Cello festival Dordrecht

Today I went to the Cello festival, which is held in Dordrecht. We went to see the afternoon show called (f)luister. Two artist played a live show , Maarten Vos and Anne Müller.
First up was Maarten , apart from the cello he had various synthesizers, a Theremin like device , drum machine and effects. Recording his Cello parts and looping them and then improvising with his synthesizers and effects. Very cool ! For some people in the audience maybe a bit too electronic. For me a perfect combo.

Maarten Vos(photo: D. Slot ©)

Check out his soundcloud page, Maarten Vos soundcloud.

Next up was Anne, she was amazing, looping different parts and adding layers to make a composition. I especially liked the last part of the show were she made a bass like loop and added lot’s of cool extra stuff with her voice and tapping on the cello. Very cool indeed.

Found a cool song on soundcloud, a collaboration with Nils Frahm. Nils Frahm and Anne Muller
Anne Muller(photo: D. Slot ©)

Google adsense

Well, I like Google use it a lot. Today I put a google adsense on my page. Let’s see if it generates something. Hopefully enough to someday buy 1 Google share ;).
Or buy some other shares which pay out dividend , since that is not something Google does.

For now let’s see what happens.

Apple dividend & additions to my portfolio.

Ok, so one of my first purchases in my account was Apple. Some time ago I lusted over a new Ipad , then I thought wait, let’s buy a few stocks. Since I don’t really need an Ipad.

This was before I was thinking about dividend investing and so sort. Now the coincidence is that last week I received some Apple dividend’s.

It’s not a lot but he it still beats the interest on my savings account. And I think it’s more fun.

Now I am thinking about getting more serious about my dividend income. I have a few ideas. First one is Shell ( RDSA) , which is an oil company. Since it pays a very nice dividend ($1,50 per year) I am thinking of buying a few shares. The price seems reasonable. Second is Unilever, dividend is € 1,14 per share, and it has most of the top ranking food brands out there. So maybe I will buy some next month.

This is still a work in progress, but nonetheless a fun exercise.

I also bought some Vanguard dividend appreciation ETF’s. Let’s see how that works out. Meanwhile I am figuring out how to make nice graphs and sheets to show you.

Now what, step 2

Following my discovery of the need to be financially aware and do something about my pension, I took the first step of getting rid of some of my mortgage.

Which is good and saves some money every month. But it does not generate any income. Only when I sell the house the money becomes available again and that’s not something I want to do.

So I was looking for a way to get some of my savings directed at some form of automated income. Luckily there is the internet.

Looking around at the internet I found a few options to do so. First there are ETF’s , dodgy sounding those 3 letter shorts. Looks like loosing your money.

Well that’s actually not the case. An ETF is an Exchange traded fund, which exactly follow’s an underlying market or part of an industry or commodity. Or some other combination.

They are reasonably cheap and there are ETF’s that follow dividend paying company’s. Which is interesting since I am looking for a way to generate income in the future. There are a lot of ETF’s and company’s offering them. One of the bigger ones is Vanguard . Which offer dividend ETF’s.

Another nice thing is that you don’t have to worry about knowing which company’s you want for your investment portfolio, that’s all being done for you. And they are relatively cheap. You can simply buy a few every month and watch how it goes.

Another possibility is too invest in company’s yourself. There are a lot of investment method’s but from what I read so far , Dividend investing is very suitable if you want to generate an income from your investments. You are trying to figure out which company’s have been giving out dividend’s for a considerable amount of time. And are solid enough to keep on doing this for the foreseeable  future. And of course  don’t cost an arm and a leg.

The downside of this strategy is it requires way more thinking on my part and it costs more in terms of fees when buying the shares. And more starting up capital.

It can be a hobby, could be fun. For now I choose ETF’s and will see how that plays out. In the meantime I am reading up on dividend investing and general investing stuff, while listening to some good music.

Keep you guys posted.

Funkstörung Additional productions

Additional productions

Last week I rediscoverd Funkstörung. One of the electronic bands I discovered thru Napster. Yes that was a long time ago. It started with the Reunited (Reunixed by Funkstörung) song.

I was looking for Reunited by the Wu tang clan. And there it was so out of curiosity I downloaded it. I thought it was amazing.

Some time after I bought the album on CD. As I really like to have a physical copy if I like something. More Funkstörung followed after that.

Nowadays my favorite track is the Björk All Is Full Of Love  remix. It gets me in a dreamy state of mind.

Lot’s of other awesome remixes on this one. Listen to it and be amazed. Timeless pieces of music.

Laurent Garnier Home Box

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A couple of weeks ago I got the Home box by Laurent Garnier. Everyone who likes Techno and House will have heard about this French DJ and producer.

The box consists of a CD and 4 records. All neatly packed in a card board box. Must admit so far I have only listened to the cd. Which is great. My favorite track is Bang ! There is a nice poster as well 🙂

The box set is sold out but I think just the cd is still available. Get it !

Now what, step 1.

A couple of days ago I wrote a bit about my own personal retirement gap. Long story short, not much is certain when it comes to my retirement.

Now what, let’s see. It got me thinking about the stuff I can control. So I opened up good old excel and started gathering all my financial info.

Boring but very necessary. So where does my money go. Not surprisingly most of the money goes to my mortgage, (health) insurance, electricity, gas and food (including eating out, drinking in bars etc.). Your basic stuff.

Luckily not all was bad, I have some savings and I tend to save each month. That’s were I did my first discovery. My mortgage costs me 5,4% every year. My savings account netted me 1% every year.

Stupid me , should have made extra payments to minimize my mortgage. which will save me money now and in the future.

Step 1 figured out. Paying off the mortgage.

That’s all good but it doesn’t give me an income in the future , if I pay off all of it the money will be in the house so to speak.

Now I have to figure out how to get a steady income that can pay for my basic needs now and in the future without having to work for it.

Retirement gap

There is such a thing as a retirement gap. The experts claim this is due to insufficient pension build up. Recently it came up as I was checking my personal finances. So there it is a potential financial gap in the future.

Question is, how big is this gap?

I can’t really figure this out. Because I don’t know what monthly income my current pension funds will buy me the moment I retire. How come ?

Well from what I understand , it has everything to do with the interest rates. And more importantly the interest rate the moment you (or I) in this case retire.

The moment I retire, the saved money in the retirement funds will become available to purchase a retirement income.

Which gives me a income based on the calculation “Amount of money in retirement funds * interest rate”. Which is good if the rate is 12 % and very bad if it’s 2%. I might oversimplify it at the moment , but this is what I understand so far.

OK here comes another part of the gap, problem is the interest rate which we calculate the amount of money to put in the pension funds with nowadays is 4%. Well we all know what we get in our savings account. Closer to 0,9%.

Which adds another gap to the gap. So I already save too little for an income of which I don’t know or I can’t calculate how high (or low) it will be.

So lot’s of confusion. This got me thinking, basically I have no way of determining how high my pension will be in the future or how much I will have to save in my pension fund for a nice cosy retirement.

Next question , what is a pension ? No expert here, but it seems to me we can define it as: Income without the need to work for it.

Sounds good to me, why wait for it until I retire ? Let’s start now.

Which I did, I will elaborate on this in another entry.