How to Build a Passive Income Portfolio Starting With Just $6,500

Looking to build a passive income portfolio? There’s no shortage of great options on the market, including these three stellar picks.

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Establishing a passive income stream is a dream that all investors share. Unfortunately, those who are new to investing often struggle unnecessarily with the idea of how to build a passive income portfolio.

In fact, building a passive income portfolio isn’t as hard as it may seem, and can be kicked off with a small amount like $6,500.

Pick the right stocks that can provide income for years

Finding a great stock that pays out an insane yield isn’t going to help your portfolio over the longer term. This is why it’s important to build a passive income portfolio with stocks that can continue to provide income for years.

A great example of this is Bank of Montreal (TSX:BMO). BMO is the oldest of Canada’s big banks and has been paying out dividends for nearly two centuries without fail. That’s an insane amount of time spanning downturns, conflicts, wars, and boom years.

Today, BMO offers investors a quarterly yield that works out to 5.5%. This means that your initial $6,500 outlay will provide just over $350 income in the first year.

That’s not enough to retire on, but it will provide some growth each year through reinvestments to help build a passive income portfolio.

Select defensive stocks that also provide growth

Adding a stock that can provide some defensive appeal is always a great option for investors. Finding one that can provide both defensive appeal and income-earning potential is even rarer.

Fortis (TSX:FTS) manages to do both of those while also boasting significant growth potential.

For those unfamiliar with the stock, Fortis is one of the largest utilities in North America. Utilities boast one of the most stable business models on the market. In short, utilities provide a service that is backed by very long-term regulated contracts.

In other words, as long as Fortis provides that utility service, it continues to generate a stable and recurring revenue stream. And that stability allows Fortis to invest in growth initiatives and pay out a very handsome dividend.

As of the time of writing, the yield on Fortis’ quarterly dividend is a respectable 4.20%. Investors looking to build a passive income portfolio with $6,500 can expect to generate a first-year income of $270.

Prospective investors should also note that Fortis has provided investors with an annual bump to that dividend for an incredible 50 consecutive years.

That fact, along with its defensive business model, makes Fortis a must-have for any well-diversified portfolio.

Don’t forget the yield!

One final option to consider to help build a passive income portfolio is BCE (TSX:BCE). BCE is one of Canada’s largest telecoms, boasting both a reliable subscription-based business and a massive media arm.

Like Fortis, BCE is a defensive business that while not immune from market volatility, can handily weather financial downturns. In fact, the defensive appeal of telecoms like BCE has grown significantly in recent years since the pandemic started.

Turning to income, BCE has been paying out quarterly dividends for over a century without fail. Today, the yield on offer is an insane 7.25%. This makes the stock one of the better-paying options on the market.

Investors should also note that this defensive gem, like much of the market, trades down in 2023. Specifically, BCE is down by 10% year to date, making it a superb buy at a decent discount.

Build your passive income portfolio today

There are two key takeaways if you’re looking to build your passive income portfolio.

First is the common misconception that you need a massive amount of cash to start. Instead, start small, buy shares over time, and let reinvestments do the rest.

Second, the earlier you start, the better. Markets will rise and fall as part of a natural cycle. And while there’s never a perfect moment to buy or the ability to time the market, starting early can provide a massive boost over time.

CompanyRecent PriceNo. of SharesDividendTotal PayoutFrequency
Bank of Montreal$106.9660$5.88$352.80Quarterly
Fortis$56.25115$2.36$271.40Quarterly
BCE$53.37121$3.87$468.27Quarterly

In my opinion, the three stocks mentioned above can help build a passive income for any well-diversified portfolio.

Buy them, hold them, and watch your future income grow.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium service or advisor. We’re Motley! Questioning an investing thesis — even one of our own — helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer, so we sometimes publish articles that may not be in line with recommendations, rankings or other content.

Fool contributor Demetris Afxentiou has positions in BCE and Fortis. The Motley Fool recommends Fortis. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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