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Advice on job offer please

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Tobe2015
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Postby Tobe2015 » Mon, 01 Sep 2014 7:33 am

JR8 wrote:
Wd40 wrote:I would anyday pick 90K SGD in Singapore v/s even 45K GBP in UK, as a neutral person from a 3rd country.


'Computer says no!'

http://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/co ... =Singapore

As you see average post-tax salaries are lower in SG than London but the cost of living is almost precisely the same.

The above also assumes a worst-case-scenario for the UK of selecting London, the single most expensive part. Pick a location outside of London and the UK cost of living would fall off a cliff.

The above also ignores that you're probably going to bring expensive expatty habits with you (the ones where the price difference is often largest). Such products are imported, and often subject to major 'sin taxes' so $$$. Bottle of wine, beer, cheese, milk, Euro-quality or sized clothes... and let's hope you never have call to buy a car here.


Wow! That is a great website, I didn't know it before. Thank you JR8 for posting it here. Actually I m in southwest England not London, so the cost of living should be less. I found the expenses shown are pretty much true reflection in my current city, very useful info. Just wondering the salary stated there for both cities to main the same living standard, is it before or after tax?

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Postby nakatago » Mon, 01 Sep 2014 7:52 am

Tobe2015 wrote:
JR8 wrote:
Wd40 wrote:I would anyday pick 90K SGD in Singapore v/s even 45K GBP in UK, as a neutral person from a 3rd country.


'Computer says no!'

http://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/co ... =Singapore

As you see average post-tax salaries are lower in SG than London but the cost of living is almost precisely the same.

The above also assumes a worst-case-scenario for the UK of selecting London, the single most expensive part. Pick a location outside of London and the UK cost of living would fall off a cliff.

The above also ignores that you're probably going to bring expensive expatty habits with you (the ones where the price difference is often largest). Such products are imported, and often subject to major 'sin taxes' so $$$. Bottle of wine, beer, cheese, milk, Euro-quality or sized clothes... and let's hope you never have call to buy a car here.


Wow! That is a great website, I didn't know it before. Thank you JR8 for posting it here. Actually I m in southwest England not London, so the cost of living should be less. I found the expenses shown are pretty much true reflection in my current city, very useful info. Just wondering the salary stated there for both cities to main the same living standard, is it before or after tax?


After tax; towards the bottom, there's a section called "Salaries and Financing." For the stereotypical expat, Singapore can be a step up with the lower taxes. For grunt-type expats, it can be a step down as salaries are lower e.g. computer engineer in Singers vs the Western World. For some reason, unless it's finance-related or a Silicon valley based company*, the same IT skills are paid much lower in Singapore.

*broad generalization

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Postby JR8 » Mon, 01 Sep 2014 9:23 am

Just an observation if I may... (my 2c).

Working in West Jurong is going to be pretty 'industrial and gritty'. Lakeside is... well I don't know, I've never been to that area or West Jurong. So I would want some reassurance that those arrangements wouldn't leave me (a new arrival) feeling 'over-immersed' culturally, and out on a limb. This would matter far less if you relo'd as a couple or family, or had a car.

I note you don't drink or smoke but if you ever go out 'in town' the inevitable trek home at the end of the night is going to hang ever-present like a dark cloud.

Who will you socialise with out of hours, and where will you meet these people? It's likely that no neighbours at a condo will speak to you. So your colleagues? There could be a risk of you mentally 'living above the shop', i.e. no psychological demarcation between work and leisure time/space.

This is one of the fundamental reasons expats tend to get paid more, as they can't be expected to just roll up, and instantly 'live like locals do', especially in a country or region that is SO culturally different from their home one.


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To make any headway on your question re: COL in the UK, you would have to fill out the 'where to live' template questionnaire that we use here to guide new arrivals. Once your wishes and expectations were clearer, a housing budget could be derived. Add transport costs, utilities, F+B etc, and a required salary might be arrived at. The reverse process of 'I earn $100k here (+zero further data), what do I need in London?' is unanswerable.

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Postby Barnsley » Mon, 01 Sep 2014 10:17 am

JR8 wrote:Just an observation if I may... (my 2c).

Working in West Jurong is going to be pretty 'industrial and gritty'. Lakeside is... well I don't know, I've never been to that area or West Jurong.
.


The Govt is about Spunk Billions on the Jurong Lake/ Japanese Gardens/ Lakeside etc etc , turning it into a new focal point to move people out of the central area.

I think it could well be the Tampines of the West. :D :D

There are tons of new buildings going up around the MRT stations and there are numerous "new" shopping malls going up to cater to this.

If the guy likes running I think its very good for that around Jurong Lake.
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Postby Tobe2015 » Mon, 01 Sep 2014 7:49 pm

nakatago wrote:After tax; towards the bottom, there's a section called "Salaries and Financing." For the stereotypical expat, Singapore can be a step up with the lower taxes. For grunt-type expats, it can be a step down as salaries are lower e.g. computer engineer in Singers vs the Western World. For some reason, unless it's finance-related or a Silicon valley based company*, the same IT skills are paid much lower in Singapore.

*broad generalization


Thanks for the response. How about the Oil & Gas industry? the new role in SG is not managerial type but an expert type in tech domain. With the same set of skills and knowledge, it will be difficult for them to get the right person locally in country (at least not with the salary they are offering - so i heard "off-line"). What they are offering me is slightly higher than my current salary in the UK, however I doubt it will be a fair offer for me to take, along with other considerations (i.e. rising living expenses etc)

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Postby Tobe2015 » Mon, 01 Sep 2014 8:19 pm

JR8 wrote:Just an observation if I may... (my 2c).

Working in West Jurong is going to be pretty 'industrial and gritty'. Lakeside is... well I don't know, I've never been to that area or West Jurong. So I would want some reassurance that those arrangements wouldn't leave me (a new arrival) feeling 'over-immersed' culturally, and out on a limb. This would matter far less if you relo'd as a couple or family, or had a car.

I note you don't drink or smoke but if you ever go out 'in town' the inevitable trek home at the end of the night is going to hang ever-present like a dark cloud.

Who will you socialise with out of hours, and where will you meet these people? It's likely that no neighbours at a condo will speak to you. So your colleagues? There could be a risk of you mentally 'living above the shop', i.e. no psychological demarcation between work and leisure time/space.

This is one of the fundamental reasons expats tend to get paid more, as they can't be expected to just roll up, and instantly 'live like locals do', especially in a country or region that is SO culturally different from their home one.

p.s.
@WD40
To make any headway on your question re: COL in the UK, you would have to fill out the 'where to live' template questionnaire that we use here to guide new arrivals. Once your wishes and expectations were clearer, a housing budget could be derived. Add transport costs, utilities, F+B etc, and a required salary might be arrived at. The reverse process of 'I earn $100k here (+zero further data), what do I need in London?' is unanswerable.


Yes JR8, you have made the point, that the whole idea of moving to Singapore sort of grabs me (hence thats why I applied for the job in the first place), but there are other things needing some serious consideration after the initial excitement, especially getting to know the current offer is not that up to the standard and expectation.....

I guess I will have to come to SG and actually see which area to live, in terms of work commuting and the right balance of "blend-in" culturally...
Regarding getting home after a night/dining out, I reckon taking taxi could be a good option, heard that it is not that expensive?

I have some contacts in SG (saying contacts, thats like school mates who moved and settled in SG and I haven't been in touch for years, also some friends' friends...), so hopefully I can re-connect with them and extend the networking, but can only find out when I m physically in SG...

Very much appreciated your thoughts and comments, definitely will need to work out carefully before making the decision..

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Postby Tobe2015 » Mon, 01 Sep 2014 8:30 pm

Barnsley wrote:
The Govt is about Spunk Billions on the Jurong Lake/ Japanese Gardens/ Lakeside etc etc , turning it into a new focal point to move people out of the central area.

I think it could well be the Tampines of the West. :D :D

There are tons of new buildings going up around the MRT stations and there are numerous "new" shopping malls going up to cater to this.

If the guy likes running I think its very good for that around Jurong Lake.

Thanks for the response. But does it mean these areas could be under "work-in-progress" construction for some years? and how is it like living in those areas, feeling isolated and away from the downtown?

I normally do treadmill, would it be too humid to run outside in SG?

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Postby JR8 » Mon, 01 Sep 2014 8:41 pm

Jurong won't change materially (if what Barnsley said is right) for years. Meanwhile it will be a building site. That said, most of the country is a perpetual building site. Almost anything over say 30 years old gets demolished and rebuilt. The Raffles Hotel is the local equivalent of the 'kin Pyramids it's that old. Though even that whored it's heritage by cloning itself in the 90/00s, Disney-style, to 10x it's original size. So it's now more a case of 'The pyramids do Las Vegas'.


p.s. You will see people jogging outdoors, but they'll do it very early, or in the later pm...



- Strange realisation. I don't recall the last time I met someone who lives here, who went to the Raffles simply to socialise, or for it's F+B. A couple of weddings here and there, tourist queueing up to get fleeced via a heritage lie, but otherwise, who goes there?

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Re: Advice on job offer please

Postby chris_pilgrim » Mon, 01 Sep 2014 10:22 pm

Tobe2015 wrote:
chris_pilgrim wrote:
Tobe2015 wrote:..... there is no housing allowance provided but they do offer 1-off relocation expense (equivalent to 1 month salary) and 1 month temp accommodation.

..... I m single and would be looking to rent 1 or 2 bed condo on my own


You need to ask for more or negotiate for a housing allowance. You mentioned you'd like to rent a 1 / 2 bedroom condo... Don't forget you still have utilities (water, gas, electricity, telecom, condo maintenance fees) + miscellaneous to consider.

SGD7k before tax is pretty tricky.


Thank you for the reply. Do you have any idea of how much the utilities would be per month?

Yes I am now thinking the same, if they don't cover the housing allowance, I would need to negotiate more for my base salary. If I m looking to spend s$2500-3000 in rent ing a condo ( if I can get one), how much percentage should that be taking in the whole salary, to be able to live comfortably, say 30%? Which will lead the salary to be around s$9k, does it sound logical? Just would like to have any idea of how much more I should be asking.


my utilities can chalked up to $300ish per month. (a word of caution - be careful using the air conditioner ... the bill can give you a massive myocardial infarction :shock: )

i don't usually cook dinner so just say $10 for food per day = $300 per month and that's just simple meals.

don't forget transportation, entertainment, shopping for necessities, ...

my employment package comes with housing allowance but i still need to be careful of what i spend cos Singapore is quite an expensive city to be in :)
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Postby Brah » Tue, 02 Sep 2014 12:06 am

Tobe2015 wrote:[ the whole idea of moving to Singapore sort of grabs me


Why?

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Postby aster » Tue, 02 Sep 2014 4:07 am

Wd40 wrote:I would anyday pick 90K SGD in Singapore v/s even 45K GBP in UK, as a neutral person from a 3rd country.


Personally I think it seems mad to give up 45k GBP in the UK (with no rental costs) to get "only" 7k SGD and have to cover accommodation here on one's own.

Could you try to bump that up to 10k citing unexpectedly-high rental costs?

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Postby CaptainBullus » Tue, 02 Sep 2014 4:49 am

S$7k should be enough on your own, especially if you choose to live out around Lakeside MRT. We've just moved to the area as have friends of ours and I know they got a 2bed with full condo facilities for 2.8k. Cost of living depends if you're willing to 'live local', the neighbourhood hawker market is surprisingly cheap for meals and fresh food (as long as you don't expect to eat beef!) and Fairprice is similarly priced to morrison's back home. If you can get a place with ceiling fans you won't need too A/C too much which will help reduce your bills. As to whether you're being paid what you're worth, well that's a different matter...Good Luck!

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Postby GSM8 » Tue, 02 Sep 2014 8:06 am

I moved to Singapore in January from Bay Area, and its actually somewhat less expensive here than I had expected. As a single person, without trying to skimp, my average expenses are:

3000 (2 bedroom condo with gym and pool in Paya Lebar area, nicer than what one gets for the same amount in Silicon Valley area, and convenient to CBD and airport) + 200 utilities + 100 public transit (it is relatively cheap) + 200 work day lunches ($5 at a hawker stand or $10 for a quizno sandwich) + 500 grocery (cook dinner at home as far as possible but eating out would be $8-10 at a hawker stand or $20 at a cheap restaurant) + 300 (miscellaneous including occasional taxi with are cheap compared to EU/NA) + 1200 (weekend partying + regional trips every 2-3 months) = 5500 total

Add a few hundred for tax (at the 7000 you mentioned, effective tax rate will be about 7-8% of total income), and the rest is saving, or about 1000 a month in the case of a 7000 monthly income.

Of course, each individuals costs may be different, and some on this forum may not agree with the above numbers, but they are realistic in my experience

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Postby zzm9980 » Tue, 02 Sep 2014 9:37 am

GSM8 wrote:I moved to Singapore in January from Bay Area, and its actually somewhat less expensive here than I had expected. As a single person, without trying to skimp, my average expenses are:

3000 (2 bedroom condo with gym and pool in Paya Lebar area, nicer than what one gets for the same amount in Silicon Valley area, and convenient to CBD and airport) + 200 utilities + 100 public transit (it is relatively cheap) + 200 work day lunches ($5 at a hawker stand or $10 for a quizno sandwich) + 500 grocery (cook dinner at home as far as possible but eating out would be $8-10 at a hawker stand or $20 at a cheap restaurant) + 300 (miscellaneous including occasional taxi with are cheap compared to EU/NA) + 1200 (weekend partying + regional trips every 2-3 months) = 5500 total

Add a few hundred for tax (at the 7000 you mentioned, effective tax rate will be about 7-8% of total income), and the rest is saving, or about 1000 a month in the case of a 7000 monthly income.

Of course, each individuals costs may be different, and some on this forum may not agree with the above numbers, but they are realistic in my experience


I'd say entirely realistic.

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Postby Wd40 » Tue, 02 Sep 2014 10:12 am

aster wrote:
Wd40 wrote:I would anyday pick 90K SGD in Singapore v/s even 45K GBP in UK, as a neutral person from a 3rd country.


Personally I think it seems mad to give up 45k GBP in the UK (with no rental costs) to get "only" 7k SGD and have to cover accommodation here on one's own.

Could you try to bump that up to 10k citing unexpectedly-high rental costs?


I said as a neutral person from a 3rd country, which means renting in both places. Why do you guys forget about the tax? Singapore overall income tax on 90K SGD is just 4.2% so after tax it is 86k SGD. UK income tax and insurance on the 45K GBP is about 25% so you are left with 33K GBP

Rent 2k for a 2 bedroom HDB in Singapore and rent in a place like for example Manchester about 800 GBP per month. So your net disposable every month in Singapore after tax and rent is 5200SGD and in UK it is about 1950 GBP. Singapore wins :cool:


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