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Milestones for 2020

2020 is upon us! As I did last year, I will try to aim for certain milestones on both a personal and financial level. I already went over my 2019 milestones, which let us be honest, was so-so. But if I can learn from this and do a better estimation this year then it was worth it to make them.

Defining 2020

SMART targets
Specific – target a specific area for improvement. Measurable – quantify or at least suggest an indicator of progress. Attainable – Is it reachable in the given time and with the provded resources? Relevant – A relevant objective makes sense. Time-related – specify when the result(s) can be achieved. Infographic vector created by katemangostar -

Well-defined milestones -preferably SMART– is the name of the game in 2020 as well. I was already Specific. I had the tools to Measure my milestones, and relevant is a given. Only Attainable and Time based weren’t quite there yet; I want to change that.

Attainable, attainable

Starting with the personal ones, I will set a reading target for myself once again. The big difference compared to last year will be the amount. Following S.M.A.R.T. I will aim for attainable results. 4 should be possible. The same applies to my Spanish. It’s an attainable target as my speaking partner is my GF who can correctly assess if I have improved and above all, can help me; it doesn’t require me to purchase a course nor does it collid with my working schedule.

Regarding my financial targets I want to set the three same ones: Savings Rate, Capital for personal portolio, and dividend payout, but just that bit more realistic based on my experience in 2019. The dividend payout should be relatively correct. The two other milestones however, those will be the real challenge this year. My SR for December 2019 is proof enough that it can quickly drop.

Financial milestones

My most important financial milestone: Savings Rate. Keeping a strong Savings Rate (SR) is paramount for a continous growth of my net worth. In my look-ahead, I estimated an SR range of 50% to 55% with a stretched ambition of 75% at least twice this year. Given I reached an average SR of 54.93% in 2019, my aim for this year is 50%.

It’s clear from 2019 that I should be conservative because of living with two on one salary and some savings. I underestimated the eating habits of two people and the missing utilities.

This one will be a challenge as I need to make sure I paid for the apartment in full by 2021. I got a loan of 280,000 EUR and at this moment (January 2020); I have 125,625.00 EUR, so I need another 14,375.00 EUR by Beginning 2021. The actual month will become clear once I go to the notary but it’ll probably be March 2021.

14,375.00 EUR/15 month = 985.33 EUR/month that I need to safe. Of course, as my focus will be this I will aim for 1000 to 1500/month. It matches perfectly with my look ahead that I did earlier.
Keeping that in mind, it means saving 10,000 EUR on top of this 14K will be interesting. In my look-ahead I didn’t take dividends nor extra salary -in the form of profit participation and holiday pay- into account. I will definitely get but that normally only covers about 80% of the 10K. I’m also assuming no surprises happen.

With all the above I should aim for something like 5K but then it wouldn’t be a challenge anymore, so I will keep it at 10,000 EUR.

I want to reach at least 400 EUR in dividend payout. Just like last time I didn’t just pick any number. With Lynx’ Portfolio Analyser giving me a detailed overview with multiple views of my portfolio since inception (or any time period for that matter). One such view is Projected Income (see image to the right). Based on this, albeit incomplete, projection and my 2019 income I’m aiming for 400 EUR.

I say incomplete because for at least two dividend payers, AED and COFB I already know the expected net dividend for 2020. This will be 2.55 EUR/share and ~4 EUR/share respectively. This differs greatly from the projected income in the portfolio analyser. As a result, my aim of 400 EUR shouldn’t be so far fetched.

Expected income from dividends for 2020
This overview is generated based on the available information Lynx has. It's incomplete since my AED stock has already sent out that the expected dividend for FY2019/2020 is 2.55 EUR net.

Personal milestones

As explained in my introduction, this year I’m going to strive to finish 4 economics or personal finance books. With the knowledge of last year, even this is still a lot. At the end of 2018 I managed to read two lighter books and that’s about it. That hould really change.

Learning SpanishAprendiendo español

By holding a full conversation with my GF.

My final and second personal milestone is learning a new language. I always had an eye on Spanish but I never got around to really starting it (besides trying a few apps from time to time). However, my girlfriend is Spanish-speaking so I should really learn the language.

This one remains a challenge for me since I’m not that goodterrible with Romance languages (i.e. French). But I owe it to my GF. She will struggle with Dutch so as support I should aim to learn her native language.

I'm a developer for a major financial institution in Belgium that is present in over 40 countries. I have over 8 years of working experience in the development of customer applications focussing on all aspects of banking. This helped me gain a deep understanding of the inner workings of a commercial bank. All of this experience in both banking and life culminates in this blog about personal finance and my fight towards FIRE.

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