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S$122k pa for family with two children?

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TandD
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S$122k pa for family with two children?

Postby TandD » Tue, 04 Feb 2014 5:09 am

Hi we are thinking of relocating with 2 young children on S$112k per year (don't need school fees), is this sufficient?

I'm usually good with money and our family currently live on £2100 (I guess its equivalent to approx $$4400) net per month, £470 of of that goes on mortgage.

Bearing in mind we will have to pay for health care there compared it being free here, can we live on $S10,166 pm before tax?

Your opinions is greately appreciated.

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Sergei82
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Postby Sergei82 » Tue, 04 Feb 2014 7:51 am

Will you pay rent?

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JR8
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Postby JR8 » Tue, 04 Feb 2014 8:53 am

The employer is not offering health coverage? That might warrant some consideration. Visiting a GP isn't expensive, maybe say $30-50 if it's a case of a bad cold, or seasonal allergies etc (IME). But I understand that hospitalisation can be expensive, perhaps akin to footing the bill for a private hospital in the UK.

Are you expecting to be running a car here?

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zzm9980
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Re: S$122k pa for family with two children?

Postby zzm9980 » Tue, 04 Feb 2014 10:22 am

TandD wrote:Hi we are thinking of relocating with 2 young children on S$112k per year (don't need school fees), is this sufficient?

I'm usually good with money and our family currently live on £2100 (I guess its equivalent to approx $$4400) net per month, £470 of of that goes on mortgage.

Bearing in mind we will have to pay for health care there compared it being free here, can we live on $S10,166 pm before tax?

Your opinions is greately appreciated.


It's more than sufficient depending on your expectations, primarily in regards to housing and savings.

First, taxes on $112k a year will be peanuts. Under 7%.

Housing and savings though is where it gets tricking. Singapore has "affordable" housing, say in the vicinity of $3k per month. However it is not what you're used to in the UK. If you're fine with the local style of apartments, the HDBs, then you'll be OK. If you expect some western style, you'll be looking at a private condo. Based on location, that could be anywhere from $4k-7k a month. Still affordable, but then your expected savings is drastically reduced.

Also, you mention not to worry about schooling. Why not? Is the company covering that 100%? Are you planning to use local schools and think you'll just get in? 1) It's not that easy and 2) It will still be $600-900 per month per kid.

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martincymru
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Postby martincymru » Tue, 04 Feb 2014 1:35 pm

I know it's simplistic but accommodation expectation is the big question.

My opinion is
family with quality housing expectation etc., then 10k sing month is not enough. Hence why relatively few Europeans living working in Sg (compared to Asian expats).

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Postby TandD » Tue, 04 Feb 2014 4:13 pm

Thank you for your replies. We knew schooling would be costly so home schooling group in Sg so thought we could do that. The 112k is for every thing so we budgeted 4k pm for housing.

We wondered whether the budget was manageable as its a great career opportunity for my husband and great experience for the family. Though my husband is English, I'm Vietnamese so we could visit vn once in a while. I guess these are the reasons we are considering relocating.

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Postby TandD » Tue, 04 Feb 2014 4:22 pm

Oh and not planning to have a car.

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zzm9980
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Postby zzm9980 » Tue, 04 Feb 2014 6:25 pm

TandD wrote:Thank you for your replies. We knew schooling would be costly so home schooling group in Sg so thought we could do that. The 112k is for every thing so we budgeted 4k pm for housing.

We wondered whether the budget was manageable as its a great career opportunity for my husband and great experience for the family. Though my husband is English, I'm Vietnamese so we could visit vn once in a while. I guess these are the reasons we are considering relocating.


The budget is very manageable, especially if you're even half as 'tiet kiem' as my Vietnamese wife. :D

Since you're Vietnamese/Asian, you'll probably be very familiar then with what an HDB would be like. A newer HDB is very comparable in quality/design to some of the newer condo towers I've been in in Hanoi.
Last edited by zzm9980 on Tue, 04 Feb 2014 6:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby beppi » Tue, 04 Feb 2014 6:27 pm

Home schooling might deprive your kids of the contacts to like-minded others of similar age that they need to integrate and be comfortable here.
My advice (and I am sure 99% of all Asians agree): Don't save on the education of your children!

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Postby TandD » Tue, 04 Feb 2014 8:04 pm

Zzm9980 - Thank you for that, I'miso happy there's family similar to ours. Because I chose to be a stay at home mum I have to 'tiet kiem' though allow for sind treats and luxuries. That's the price we pay for me not working but definitely worth it as kids balance is so much better. We were thinking we could get condo with swimming pool in cheaper area for 4k maybe.

beppi - Thank you also for your reply. I definitely agree on not skimping on education, however I have found a community of home schoolers in Singapore who get together to do various activities and trips. I also have several friends in uk who homeschool school and they seem to be able to give better quality education due to being able to give kids much more one to one time in smaller no. of hours daily. Initially felt quite anxious about doing it but having spoken to few I feel much more at ease though it would only be for primary education.

I really appreciate everyone's input, have spent hours and hours researching everything.

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Postby x9200 » Tue, 04 Feb 2014 10:05 pm

You can get a reasonable 3+1 condo in less central area for 4k without a major sweat. The main factor to consider would be your husband's commuting.
You may look for example for the condos in Bukit Batok, in the vicinity of the MRT stations. They should be ~4k. Also to consider is buying a car and living further away from the MRT. The difference in rental can be similar to the car loan monthly installments. Riding to work (motorbike) is another and cheap option.

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Re: S$122k pa for family with two children?

Postby TandD » Mon, 06 Apr 2015 2:31 pm

Just thought I'd post an update. So we've been here 6 months now and this is our reality:

- Income, we manage to get the deal upto $143k pa ($12k pm). After tax and UK National insurance we are living on $10k pm.

- Got a 3 bed apart ($3.8k pm rent) in East Coast which we absolutely love and cycle to most local places. Buses and mrt everywhere else with a very occasional taxi ride.

- Homeschooling - we have joined a great HS community here which is mixed of expat and local families. Definitely the best education I can give to the kids at this point, having seen how local kids in our condo who don't get to come out to play til about 6pm each day due to one enrichment class after another, and the pressure they are under. Though the International Schools are better, not sure that would have been the best option for us even if we could afford it, but again really depends what you value, high achievement or a more holistic balance of social, emotional and academic development.

Overall, education wise, we have landed on our feet and love the freedom, the interaction with local and international families and we regularly get together to share skills and experiences. As a family we have built up relationships quickly due to this community.

- Commuting, initially we planned to live somewhere within 30mins commute, but our accommodation is more like 40-45mins by bus so a bit further than we wanted but was definitely worth the compromise to fit needs of the whole family.

- Food, our budget here is more than double what it was in the UK, but uplift in wage covers that, when we return, husband will loose the uplift so 6/half dozen. Utility bills here are also cheaper than home.

- Maid, we don't have one, didn't have one at home so.....and don't particularly have a great urge to have one either.

- Overall income vs outgoings ; I would say we live comfortably (but I guess depends what one's definition of comfortable is), we certainly are not struggling and are even managing to save a bit for holidays and trip back home. On top of which I think I have an expensive coffee habit (have to have one each day out, and not the local $1 ones either, in the UK it would be once a week), yet we still can accommodate this :P

Conclusion - this is a great career opportunity for my husband and great experience for our family, yes we have to be wise with our spending but probably no more than we had to be in the UK, just in slightly different way. Enjoying life here, but think will be happy to go home too.

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Re: S$122k pa for family with two children?

Postby PNGMK » Tue, 07 Apr 2015 10:15 pm

Great update. Very helpful for other's in the same boat. I particularly appreciate the homeschool info as I think we may end up in that boat.
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