November 23, 2011
Less than a month ago, I decided to convert my existing MBNA Platinum Plus MasterCard into the Smart Cash Platinum Plus MasterCard, which would now offer me more money back into my pocket than before.
Here is how it works:
- I will receive up to 5% cash back on qualifying net gas and grocery purchases for the first 6 months of usage.
- After the initial six month “honeymoon” period is over (kind of like in real life!), those net gas and groceries purchases will earn me 3% (on the first $600 spent monthly).
- Everything else will earn 1% cash back.
The attractive thing about this card is that once you have accumulated at least $50, MBNA will cut you a cheque. Money that can be used for whatever purpose I so desire? You can see why this card would make me in high spirits and as a result it is the sole cause as to why I have started charging anything and everything on to it so as to earn as much cash back as possible because like it is said, “Cash is King”.
I am glad to know that I am not the only one who feels cheerful about this splendid financial product since My Own Advisor has a posting reflecting the same type of thought/feeling that I have toward this card.
March 16, 2009
It seems that I did not have much time to write this week since I was very busy with my CGA exam and family dinners (we had three over this weekend!). However, I have the time right now to give a small update as to what has happened during this week.
- I put another $78 into my TD Waterhouse RRSP account which brought the cash balance over the $400 limit, therefore enabling me to purchase another $100 in each of the four index funds I own.
- I added $60 to the vacation fund bringing the total balance to $120.
- If you noticed, I removed the Playstation 3 from the want fund because my wife wanted to buy it for me or least help me buy it so she suggested we create an envelope and put cash in there which will be solely for the Playstation 3.
- Derek Foster, who advocated living off investment income, sold off all his stocks. He says that he is just making a temporary portfolio adjustment until the market stabilizes then he intends to go back into the market. My opinion on this is that he should not have sold any of his stocks; in fact, this would be the best time to buy more shares which will in turn increase dividend income.
- We were invited to a dinner Friday night, took my wife’s cousin and her husband (another newlywed couple) out for dinner on Saturday, were invited to a lunch today, and dinner today by different people in honour of our wedding, which kept us busy.
- Due to a cancellation on Saturday for a lunch, my wife and I took advantage of the free time and the better weather to just spend the day out.
All in all, I can say that this weekend was a lot of fun and I had not felt this relaxed in a long time. Well, back to work tomorrow so let’s see what the week brings us.
March 10, 2009
I am really excited to have restarted this blog again. It gives me a great feeling to do it; in fact, it has been on my mind so much recently that today at work, I could not think of anything else but to come home and write something on this blog. Well, here I am!
As the title of this post states, I was not able to write a complete update on my financial position so here it is.
On the investment side, I began to put a little something into my TD Waterhouse self-directed RRSP again and I get my empliyer to deduct a percentage of my salary into a Group RRSP (which is great as that is forced savings!). I was invested in dividend stocks in my TD account but I sold out and invested it into index funds. My intention is to invest into Canadian dividend stocks which will one day (God willing), be my sole source of income but for now I intend to focus on the RRSP until I have removed more of my debt.
I have a lot to say but when the wife calls, one must answer. In fact, let me leave you with a saying I once heard in regards to marriage:
A man has two choices; He can be right or he can be happy!
March 9, 2009
I am back! I can’t believe it has been a year and three months since my last post and a lot has happened since then.
- In July 2008, I got married to the most wonderful woman in the world.
- In August 2008, I started a new job as an Intermediate Accountant, which I am so grateful for because this job is 5 km from my home and the job itself is exactly what I was looking for. I actually believe that once you have faith and hope, everything works out in the end. I mean, I had been applying to jobs and going to interviews for months but nothing was happening until one day I actually got two job offers, of which was this job that was exactly what I was looking for.
- In October 2008, I traded my 2000 Chevrolet Malibu in for a 2006 Chrysler 300 Touring.
Now, since my intended goal for this blog is to journalize the financial events and transactions that occur in my life, let me explain the financial impact. My RRSP was wiped out to zero to pay for the wedding expenses (including a wonderful seven-day honeymoon in Victoria, British Columbia). Even though, the new job brought a higher salary, my car purchase increased my monthly car payment by $100 and my insurance payment by $20.
The honest truth is that even though my expenses increased and puts less money in my pocket, I am happier and more content with life than I have ever been and I welcome whatever the future has in store for me.
December 16, 2007
It seems that I am busy with work, studying for my CGA designation, and life in general that I am not finding much time to blog. I will make an effort to find more time if I can. As to what happened this past week:
1. I had to buy a $20 gift for my secret Santa at work so I decided I would purchase a sweater or something like that from The Bay (Canadian department store). I was meaning to go anyway because I wanted to buy a shirt for myself and since I had a $50 gift card sitting in my wallet for the past three months, I decided to utilize it. It turns out I ended up spending $92! This is broken down as $49.99 for my shirt (good quality, though) and $29.99 for my secret Santa, plus the rest was sales tax. Result: Went over by $20 and turns out the office decided to cancel secret Santa the day AFTER I bought the gift so I just gave it to my father instead.
2. All was quiet on the investment side, although I got ~$7 dividend from a stock I recently sold out of.
3. As you can see, I have decided to set up visuals of certain things I would like to acquire and have decided to find money from somewhere to contribute towards these goals.
Other than that, it was a calm week (this does not include work-related stuff), although I have started becoming more anxious about making certain moves that will allow me to switch into a career that I have been wanting to pursue for a long time. (No clue why I never thought of this before!) That is all I can think of for now, let us see what the next week brings, although one hopes it is monetary gains (big ones, please!)
December 9, 2007
Payday was once more upon me on Friday and after making all the allocations, I still do not have much money left over. Nevertheless, I did accomplish to put $1 into my Laptop Fund. Yippee!
At least I have made some cuts in expenditures:
1) I have cancelled my $29 monthly online DVD rental subscription (I am probably not going to see the effect of this much since this was blindly being charged to my credit card and I was not paying it off)
2) I have slashed my cell phone plan from $220 to approximately $75 monthly. (I should see the effect of this because I do pay my cell phone bill from my take-home pay.)
I am at all times on the lookout for an improved job (with better pay, of course!) but nothing has turned up yet. The key, I find, is to conceivably have faith and patience and the rest will come on its own. I have been thinking that it would be nice to find extra earnings from somewhere and I came upon Helium, who pays for articles that you can write. The thing is I am seriously thinking that possibly I should try my hand at freelance writing articles. I have some topics in mind but I want to do it the way I used to write my research essays in university — with research and take my time. I think quality is more important than quantity (plus, it is not as if even one good article is going to compensate me $1000 a month — oh, how I wish!).
December 6, 2007
Due to the low market prices, I was able to pick up another 20 shares of Bank of America, thus reducing my average cost price per share another 2.5%. This may not be much but every little bit counts once the stock price starts rising again.
On another note, I have decided that I no longer want to use desktop PCs — laptops are the way for me but I intend to pay cash and thus have started my ‘Laptop Fund’. It’s not a big priority right now as it’s more of a want than a need so I can take my time.
December 5, 2007
I have been busy since Friday and have not had the time to give an update on my investment portfolio transactions.
On Thursday November 30th, I purchased an extra 22 shares of American Capital Strategies
On Monday, December 3rd, I purchased another 15 shares of Bank of America
Today, I picked up another 20 shares of American Capital Strategies.
With these three transactions, my average cost price per share has reduced, which is my whole objective (the fact that I will see larger dividend payments is a bonus!)
December 3, 2007
I finally decided to take a harder stance in regards to paying off my credit card debt. I did not realize it is was this towering! I mean, over $14,000?! Where did all this come from, I enquire myself. Off the top of my head, I can account for approx. $6700 coming from accounting course fees ($1200), car repairs ($500), and a partial balance transfer of a car loan ($5000) but the rest I presume I was just spending more than I earned.
Well, I would like to quietly (no need for shouting) inform the divine powers that are that I have it in mind to vigorously (cross my fingers) show aggression towards my debt. In addition, I would also like to have a more positive net worth, seeing as how negativity is just plain ole appalling.
November 27, 2007
Friday was payday! That was fun (while it lasted). I made all the allocations to where my money should be going and everything was going fine until yesterday. You see, it turns out that I forgot to register for the next course in my Certified General Accountant program and two outcomes occurred:
1) I had to use my credit card to pay for the course (which I should have anticipated ahead of time and saved for)
2) I had to pay an extra $30 late fee because I registered late.
Moral of the story – always remember important dates as well save up to pay for something. I will say this much to my credit that even though I HAD to use the credit card, one thing is that it might be worth going into debt for if the end result is that it will pay off down the road with a better paying job. Another point is even though I used my credit card, at least NOW I am aware that I am using debt and that it bothers me. As long as using debt will bother me, I will use it as little as possible and eventually stop using it totally.