Passive Income Update: September 13

Instead of spending the start of every month preparing for (and boring you with) both the expenditure and passive income updates, I have decided to provide the latter only during the middle of the month, like now. This way, I am able to use more accurate figures (Sep statements that arrive only in early October) and also provide the amount of dividends I actually received for the past month. After … [Read more...]

Book Review: The Secret Of Shelter Island

I still recall that day (more than 3 years ago) when I was planning a quiet weekday afternoon (one of the perks of university life) in the lovely Jurong Regional Library. I was originally looking out for some fiction but I still found myself checking out the personal finance section first, even though I had already read most of the collection by then. If you’re a regular to the books with … [Read more...]

Aviva’s Term Insurance Promotion

My independent financial planner often sends me letters and emails to update me on some of the latest promotions on insurances and investments. Most of the time, I would just take a quick look before crumpling up the leaflets or hitting that “delete” button. After all, I presume myself to be already adequately covered and prefer to manage my own investments. However, earlier last week, … [Read more...]

How We Keep Our Insurance Expenses LOW

After sharing on our costs of insurance of about $160/month (translates to <$2,000 a year) in our fixed expenses post, we got several comments from readers (with good intentions, I must say) that appear to suggest that there is a strong possibility that we were under insured, just like many Singaporeans. Many studies like this and that conclude that Singaporeans are not well-insured even … [Read more...]

Understanding The Basics Of Insurance

Warning: Plenty of economics lingo in this post. It’s quite surprising to find that I haven’t really mentioned much about insurance since the birth of this blog. Afterall, besides having a strong interest in the subject (motivated by previous negative experiences), I was also an Economics major who even took a module on Health Economics. So short of claiming to be an expert in this … [Read more...]

Expenditure Update: September 13

Yes, it’s time to wake up to the breakdown of our discretionary expenses as September has ended! Expenses-wise, this is a pretty good month as we spent $3,153, which is also well below the target of $3,500. And even after including last month’s higher expenses, the running average is still a healthy $3,427. A case of what gets measured gets contained? We shall see in the next few months. … [Read more...]

What If I Need The Money 3 Years Later?!

As mentioned in many of the pages and posts on this blog, we started a Regular Savings Plan (RSP) with Philip Sharebuilder back in Nov 2010. To minimize the monthly fees of $6 to 1% of the investment, we also committed $600 to this product every month. Since the plan offered us the option of choosing two counters without additional charges incurred, we allocated $500 to the STI ETF and $100 to one … [Read more...]

Counter-productive For Performing Students To Have Tuition?!

Tuition has been a hot topic for the past week and having been a full-time tutor for the bulk of my university days (3 years to be exact), I also have some strong views on this hot potato issue. This perennial issue made the headlines (once again) after Senior Minister of State for Education Indranee Rajah mentioned that tuition was unnecessary. Her argument was that for weaker students, … [Read more...]

How’s The Blog Doing So Far?

Since the middle of this year, I have been thinking about starting a finance blog. And exactly two months ago, I handed almost $200 bucks of cash to Bluehost to create this website. This was my first attempt at blogging and I had to justify my purchase to Mrs 15 HWW. After all, I could have easily opted for free alternatives with BlogSpot & WordPress, right? I bullshitted my way through. I … [Read more...]

Money Bomb 2: The Renovation

Previously, I blogged about Money Bomb 1: The Wedding where I shared how we actually budgeted for our wonderful wedding. As the title suggests, that is likely to be the first of many money bombs I will be sharing (it also helps that the article was pretty popular). So since it is still relatively fresh in our minds, here we are with the second money bomb: The Renovation. By depicting them as … [Read more...]

Financial Behaviour That Just Doesn’t Make Sense

Economics isn’t named the dismal science for no good reason. In terms of the accuracy of its predictions, it has more in common with Astrology than Physics or Chemistry. Seriously, if you had based your investment decisions on their predictions on when the economy would turn, I wouldn’t be surprised to find you living in the streets today. The problem is, these economic models are … [Read more...]

Get Rich With…Reading!

Unlike children of today, I didn’t have a computer, cell phone, tablet or even internet access until I was a teenager. And guess what? I am not complaining. I consider myself lucky to grow up in an age when there weren’t that many entertainment options. Otherwise, I probably wouldn’t love to read as much as I do now and consequently, my English would not be good enough to churn out posts like … [Read more...]

3 Reasons Not To Pay Off Your Mortgage Early

“Dear, are you sure we should take a 30-year home loan? Perhaps we should seriously consider a 25-year or even a 20-year loan instead. With our incomes, the higher monthly instalments shouldn’t be a problem. Otherwise, we could use some of our cash reserves to reduce the loan quantum. Somehow, stretching this debt to the time when we turn 55 doesn’t seem that great an idea to me” Mrs 15 HWW was … [Read more...]

Mr Fredricksen Should Have Saved More For His Trip!

After the Aladdin parody, I am on a roll with cartoons/movies and today, we shall be picking up some simple personal finance lessons from the movie “UP”. “UP” is one of my favourite movies in recent years. Its really a heartwarming show and I happened to have watched it a few times already. The best parts are actually the opening scenes which never fail to induce moisture in my eyes. I have … [Read more...]

Aladdin’s Choice: Superior Saving Rate Or Superior Investment Return?

Agrabah had fallen on hard times and Aladdin* decided to leave in search of better pastures for him and his wife, Jasmine. He decided to come to Singapore since knew that he would have little problems qualifying for Permanent Residency (PR). Afterall, he was a famous celebrity like Jackie, Jet and Gong Li. It also helped that the wages were relatively high for an officer worker in Singapore. After … [Read more...]

Passive Income Update: August 13

Not surprisingly, the My Passive Income page is by far the most popular page in my blog. Understandably so, since everybody loves taking a peek or two at each other’s assets to better benchmark themselves with others. That’s what we all did back in army. Remember those times when we were showering? ;p On hindsight, I also realised I did quite a shoddy job for that page. There … [Read more...]

Expenditure Update: August 13

In a perfect world, I would be working a 15 hour work week in a job I love and take pride in. Productivity would be sky high and I will still be justifying a salary of $3k to $5k, even though I work so much less. And instead of making myself fat at restaurants or spending my still hard-earned money at malls, the leisure time is spent having fun with friends/relatives in my home or better … [Read more...]

Our Fixed Expenses

I hate hypocrites. These people say one thing, but do another. No, I am not refering to the girlfriend that says “Anything’s fine for dinner” but gives you a frown when you suggest MacDonald’s, Ding Tai Fung or Sushi Tei. And I am also not talking about parents who spend their free time watching TV or playing mahjong but ask their children to study or read more story books. Ooops. I am actually … [Read more...]

Making HDBs More Affordable

In case you have the misconception that I am one of those anti-PAP Singaporeans after reading my views on the proposed Medisave Life and PSLE changes, let me correct it with the next sentence. The government has to be commended for introducing the latest set of housing measures to provide Singaporeans with “More Help, Stronger Support and Better Homes”. After reading HDB’s press release today, … [Read more...]

Take Advantage Of The Volatile Market Through Dollar Cost Averaging

For the past couple of weeks, some Asian currencies have been hit pretty badly and the Singapore dollar climbed to record highs against many of our neighbours’ currencies. Since I go to Johor Bahru pretty often, I took a leisurely walk to Change Alley during lunch time last Friday to check out the exchange rates. Unfortunately, most people thought the same way too and the place was super … [Read more...]