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Job Offer- Your opinions?

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

SuSun
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Job Offer- Your opinions?

Postby SuSun » Tue, 16 Sep 2014 3:05 pm

Hi Everyone,

Adding to the list of posts like this...I would love to ask for your help in regards to a job offer my partner has had. The role is as an Assistant Director.

The salary offered in 10k pre tax/pcm inclusive of 3k for housing plus health care and visa costs. This is an initial offer so open to negotiation.

We would be moving from Beijing, where we have been for last 3 years.
Comparitively my partner earns about the same here. However he is very interested in the career change and we are looking for a way out of BJ (pollution etc) .
From the research I do know we will have a drop in lifestyle due to the higher living costs e.g. no more taxis, smaller apt etc , but trying to work out just exactly how much compromise we would have to make and if indeed it is actually manageable and worthwhile the change.

Our lifestyle in Beijing that we are used to is a 130sqm, 3 bedroom apt with 2 full bathroom. Easy commute to work and downtown areas. We eat out about 2-3 times /week, buy some imported food, take regular taxis and employ a maid 2 times a week for cleaning.
We enjoy travel and go to the Europe once a year and other places in Asia 2 more times in the year.

We have no children and don't plan to for a few years, so school fees etc are not an issue.

Whilst the job role is great to me the salary sounds low. Love your inputs please? As we're in the negotiating stages what more salary should we be asking for? Higher housing allowance? What would 3k cover?

Many Many thanks in advance for you help!

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Wd40
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Postby Wd40 » Tue, 16 Sep 2014 3:38 pm

My friend works for a big human resource consulting firm and according to him billing rates in Tier 1 China cities are same as in Singapore, so I am assuming salaries would also be same.

I have no idea about the cost of living in China. May be ZZM will pitch in later to help you.

From what you have described, it appears your money goes a long way further in Beijing than in Singapore. I would ask for atleast 12k a month, 15K would be great.
Last edited by Wd40 on Tue, 16 Sep 2014 3:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

beppi
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Postby beppi » Tue, 16 Sep 2014 3:39 pm

Your housing allowance is in the lower ranks of apartments available in Singapore, so you'd have to accept a step down here. But with the rest (S$7000/month) you can pretty much afford the same lifestyle for a couple.

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the lynx
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Postby the lynx » Tue, 16 Sep 2014 3:47 pm

3K for housing is too low. Especially considering your kind of lifestyle and the commute time you have enjoyed currently. I agree with wd40 on this one. Try to negotiate higher salary.

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JR8
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Postby JR8 » Tue, 16 Sep 2014 4:24 pm

If you can add what industry you're in, or products/role/function it would help people visualise the position.

[I appreciate if it's niche, and you fear the above might potentially identify you - then don't bother, no probs].

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Postby hotandhumid » Tue, 16 Sep 2014 5:58 pm

I agree regarding the housing allocation, and it seems that by incorporating this housing allowance into your salary, they are in a way re-assigning some corporate taxes onto you instead.

...which leads me to my main point: Taxes.
Based on the $10k/pm salary, you are not likely to be paying more than 7-8%, which I believe is far lower than what you are subject to in Beijing.



Others - feel free to refine my numbers[/list]
Lets air-condition the entire island please

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Postby Mi Amigo » Tue, 16 Sep 2014 6:22 pm

This will give some quantitative data to go on, in terms of cost of living differences between Beijing and Singapore. Of course these are 'average' figures and YMMV, but it might help to give you an overall feel for the C.O.L. implications:

http://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/compare_cities.jsp?country1=China&country2=Singapore&city1=Beijing&city2=Singapore

Good luck.
Be careful what you wish for

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Wd40
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Postby Wd40 » Tue, 16 Sep 2014 9:14 pm

Here are the Kelly's salary guides for the 2 countries:

China


Singapore

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zzm9980
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Postby zzm9980 » Wed, 17 Sep 2014 12:34 am

Housing allowance is likely too low for what you're used to in Beijing. Are you in a newer unit and within the 3rd ring road? Double it for Singapore. 4th ring road? Triple it.

That said, based on your habits I don't think your COL will be too much higher in Singapore. Most of the things you describe will cost about double in Singapore Eating out local, etc, which is already really cheap in Beijing so double isn't a big deal. Western-style meals / trendy places will be about the same price. Drinks in bars will be about double if I recall.

On the plus side, it is immensely cleaner and nicer. Everyday is like an average Beijing summer day, but without the smog most of the time. Public transportation is so clean and efficient compared to Beijing you'll be willing to eat off the floor.

On the off chance you're a Star Trek fan, you can think of Singapore as Betazed and Beijing as the Klingon Home World. I didn't make that up as I'm not that nerdy, someone else told me it but it's true. For those who aren't ST fans, just do Google Image searches of each.

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JR8
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Postby JR8 » Wed, 17 Sep 2014 7:40 am

zzm9980 wrote:On the off chance you're a Star Trek fan, you can think of Singapore as Betazed and Beijing as the Klingon Home World.


Race: Betazoid
Home planet: Betazed
Appeared in episode: "Encounter at Farpoint" (TNG)
The Betazoid are a humanoid species, originating from the planet Betazed. They are telepathic and are members of the United Federation of Planets.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_S ... s#Betazoid


Farpoint, isn't that a mall out near Tuas? ;

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zzm9980
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Postby zzm9980 » Wed, 17 Sep 2014 7:45 am

JR8 wrote:
zzm9980 wrote:On the off chance you're a Star Trek fan, you can think of Singapore as Betazed and Beijing as the Klingon Home World.


Race: Betazoid
Home planet: Betazed
Appeared in episode: "Encounter at Farpoint" (TNG)
The Betazoid are a humanoid species, originating from the planet Betazed. They are telepathic and are members of the United Federation of Planets.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_S ... s#Betazoid


Farpoint, isn't that a mall out near Tuas? ;


Some of those newer malls out west definitely look like spaceships from Star Trek. Yes, these are different malls:



Image

Image

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Postby SuSun » Wed, 17 Sep 2014 7:52 am

Thanks for all the replies, they are super helpful.

Sorry can't define the role/sector more, it is pretty niche and appreciate your understanding.

To clear a few of the questions- Our housing allowance will be separate 3k then 7k salary, which helps with the tax issue I believe. Sorry this was my mistake.

Having had a look at apartments for rent yes 3k seems super low and would be a big step down from the size/style of apt we are used to. Would prefer 120sqm plus and so this will definitely be in the higher price bracket..4-5k?
My partner would be working in cbd area so looking for something within 30mins commute of there.

Have looked at the COL comparisons before and it is helpful. We are used to eating out western food here, drinking in hotel bars etc. Know we may have to curb that, but looking forward to safer local options too! And yes not sure we can put a price on clean air!! Yes we can live on the money offered but also hoping to keep our savings topped up too.

Company will organize a look see visit for us soon, which i think would be super helpful.Any more questions we should be asking prior to then?

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Postby Strong Eagle » Wed, 17 Sep 2014 8:20 am

SuSun wrote:Our housing allowance will be separate 3k then 7k salary, which helps with the tax issue I believe.


No - it does not help with any Singapore tax issue. A housing allowance is income just like a salary, and just like assistance provided for schooling or operation of a motor vehicle.

The only way to derive a tax benefit is to have the company rent the house for you to live in. You then pay lower taxes on the benefit you receive (living in the house).

See this URL for details. http://www.iras.gov.sg/irasHome/page04.aspx?id=1758

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JR8
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Postby JR8 » Wed, 17 Sep 2014 8:47 am

SuSun wrote:...
Having had a look at apartments for rent yes 3k seems super low and would be a big step down from the size/style of apt we are used to. Would prefer 120sqm plus and so this will definitely be in the higher price bracket..4-5k?
My partner would be working in cbd area so looking for something within 30mins commute of there.
...
Company will organize a look see visit for us soon, which i think would be super helpful.Any more questions we should be asking prior to then?


I'm a believer in negotiating a package with a basis of the overall offered proposition being at least as good. So one could take something of a financial step down, but only if you're going to be promoted into a role that will shine like a star on your CV/resume later. But 'Assistant Director' being relo'd into SG on $3k housing, is not generous to say the least. I would hazard a guess you wouldn't find a 120m2 condo anywhere in the country for that. Use the search buttons above and have a look. Do a search on say... Districts 12/15/16/20... that should give you a feel for say typical, or representative, 'Zone 2' pricing. (For your ref: 'Zone 1' is usually considered as D9/10/11 - I'm thinking Zones from the London/London Transport model, and I expect it translates reasonably well to non-Brits too).

Actually why not just complete the 'Where to live' questionnaire over in the Relo sub-topic? Far better and more focussed starting with that than addressing the matter piecemeal. Here > ftopic101985.html

p.s. Potentially important >>> You mention a 'partner' who will also be working. Is he/she coming in on a completely stand-alone EP? I.e. you're both being relo'd to SG in parallel, but on totally separate visas?

---
StrongEagle wrote: 'The only way to derive a tax benefit is to have the company rent the house for you to live in. You then pay lower taxes on the benefit you receive (living in the house).'

Agreed, having accommodation rented with the employer as tenant, i.e. rented in their name, is the way to go tax-wise, not at all unusual, and indeed what I had when I was in employment here.

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zzm9980
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Postby zzm9980 » Wed, 17 Sep 2014 9:38 am

SuSun wrote:Have looked at the COL comparisons before and it is helpful. We are used to eating out western food here, drinking in hotel bars etc. Know we may have to curb that, but looking forward to safer local options too! And yes not sure we can put a price on clean air!! Yes we can live on the money offered but also hoping to keep our savings topped up too.


If you're talking bars like Xiu (Park Hyatt Beijing) then the prices are comparable. Drinks maybe slightly higher. I'm used to 50rmb drinks, which would be about 25-50 rmb less than comparable in Singapore.

30 minute commute to CBD is half of Singapore, so you have options. Use the website called "gothere.sg" to get an idea on commute times from any point A to point B in Singapore via Taxi or MRT.


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