Author: Singapore's Budget Babe

I Need Your Help for the Blog Awards!

  Hey guys, Work has been a bit crazy recently so I haven’t had much time to finish up my next post (on a huge secret for savings that apparently not many Singaporeans know about yet), sorry about that!  On a sidenote though, I just found out today that my blog has made it to the finals of the Singapore Blog Awards 2015 for “Best New Blog” and “Best Individual Blog”. Competition is pretty stiff so I have no expectations about winning, but there’s a section where you can help!   Part of the reason that keeps me writing...

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Why Being Busy Might Be Making You Broke

I learnt a very important lesson last month – being busy is going to cost me my wealth in the long run. You might be thinking, why do I say that? Isn’t being busy one of the best ways to save money? After all, when we’re busy, we have lesser time to spend money on entertainment, frivolous shopping, etc. While that is true, but let’s also consider the other side of the coin. When we’re overscheduled, we’re also more likely to pay for convenience (and other things we barely notice). Last month was an incredibly busy period for me,...

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How To Buy Your Insurance Directly

I wrote about MAS’ Direct Purchase Insurance (DPI) initiative previously here, which allows us to buy basic life insurance products directly instead of having to go through an insurance agent. While for some people, especially those who are not too financially savvy and do not understand much about insurance, insurance agents can helpful, but I personally find them as too much “noise”. What do I mean? I’ve set my mind on purchasing term insurance since a few months back, when I reviewed my ILP and decided it was time to terminate, as it wasn’t worth my while paying anymore (more...

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How To Say No To Expensive Friends

A few days ago, I came across a post on 4 inconsiderate ways Singaporeans pressure their friends to spend money. It highlighted 4 common situations we face, where friends get you to split the bill evenly with them when your share was not equal to theirs, asking you to share cabs, buy new stuff and choose expensive social activities to indulge in as a group. I was discussing this article with a good friend, and asked her how she typically deals with such situations. Her answer made me realize that many people generally do not know how to handle these scenarios...

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Transition

Hi guys! I’ve received a few emails and messages from concerned readers asking where my blog went – apologies if you were affected by the downturn in the last 12 hours! That happened because I screwed up my HTML and the problem has since been fixed. On a another note, I’m also working on a few exciting upcoming initiatives to further push out better financial tips and lifehacks for you guys! I just wanted to say that I’m really thankful for all your support and am super humbled by how Budget Babe has grown since I started it in December....

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Why Money is Not A Priority For Most

The topic of why people don’t care for personal finance has been brought alive through active discussions in the financial bloggers community recently. I really liked this post by a friend of mine, Xeo, where he offers insight into why people don’t care much for this topic at different stages of their lives, until a turning point (typically in their late 30s or 40s) where they wake up one day and realize that it is time to take charge of their personal finances. The problem can be distilled down to PRIORITIES. Life is all about priorities and trade-offs, isn’t it? Given how hectic...

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Utility Cost – What Is Worth Spending On?

In my last post, I shared with you my real secret and mindset that has helped me chalk up my savings easily – the concept of utility cost which I use before I make any purchases. There has been a lot of critics and haters alike on my viral post of how I saved $20,000 in a year, where many chastised me for being cheap, not spending enough, etc. But there is a huge difference between being cheap and being frugal (which I’ll write more on next time). Contrary to what some people think, Budget Babe does indeed spend on certain stuff....

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To Buy Or Not To Buy? Introducing UTILITY COST

It amazes me how up till today, the post you guys seem to like reading the most is still on how I saved $20k last year. Seriously, what about the other posts?! Are they boring :(  Anyway, I wanted to share a little more on my #1 philosophy and mindset towards saving that really helped me to chalk up that $20,000. Contrary to what many readers think, it is not about having a fixed budget or saving huge chunks of money.  It is about saving all the little excesses that accumulate over time to become quite a sum. It is about being...

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Singaporeans Losing Jobs to Foreigners with Fake Degrees?

Some of you might have heard the breaking news recently about IDA having hired an employee with a fake MBA. Combining Singaporeans’ unhappiness over losing jobs to foreigners with our struggle with high tuition fees in education, it is no wonder the locals are unhappy with this matter.  Locals losing jobs to foreigners is bad enough, but losing jobs to foreigners who have faked their “superiority” to us? I highly doubt that IDA’s response was crafted by a PR professional, or if so, then that person must have been not that good at his/her job. A good PR response...

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A Creative Way to Impress a Girl?

Saw this on a friend’s Facebook post this morning. It’s been quite some time since I last did a full-page newspaper ad placement for a client, but I vaguely recall our last 1/4 page ad cost us about $700. (Correct me if my figures are outdated!) Guys, are you spending too much on Singaporean girls? Ok, I’ll concur that it is a pretty sweet and innovative gesture. If this guy can afford it, good for him! But to guys who complain that dating Singaporean girls are costing them a hole in the pocket and yet laud this move, that’s...

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5 Common Job Interview Questions Fresh Graduates Should Expect (and How to Answer Them)

With a few friends graduating soon, I thought I’d write this as a guide to how to excel in answering some common job interview questions. While there are tons of “model answers” out there, remember that your aim is to sound genuine and not have your answers sound rehearsed. In my day job, I also deal a lot with HR and hiring managers in Singapore, so I’ve highlighted the questions I’ve encountered from them before. 1. Tell me about yourself. This is a common opening question that HR usually asks, and I’ve done a fair amount of interviewing where this...

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Should You Buy Direct or Through Your Insurance Agent?

Yesterday, I woke up to exciting news which I’ve been waiting for quite some time now. MAS finally launched their Direct Purchase Insurance (DPI) initiative, allowing consumers to buy basic life insurance products directly instead of having to go through an insurance agent. This is great news for people like me, who are generally distrusting of financial advisors (and a little more financially savvy than your average Singaporean). I’m not certified, but after reading and evaluating plenty of resources on the topic, I already have a good idea of what I need and what I don’t need. However, most...

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My Stock Analysis: Keppel DC REIT

Keppel DC REIT has been getting quite a bit of attention since its recent IPO in December 2014, Recently I spent a considerable amount of time analyzing this company after my broker tried to convince me to buy it. I already made a mistake on one counter under his recommendations (lesson learnt: take what your broker tells you with a pinch of salt!) so I wasn’t going to repeat the same error. So here’s my take on this stock: Disclaimer: I am not an expert, and the views contained in this post should not be taken as an indication...

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10 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Investing

To some people, the thought of investing can be a scary one, whereas to others, it could be a rewarding journey and a way to get rich. Whatever your thoughts, the fact is that investing is not an easy journey, and definitely not one for the faint-hearted. You need to be intelligent, well-informed, and rational enough when it comes to investing. Be prepared to spend a significant amount of time researching and analyzing…and yet you might not end up buying it. On top of all these, you also need to be prepared to take a certain amount of risk....

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We Are Singapore and We Will Go On. Rest in Peace, Lee Kuan Yew

I’ll never forget last week. I don’t think any of us ever would. It was a hard week to get by, as the nation mourned together for the loss of our greatest leader ever. Funny how Singapore was ranked as the world’s most emotionless society just 3 years ago, yet this past week saw an outpouring of grief never seen before. I don’t think the world expected us to react this way. What would the people who conducted the Gallup poll think? People wept buckets for this man. I lost count of the number of times I teared. But...

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