Author: Early Retirement SG

The Big Short revisited

I watched the film The Big Short again cos it was showing in the hotel room. I wrote about it before https://earlyretirementsg.weebly.com/blog/the-big-short And I felt all depressed all over again. And I wonder why I get depressed… So I thought more about it. And I came down to a couple of points. It’s a complicated network of issues and a lack of responsibility of a lot of people. And it boils down to capitalism and specialization of skills and knowledge, and a lot of conflicts of interest in between. Most normal people just want to live their lives. So...

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Not Enough Time? Just Buy It!

We hear it so often right? People say they don’t have enough time. And most people say they can’t buy time. But the thing is… most of us are already “buying” time. Don’t believe me right? You see, whenever you are buying convenience, you are by right, buying time. Lazy to cook? Too troublesome? Too messy? Buy dinner from downstairs? That’s buying time. Cos when I prepare my meals, I take an hour or so plus another 30 minutes of cooking. But if you buy food, it’s a snap of your fingers and dinner is ready. If you hire...

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28 Feb 2019 Expense update & 12 Month Expense update

Ok, I’m not really going to talk much about 28 Feb 2019 Expenses. I end up saying usually the same thing. Food expenses seemed to be quite high last month. $361.28 I think we were getting a bit sloppy and just decided to go out to eat more than normal. Bought a Taiwan flight for April 2019. $522 Wife bought some lunches for her staff in Feb cos it was Chinese New Year so gift expenses was quite high as well. $151 ​ What’s more interesting is the below table where I tabulated my expenses for the past 12...

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Saving More? Saving Less?

I’m just about ending 10 days in KL. It’s been a long trip and I’ve been spending quite a bit on food. There are a couple of days when we spent S$40 for dinner, which is considered a lot in Malaysian terms. As I spend more on food for these 10 days. I keep thinking to myself. Why do I save on $10-$20 for meals. When I can save so much more if I just don’t follow my wife to Paris? That would straight-out save $1300 at least. It’s like skimping on the small stuff but making poor decisions...

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Life goes on

I apologise that I haven’t been writing much. Life has been… Kinda just moving along and I now understand how people can get so caught up with things that they do daily that they forget about other stuff. I’m not sure if it’s a good thing or a bad thing. Cos it’s kinda like the wind blows and I just move along and I don’t really ponder about things as much as I used to. And interestingly My15HWW seems to have taken a break from writing as well. It’s like when I was working. I really wanted to get...

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Financial Abstraction

I haven’t been posting much recently. Some things have cropped up and I’ve been trying to settle them. Maybe I’ll update everyone when things settle down. Anyway, here’s a good clip to watch. Ever wondered why casinos want people to play using chips? Or why some restaurants like Marche use a card to charge your purchases? ​Or how about online games where people buy “tokens”? ​It’s all similar to what this talk is about. Financial abstraction. Making people less connected with their money so that they don’t feel like they are spending money, so that it’s just a number...

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Expense update 31 Jan 2019

Not going to say much about my expenses this month. It’s pretty normal and expenses is around the same every month. Gift ($155) is a bit high this month as my wife was buying lunch treats for her colleagues/staff/friends who have helped her through the past year. We also ordered a photobook ($15) cos we always do up a photobook for our trips so that we can capture our memories. (see previous post) The end of Feb expense update will be more interesting as I have been tracking my expense for the past year. So I’ll be showing a...

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Lunar New Year : Prosperity or Waste of Money?

It’s the lunar new year period now and many people are done with their spring cleaning and rituals and what not. And everyone wishes and hopes the coming year will be prosperous and good. And so, as usual, I wander around and look and see and observe. Since young, my mum always told me of things to do, things not to do during the CNY period. She would make preparations, buy new stuff, etc… and as I grew older, I noticed this was the norm for most people. ​And she told me not to say unlucky things during the...

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Free Groceries

I haven’t been posting about getting free stuff from Pasir Panjang for a long time. I usually go and collect on Thursdays. But recently I haven’t been taking much stuff cos I have other sources of free food. So I usually go mainly for the fun of it. So today this is what I took home. Its been a long time since I took so much, cos I have an event I have to plan for so I needed more food. Some of these items were labeled as organic, such as the potatoes, carrots, beetroots, corn. I forgot what...

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Are you RICH?

So I was thinking… Just how much does one need to be or feel rich? So I think a bit more… How do I define rich? Well, let’s not talk about the uber rich, so let’s not talk about big bungalows or luxury boats, cos that’s just way out of what most of us are going to be able to achieve. Let’s look at what many people would deem a wealthy life. So I’d think someone rich would be living in a condo or landed property. ($3k per mth or $36k per ann) This person drives a luxury car. ($2k...

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There's no end to Comparing

I received a comment recently. And I was wondering whether I should write about it. But I thought the comment had good learning points. Or at least it made me think more about things. The amazing thing is, sometimes, we can find life lessons in the smallest of things. So commenter Bart compared me to AK71. I don’t read his blog so I went over and skimmed a little bit. Apparently AK71 makes $15k dividend a month. Meaning it’s likely he has a portfolio of around $3m according to my estimations. AND he retired at 30+. Woah! The thing...

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Living like a Pauper to retire young

So in true spirit of my post yesterday, someone gave me a pretty interesting comment. Cos we were talking about people giving excuses about why they can’t retire and here is someone who can’t retire cos he/she wants to be retiring with a lot of money, by picking out a single point which he/she doesn’t seem to agree with. Whereas in most of the FI community, most of us just want… Good enough. Freegan living is like living as a pauper? Now my regular readers know I talk about a Freegan mentality which leads closer to a Freegan lifestyle....

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Early Retirement cannot be achieved

So I hear this comment or some derivative of it. “Early retirement cannot be achieved, It’s not possible, Did you strike the lottery, Are your parents rich, etc…” There are a whole load of comments I get when I talk to people, friends, family, etc… And it’s tiring sometimes. Cos you see, I got to where I am by making many decisions which aren’t mainstream. Studying hard, getting better than average grades, getting into a job paying quite well, keeping expenses super low, being prudent with my spending, buying things within my means, getting a BTO which is considered...

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Defending your Position

I think this may be something that most people don’t really talk about. It’s always been the same story most of the time. Work hard, save more, invest, then plan for early retirement… And somehow, it always stops there. It’s like… the answer magically appears after early retirement and all our problems are settled. That’s hardly the case. It’s pretty much the beginning of the next journey. Most of the time we know how much we need to spend every month, we multiply it by 12, input some rate of return we are expecting for X number of years...

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POSB HDB Loan @ 2.5%

So when I got my HDB couple of years back, we took the POSB HDB Loan instead of the HDB Loan. The interest rate for this POSB Loan is some mix of short term and long term fixed deposits + a fixed percentage. The best part of this loan is that it is maxed at 2.5% for 8 years. For the past 3+ years, the interest rate has been higher than most floating rate loans but lower than 2.5%. It has been slowly increasing the past few years. Recently, I just received a letter from DBS/POSB to tell me...

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