I collected 3 dividends while I wasn’t paying attention

Reason dividend-growth investing is the bomb No. 116: the payments are automatic.

Duh. That’s what you said, right? Duh. It is a pretty basic truth, one that’s pretty much common knowledge, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a great reason to invest in companies that pay dividends.

If you own a share before the ex-dividend date, you get the dividend. It’s that simple.

When I was still new to this whole investing thing, around this time last year, I would pay super close attention to the ex-dividend dates and dividend payment dates. If I knew a payment was scheduled to hit my account, you better believe I was checking to make sure it was there after the market closed for the day. I didn’t care if it was for $0.06. If I was supposed to get it, I checked.

Now that I write posts about all the dividends I receive, I still check on an almost nightly basis. I don’t want to be redundant or bore you guys, but I want to show you that small, consistent payments can add up over time. I don’t have any monster numbers to share just yet, although I have earned more than $200 in dividend payments since the beginning of the year. I also set a record for monthly dividend income in August, which was pretty awesome.

Last night, though, I didn’t check. It’s not that I didn’t want to – I love writing these posts – but it just kind of slipped my mind. I was running around with my boys during the day and, by the time my wife and I got all three of them settled into their beds for the night, I just wanted to relax.

Which is what I did. I grabbed a beer (I’ve been loving the stuff from Cleveland-based Platform Beer Company lately), hung out with the woman for a bit on the front porch and caught the tail end of the New England-Kansas City game after that. I hate the Patriots, by the way. It was nice to see them stumble in the opener.

Anyway, I checked my account this morning and noticed three more dividends hit my portfolio when I wasn’t paying attention – $1.46 worth.

Yesterday’s Dividends

Unilever: UL paid me $0.41 for the one share I own. The payment was for $0.03 more than the one I received last quarter – almost an 8% raise.

Discover Financial Services: DFS paid me $0.35 for the one share I own.

Valero: VLO paid me $0.70 for the one share I own.

OK, I feel better now that I have that out of the way. I just had to post.

March on!

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