Thursday 28 February 2019

OT work life - feeling drained

I have been working overtime for consecutively a week now except for Sunday.

It's tough when work takes up so much of your time. This explains for the lack of blog post this week.

I have been working till about 1030/11pm as there is data migration going on in my company.

This means that when I reach home, I bathe and after drying my hair, I get to bed right away as I am sooooo drained.

Waking up the next day is tough as well as I find myself not getting enough rest the day before.

I have so many miscellaneous stuff at home that I haven't been doing like filing my mum's bills and packing the house.

I am complaining but I know so many people who have been living this lifestyle for a few years.

I can't imagine how they can stay up to do work till so long, although I got to admit that when you are busy, time flies!

Going back to the office on a Saturday was a first for me and it really made me appreciate my weekends.

I do get the feeling that work will never be done as every single day there are things to follow up and new things to be updated.

This is work life I guess. 

Budget 2019 - Merdeka Generation

My mum is in the Merdeka Generation (MG), oops, revealing her age range here.

So of course, she has been wanting to hear about what she would get from the government.

With what was announced at the Budget 2019, she will be getting:

1. PAssion Silver Card Top-up

There would be a $100 placed into their PAssion Silver Card, which they can use for public transport, swimming pools and courses at the community clubs.

More details would be announced in June 2019 for this $100 top up.

2. Annual MediSave Top-up

There would be annual top-ups into MG's Medisave from 2019 to 2023 in the month of July making it $200 X 5 years = $1000.

This is a pretty good incentive as my mum does use her medisave for her medical checks and hence this amount is useful for her. 

3.  Additional outpatient care subsidies

This is where there would be an additional 25% off subsidised bill at polyclinics and Public Specialist Outpatient Clinics and special CHAS subsidies.

Of course, all these can't compare to the Pioneer generation but it will come in handy for people who can qualify for it.

As my mum gets older, I start to realise the importance for her to be healthy so that she can be active to do the things that she like to do like travelling and shopping.

I want to help her to start to exercise but its definitely not going to be easy.

She currently loves watching Korean dramas while on her bed so I would need to come up with a plan to get her to move. haha

Thursday 21 February 2019

Losing a fellow comrade at work

A few weeks back, my mum told me that her boss has been assigned to another country and that he was considering to maybe take up that position.

Maybe some back story first before continuing, my mum and her boss were the first 2 employees for the Singapore office and so they both have always been around for quite long and he is the director of the Singapore office.

While my mum is somewhat like a PA or secretary.

Of course, over the years, they have quarreled or argue but he was willing to teach her and also to help her so my mum grew pretty close to him.

However recently, a new person from the India office has started to take over the Singapore office and my mum's boss was first demoted.

He was okay with it as it meant a lesser workload however he received a call and the company gave him 2 options, either to relocate to an overseas office or to quit.

And so, he decided to quit.

He didn't let my mum know until today when he is already leaving next week.

My mum is very affected by it as he is the only one who stayed in the company with her all these years.

All of other colleagues have left with new ones coming in.

But I guess this affected her much more because he and her were the original members of the Singapore office.

She told me that she cried every time someone talked to her in the office.

I guess she was actually planning to quit as well when she heard that he would be leaving.

I hoped to help her as well since I have started working but of course, with my salary right now, i don't think she can quit.

My mum has been for a few years wanting to retire. But right now, she's not too sure either.

We shall see how everything goes.

Tuesday 19 February 2019

Dividends received in January 2019

Another pretty overdue post as I realised that I haven't posted about the dividends received in January 2019.

So for during January 2019, I recieved dividends from Singtel and Nikko AM STI ETF.

I received $34 from Singtel and $18.85 from Nikko AM STI ETF.

This bring my total dividends received in January 2019 to be $52.85.

Comparing to 2018 in January, where I received about $18.85 which was only from my Nikko AM STI ETF.

So with the addition of Singtel to my portfolio, I have increased my dividends received.

However, with the drop of Singtel share price, my overall profit for Singtel is still in the red.

But I would still be holding onto it.

For upcoming February 2019, I should be expected to received dividends from First REIT, STI ETF, SGX and Capitaland Retail China Trust.

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Sunday 17 February 2019

What to do with your angbao money? Save, spend or gamble?

With Chinese New Year coming to an end soon, almost all angbaos would have been received.

So what do you usually do with the angbaos received?

I would usually just deposit the money into my bank account.

And this is also what most Hong Kong children are doing as well.

I came across this article which mentions that a substantial proportion of children in Hong Kong are saving their angbao money, of course they might be forced by their parent's to do so but it is a good thing. 

According to the article, many children in Hong Kong were willing to save their money and that it is the best thing to do.

"The online survey interviewed 120 children between the ages of 8 and 15 years old.
The survey was conducted as part of AXA Investment Managers’ new “Voices” report on Hongkongers’ attitudes to money and investing.
More half of those surveyed said they were confident about their personal finance situation and 59 per cent said they were confident about how their finances will look in the future"
I have read up a few articles where parents start investing the angbao money for their children for example, Heartland Boy.

It is definitely a great idea and I wished my mum had done that for me but I am also contented as well because when I turned 21 years old, my mum went with me to the bank account and transferred me money which were my angbao money.

For this past few years, I have been saving my angbao money and it is like a bonus for me during that month. 

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Thursday 14 February 2019

Buying without looking at the price tag

My friend and I talked recently as we both just started working.

So we asked each other what our ultimate goal of working shall give us.

He told me that he hope he would be able to like treat his friends at a restaurant or buy things without looking at the price tag.

Well, that would be crazy but at least it is something that he is aiming for and it’s really nice of him to think of the people around him enjoying as well when he becomes rich.

Many people want to achieve financial independence for certain reasons, maybe to have more time to spend with their loved ones or to start something that they always wanted hence retiring early.

I read somewhere that why most people want to achieve FIRE is because they have that FIRE (interest) in them to want to do things that interest them. 

And being financially free would give them much more time to cultivate or grow that FIRE in them.

For me, I would like to be financially free as in that I would continue working but not for the sake of money.

When I met up with my secondary school friend recently, she told me that when her friend meet up nowadays, it is always to complain about their work and how tiring it is.

Out of all her friends, she only has one friend who truly enjoys his work and looks forward to going to work everyday.

I mean work really takes up a lot of our time. From being in school, where our time is so flexible and free, we enter the corporate world where we spend about 8 hours (minimally) each day 5 times a week.

That's crazy if you ask me. Especially when you are starting out and the pay is not yet that attractive for you to spend so much time on it.

Back to the point of why I want to achieve FI is not to have the burden of worrying about money.

So for me, the focus is not on retiring yet but being able to be financially free.

Of course, being financially free might have it's own set of problems but I wouldn't know for now. HAHA.

Of course, at every phase of life, we have different commitments and goals and for now, I would like to save and increase my income at the same time.

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Wednesday 13 February 2019

Dividends collected in 2018

A late update on the total amount of dividends I have received in 2018. So in 2018, drum roll..........I received a total of............

$273.05 of dividends from my portfolio.

Not much but of course this was the year I entered the stock market and so I am pretty happy to see some dividends coming in even though my portfolio is still in the red.

I have read many articles mentioning that you should first build up a substantial amount of money first or to increase your income before getting into the market to prevent commission charges from eating up your profits.

And I do find that somewhat true so for 2019, I would be making transactions in bigger amounts to make the commission charges more worth it.

So I recently also started working and have a DBS multiplier account so for the year 2018, you can see that I did not receive dividends for the month of May and September.

However with the recent transaction of Far East HTrust, the dividends might be in May and September it depends meaning that it would help in achieving of the criteria for investments for the DBS multiplier.

Read more: January 2019 Portfolio review - Added Far East Hospitality Trust and Nikko AM STI ETF into my portfolio

Definitely, I would like to increase my dividends every year. For 2019, my projected dividends according to SGXcafe is around $470.

This increase is mainly due to Singtel being added late last year and also Far East HTrust added just last month.

Read more: Portfolio updates (MAY 2018): 2 buy transactions

Read more: Singtel - rollercoaster ride and portfolio updates.

Hoping to grow my portfolio much more this year but of course, only when the time and prices are what I think is fair.

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Sunday 10 February 2019

Travelling right after graduating

My exams ended on Oct 2018. Many of my friends started travelling after that and many travelled to a few countries at once.

Some went to Europe and also to more expensive countries rather than like Thailand or neighbouring countries that are more affordable.

I think it is good to be travelling when you are young as you have more stamina and are up for more risky activities.

My friend's cousin for example took a loan from her parents after she graduated to travel around Europe for a month and after she came back, she started work and slowly start to pay her parents back the loan that she had taken.

Many young people of my age nowadays place a huge emphasis on travelling as it allows them to explore different cultures and also to be in a different environment as we seek more spiritual than materialistic experiences.

I remember my mum telling me that travelling was not a thing for them when they were young.

She only started travelling after quite a few years of work.

She told me that she had a few savings plan when she started work and when the payouts came, she would spend them on her travels.

For my brother as well, he has a scholarship to study overseas and in the short 6 months, he has travelled to numerous countries.

He definitely is enjoying himself and all along, he finds it very interesting to explore different countries. 

For me, when I graduated from polytechnic, I did went on a graduation trip with my classmates to Krabi.

It was pretty fun and to be honest, we still talk of the things that happened on that trip.

However, nowadays, it is pretty difficult to organise one as we are all busy with our own stuff.

After I graduated from university, I did not fly overseas and instead started work after about 3 weeks of break.

I am a super lazy person and to be honest, a rather boring person as well.

When we travel as a family, my mum and brother likes to maximise the time in a day and to explore as many places as they can.

For me, I usually like to laze in the hotel room and eat takeaways which to be honest is the worst travelling companion anyone wants. haha

But of course, I enjoy travelling but am lazy to do bookings for accommodations, transport and to plan the itinerary so I like travelling with people who can do it all.

Of course, after starting work, travelling for many is a break from the daily routine and to be able to fully relax and explore so I do have a trip planned out for this year but for now, I hope to fund some trips for my mum as she loves travelling with her group of friends recently.

What's kind of travelling do you guys like? Do you like scenic or shopping destinations?

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Thursday 7 February 2019

Time to BTO!

I recently met up with my polytechnic friends as well as my university friends.

In those 2 group, there were individuals who have applied for a BTO unit with their significant other.

One of them have even successfully gotten a BTO unit.

When I first heard about their plans, I was like wow.....we are all getting old now. And that they are really planning for their future.

I mean I met my polytechnic mates when we were all just 17 years old so every time I meet them there is that impression that we are all still young.

But right now, we are already 24 years old and some of them have signed on to the army or are starting to work like me.

BTO was the next thing for them after getting a job.

Of course, my friends who have applied or gotten a BTO unit have already dated for number of years and are more or less gonna get married to their girlfriend or boyfriend.

The process is pretty long, from choosing where you want your future house to be to balloting and then to wait for the flat to be build.

One of my friends who has already a unit mentioned that they were actually the last few queue numbers to get a unit hence they were not expecting to get a good unit.

However, when they went in to choose their unit, they realized that there were actually quite a number of empty units meaning that the couples either did not want to follow through or that they could have broken up.

She feels pretty rushed after getting the unit as she has to be engaged before the flat is ready and her boyfriend is currently planning a wedding photo shoot before having the actual wedding. 

No matter what, I think it is great that young couples are able to get their own flat even though balloting for a unit is not that easy but it at least is an avenue for couples.

For me, if I continue to be single, I would need to wait till when I am 35 years old before getting a resale HDB flat as I don't think I would be getting a private property.

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Monday 4 February 2019


5th Feb 2019 would be the first day of the Lunar New Year.

For me, it will also be my year as I am born in the year of the pig, Oink Oink.

With the weeks following up to CNY, many of my colleagues and my mum changed new notes to give out during CNY.

With the changing of new notes, DBS bank has actually introduced a angbao with a QR code which would then allow the moneyto be digitally transferred. 

Good initiative but for many, cash is still much more shiok to receive. 

Every year, I would help my grandmother to bao her angbao as she is getting old and forgets how many she needs.

Getting to organise her angbao for her brings back memories because when I was younger and my mum was not able to buy a flat, we stayed with her and she would take care of our daily meals and also to take care of us when my mum worked.

I would also love my grandma's place as it was where all the snacks would be at.

And I love the cookies that I have unlimited access to and of course soft drinks!

My mum would always overspend during CNY as she would go to the Takashimaya food fair and spend so much on the branded cookies.

For this year, besides shopping there, she also found out that markets do sell certain traditional snacks like pineapple tarts, kok chai and hae bee hiam rolls for like $10 per bottle. Which is so much more affordable.

Also, for this year, many of my uncles and aunties are travelling as it is 1st and 2nd day of CNY is Tuesday and Wednesday which allows them to connect it making it more worth as less leave is needed to be applied.

Looking forward to a good rest as it is my first CNY after I started working and a break like this good for some recharge and to catch up with my relatives and friends!

Wishing you all a HAPPY CHINESE NEW YEAR!

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