My First OPF Jouney Post

Hi Everyone. My name is Pete, and id like to think of myself as a fairly well traveled personal finance explorer, tinkerer, optimizer. I have always been fascinated by how people make a living, how they chose to spend their money, time, and knowledge. I thought i would start by sharing a little bit about myself and how i got here.

It all started one morning when i saw my father reading the newspaper. the page was covered with letters and numbers and fractions of shares. This was of course, the business section of the paper, before online trading, before Yahoo Finance, before the internet had taken hold. I asked him what he was looking at. He said “i am looking at the stock price of International Paper (IP)” (this was the parent company of the distributor he worked for) He followed up with saying, “i own a lot of stock in the company and i was checking the dividend”. This is where it started to get interesting. “Whats a dividend?” i asked. He responded with, “a dividend is when a company pays you money to own a piece of their company” This is when my head exploded. “HOW MUCH?!?” i asked. “about 30 cents or so” he replied. I could not believe what i was hearing. I know this knowledge seems commonplace to us now, but to a 10 year old, this was earth-shattering. “Do they pay you once a year?” i asked. My father then told me that the company paid the dividend 4 times a year. And so began my love affair with dividends, interest, and passive income streams.

Ever since, i have been trying to find ways to “optimize” and find assets that could grow in value, create streams of income, and work for me while i spent my time at school, sports and eventually work. stocks, bonds, preferred shares, rental properties, and eventually absentee small businesses. One thing we can all agree on is that we can’t be in more than one place at once, you can only work one job. However, our assets can. Money and time that we invest can work for us. My goal is to investigate and research them all. Hopefully with your help, we can learn from each other, our experiences and avoid the pitfalls along the way.

What are some of your first experiences with money making assets? Was there moment in your life that helped crystallize your desire for independence? I would love to hear your thoughts and would appreciate any questions, comments or ideas. thank you and i look forward to hearing from you!

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