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The investor

Dylan Parker

Occupation

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Mortgage agent, property manager and private investor

The portfolio

Holdings include real estate properties, private mortgages and cannabis stocks.

The investor

"I saved my first $1,000 from my paper route at the age of 12," says Dylan Parker, now in his 30s. "I invested it in a mutual fund, with the help of my mother."

Now, Mr. Parker and his wife invest in rental properties. They also hold private mortgage investments, which are loans made by investors to real estate owners who can't get bank loans to tide them over a rough patch. Lending rates are often above 10 per cent and the loans are secured against the owner's property.

In his personal portfolio (separate from his wife), he is focused on the Canadian cannabis industry. With legalization on the way, cannabis companies could see big jumps in revenues and income.

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How he invests his personal portfolio

"Currently, my approach is very aggressive," Mr. Parker says. "I feel when opportunity arises, make as much as possible while you can … There's only a certain amount of time that you have the ability to jump on opportunities to really profit."

Risking only savings that could be lost, he started to aggressively invest in the Canadian cannabis industry a few months ago, buying shares in Canopy Growth Corp. and Mettrum Health Corp. His portfolio has more than doubled in value over the past two months. "When stocks are being sold based on speculation, and not real value, they tend to be very volatile," he observes. So, Mr. Parker is trading the highs and lows, but once cannabis stocks "settle down," he will revert to a buy-and-hold approach.

He will also be looking at ways to diversify with dividend and blue-chip stocks. And he plans to invest more in private mortgages: As a member of a team of mortgage specialists in Ottawa, he has gained some expertise in the evaluation of such investments.

Best move

Gaining an early position in a new market (cannabis production and distribution) that "will be worth billions."

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Worst move

When he started investing, he bought safe stocks. If he had trusted his gut and taken more risk, he would have made more money, Mr. Parker says.

Advice

"Take advantage of opportunities," he recommends.

As Shakespeare wrote:

There is a tide in the affairs of men,

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Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune …"

Want to be in Me and My Money? Contact Larry MacDonald at mccolumn@yahoo.com.

Alyssa Gowing is a 27-year-old homeowner who follows a strict budget and finds creative ways to save money in order to afford her mortgage
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