Money, Monthly Money Reports

Finally! April 2018 Income, Expenses and Goals

April was an exciting month, nothing to do with income, blogging or steps! I traveled to Australia for business. And that was awesome!  We all have different goals and aspirations in life. One of mine was always to do an international business trip (well several if I could) and never managed to get one (U.S. aside). I even considered getting a different job in order to do so but wasn’t looking to do it on a consistent basis so I never made the move. So here I am, still waiting for my formal layoff notice but finally got my international business travel opportunity! I went to Australia for two weeks…and got to pet a Koala (I know I know how lame…but I always wanted to) Check out my upcoming post for pics of my trip! Of course I could just buy myself a ticket and go visit Australia but having a mix of leisure and work was more what I was looking for (Remember I actually like my job, most of the time!) Otherwise everything for April was pretty good except blogging! Here is my April 2018 Income, Expenses and Goals.

Related postWould You Travel To Australia For Business?

Update on layoff notice: I had a call with the “powers to be” and they had a great proposal but didn’t follow up with written confirmation yet! I have been around long enough, I don’t believe anything “they” say until it is in writing!


Monthly FI (Financial Independence) Income:

 Dividend & Interest Income: $1,014

Not my highest month but not bad at $1K and totally within my plan!

April 2018 Dividend

Here are the stocks/ETFs I received dividends from in April:


  • REI.UN – RioCan Real Estate Investment Trust
  • CPG – Crescent Point
  • ZAG – BMO Aggregate Bond ETF
  • CJR.B – Corus Entertainment Inc.
  • IPL – Inter Pipeline Ltd.
  • ZDV – BMO Canadian Dividend ETF
  • FIE – iShares Canadian Fncl Mthly Inc ETF
  • * new *ALA –  AltaGas Ltd.
  • ZDI – BMO International Dividend ETF


  • GE – General Electric Company
  • KO – The Coca-Cola Company
  • GSK –  GlaxoSmithKline plc

Rental Income

Rental income from my three rental units, all condos. You can read more about it here.

April 2018 Rental Income

  • Insurance: Paid the insurance on all condos. I could pay monthly but prefer to pay it all at once, which is why the cash flow is negative this month. Cost: $748.44.
  • Unit #1:Nothing to report this month but did remind them their lease was up and they have to give me 60 days’ notice. I hope they stay, otherwise I may sell. I could increase their rent in June but I don’t plan to since I am already above market.
  • Unit #2: Kitchen sink was leaking and the tenant waited until water was dripping down in the basement to call me! I got a plumber in (next door neighbor) and he replaced the entire faucet. Also critters are back in the basement (already had an issue a couple of years ago) so I had to call the condo corp (their responsibility) to take care of it. They did but it doesn’t look like it worked so will have to call them again! Total cost: $290.97 (I bought a good quality faucet this time!)
  • Unit #3: They still didn’t return their lease. They called to follow-up on some work they want done (tiles in the kitchen and changing the AC unit) but told them I wouldn’t do anything until I get a signed lease. I paid $30 for a floor product to refresh/reshine the hardwood floor (and keep them happy).

I estimate the time spent on rentals this month to be around 3.0 hours overall, including my partner’s time to go check on the leak and going to the store to buy the new faucet, a few texts and a few calls.

$778 for 3 hours of work! Not quite as spectacular as last month but who gets paid $260/hr at work???

Related post: To Be A Landlord Or Not To Be?

Side Hustle Income:

  • Nothing to report this month.

EXPENSES – $2,808

See where it all started and why I keep track of my expenses here

Tip: Update your spreadsheets regularly otherwise it takes forever!

April 2018 Expenses

Categories from Household to Cell phones are consistent each month so I will stop commenting unless something changes. You can refer to the December post for details.

Kids :

  • The school finally cashed my cheque for my son’s ski activity – $220. Thy go skiing every Friday night after school for 8 weeks. Kids love it! Not sure why it took so long for the school to cash it.  I probably should have included it in my December report but I prefer the cash method:)
  • Another $120 for clothing, school supplies and a show at school for my son.

Other :

Much better than last month but not overly frugal!

  • $96 for eating out. Pizza & shawarma with my kids twice and a night out with my girlfriend at a great Indian restaurant (forgot to take pics again!).
  • $67 for snacks and coffee this month. Took my daughters out for coffee on the market a couple of times and it’s not cheap, but we had a wonderful time. Also treated myself to a few yummy chocolates again! What’s the point to have money if I can never indulge:)
  •  $160 for miscellaneous items. My daughters and I went to a trade show and I spent a little more than I should have on things I didn’t need, post to follow! But we had a blast. It’s so nice when your older kids still want to spend time with you!

Summary – FI ratio is 52% YTD including kids expenses.

A drop from last month YTD at 58% because of the payment of the insurance on condos. Next month my car insurance is due so the ratio will remain low. Also I haven’t been very frugal for the last couple of months. I think it has to do with the weather but I could easily cut back on the “other” expenses if I had to…but I don’t have to yet!


April 2018 Goals                                                                                                                                                                                                                              


  • Reduce Grocery bill by 30% or $200/week. Haven’t done the detail analysis yet but I know we are on track. Check out my previous Monthly Grocery Reports.
  • Increase my dividend to $12,000. Right on target with 35% of dividend income in four months.


I didn’t check for April! Taking a little break from the metrics. It was depressing last month and I assume after one month away, it must be awful! Same with Twitter followers. Blogging is very addictive and I think this forced break was good for me. Hopefully I find a good balance going forward between blogging and everything else in my life.

The main goal is to keep enjoying it and make it to One year at least!

Related page: Best Blogging Tips


  • Cut back on Sweets: Made progress in April but still have work to do! (It’s the chocolate!)
  • My average daily steps were 10,414 in April compare to 11,226 last month! Work got the best of me but still managed to get out for a walk almost daily.

That’s it for April. It was a really good month overall! A little late to ask readers about their April so hope it was great!

But wondering, to any current or ex bloggers, have you taken a break since you started? For how long and was it beneficial overall? If not , do you ever consider doing it? Why or why not?

A special THANK YOU to the following bloggers for featuring some of my posts in April:

April 2018 Income, Expenses and Goals

15 thoughts on “Finally! April 2018 Income, Expenses and Goals

  1. It’s interesting Caroline as a VP you refer to the “higher ups”. You are a higher up, but I guess we all are accountable to someone. Even I have to account to Mrs. DD. And like you, I don’t believe anything if it’s not in writing. Tom

    1. Hi Tom, yes we are all accountable to someone plus I am a VP for our Canadian subsidiary. Head office RULES!
      Do you put everything in writing with Mrs. DD? Lol

  2. Yay this is great news! I thought it was so bleak that they could cut you off after you’ve been working for so long. I hope they make a better informed decision and have you stay. Or else they’re stupid as fffff

  3. Caroline, that’s great you like your job most of the time. That makes the 8 hours go much faster. I’m just the opposite: while working I only liked the job once a while. I feel that, the job is going to work out in a surprisingly good way for you. Good luck.

    1. Hi Helen, the problem is that work is getting to become a little slow and then the days start to feel longer. I love being challenged , which is what I got with Australia:) I keep my fingers crossed that something good is going to come my way soon.

  4. Yay that’s great news, hopefully they give you an awesome offer!! Your monthly spend is so low!! How do you split the grocery cost with your partner? (You may have covered this already and I may have forgotten- blame it on my mom brain).

    Do you leave a minimum amount in your bank account to waive the $20 bank fees? I hate bank fees! I keep a minimum in my BMO account ($3K) so that I don’t have to pay the $10 monthly fee. Sometimes I go under accidentally and I call them and they reverse it for me.

    I try to keep a 2 month posting schedule ahead of time so that I don’t feel overwhelmed. Even with 2 months of posts ahead of time I feel overwhelmed (like right now, I am cutting under 2 month and feel the pressure to get back to 2 months of ‘post bank’ haha!).

    1. Hi Gym, I do hope they give me a great offer but will have to see what they do in writing!
      My partner and I share all house expenses, mostly 50/50. the grocery I report is the full amount and I pay part of it. We upgraded quite a bit when we moved in together and my share is costing me about the same as what I used to pay on my own. (not sure I covered it before so not blaming your mom brain!)
      My $20 bank fee covers all my accounts, a small safety deposit box and my VISA fee. They waive the fees once in a while when I ask (I haven’t done so for a while). Overall the fee seems reasonable?
      I definitely don’t have 2 months posting schedule done! Sometimes I get something ready ahead of time but I don’t feel like posting about that specific topic when it’s time to post:( I don’t know how you do it with a baby at home!

  5. wow great report Caroline.

    nice dividend income and rental incomes. annoying that the tenant didnt call ya until it leaked downstairs though!

    very cool about Australia. thats one of my top places id like to go.

    keep it up, great savings rate.


  6. @Caroline: You have really done some good work with your dividends income stream! As for taking a break from blogging, I try to take my normal work vacations as blog vacations as well. I have not been 100% in doing that, but looking forward to getting more time off this summer. Good luck on your job expectations!

    1. Hi Enoch, yes it’s seems to make more sense to get out in the summer. How to you manage when you take a break? Do you have posts scheduled? Do you let your readers know?

  7. Yeah your right Caroline, blogging can be addicting! It’s fun but a lot of work at the same time, Hopefully that business trip to Australia gave you a nice break from blogging and give you better perceptive on how to balance everything that’s going on(job situation, blogging and the kids).
    Great dividend income increase you have compared from a year ago. Hopefully it keeps up as the year goes on.
    Hope all is well with your job situation and the ‘higher ups’ provide an official proposal soon.

    1. Thanks Kris. I do hope I get that proposal soon, I sent my boss a reminder to get back to me!
      Blogging is so freaking addictive! But as long as it stays fun it’s good:)

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