Goals for 2017

A new year and new set of goals/target to set. Lately, I’ve been dwelling on goals to set — not just financial but also personal and professional goals. To make steady progress on a regular basis requires determination, patience and of course a target in mind. Setting and writing down goals and working towards them are one of the best ways to make progress. As far as financial goals go, the long term goal still remains the same — achieve financial independence that will provide us with more freedom to do what we want out of life. Following are the goals that I am setting for 2017.

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Goals for 2016

The year 2015 is almost over and as we wrap up and look back at the year that was, a question always emerges on the horizon – What Next? As investors, we all want to achieve financial independence and build our income stream so that we may have the freedom of choice to do what we want. To make steady progress on a regular basis requires determination, patience and of course a target in mind. This is where goals come in. Setting and writing down goals and working towards them are one of the best ways to make progress. Over the last few weeks, I have been thinking about setting financial goals and setting targets. Following are the goals that I am setting for 2016.

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Setting Financial Goals

As the year wraps up and the new one approaches, it is common to see everyone setting their annual goals. While there are always some goals that each one of us wants to achieve – for e.g., financial goals may include earn more, save more, invest and grow nest egg more etc, I want to take this time to reflect on some things to keep in mind when setting financial goals.

Goal setting can be a great way to achieve success in life. Of course there are exceptions to the rule – and depends on each individual’s commitment, personality, ability and other uncontrollable circumstances. But something that is highlighted a lot in media is to set SMART goals. SMART is a mnemonic acronym standing for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-related. A lot has been written about SMART goals and I will not try to repeat things here – but I encourage you to read up and think about this as a goal setting measure.

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Annual Goal Achieved

My personal financial goals for the year include a few other things, but the top of the list and the main goal is to generate enough passive income. A year ago when I was contemplating the goal to set for 2014, I found it hard to believe that I would be able to reach $4,000, but I decided to shoot high and set myself that goal. Well, I am happy to report: Annual Goal Achieved!

Annual Goal Achieved

On a quarterly basis, I was right on target at generating the required passive income to reach my goal. The second quarter was a bit slower and I thought for a few days that I wouldn’t be able to achieve my goal since we were selling some of our investments to fund our home purchase. But things started looking up, and with approx 50 days left in the year, I was able to reach that goal. As expected, I am one happy camper.

Annual Goal Achieved

A Note on Other Passive Income

I believe that it is important to not only diversify your investments to protect against unknown circumstances, but also to diversify income sources. My job and the active income that I generate still makes the bulk of my take-home pay; and that is what I intend to complement and eventually wean-off from – to achieve financial independence. While dividends are a great and robust way to achieve that, I do not rely only on dividends. Dividends from investments are simply one source of passive income and my goal last year was to add more sources. I managed to do that in 2013 and this year was all about growing those income streams.

Some people have pointed out that it is not truly passive, I like to consider it semi-passive. A lot of my “Other” income is achieved by my writing skills, either through my blog (which generates advertisement revenue) or writing for other third party sites. Writing is my hobby that I like to cultivate and combining that with my passion for investing and passive income, I have been able to forge an income stream doing something that I love. Besides, I already go through the exercise of evaluating stocks for my own investments, and writing it clears my thoughts; and sharing those thoughts with others validates and reaffirms my investment thesis by providing me with some feedback.

Other Passive Income

To introduce a bit more transparency, I have decided to separate out and breakdown my passive income goals for next year. I still do not have the target figured out, but will be sharing those in the coming weeks once I set it. A big thanks to all you readers for stopping by and the inspiration and comments. It has been a joy sharing these details with you. I wish you all the best with your own personal goals and hope you achieve them.

Goals for 2014

Just a few more days left over in 2013 and I have been looking into setting goals for 2014 over the last couple of weeks. My 2014 goals are summarized below:
1. Passive Income of $4,000
My passive income for 2013 has surpassed my original goal of $2,000 and I am on track to reach a passive income of $2,600-$2,700. In addition, my wife’s portfolio (which is currently unaccounted for on this blog) generates about $600 in dividend income. So, between the two of us we should be able to see our passive income grow by $700-$800 easily. The reason for this low target is because of Goal #2.
2. Buy a house
My wife and I have been building up our savings over the past few months. We intend to have 20% for the downpayment saved by the middle of 2014 to buy our first house together.
3. Rebalance portfolio with my wife’s portfolio integrated
In 2014, I intend to merge my portfolio with my wife’s for a balanced portfolio. Her portfolio consists of two funds – a Canadian index fund and a monthly dividend income fund, both held as mutual funds. I have a few ideas in my mind and floated the ideas to my wife who is still thinking about it.
4. Sell all my positions in mutual funds and cut down on the fees
This has been my goal for the past couple of years, but I havent come around to do it since I am not able to find comparable ETFs with similar performance. This goal might finally get achieved in 2014 since I intend to use these funds for Goal #2 above.
5. Read More Books
I have fallen a bit behind on reading books over this year, and I intend to pick those books back up and read more. My interests vary a lot – from finance and business to psychology and family/health-related topics. Readers can look forward to seeing more book reviews on this blog in the following year.

In addition to the main financial goals above, I intend to continue to:
6. Expand my knowledge of business and finance.
7. Educate myself about home buying.
8. Expand my knowledge of options trading.

I have updated my Goals page with the new goals set.