Author: Early Retirement SG

Expense update 30 June 2018

This month’s expense is pretty interesting. Cos I was in Paris from 1-9 June. Special Expenses is kinda high this month cos of the Paris trip. The Biz expense of $492.40 is for food and transport in Paris, a proportion of this is covered. A large bulk of the Gifts expense is also due to the Paris trip and we bought some stuff for a couple of family members. Also, some part of this is covered. There’s also a couple of bucks in Gift expense where we bought lunch for friends. Nothing too extravagant. Dental expense is a night...

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It's time to UPGRADE!!!

These comments have been going around the Whatsapp chat with my neighbours. We are around 3 years into our minimum occupation period (MOP) so there’s a number of people who are thinking about UPGRADING! What a wonderful topic… The story is the same. We have made a certain amount due to the appreciation of our HDB. It’s time to use this profit to downpay another property and take up another loan. They have even started calculating how much loan they are able to take with their current income. Although we still have another 2 more years left before any...

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What to do with a $220 restaurant voucher?

We have a $220 restaurant voucher. It’s one voucher so we have to use it in one sitting. We were considering the options which we could best utilize the voucher. 1) We could treat the $220 like cash and be really really stingy with it. Now, this place isn’t cheap, we wouldn’t be here if not for the voucher. Around $25-$35 per dish. But we could order  stuff which are of good enough value to price. You know, like fried rice, a roast chicken, stuff like that. BUT, if we did that, we would end up with A LOT...

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Use money if you want less

The freegan community has this saying… If you want less stuff, use money to buy.  For newer readers who didn’t follow me on my freegan stories. Here is how I got started and the string of posts following the initial journey. As I’ve been traveling for sometime, I have been missing out on some activities. And recently I’ve pretty much settled down for a couple of weeks so I thought I’ll do some stuff. Recently, my neighbours have been raving about this new bakery which they get their breads/buns from. They described a couple of their breads and how...

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A show that changed my perspective

I like things that change my perspective. Or give me a new way to look at things. I somehow chanced upon this serial… Westworld It’s about a futuristic theme park called “Westworld” And it’s set in this wild wild west theme and run by robots or artificial intelligence. The robots are preprogrammed to go around their daily lives like normal people in the wild west era. And humans come to Westworld to do anything they want. So they come to live their most innermost desires. Murder, rape, pillage, whatever. It’s expensive… $40,000 per day, in future dollars. The robots...

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Everyone has their own struggles

I’m sure most of you know about the deaths of Anthony Bourdain and Kate Spade. And more often than not, it’s likely depression. And you know what? Who knows anyone really? Everyone has their own struggles. I was flipping through Facebook the other day. There was this guy… Always traveling. Australia, KL, SG, he was doing well in his business, going out having drinks with his friends and staff, going for events, meeting important people… and I wonder… I know a jet setting life isn’t fun. Well, at least it isn’t fun to me. When I was younger, I...

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If all good things are expensive then…

If all good things are expensive then… All expensive things are good? Obviously not right? But yet… it’s a common fallacy, especially if we don’t know much about the product. I was reading up about this… why people like to spend money on expensive things and believe that expensive things are good. ​The answer is a mix of psychology and stupidity. I’ll copy and paste some stuff off the internet cos if I just post the link some people won’t bother to click it. (Cos usually I won’t, I’ll prefer the text to be in the page I’m in.)...

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What do I bother to do all these? (Time version)

I did a previous post on Why I bother to do all these stuff to save money and how much it’s worth. And Daniel Tay from Freegan/SG Food Rescue commented to say I should do a version for time as well. I thought this was an interesting perspective so… I’ll cover the 6 points which I mentioned in my previous post and also other factors of working and earning money to “buy” convenience. Stuff I did for my previous post… 1) Cashflow management to optimize bank interest (Savings/Earnings : $2,400) 2) Credit card spend to get rebates (Savings/Earnings : $800)...

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Life's too short to take it…???

Fast or Slow? Life’s too short to take it fast… Life’s too short to take it slow… What do you think? I’ve pretty much come down to the conclusion that for myself, life’s too short to take it fast. I wanna chill, relax. I really don’t want to be rushing around all day. Nowadays when I go to Tanjong Pagar area to meet my friends for a meal or something, I feel that the place is soooo… rushed, everyone is busy… and yet for what? Doing things that have no real meaning but yet it gives them money. People...

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Why do you bother to do all these

I was recently asked. “Why do you bother to do all these. You don’t save a lot, you could get so much more if you found a job” I mean like… It’s very little returns but a lot of small little things. Let’s not talk about investments. Cos that one a number of normal people do it… But like, 1) Cashflow management using the credit cards, this nets me the additional 2.43% interest from the UOB One account. This is just under $100 per account per month. ($200 x 12 per annum, total $2400) 2) Hitting minimum spend of...

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Case Study : An HDB problem

Ok! Finally I’ve got some free time. I’ve been back from France for around a week, but something happened on my wife’s family side so I’ve been busy helping them out til now. And I didn’t have any free time til now and hopefully I’ll be back to my usual routine from now onwards for a couple of weeks before our next flight. So a reader sent me his current situation and I’ll see if I can share some comments. I’m not here to tell him what to do. Just sharing some comments and opinions. He’ll have to decide...

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I get reminded how fortunate Singaporeans are

As I walk around Paris and take the Metro… I get reminded how fortunate Singaporeans are. And so many Singaporeans don’t realize it. Many Singaporeans own the latest phone. Not necessarily an iPhone, but a recently released phone. In Paris, I see many people are still using iPhone 4 or 5, I see some using those old school flip phones. I don’t see many people own branded bags, LV, Gucci, etc… They just don’t have the money to buy it after tax, rent, food, transport. Whereas in Singapore, everyone’s got an expensive bag. Look in the MRT, the aunties...

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Expense update 31 May 2018

It was quite interesting to have so many people coming out to comment in the last post. A lot of people look at CPF in their own different way. The main thing is that most people use CPF to buy their homes and use up their free cash on hand for lifestyle purposes. Many people who follow this blog highlight that if people invest their free cash in more than 2.5%, the person would be better off. This is true. I absolutely agree with this. However, I wonder… How many people actually actively save every month. Next, even if...

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What is the real cost of financing your HDB?

One of the most important points of this is the usage of CPF vs loan to pay for the house. I’m starting to have the idea that one should as best as possible pay off the loan as soon as possible with CASH. Using CPF to pay for the HDB MIGHT not be a great idea. *Special thanks to Robin for highlighting this* Think about it. Let’s say… Every year we pay $10,000 using cash for our mortgage. We lose $200 to interest. Assuming 2% interest rate. And if we use CASH. The story ends here. But assume we...

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What is value?

So as I wrote my previous post. And it slowly came to light that my HDB isn’t really an asset. It doesn’t grow in value. It’s always depreciating due to the lease. If I want to extend the lease by moving to another area of Singapore, I will have to give up size and location. Eventually as time passes, assuming I can live forever and keep trying to extend my lease by downgrading, I will end up in a super small place maybe just enough for a bed in the far ends of Singapore. If it’s a house for...

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