2022 is officially finishing up. I usually make personal finance goals in the beginning of the year, review how I’m doing at mid-year, and review them again at the end of the year.
Here are my 2022 personal finance goals in italics and whether I’ve completed or failed them.
MAX OUT TFSA
The 2022 TFSA contribution limit is $6000. This will be an easy goal because it just involves transferring money from my non-registered account into my Questrade TFSA, and this will be done in January 2022 to maximize the magical tax free compounding.
Here’s the total TFSA contribution room if you were of minimum age (age 18) when the TFSA started in 2009. $81,500 is the total contribution room if you had never contributed to your TFSA in 2022..
Accomplishing this easy goal in January will help me feel more positive about achieving the other goals.
According to James Clear from Atomic Habits, achieving goals and changing your habits must help you feel good (so you will continue to repeat them because of positive reinforcement).
These easy wins help prepare me for more difficult tasks.
Completed. As mentioned in my mid-year review, I finished this task on New Year’s Day in 2022 before I rolled out of bed. For some unknown reason, I don’t think I’ll be as excited about it in a few weeks for the 2023 contribution, even though it has increased to $6500 for next year.
MAX OUT RRSP
As with other years, I’m not sure what my RRSP room will be. This goal will be done once I find out what my RRSP contribution room is from the 2021 Notice of Assessment after my taxes are done.
My RRSP contribution room is on the lower side (typically it is 18% of earned income from the previous year) because of my defined benefit pension adjustment.
Completed. This was another straight forward task. I debated whether or not to transfer cash from my non-registered to my RRSP but in the end I transferred US dividend paying stocks from my non-registered into my RRSP (I transferred in kind).
Why did I do this instead of transferring cash?
Well, the US dollar dividend income is taxed at your marginal rate, some people say don’t let the tax tail wag the dog, but I feel that I am doing this in moderation. The capital gains resulted from the transfer in kind were minimal, but the future tax in the dividends will be reduced.
INCREASE DIVIDEND INCOME TO $25,000/YEAR
Last year in 2021, my goal was to increase my dividend income to $20,000 per year. To my pleasant surprise, I ended the year with just over $23,400 in passive dividend income annually.
It helped that companies like Suncor increased their dividend back to previous levels (after it was cut in 2020), and that some of the Canadian financials increased their dividend distribution by anywhere from 11% to 25.5%.
Therefore, in 2022, my goal is to increase the dividend income from $23,400 per year to $25,000 (forward annual yield). With a conservative 2.8% yield, this amounts to approximately investing another $57,500 into the portfolio (through dollar cost averaging).
I can’t control what the market does but I can control my contributions.
If I don’t hit my goal, I won’t fuss about it too much because I don’t need the income right now, but focusing on growth would be a bigger deal, which is why I’ll be investing the majority of my money in ETFs that may not have a 3%+ yield (and rather a unsightly 1.8% yield, but has much more potential for growth).
Completed. This was completed in May 2022. There were a lot of dividend increases along the way to speed this along. I am now at over $28,000 in forward annual dividend income.
CONTINUE WORKING ON MY 2 YEAR GOAL
My two year goal is to have 7 figures in my investment portfolio. Assuming a 7% annualized return (though this is average), my target for the end of the year December 2022 will be around $920,000 and this includes contributions to the portfolio which are similar in numbers to the above dividend income goal with reinvested dividends.
Get Smarter about Money has a nice compound interest calculator, and Passiv recently added a Goals feature to help you achieve this and keep track of your goals- it is pretty much a compound interest calculator broken down by month. You can see what the goals feature looks like here.
One downside is that it only looks at your Questrade accounts and if you have other accounts it doesn’t include it.
Passiv Elite is free if you use Questrade.
Completed. Hot diggity. I had really low expectations. It looked really bad for a while there in June and in October of this year (like down over $100,000), but the market picked up and as of writing in December 2022 this goal has been reached!
READ 5 INVESTING/ PERSONAL FINANCE BOOKS
I enjoy reading non-fiction personal finance and investing books, and I usually pick five investing or personal finance books per year and and write book reviews about them.
The book reviews I write help me remember what I learned from the books, even if they’re not very popular articles on this blog.
Here are the 5 investing and personal finance books that I hope to read in 2022.
- Margin of Safety: Risk Averse Value Investing Strategies for the Thoughtful Investor by Seth Klarman
- The Most Important Thing: Uncommon Sense for the Thoughtful Investor by Howard Marks
The Great Minds of Investing by William Green (I liked his book Richer, Happier, Wiser so much, I thought I should read his other book)I couldn’t find this book so I read Balance by Andrew Hallam instead
- Adventure Capitalist: The Ultimate Road Trip by Jim Rogers
- What Works on Wall Street by James O’Shaughnessy
I read What Works on Wall Street but it was not for me, I didn’t like it and I couldn’t write a book review on it.
I read Adventure Capitalist and that and Balance were probably the favourites for me. I will have a review of Adventure Capitalist by Jim Rogers coming soon.
I also finished Margin of Safety very recently (in the last few days, haha) in order to make sure I could say “completed” for this goal. I have yet to write a book review on it.
Completed. But barely! Balance and Adventure Capitalist were my favourites. I definitely need to carve out some more time in my day to read.
“Real” Resolutions are More Difficult
For my “non-finance” related goals, I failed miserably. These habits are so much harder to change my behaviour. I’ll work on them again for 2023.
- Meditate daily for 10 minutes. I continue falling asleep within seconds to minutes. I should stop lying down while meditating.
- Physical activity 20 minutes four times a week. The physical activity part is pretty good four times a week. I prioritize that over other things like working on this blog, or sleep. I either do HIIT or go for a run, but I have fallen off the bandwagon with the weights. I should restart that again at least once a week.
- Sleep before 12am. Not good. Some nights I go to bed at 11:30pm and do great the next day but other nights it’s 12:30am or sometimes even 1:00am! I blame it on the introvert in me. Night time is the only time it’s quiet, mostly uninterrupted.
- Time management. Good, then not good, then good-ish again. Twitter! The scrolling. Hard to stop. It’s definitely hard to limit to less than 30 minutes a day of Twitter but I have been good at keeping it under 1 hour, at least. I should use that time scrolling to read instead.
How did you do for 2022?
Did you achieve your personal finance goals?
Did you achieve your non-money related resolutions?
Which do you find more difficult to change- money habits or other habits?
GYM is a 40 something millennial writing about personal finance since 2009 and interested in achieving financial freedom through disciplined saving, dividend and ETF investing, and living a minimalist lifestyle. Before you go, check out my recommendations page of financial tools I use to save and invest money. Don’t forget to subscribe for a free dividend yield spreadsheet and the free Young Money Bootcamp PDF.