The $20,000 Goal I Forgot About


The $20,000 Goal I Forgot About

Recently I was cruising around other financial bloggers websites and came across Bob’s blog roll of Canadian Dividend Blog’s. Lot’s of great writers on there, but one thing stood out to me. The intro and bio of us to our site included this – They are aiming to generate over $20,000 in dividend and other passive income by 2025.

I actually couldn’t believe it, was this an error – did I actually say that? Was it a goal of ours? Well I did say that – you can see it on our first goals page located here. At the time, that was a huge goal of mine. In February 2017 we had less than $1,100 in passive income, so I thought that was a solid goal.

Here we are at the end of November and we will most likely bring in about 17k a year from passive income sources. That’s a massive difference in 4.5 years.

It is humbling thinking back to that original goal. Back then I questioned how we were going to achieve the goal of 20k in 8 years. Looking back I guess we were thinking to small. But once you realize you can do it and figure out ways to help you do it faster, wow does it ever grow.


Last week I actually called the bank and started talking about refinancing our mortgage as our term is near an end again. The wife and I have discussed pulling another 150k out of our equity. This would increase our payment about 230 a month.

50k would go towards that private investment of ours. As some of you know we already invest with our family and generate 12% interest on our money. An additional 50k would bring in another $500 a month and easily cover the increased mortgage payment.

At this point our forward income would be about 23k with roughly 100k left to invest.

The wife wants to use some of that 100k to redo our stairs in the house, (hardwood with carpet runner) I think this would cost max 4 thousand. The rest would be used to invest in our tfsa’s and rrsp’s. Probably with a conservative 3% dividend yield bringing in slightly under 3k a year.

So we would be at 26k in forward passive income way ahead of the 20k goal and 3.5 years earlier.. Pretty crazy right? The compounding at that point will only grow faster.

Most of us (myself included) need to change the way we think, instead of thinking I can’t do it, we need to ask how we can. Remember I’m a landscaper, not a doctor making a massive salary – Make the income, be disciplined with your money and then get that money earning more money!

The Math Works

The math makes sense, by using other people’s money we can bring in more money than we pay. Now I understand the argument for a paid off house at the end of the day this is personal finance. What is your risk tolerance? I used to be all about paying off debts, and being debt free. But my mentality has changed over the years, some debts I consider to be good debts and with interest rates where they are I think the risk/reward ratio is worth it.

Our plan currently is to max out all our tax friendly accounts – resp, tfsas and rrsps and then focus on hammering down the mortgage. Let’s be honest we don’t want to retire while continuing to have a mortgage balance even if the math works, but that’s quite a bit a ways away. Right now it’s purely just about more financial freedom – more days off – more time to do whatever we want, whenever we want.

Looking Back

I remember when we first got into finances talking to the wife’s family who all pitched in and bought a 20 unit apartment building. They basically would put all the income from rents into an account for maintenance and paying down that loan – every 5 years they would refinance to the max and distribute all that equity among the owners. At the time I didn’t think that was the best idea, but looking now its a great idea. Rents continue to go up, the place looks great, tenants are happy and I’m sure they have probably all made back their original investment and redeployed that money into more income producing assets!

This is one thing I got out of Robert Kiyosaki’s – Rich dad poor dad. Use other peoples money if you can, but know your risk tolerance and don’t over leverage!

I cant stress that enough – stocks don’t always go up, real estate doesn’t always go up etc etc use other peoples money wisely.

Slowly But Surely

We live in a time right now where everyone wants to make it rich quick. We see insane things happening with crypto’s, nft’s and even virtual real estate. I still don’t get it. I have missed out on crypto’s no question! To be honest I do sometimes consider starting a position in bitcoin or etherium, but still haven’t taken a stake.

The block chain network is interesting for sure, don’t get me wrong. People love the idea that citizens are taking back the currency in a way. Eventually govt’s will release their own digital currency’s and I’m pretty sure they will become the new currency. Will this actually be a good thing? No more cash, everything tracked, everything taxed, bigger government and even more control. I think the digital peoples currency will eventually backfire, maybe I’m missing something.

Nft’s I really don’t get – I can just right click save as if I really like the picture.

Virtual real estate seems a little interesting and yet depressing. I like the concept that you could own a park or something in the metaverse and possibly put billboards or something to make a income off ads, but thinking that people will hang out together online in this virtual world is actually sad to me. Why wouldn’t people get together with their friend’s in the real world and feel the suns rays on their skin, feel the cool breeze. Will we really rather sit on our computer in this virtual world?

Personally I rather own quality businesses, they aren’t going anywhere. People will always need utility’s, food, shelter etc etc. They have been time tested, provide you real cash flow, capital appreciation and solid dividend increases. Slowly but surely the market continues to set new all time highs since it began in Amsterdam in 1611.

Will you strike it rich as quick as some of these trends? no probably not, but at the same time do we really need the above things? Do they hold real value?


At the time when we started the site in 2017, I thought 20k by 2025 was a very ambitious goal and here we are. Create a plan, stick to it, pay yourself first and watch it grow. It can happen if you really want it to. We all have 24 hours each day. Some of us were born in/ or have certain situations/environments that we may use as an excuse as to why we cant do something, no question it can make things harder but I guarantee you there is someone out there in the world who had the same situation, who made it. We need to stop with this victim mentality that is so prominent today.

Dream Big, Dream Often!

btw – I really wanna stress I don’t post this to brag that we will hit our goal early, some of you may take it like that. I just want to emphasize setting a target or goal and continuing. Its slow at the start, keep going and it gets easier and easier. Write stuff down, so you can look back in the future.

10 Responses

  1. Ghassan hayek says:

    amazing article Rob!! and so much wisdom in it 🙂
    yes I know how it feels watching your passive income growing i’m experiencing the same thing looking back year on year my dividend income is growing double digit well thanks in part also to disciplined contributions but i know one day soon the portfolio will grow organicaly, as for bitcoin i’m late as well for it so many times i wanted to pull the trigger but my problem is i never understood what it is and how it works so i would rather stick to utilities banks insurance companies teleco and pipleline at least those i use on my day to day basis and i understand.
    congrats on your achieving the 20k and i’m sure more success will come

    • Rob says:

      hey Ghassan

      Thanks and congrats to you as well. I haven’t actually hit the 20k goal yet but once the bank stuff gets sorted out we will. Crazy looking back, how quickly we got here.

      keep it up

  2. Norm says:

    Hey Rob, thanks for sharing! Love how this articles illustrates your thinking between then (2017) and now (2021), and the way that thinking has matured and evolved. You made several excellent points from a place of honesty and full transparency, one of your best posts.

    Congrats on the explosive passive income growth, seems like this site was aptly named! 🙂

    I’m glad to see you’re truly embracing leverage now, as someone who uses a significant amount I can attest to the true growth accelerator leverage really is. There are many ways to use leverage responsibly, not over extend, spread the leverage risk around, and grow the total leverage amount over time. Just like dividends, start small and grow.

    Given you’re already at $17K, and with some additional leverage planned, it feels like that 2025 goal should be adjusted upwards, perhaps to $40K!? It’s okay to not hit every goal, but the challenge of trying to reach the lofty ones is what drives me. For myself the current lofty goal is $90K in annual dividends by 2027. Likely won’t make it but I’ve got a chance and am sure going to try.

    On a side note…. AQN… in the $17.20s…. trying real hard not to buy more 😉

    • Rob says:

      Man, Norm you always make me feel good! Appreciate your comments every time. Sometimes I write these posts and don’t get any responses and 2nd guess things.. Should I have wrote the post? Did I create any value to the readers? etc etc but you saying one of the best posts wow!

      For sure there has been a major mental shift in the use of debt over the last 4 years. Man that is just awesome about you.. Roughly how much are you bringing in now? 90k would be fantastic, at that number would you retire or work/volunteer part time? I agree about missing some goals, rather aim high and miss than aim too low and hit.

      90k id probably work part time/ volunteer and live up north on the water. Do lots of fishing and maybe get into bird watching haha!

      Yeah algonquin definitely is getting even more tempting. After all these bank raises this week kinda makes me want to add to them as well. May even grow our tc energy position in December, always love buying them under 60 a share and next purchase would enable 2 drips a quarter for us.

      Thanks again Norm, have a great one!

  3. DividendsOn says:

    It took us fourteen years to get to collect over $17,000 in annual dividend income in the non-registered portfolio, so you’re doing great Rob.

    • Rob says:

      hey Dividends
      Thanks, sounds like your doing great as well averaging over 1k a year, the snowball will only make that grow even faster.
      keep it up

  4. GYM says:

    Your snowball is rolling!!! That’s amazing. Compounding is so magical. Keep up the fantastic work!

  5. Norm says:

    This year we’ll get about 48K in actual dividends, but the current forward income is higher with purchase and raises the past 6 months, and unlike most dividend investors I don’t count a raise until it actually hits my account for the first time. So 90K is definitely achievable, but I also want to dump money into other investments as well.

    Once we have sufficient passive income (which like you is multiple sources, real estate is a big one here), I’ve got enough interests, passion projects, and traveling to keep me busy for 200 years, so we’ll see what things on that list I can get to.

    • Rob says:

      That is fantastic Norm, congrats!

      curious what do you have for real estate? Do you have any multiplexes? how did you start? would you be a buyer in ontarios market currently?

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