. This marks its 4th consecutive annual increase in dividends. My portfolio consists of 40 shares of Cineplex, which increases my annual dividend raise from $57.60 to $60. My yield-on-cost rises to 4.92%.



We Bought a House!

The search is finally over! We finally bought a house. After a lot of dilly-dallying over a period of months, and trying to figure out if we should buy a house or simply continue renting, we finally made the call to buy and completed this task last week.

We may invariably be buying at the peak of the housing bubble here in Canada as the chart from The Economist illustrates below. But then again, we may not. Nobody knows for certain where we are in the cycle. But for now, money is cheap with interest rates at 1% and prime rate at 3%, and the real estate market is on fire.

The housing market in Ottawa is quite ridiculous, to be frank. Banks and lenders are falling over each other to push money onto borrowers, with the city’s big part of the population working for the government, with secure jobs, secure pensions (for now) and what-not. Unfortunately, this is not true in my case, where I do not have any job security nor pension from my workplace. While shopping, we saw some houses in extremely deplorable conditions with an asking price of over $500K. We couldn’t figure out whether to laugh or get annoyed when we saw two listings of houses with a pathetic picture of the outside and a headline “No internal viewings allowed. Buy for land value only”. And this was not really the best neighborhood in town! That sounds like things are getting out of hand, and we contemplated holding out until the bubble pops, which could happen either now or in a few years. The only consolation is that house prices in Ottawa aren’t as bad as Vancouver or Toronto where average house prices are closer to $1M mark.

Why buy?
Currently, we are renting a one-bedroom apartment in downtown Ottawa, which isn’t big enough for the two of us and no space for us to grow. The flip-side was that we rent a bigger place but between renting and buying, the difference wasn’t much and we decided that in the long run, we want to own a house. We ended up buying a place which fits plenty of our criteria – something well in our budget, relatively close to downtown, big enough for us to grow into (a 3-bed, 2-bath house), good neighborhood, close to one of our jobs (walking distance from my wife’s work), good school district etc.

This purchase obviously affects our investments and readers will notice a drop in our passive income going forward. I have sold off my mutual fund holdings that I intend to use for our down payment, but still need to sell a few more of our investments to cover our down-payment. I intend to sell off most of our existing ETFs and a couple of high income stocks as I want to keep holding the dividend growth stocks. This upcoming selloff could result in a possibility of us missing our target of $4,000 in passive income this year. But we are still happy about the decision – a lot happier than we ever anticipated.

The closing date is in July and we can’t wait to move into our new house.

Chatter Around the World – 45

Chatter Around the World is a weekly link update of economics, investing, dividends and personal finance articles that have caught my eye. In these weekly updates, I also capture my blog updates and news related to my holdings.

Boston

I have been away the last couple of days in Boston on a mini-vacation and haven’t been following up much on the markets and the news. So, here’s a bare-bone weekly links collection. I took this picture from the Top of the Hub – a fantastic viewpoint of the city. I had been to Boston a couple of times in the past but didnt go out and explore city as much as I did this time…and absolutely loved the city. The people, the environment, the morale were up all throughout – and it was contagious 🙂

New Blog Posts

Let’s dive into the links that caught my attention this week.

Updates from My Portfolio Holdings

General Reads

Dividend Reads

Dividend Stock Analysis

< All Previous Weekly Links

Have a wonderful weekend.

The Div-Net Membership

Roadmap2Retire is now part of the The Div-Net, a network of investors focused on dividend investing, value investing and a long-term buy and hold philosophy. I am now an associate member and readers will notice the following badge displayed prominently on this blog.

What does this mean to the blog and the readers? Not much….there will be no changes in my content. I will be continuing to focus my work on investing and writing about dividend growth stocks in addition to other sources of passive income to achieve financial independence. Occasionally, my posts will be shared on the The Div-Net website as well.
I would also like to acknowledge and thank all the readers for the support. If you have any questions and comments, feel free to leave one below or email me.