Singapore Expats Forum

New job in Singapore - advice needed!

Discuss about getting a well paid job or career advancement. Ask about salaries, expat packages, CPF & taxes for expatriate.

Bubacus
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon, 27 Jan 2014

New job in Singapore - advice needed!

Postby Bubacus » Mon, 27 Jan 2014 8:06 pm

Hello all,

I'd like to reach out to you with a couple details. I will be transferring to Singapore around June time and I wanted to check two main things with you all.
Some background on me first: I'm from London and work in Paris currently, and will be transferring to our new office in Singapore around June. I may move on a VIE contract, which is a French system to allow French companies to send you to work abroad easily. You get a set salary, insurance, etc etc. I think it's the easiest way for my company to send me there which is why that is the likely option.

1). I will have around 5300 SGD per month to play with (no deductions since I have a housing allowance). Is this a good amount to live on? I want to be able to save a decent sum of money each month, and i'm not crazy luxurious or have a 'high flying' life style. Normal stuff like gym membership, eating out sometimes, the occasional party, etc.

2) A friend proposed a flatshare since she is moving there too - a 90SQM flat in Clarke Quey for the two of us. Rent is 2200SGD per person all-inclusive - is the area/price good?
I think it's a little pricey, but my housing allowance is 2500SGD monthly so i'll actually pocket a little of it.
Each room has it's private bathroom, so it's actually a very nice place I think (the building has a swimming pool, etc)

I really know nothing about the areas in Singapore or where is a good place to live, so advice on the second point would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance for your help!

EDIT: For more info about myself: 27, male, often goes on dates when i'm single and will probably go out more when i first arrive since everything will be new to me until i settle into a routine and 'calm down' with the partying. I prefer to buy groceries and cook a lot at home during my usual routine, unless of course i have plans with friends etc. where i'll eat out.
Normal luxuries: Gym membership, phone contract with data, i do a lot of sports so football/tennis/squash fees. I try to save as much as possible each month. The usual routine, I suppose!
Last edited by Bubacus on Mon, 27 Jan 2014 9:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

PNGMK
Director
Director
Posts: 4895
Joined: Thu, 21 Mar 2013

Re: New job in Singapore - advice needed!

Postby PNGMK » Mon, 27 Jan 2014 8:21 pm

Bubacus wrote:Hello all,

I'd like to reach out to you with a couple details. I will be transferring to Singapore around June time and I wanted to check two main things with you all.
Some background on me first: I'm from London and work in Paris currently, and will be transferring to our new office in Singapore around June. I may move on a VIE contract, which is a French system to allow French companies to send you to work abroad easily. You get a set salary, insurance, etc etc. I think it's the easiest way for my company to send me there which is why that is the likely option.

1). I will have around 5300 SGD per month to play with (no deductions since I have a housing allowance). Is this a good amount to live on? I want to be able to save a decent sum of money each month, and i'm not crazy luxurious or have a 'high flying' life style. Normal stuff like gym membership, eating out sometimes, the occasional party, etc.

2) A friend proposed a flatshare since she is moving there too - a 90SQM flat in Clarke Quey for the two of us. Rent is 2200SGD per person all-inclusive - is the area/price good?
I think it's a little pricey, but my housing allowance is 2500SGD monthly so i'll actually pocket a little of it.
Each room has it's private bathroom, so it's actually a very nice place I think (the building has a swimming pool, etc)

I really know nothing about the areas in Singapore or where is a good place to live, so advice on the second point would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance for your help!


CQ is ok - a bit of a tourist trap but central. You're on a reasonable deal there with sharing and it's very common.
You won't save a lot but think of living here as an extended education.

User avatar
JR8
Immortal
Immortal
Posts: 16514
Joined: Wed, 24 Mar 2010
Location: K. Puki Manis

Postby JR8 » Mon, 27 Jan 2014 9:11 pm

Hi, welcome to the forum.

>>I may move on a VIE contract, which is a French system to allow French companies to send you to work abroad easily. You get a set salary, insurance, etc etc. I think it's the easiest way for my company to send me there which is why that is the likely option.

I’ve not heard of that, but if it works for you, then great.


>> 1). I will have around 5300 SGD per month to play with (no deductions since I have a housing allowance). Is this a good amount to live on? I want to be able to save a decent sum of money each month, and i'm not crazy luxurious or have a 'high flying' life style. Normal stuff like gym membership, eating out sometimes, the occasional party, etc.

Based upon the little info you’ve given about yourself, it sounds pretty good.


>> 2) A friend proposed a flatshare since she is moving there too - a 90SQM flat in Clarke Quey for the two of us. Rent is 2200SGD per person all-inclusive - is the area/price good?
I think it's a little pricey, but my housing allowance is 2500SGD monthly so i'll actually pocket a little of it.
Each room has it's private bathroom, so it's actually a very nice place I think (the building has a swimming pool, etc)

How has she identified this property, five months ahead of your move? Is it a Serviced Apartment, i.e. a longer term hotel?
‘All inclusive rent’. Inclusive of what?
Clarke Quay is an entertainment district (area?) by the river, just Google on it to read more. I expect it would be fun place to live for some time (esp. if younger, and a newbie to SG)
$4400/m ‘all inclusive’ for a 90M2, 2 bed, 2 en-suite at Clarke Quay? On the face of it that sounds like a deal to me.


p.s. Cost-of-living/budgets, how to evaluate a job-offer and costs etc., have been discussed to death. Just have a dig around, esp. under the 'moving to singapore, liviing in singapore' sections...

Bubacus
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon, 27 Jan 2014

Postby Bubacus » Mon, 27 Jan 2014 9:47 pm

Thanks for the replies!

JR8: She identified the flat because her friend lives there, and is moving out soon. She's actually moving in around March, and will find a temp flat mate until I arrive i think.
Inclusive of electricity, wifi, etc. She said the total price was 4000 without utilities, and 4400 with utilities.
Your description of the apartment is very accurate! I'm glad you think it's good (any other opinions?)

For more info about myself: 27, male, often goes on dates when i'm single and will probably go out more when i first arrive since everything will be new to me until i settle into a routine and 'calm down' with the partying. I prefer to buy groceries and cook a lot at home during my usual routine, unless of course i have plans with friends etc. where i'll eat out.

I've read other threads about salary with mixed success (they usually get side-tracked pretty quickly unfortunately) but i've read a lot of people asking if their 4-5k salary is enough to live on, to which people usually say yes within limit. So based on that my 5.3k salary, with no rent to pay on top of that, seems like a very good deal for my age.
Do you/others agree?

PNGMK said saving would be difficult: Is 5.3k with no rent not enough to save at least 500-1000 SGD a month?? (it will of course vary based on what I do, some months i spent a lot, some very little, etc.)

PNGMK
Director
Director
Posts: 4895
Joined: Thu, 21 Mar 2013

Postby PNGMK » Mon, 27 Jan 2014 10:09 pm

Saving is entirely up to your self discipline. if you live like a monk and never travel in this beautiful region you'll save a lot.

Bubacus
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon, 27 Jan 2014

Postby Bubacus » Mon, 27 Jan 2014 10:31 pm

PNGMK wrote:Saving is entirely up to your self discipline. if you live like a monk and never travel in this beautiful region you'll save a lot.


That's not really that helpful, mate. I'm not talking about an extreme lifestyle of not doing anything and saving all my money. I'm trying to convey a 'normal' mid-twenties guy's lifestyle, with the usual expenses and a suggested salary to do it with.

For example, if you told me you wanted to move to London with a salary of 2,500 pounds a month with a 'normal' lifestyle, you could save between 200-800 depending on what you do and where you live.

User avatar
JR8
Immortal
Immortal
Posts: 16514
Joined: Wed, 24 Mar 2010
Location: K. Puki Manis

Postby JR8 » Mon, 27 Jan 2014 11:20 pm

Bubacus wrote:That's not really that helpful, mate. I'm not talking about an extreme lifestyle of not doing anything and saving all my money. I'm trying to convey a 'normal' mid-twenties guy's lifestyle, with the usual expenses and a suggested salary to do it with.

For example, if you told me you wanted to move to London with a salary of 2,500 pounds a month with a 'normal' lifestyle, you could save between 200-800 depending on what you do and where you live.


PNGMK has a valid point. The question is so subjective as to be unanswerable. We have, and have had, people here who find S$1000/month housing expensive, and others who are looking to spend S$25k/month.

Do you smoke, quite heavily? Well that could 10% of your salary gone for a starter. Bottle of wine a night at home? (or 1-2* a week in bar)... oh dear, another 10% gone. What's normal to some people isn't to others. There are a kaleidoscope of lifestyles on this forum, all 'normal' to those who lead them. Do you see :)?

Bubacus
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon, 27 Jan 2014

Postby Bubacus » Mon, 27 Jan 2014 11:45 pm

JR8 wrote:PNGMK has a valid point. The question is so subjective as to be unanswerable. We have, and have had, people here who find S$1000/month housing expensive, and others who are looking to spend S$25k/month.

Do you smoke, quite heavily? Well that could 10% of your salary gone for a starter. Bottle of wine a night at home? (or 1-2* a week in bar)... oh dear, another 10% gone. What's normal to some people isn't to others. There are a kaleidoscope of lifestyles on this forum, all 'normal' to those who lead them. Do you see :)?


Hmm. Yes, i suppose that's true. I guess I won't know the specifics until i actually live there.

I guess as indicated this salary with the housing allowance should be good enough for me!
FYI i don't smoke, nor do i drink wine at home by myself often :P

User avatar
zzm9980
Governor
Governor
Posts: 6837
Joined: Wed, 06 Jul 2011
Location: Once more unto the breach

Postby zzm9980 » Tue, 28 Jan 2014 9:41 am

How often will you go out? Expect your drinks in bars (especially in CQ area) to cost you S$25-$35 each.

Dating? Dinner date? Anywhere from S$120 at a so-so average chain place to S$300 or up at something that fancies itself as trendy.

Groceries are quite expensive, most people actually find it cheaper to go and eat at hawker centers (local Singaporean food courts essentially) than to cook at home, especially for only one or two.

Wait, did you say date? That gets pricey if you date a local, as they expect a lot of nice things (this is all quite subjective). Kind of like it's cheaper to eat at a hawker center than cook yourself, some guys find it cheaper to get 'take out' girlfriends. (Yes, this is partially in jest, but sadly there is also some truth in it).


That all said, I think S$5300 a month after your rental costs should be more than plenty to live off of as long as you don't live an utterly decadent and self-destructive life style. You should have plenty to go out and party at least twice a week, leave town every month or so for a long weekend in a random nearby destination, and still save S$1500-2000.

User avatar
ecureilx
Immortal
Immortal
Posts: 9500
Joined: Fri, 20 Aug 2010

Postby ecureilx » Tue, 28 Jan 2014 10:25 am

Bubacus wrote:I guess as indicated this salary with the housing allowance should be good enough for me!
FYI i don't smoke, nor do i drink wine at home by myself often :P


As a matter of fact, drinking at home is the cheapest option ...

A bottle of Duty Free Blended Whiskey @ approx 35 $ or outside Duty free @ Approx 65 $ vs ..

each glass of whiskey in bars at ~12 to 15 or 18 $, or a bottle at 190 $ upwards, plus mixers at 10$ upwards a jar .. - yah, the bars have to cover the cost of rental, labour etc. etc ..

drinking at home or outside bars is the cheapest option ;) ;)

Bubacus
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon, 27 Jan 2014

Postby Bubacus » Tue, 28 Jan 2014 6:55 pm

zzm9980 wrote:That all said, I think S$5300 a month after your rental costs should be more than plenty to live off of as long as you don't live an utterly decadent and self-destructive life style. You should have plenty to go out and party at least twice a week, leave town every month or so for a long weekend in a random nearby destination, and still save S$1500-2000.


Well, you ended that in an incredibly encouraging manner :) My lifestyle is far from decadent (90% of the time!) so i'm sure this will be fine. Thank you.

The alcohol prices in bars seems kind of crazy in SG so i'll definitely be exploring the drinking at home option, but i'm not a heavy drinker so it should be ok.

The grocery prices being expensive is a little unfortunately, i can spend quite a lot on that since i try to eat healthy so hawker centers probably won't be a regular occurrence, and if SG is anything like London or Paris then eating healthy is usually more expensive.

Thank you very much for the responses; they've been extremely helpful. Feel free to add more or provide random helpful tips if you can think of common issues expats have when moving to your country!

User avatar
zzm9980
Governor
Governor
Posts: 6837
Joined: Wed, 06 Jul 2011
Location: Once more unto the breach

Postby zzm9980 » Tue, 28 Jan 2014 7:13 pm

Bubacus wrote:
zzm9980 wrote:That all said, I think S$5300 a month after your rental costs should be more than plenty to live off of as long as you don't live an utterly decadent and self-destructive life style. You should have plenty to go out and party at least twice a week, leave town every month or so for a long weekend in a random nearby destination, and still save S$1500-2000.


Well, you ended that in an incredibly encouraging manner :) My lifestyle is far from decadent (90% of the time!) so i'm sure this will be fine. Thank you.

The alcohol prices in bars seems kind of crazy in SG so i'll definitely be exploring the drinking at home option, but i'm not a heavy drinker so it should be ok.

The grocery prices being expensive is a little unfortunately, i can spend quite a lot on that since i try to eat healthy so hawker centers probably won't be a regular occurrence, and if SG is anything like London or Paris then eating healthy is usually more expensive.

Thank you very much for the responses; they've been extremely helpful. Feel free to add more or provide random helpful tips if you can think of common issues expats have when moving to your country!


The bars and girls are cheaper in a place called Orchard Tower than normal bars and normal girlfriends (per-drink and per-lay, respectively). Just a pro-tip. :)

Bubacus
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon, 27 Jan 2014

Postby Bubacus » Tue, 28 Jan 2014 7:19 pm

zzm9980 wrote: The bars and girls are cheaper in a place called Orchard Tower than normal bars and normal girlfriends (per-drink and per-lay, respectively). Just a pro-tip. :)


LOL. Thank you for the tip, but it's a little unusual for me to purchase 'girlfriends' so i'll stick to the cheaper bars in Orchard Tower :)

User avatar
JR8
Immortal
Immortal
Posts: 16514
Joined: Wed, 24 Mar 2010
Location: K. Puki Manis

Postby JR8 » Tue, 28 Jan 2014 8:11 pm

Oh I think ZZM was describing the cheaper bars... OT is no high-end building :)

User avatar
zzm9980
Governor
Governor
Posts: 6837
Joined: Wed, 06 Jul 2011
Location: Once more unto the breach

Postby zzm9980 » Tue, 28 Jan 2014 10:45 pm

Bubacus wrote:
zzm9980 wrote: The bars and girls are cheaper in a place called Orchard Tower than normal bars and normal girlfriends (per-drink and per-lay, respectively). Just a pro-tip. :)


LOL. Thank you for the tip, but it's a little unusual for me to purchase 'girlfriends' so i'll stick to the cheaper bars in Orchard Tower :)


Haha sorry. Just a lot of tongue in cheek humor. Sometimes it's lost in text, or if someone's first language isn't English (not sure in your case). Orchard Tower has a lot of bars where the "working girls" go. The drinks are also among the cheaper ones in Singapore, as it's assumed you'll also being buying watered down drinks for the girls.

The joke about them being cheaper than a girlfriend is also partially rooted in truth. Singaporean girls are notoriously materialistic (Not all, but plenty. IT's the culture) about wanting expensive gifts, fancy dinners, etc. Anything that's pricey in Singapore. So you'll probably pay less-per-romp by just hiring the OT girls for the night.

Humor is much less funny when spelled out :(


  • Similar Topics
    Replies
    Views
    Last post

Return to “Careers & Jobs in Singapore”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest