Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

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teamNLUK
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Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by teamNLUK » Tue, 13 Apr 2021 2:23 pm

Hi,

I recently received a job offer of S$115,000.

I have an 8 month baby, and a wife to support.

I also earn bonuses which vary from 0-S$5,000 per month, but this is very difficult to predict.

We are budgeting S$4,000 per month on rent.

Is this salary enough for us? Will we struggle?

Thanks,

randomluser
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Re: Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by randomluser » Tue, 13 Apr 2021 3:28 pm

$9.58K/month, IMHO budgeting $4K for rent is.. excessive. I think $2.5K is more prudent.

This pay level will be OK but not great provided you don't send your child to infant/child care. Child care at "PAP Kindergarten" (PCF Sparkletots) - and yes, some of them do accept children of EP holders - would be around $1K/month, while child care at an International School would be $2.5K+/month.

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Re: Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by Wong_Jnr » Wed, 14 Apr 2021 9:24 am

Amount should be fine.
I live in a considerable more expensive condo and my wife and I struggle to spend $10k per month and we don't exactly scrimp on spending.
You should be able to live a comfortable life as long as you don't get suckered into the keeping up with the Jones

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Re: Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by Lisafuller » Wed, 14 Apr 2021 5:56 pm

Wong_Jnr wrote:
Wed, 14 Apr 2021 9:24 am
Amount should be fine.
I live in a considerable more expensive condo and my wife and I struggle to spend $10k per month and we don't exactly scrimp on spending.
You should be able to live a comfortable life as long as you don't get suckered into the keeping up with the Jones
Yes but your expenditure doesn’t include money you’ve put away as savings does it? $10K a month will give you a relatively comfortable life but you’ll be left with nothing at the end of the day.

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Re: Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by Lisafuller » Wed, 14 Apr 2021 5:57 pm

randomluser wrote:
Tue, 13 Apr 2021 3:28 pm
$9.58K/month, IMHO budgeting $4K for rent is.. excessive. I think $2.5K is more prudent.

This pay level will be OK but not great provided you don't send your child to infant/child care. Child care at "PAP Kindergarten" (PCF Sparkletots) - and yes, some of them do accept children of EP holders - would be around $1K/month, while child care at an International School would be $2.5K+/month.
Agree completely. You should be able to find a house for much less. $4K for rent would leave you with $5.58K for gas (assuming you drive), food, utilities, childcare expenses and recreation, so it will be a tight budget. $2-$3K would leave you much more wiggle room.

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Re: Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by Wong_Jnr » Thu, 15 Apr 2021 9:56 am

Lisafuller wrote:
Wed, 14 Apr 2021 5:56 pm
Yes but your expenditure doesn’t include money you’ve put away as savings does it? $10K a month will give you a relatively comfortable life but you’ll be left with nothing at the end of the day.
OK let's rephrase this. I came to Singapore with my wife and a $10k income was what I calculated to require a comfortable life to include savings too. This was based on talking with several friends who have been living here a long time, so it's based on peoples experience not just a guesstimate.
$10k I will stand by as a good base figure from experience and it does leave headroom for savings and holidays. Cheaper the condo the more headroom.
Obviously everyone's lifestyle is different and it's a balance that only the individual can decide.
I am trying to give some comfort to the OP that it's possible.

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Re: Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by Lisafuller » Thu, 15 Apr 2021 1:40 pm

Wong_Jnr wrote:
Thu, 15 Apr 2021 9:56 am
Lisafuller wrote:
Wed, 14 Apr 2021 5:56 pm
Yes but your expenditure doesn’t include money you’ve put away as savings does it? $10K a month will give you a relatively comfortable life but you’ll be left with nothing at the end of the day.
OK let's rephrase this. I came to Singapore with my wife and a $10k income was what I calculated to require a comfortable life to include savings too. This was based on talking with several friends who have been living here a long time, so it's based on peoples experience not just a guesstimate.
$10k I will stand by as a good base figure from experience and it does leave headroom for savings and holidays. Cheaper the condo the more headroom.
Obviously everyone's lifestyle is different and it's a balance that only the individual can decide.
I am trying to give some comfort to the OP that it's possible.
I see, I just didn’t want OP to have false hope.

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Re: Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by randomluser » Thu, 22 Apr 2021 4:00 am

Don't forget that a bread and butter car is $10k annual depre ~ $1k+/month including road tax, fuel, maintenance..

IMHO spending more than ~ $3K for housing on a $10K gross income is highly questionable.

It's a very common benchmark that you should only spend 20-30% of your income on housing. QED. I'm personally not comfortable spending more than 30% which incidentally is also around the maximum mortgage % banks in other countries will allow (the 60% TDSR that MAS allows simply boggles my mind.. people with 60% TDSR are up to their necks in mortgage debt).

And again: child care isn't cheap for foreigners in Singapore. You'll be lucky if you get your kid into PAP kindergarten (minimum 2 years old). $1k/month minimum. If it's International School, $2K+ minimum per month. I literally spend more on child care every month than on rental.

Even if your wife isn't working, your kid still needs to go to childcare for the social interaction and you don't want your wife to go nuts caring for your kid alone at home while you're at work. If you get a maid.. the TCO used to be $1K/month (maid salary + maid levy + the food/utilities they consume). I understand it is much higher now because COVID restrictions have jacked up the pay that maids can ask for. I'd say $1.5K/month probably minimum TCO.

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Re: Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by Lisafuller » Thu, 22 Apr 2021 11:26 am

randomluser wrote:
Thu, 22 Apr 2021 4:00 am
Don't forget that a bread and butter car is $10k annual depre ~ $1k+/month including road tax, fuel, maintenance..

IMHO spending more than ~ $3K for housing on a $10K gross income is highly questionable.

It's a very common benchmark that you should only spend 20-30% of your income on housing. QED. I'm personally not comfortable spending more than 30% which incidentally is also around the maximum mortgage % banks in other countries will allow (the 60% TDSR that MAS allows simply boggles my mind.. people with 60% TDSR are up to their necks in mortgage debt).

And again: child care isn't cheap for foreigners in Singapore. You'll be lucky if you get your kid into PAP kindergarten (minimum 2 years old). $1k/month minimum. If it's International School, $2K+ minimum per month. I literally spend more on child care every month than on rental.

Even if your wife isn't working, your kid still needs to go to childcare for the social interaction and you don't want your wife to go nuts caring for your kid alone at home while you're at work. If you get a maid.. the TCO used to be $1K/month (maid salary + maid levy + the food/utilities they consume). I understand it is much higher now because COVID restrictions have jacked up the pay that maids can ask for. I'd say $1.5K/month probably minimum TCO.
Yes, childcare costs for foreigners are exorbitant. Spending more than 2.5-3K a month on rent would not be prudent.

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Re: Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by 6nd68rrp » Sun, 23 May 2021 5:00 pm

For an expat package, it seems pretty average.

As per what most mentioned, the real challenge should be the kids education etc.

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Re: Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by kozizi » Fri, 28 May 2021 11:00 am

10k is very much possible and you won't be squeezed. you will be able to save.
- monthly budget 2.5k for rent, about $500-600 for grocery, another $500 for utilities, telecom, transport, misc expenditure
- upto the age of 6, child can go to neighborhood kindergarten/ childcare, no need of admitting in intl school. Church kindys (3hrs a day) cost about $300 a month, this is the cheapest & best option if you don't require full day child care. If you need full day child care, you can find options in $1000-$1500 range, but i assume in that case both parents would be working so $ wont be an issue
- by the time your child is ready to get into international primary school, either you should be earning more (in the range of $12-15k per month at least), or your wife should start working to boost the household income
- gas/car has been mentioned above by another member, however there is absolutely no need to own a car in SG, public transport is good enough. I use taxis only once a month maybe.

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Re: Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by Lisafuller » Fri, 28 May 2021 11:24 am

kozizi wrote:
Fri, 28 May 2021 11:00 am
10k is very much possible and you won't be squeezed. you will be able to save.
- monthly budget 2.5k for rent, about $500-600 for grocery, another $500 for utilities, telecom, transport, misc expenditure
- upto the age of 6, child can go to neighborhood kindergarten/ childcare, no need of admitting in intl school. Church kindys (3hrs a day) cost about $300 a month, this is the cheapest & best option if you don't require full day child care. If you need full day child care, you can find options in $1000-$1500 range, but i assume in that case both parents would be working so $ wont be an issue
- by the time your child is ready to get into international primary school, either you should be earning more (in the range of $12-15k per month at least), or your wife should start working to boost the household income
- gas/car has been mentioned above by another member, however there is absolutely no need to own a car in SG, public transport is good enough. I use taxis only once a month maybe.
It’s very inconvenient to not have a car if you have a family, particularly if the children are young, so car and relevant expenses should be accounted for.

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Re: Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by kozizi » Mon, 31 May 2021 3:42 pm

@Lisafuller,
I have a very young child and have never felt the need to have a car, been here over 6yrs.
Easily used baby strollers on public transport. Even if a car is required once in a while, taxis are plentiful and affordable.

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Re: Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by BBCDoc » Mon, 31 May 2021 4:09 pm

kozizi wrote:@Lisafuller,
I have a very young child and have never felt the need to have a car, been here over 6yrs.
Easily used baby strollers on public transport. Even if a car is required once in a while, taxis are plentiful and affordable.
Truth, been here for 11 years and 2 kids, never had a car.

One can join a car rental club, but taxis are so much easier. PITA to find parking in malls during peak hours….and the kiasu driving attitude is annoying.


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Re: Is this salary enough for a family of 3?

Post by ProvenPracticalFlexible » Tue, 01 Jun 2021 10:07 am

kozizi wrote:
Mon, 31 May 2021 3:42 pm
@Lisafuller,
I have a very young child and have never felt the need to have a car, been here over 6yrs.
Easily used baby strollers on public transport. Even if a car is required once in a while, taxis are plentiful and affordable.
I would agree, car is absolutely not needed in Singapore. It's easy to use public transport and compliment it with taxis and grab, nowadays easier to book with apps not to mention cheaper.

It seems to be still some kind of Singapore thing that claim car is convenient. I would only consider if there's a big family, 4 kids or so and can't fit into one taxi. Though nowadays grab6 would fix that problem too.

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