Income investors want stocks that pay attractive dividends. More importantly, though, they want stocks that they can count on. After all, they're usually depending on those dividends to help pay the bills.

To be sure, even the most rock-solid dividend stock has some level of risk. And oftentimes, the higher the stock's dividend yield the more risky the stock is. However, there are some stocks with relatively high yields that I think you can count on to deliver positive long-term returns. Here are my three highest-conviction dividend stocks with a yield of at least 3%.

Dividends written on a chalkboard behind a piggy bank.

Image source: Getty Images.

Brookfield Renewable

You might wonder why I'd include Brookfield Renewable (BEP -1.71%) (BEPC -1.05%) on my list. After all, the renewable energy stock lags well behind the major market indexes so far this year and is even in negative territory. I'm confident about Brookfield Renewable's future and its dividend, though. 

I have no doubt whatsoever that demand for renewable energy will increase in the coming years. There are far too many governments and major corporations seeking to reduce their carbon emissions to think otherwise. It also helps a lot that solar and wind are now the most cost-effective sources of bulk power generation.

This rising demand should serve as a major tailwind for Brookfield Renewable. The company certainly anticipates that will be the case. Its development pipeline of 27,000 megawatts is more than twice the size of its current installed capacity of 21,000 megawatts.

Brookfield Renewable's dividend yield currently tops 3%. The company has increased its distribution by a compound annual growth rate of 6% over the last 20 years and targets annual growth of between 5% and 9%. I fully expect this stock to deliver double-digit total returns for investors for years to come -- just as it has over the last couple of decades.

Easterly Government Properties

Unlike the two other high-conviction dividend stocks on this list, I don't own shares of Easterly Government Properties (DEA -1.71%). However, if I were retired or otherwise needing to rely on steady dividend income, this real estate investment trust (REIT) would definitely be in my portfolio.

I can't describe Easterly's business any better than its chairman of the board, Darrell Crate, did on the company's Q1 conference call. He stated:

We're not a complicated story. We keep it simple. We purchase and develop the U.S. government-leased assets and pass along the stable cash flows and superior tenant credit quality to our shareholders, generating strong risk-adjusted returns. And with a highly actionable pipeline, we believe we'll be able to continue to execute on our original thesis for many years to come.

You won't find a lower-risk tenant than the U.S. government. As Crate mentioned, the company also has a solid pipeline of new opportunities for acquiring and leasing properties.

Easterly's dividend yield stands north of 4.8%. I look for the company to keep the yield in that ballpark while also delivering 4% or so annual growth in funds from operations. 

Innovative Industrial Properties

I've held my favorite dividend stock of all for last. Innovative Industrial Properties (IIPR 0.19%) is a REIT focused on the medical cannabis industry. Yes, a pot stock (of sorts) is my highest-conviction dividend stock.

IIP's dividend yields a little over 3% right now. It's been a lot higher than that in the past but is lower now because the stock has soared more than 440% over the last three years. (You're probably understanding now why it's my favorite.)

To borrow Darrell Crate's description of Easterly, IIP isn't a complicated story. It buys properties from medical cannabis operators and then leases those properties back to the tenants. And then it does it again. This "rinse-and-repeat" business model has fueled astronomical growth in IIP's revenue and profits.

I think that IIP could realistically double or more over the next five years. The company currently owns 72 properties in 18 states. That represents only a sliver of its potential opportunity. With medical cannabis markets expanding across the U.S., I'm convinced that IIP will keep up its winning ways.