Review, Preview and Goals 2018

Although it has already been more than a month since the beginning of the year, I would like to take a brief look back at 2017, before giving an outlook on 2018 and redefining my annual goals.

Take a look back

From a financial point of view, 2017 was our most successful year so far. As the following table shows, our previous year’s figures improved in every respect. Our path to financial independence is in full swing now. I’m particularly pleased by the significantly higher savings rate and the more than doubled passive income.

But as you should still be honest with yourself, I have to admit that contrary to the great results shown above, we weren’t fully able to reach our last year’s financial goal of €2,400 in passive income. That’s because I was too reluctant to buy more shares given the high price level towards the end of the year.

Looking into the crystal ball

Whether the bull market is going to continue, or the current price correction will trigger a turnaround in the markets cannot be said with certainty yet. However, there are other factors that lie primarily in your hands.

Savings Rate

As our savings rate has already risen from 22.9% to 38.3%, I guess there is not much more room for further improvement. Nevertheless, we have decided to give it another go and try to achieve a savings rate of at least 40% in 2018. In January, we already made it to exactly 40.0%!

Investments

Currently, our portfolio consists of 11 companies. These are from 8 sectors and 5 countries. Although I’m not a huge friend of over-diversification, I would like to increase the variety of sectors and countries in my stock portfolio a little further. Candidates for my potential portfolio expansion can be found in the following overview.

Passive Income

I admit that last year’s goal of €2,400 in passive income was quite ambitious. But as the Austrian conductor Herbert von Karajan put it:

He who reaches all his goals has probably not chosen them high enough.

Therefore, I don’t want to set myself a less ambitious goal and aim for €3,000 in passive income in 2018.

Conclusion: My goals for 2018

Instead of doing too much at once, this year, I deliberately made a small but fine selection. For 2018, I set myself the following 3 goals:

  • savings rate of at least 40%
  • diversify across sectors and countries
  • €3,000 in passive income

All three goals are really challenging. However, I’m particularly curious, if we’ll be able to increase our savings rate again. Because only those who save enough, can invest enough and thus become financially independent someday. True to our motto: “save. invest. be free.

What are your goals for 2018? Please let me know and leave a comment or get in touch with me on Facebook or Twitter!

4 Replies to “Review, Preview and Goals 2018”

  1. Loved the quote “He who reaches all his goals has probably not chosen them high enough.” and seems like everything is going your way! Be careful with OHI. I own a few shares in the company, but the yield is insane and it only looks have safe. Might take a look at HCN (Welltower) instead because they have a huge moat with the new wave of eldery people in the states. Solid balance sheet also.

    Hope 2018 is good for you!

    1. Thank you Stockles,

      I really know to appreciate your kind words!

      It makes sense to be overcautious regarding Omega Healthcare Investors Inc. Those issues with their tenants are truly worrisome. I guess it wouldn’t be a smart move to pick OHI as my first Real Estate investment. Can you recommend other REITs besides Welltower Inc., which are currently on your radar?

      – David

  2. Hi David
    These are huge financial achievements, congrats on substantially increasing your savings rate and doubling your passive income. Boosting your savings rate will handsomely reward you over time, as it will provide you tremendous financial flexibility. Just let time work in your favour.
    My wife and I started to track our savings rate back in 2006 and our savings rate was between 38 % and 45 % for some years. We just focused on holding our discretionary spendings more or less steady and streamlined where we practically effort-less could, especially with regard to fixed costs. Then, all of a sudden, our savings rate “jumped” well above the “magic” 50 % rate” and reached 65 % in 2017. It didn’t take us any particular effort and our income has always been more or less stable. We just lead a great down to earth lifestyle. I think that’s the key.
    Even now, with two children and after having reduced our work pensum, our savings rate is comfortably in a range of around 50 %.
    Keep up your good work and all the best.
    Cheers

    1. Hi FS,

      Thanks a lot for your kind words. It’s good to read that you once started with a savings rate comparable to ours today. However, I’m pretty sure that we’ll hit the 50% rate in no time if our salaries keep on increasing like in the past without inflating our lifestyle. But that shouldn’t really be a problem.

      It’s always good to hear from you!

      – David

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