If you are investing in shares, what do you look for? Well, I would say a key component is growth: increasing revenues and increasing earnings. And I would expect that a substantial proportion of those earnings to be paid out as dividends, leading to a high income for the stock.

So here I have picked three companies that have prospects for growth and a high dividend yield. One is a pharmaceutical company, one is a house builder, and the third  is an insurance firm, and I think there has never been a better time to buy all 3.

Treading water

In the 1980s, I remember people talking about chemical company ICI as a barometer for British industry. If Britain did well, then so did ICI.

I feel a similar way about pharma giant GlaxoSmithKline (LSE: GSK) today. Its share price movements have tracked those of the FTSE 100, almost as if the index and the firm were running a 3-legged race.

During the torrid bear market of the past 16 years, GSK, like the FTSE 100, has been treading water, some times moving a little up, some times moving a little down. But as the next great bull market gradually gets underway, I expect this firm to rise, just as the FTSE 100 will.

A 2016 P/E ratio of 16.61 shows the stock is reasonably priced, and their is a dividend yield of 5.49% that adds to GSK’s appeal.

Unbeatable combination

Britain’s economy has recovered strongly, and this has led to a resurgent housing market. That’s why I have long advocated investing in house builders such as Persimmon (LSE: PSN). After the dark night of the Credit Crunch, house builder share prices have been recovering strongly. And yet you can still buy in at bargain prices.

Persimmon’s 2016 P/E ratio is predicted to be just 11.11, with a dividend yield of 5.19%. This is an unbeatable combination of growth and income, and I think this company would be a worthy addition to your portfolio.

Highly cash generative

The insurance industry, once seen as unexciting, has undergone a series of revolutions. Firstly, as phone-based insurance took over from traditional brokers, and then as online insurance firms and price comparison sites have grabbed much of the business.

Admiral Group (LSE: ADM) is one of the leading price comparison and online insurance companies worldwide, owning brands such as confused.com, Admiral and Diamond in the UK, as well as websites in Europe and North America.

This promises to be a fast growing area, as Admiral’s international businesses follow the lead from the UK, which has perhaps the most advanced insurance market in the world. And this company is well placed to take advantage.

That’s why Admiral’s share price has been trending steadily upwards, and a 2016 P/E ratio of 19.05 may seem fully priced, but the well-covered dividend yield of 5.01% shows that this is a highly cash generative firm that has bright long-term prospects.

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It's a well-known company with a brilliant track record and an impressive growth rate. And we at the Fool think that this is an excellent opportunity.

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Prabhat Sakya has no position in any shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK owns shares of and has recommended GlaxoSmithKline. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.