My Best of 2021
Well, almost another year in the books folks – so a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you and family.
Welcome to my best of 2021.
Where on earth does the time go?
2010 was the first full year of running this site and I’m still going strong all these years later. In 2010, I wrote about welcoming some new stocks to my portfolio (Bank of Nova Scotia (BNS) was one of them), I finished some spring-cleaning by dumping all remaining costly mutual funds from my portfolio, I received my first feature in The Globe and Mail, and I started broadcasting my dividend income journey to the world. While the years have flown by, my passion for investing and sharing my journey with others has not wavered. This site remains fun, all these years later…
I want to thank you for that – since all readers are a big part of my inspiration and overall engagement in personal finance and investing.
Fast forward to 2021, and it was another fun year on the site, and building others, more on that in a bit.
Some My Own Advisor site stats by the numbers:
- 835,000+ = the number of pageviews on this site year to date, in just 2021.
- Readers spent an average of 3 minutes; 5 seconds on my site, in 2021.
- Top pages and pageviews in 2021:
My fun and ever growing Dividends page – where I highlight some of the stocks I own and why (that page averages 3,000 views per month).
My ETFs page – where I also highlight what low-cost ETFs I own and why; to manage a 7-figure portfolio.
The 5 stocks I want to buy in 2021 was very popular. I’ll recap what I bought and why in the coming weeks!
There were also some popular case studies viewed in 2021:
This couple wants to retire at age 55, they wonder without any pensions if then can retire on $1.2 million invested – do they have enough?
…and the list goes on and on and on!
As always, you can find these case studies with dozens of others on my Retirement page.
My Best of 2021
Here are some of my favourite posts over the last year and what readers enjoyed as well:
Investing wisely is of course smart, but so is tax-efficient investing. I profiled these tax efficient ETFs from Horizons ETFs and interviewed Mark Noble, Executive Vice President, ETF Strategy at Horizons ETFs about some products here.
I also talked to semi-retiree, author and financial expert Jon Chevreau this month and asked him if you should ever speculate with your retirement portfolio.
I made a decision to renew some term life insurance this year – this was the thought process I went through to determine how much term life insurance was enough for me/us.
How to generate retirement income, including some tips from an advice-only financial planner was popular on the site.
These were some stocks to take advantage of with any market resurgence in 2021.
These millennials wrote me about their plan to FIRE (Financial Independence, Retire Early) at age 50. I highlighted how they could pull that off and how much they would need to save to get there.
Also in April, on the subject of FIRE, I mentioned FIRE really stands for Financial Independence, Retire to Entrepreneurship (and not Retire Early) since nobody in their 30s or 40s really “retires” from all work or employment income. #FIREpolice. Ha.
I updated for all readers, based on many recent questions: How I built my dividend portfolio that now earns thousands in tax-free dividend income per year.
I also discussed a very important subject for any retiree or aspiring retiree: how to manage your healthcare insurance.
After debunking the 4% rule for retirees and after covering the Variable Percentage Withdrawal (VPW) approach in retirement, I shared some other overlooked retirement income and planning considerations – including those I’m working through myself.
Early retirement or any retirement comes with lots of uncertainly. The pandemic had me reflecting on the emotional side of early retirement.
I also predicted some big bank raises on the way this year – that could be windfall to my dividend income.
I highlighted these stocks and ETFs built to last for your portfolio.
Examples include XAW, VXC, VTI, QQQ and more.
I also talked about how to fight inflation and offered some links to some permanent portfolios.
In September, I wrote about why cash is somewhat king – although cashflow management is more important. That means you should consider a Cash Wedge for your semi-retirement dreams or at least some cash on hand to navigate market volatility at any age.
I also challenged investors to explain: why would anyone own bonds right now??
This month, I tackled of number of hot topics:
Here are some of the best dividend ETFs to earn cash for life.
I posted my Financial Independence Update as well.
Thanks to those big bank raises I predicted months ago, our dividend income rose substantially to new highs his month in this November 2021 dividend income update.
And…these are some great year-end tax tips if you haven’t already included some in your personal finance plans. On top that, in that post, I offer you a whopping 30% off The Grumpy Accountant with my personal promo code.
Best of 2021 – a new site and a new venture – Cashflows & Portfolios
This year-end recap on my site would also not be complete if I didn’t highlight I started a new site and new venture in 2021 with my friend Joe who founded Million Dollar Journey.
We started Cashflows & Portfolios to offer a unique free resource providing a beginning-to-end guide for Do-It-Yourself investors. Our content focuses on how to budget and generate cash flow; how best to invest that cashflow; onto using the nest egg to fund the next phase of life – retirement. We wanted to create a more actionable site to help you with your financial goals since we would have wanted to find such a site years ago as well…to help cut through the personal finance and investing noise.
Beyond the free content, free downloadable tools and weekly newsletter, we wanted to do something very unique in Canada: offer up our time and services to run financial projections to anyone, anywhere, anytime at a low-cost.
We answer a host of questions for Canadians looking for any early retirement or full-on retirement drawdown answers; we offer a detailed report or reports for you, customized to your needs, that answer questions specific to your financial situation such as:
- Do I have enough to retire?
- When can I retire?
- Will I run out of money in retirement?
- How much can I spend in retirement?
- How much of a financial legacy can I leave behind?
- Should I take CPP at age 65 or 70?
- How do I minimize OAS clawback?
- Which account (and when) should I withdraw from during retirement for the highest tax efficiency and estate value?
- And the list goes on for whatever you need!
We are offering these services because we feel, essentially, we can help Canadians in a major way. We are currently using professional financial projections software that we use, and making it available to our readers. We are doing this because we are passionate about investing but we also feel there is a HUGE gap between fee-only planners who advise folks vs. folks who simply want some personal confidence in their own retirement projections. As passionate Do-It-Yourself (DIY) investors, we know the hard part really isn’t about investing or asset accumulation any longer with all the tools, services and resources available to Canadians. The challenging part is really about solving the asset decumulation puzzle. That asset decumulation puzzle is a process that is often very personal and must be tailored to your specific retirement or semi-retirement needs and goals. We know – we’re working through that process ourselves right now!
Because we do not offer any financial advice, and never will, we can offer our services for a fraction of the cost some planners charge. We don’t charge between $1.5k – $11k for a financial plan since we don’t offer debt management services, estate planing or other services that come with those plans. We also have no desire to manage any investors’ financial assets – so we avoid that conflict of interest! We are DIY services for DIY investors from passionate DIY investors.
With Cashflows & Portfolios services, we work with you, take your inputs, your assumptions, then work on providing you with an optimized Retirement Projections Report(s) that is customized to your needs and goals. That’s it. Simple but very, very effective.
It’s been amazing to see that site and services grow in 2021 and we’ve got a queue of work to help more Canadians in 2022, along with more plans for the site itself. So, I encourage you to hit me up with any retirement projections case study ideas for some blogpost content or ask me about your own projections service needs. Happy to help!
My Best of 2021 summary
A busy year. A challenging year. Another year to be very thankful for.
I want to acknowledge and thank all the readers, visitors, giveaway contestants, fellow bloggers, mainstream media, partners and many more associated with My Own Advisor that make running this site a pleasure and a continued passion.
My best wishes back to you and your families for a safe and enjoyable holiday season. See you around the site again in the coming weeks, and of course more content in 2022.