Am I insane to spend this much on rent with my salary

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smoulder
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Re: Am I insane to spend this much on rent with my salary

Post by smoulder » Fri, 27 Aug 2021 1:05 pm

I'm surprised that some of the folks here who appear to be very disciplined in their personal finances aren't using credit cards for the extra freebies.

I am not a rash spender - so I like to use my credit card to buy essentials or generally stuff that I would otherwise use cash for (if there were no credit cards). Good example would be groceries. At the moment, I'm using my UOB one card which gets me decent rebates.

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malcontent
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Re: Am I insane to spend this much on rent with my salary

Post by malcontent » Fri, 27 Aug 2021 4:22 pm

I actually really like credit cards, even though it has zero impact on my propensity to spend and I’ve never paid a single cent on interest or fees.

What I do is match my existing spending habits to the highest reward available for that spend. Over the years I’ve settled into a 3 card system here:

Citi SMRT doubles as my EZ-Link card and gives me 5% back on my groceries, online and transport.

DBS Esso doubles as my ATM card and gives at least 17% off on the rare occasions that I drive and need to buy gas.

Finally, StanChart Unlimited gives me 1.5% back on everything else. I noticed UOB has a new 1.7% card that could be a potential replacement.

I also keep at least one US credit card going. Citi Double Cash is my keeper card and any US expenses get charged to that. Every trip back to the US we usually sign up for at least 3 new cards and get sign-up bonuses and other perks worth around $1,000 per trip. It’s all on money I’m going to spend anyway, so why not?

Every single credit card I have is set to auto-pay in full, so it’s no different than paying cash for me.

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Re: Am I insane to spend this much on rent with my salary

Post by smoulder » Fri, 27 Aug 2021 4:36 pm

Yep mal. Looks like we are on the same page.

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Re: Am I insane to spend this much on rent with my salary

Post by Wd40 » Fri, 27 Aug 2021 10:54 pm

My spending habits are such that I hardly get to use credit cards. Our groceries are different from the rest, Indian groceries, so we mostly shop at Indian groceries stores and they don't accept credit cards. Fruits and vegetables we shop from the wet market, which is much more cheaper than fair price.

The only thing we buy from fair price is milk, cheese and juice.

The toiletries and house cleaning liquids etc we buy from MyCK which is way cheaper than fair price and doesn't accept credit cards.

It is funny locals here think cold storage is expensive and we think fair price is expensive, lol.

Our mobile spend is 0 we use circles Flexi $0 sim. I find it crazy people still need so much of mobile data. Now with WFH we only need M1 broadband 500mbps that cost $30.

Then just utilities and simplygo. We struggle to hit even $300 a month. We eat out rarely in restaurants, we cook at home and the few times we eat out we go to food courts.

However I do use credit cards mainly for the sign-up bonus on singsaver. They give you like $200-300 for applying and then I cancel and reapply again after one year. I do this for all cards in a round robin fashion and kind of our annual discretionary spend gets funded this way, lol.

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Re: Am I insane to spend this much on rent with my salary

Post by smoulder » Fri, 27 Aug 2021 11:35 pm

Wd40 wrote:
Fri, 27 Aug 2021 10:54 pm
My spending habits are such that I hardly get to use credit cards. Our groceries are different from the rest, Indian groceries, so we mostly shop at Indian groceries stores and they don't accept credit cards. Fruits and vegetables we shop from the wet market, which is much more cheaper than fair price.

The only thing we buy from fair price is milk, cheese and juice.

The toiletries and house cleaning liquids etc we buy from MyCK which is way cheaper than fair price and doesn't accept credit cards.

It is funny locals here think cold storage is expensive and we think fair price is expensive, lol.

Our mobile spend is 0 we use circles Flexi $0 sim. I find it crazy people still need so much of mobile data. Now with WFH we only need M1 broadband 500mbps that cost $30.

Then just utilities and simplygo. We struggle to hit even $300 a month. We eat out rarely in restaurants, we cook at home and the few times we eat out we go to food courts.

However I do use credit cards mainly for the sign-up bonus on singsaver. They give you like $200-300 for applying and then I cancel and reapply again after one year. I do this for all cards in a round robin fashion and kind of our annual discretionary spend gets funded this way, lol.
This is blog worthy stuff.... How to live frugally in Singapore :)

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Re: Am I insane to spend this much on rent with my salary

Post by bro75 » Sat, 28 Aug 2021 9:35 am

Looks like I am similar to WD40, Malcontent, and Addadude. I do use credit cards due to the rewards and convenience but I pay them all off at the end of the month. I find loans abhorrent although I do still have a mortgage which is the only loan I can abide and which I plan to pay off this year. Like you, all my bonuses barely register in my mind and go straight to savings and investment. My problem is I do not invest enough and there are some lost opportunities there.

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Re: Am I insane to spend this much on rent with my salary

Post by malcontent » Sat, 28 Aug 2021 1:41 pm

bro75 wrote:
Sat, 28 Aug 2021 9:35 am
Looks like I am similar to WD40, Malcontent, and Addadude. I do use credit cards due to the rewards and convenience but I pay them all off at the end of the month. I find loans abhorrent although I do still have a mortgage which is the only loan I can abide and which I plan to pay off this year. Like you, all my bonuses barely register in my mind and go straight to savings and investment. My problem is I do not invest enough and there are some lost opportunities there.
I used to have this same problem with lost opportunities from not investing enough. What helped me is downloading historical annual returns in the stock market going back to the 1920’s and using a spreadsheet to calculate the best, worst and average returns over every 5, 10, 15 and 20 year period possible. You quickly realize that even if you buy at the peak you won’t lose out… as long as you are investing for the long-term and stay the course no matter what happens, even through a 50-60% drop. This helped build my confidence and acceptance of the risks given the long-term rewards are almost guaranteed. I then started plowing my excess cash into the market, month after month without fail. At first it was more random, but eventually I settled into buying on the last day of the month. I managed to get all of my excess cash invested over the course of about 18 months. Then I continued to invest my usual savings each month from there.

I recommend taking your total excess cash, divide it by xx months you want to spread it over, then add your usual monthly savings to that - - that is the total you need to invest each month for xx months. Pick a drop dead date each month and stick to it with discipline, ignoring what is happening with the market and price, if you want to focus on a number, focus on the number or shares you own.

I am really glad that I did this, although last year in March at the low, all of my gains were wiped out completely, I stayed the course and bought even more at cheaper prices. This is why studying historical returns is useful… markets always recover. Do you think the market is too high now and could drop? Well, let’s hope it does, because then you’ll get even more shares each month you invest. If it doesn’t, at least the money you put in last month has grown. It’s win-win.

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Re: Am I insane to spend this much on rent with my salary

Post by Lisafuller » Tue, 31 Aug 2021 2:10 am

smoulder wrote:
Fri, 27 Aug 2021 1:05 pm
I'm surprised that some of the folks here who appear to be very disciplined in their personal finances aren't using credit cards for the extra freebies.

I am not a rash spender - so I like to use my credit card to buy essentials or generally stuff that I would otherwise use cash for (if there were no credit cards). Good example would be groceries. At the moment, I'm using my UOB one card which gets me decent rebates.
I use that UOB one card when I get groceries, I also have the fairprice membership card which allows me to accumulate points that can later be redeemed for a discount.

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Re: Am I insane to spend this much on rent with my salary

Post by Lisafuller » Tue, 31 Aug 2021 2:12 am

Wd40 wrote:
Fri, 27 Aug 2021 10:54 pm
My spending habits are such that I hardly get to use credit cards. Our groceries are different from the rest, Indian groceries, so we mostly shop at Indian groceries stores and they don't accept credit cards. Fruits and vegetables we shop from the wet market, which is much more cheaper than fair price.

The only thing we buy from fair price is milk, cheese and juice.

The toiletries and house cleaning liquids etc we buy from MyCK which is way cheaper than fair price and doesn't accept credit cards.

It is funny locals here think cold storage is expensive and we think fair price is expensive, lol.

Our mobile spend is 0 we use circles Flexi $0 sim. I find it crazy people still need so much of mobile data. Now with WFH we only need M1 broadband 500mbps that cost $30.

Then just utilities and simplygo. We struggle to hit even $300 a month. We eat out rarely in restaurants, we cook at home and the few times we eat out we go to food courts.

However I do use credit cards mainly for the sign-up bonus on singsaver. They give you like $200-300 for applying and then I cancel and reapply again after one year. I do this for all cards in a round robin fashion and kind of our annual discretionary spend gets funded this way, lol.
Ah… the wet markets, the hidden gem foreigners usually stay far away from. It’s a little rough around the edges, but it’s where you’ll find the best prices and freshest produce.

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Re: Am I insane to spend this much on rent with my salary

Post by malcontent » Tue, 31 Aug 2021 9:40 am

Lisafuller wrote:
Tue, 31 Aug 2021 2:10 am
I use that UOB one card when I get groceries, I also have the fairprice membership card which allows me to accumulate points that can later be redeemed for a discount.
I just can’t achieve the minimum spend consistently for the UOB One card. Even my Citi SMRT which recently upped the minimum spend to $500/mo is a challenge, so I’ve started buying groceries ahead for the following month and skip a month. All of our fresh food comes from the wet market paid with cash.

The NTUC points didn’t used to be available for online. My entire points balance last year was forfeited because of this. But just in the past few months you can now earn and redeem points online — so if you haven’t linked your points to your online account, be sure and do it.

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Re: Am I insane to spend this much on rent with my salary

Post by Lisafuller » Tue, 31 Aug 2021 10:51 pm

malcontent wrote:
Tue, 31 Aug 2021 9:40 am
Lisafuller wrote:
Tue, 31 Aug 2021 2:10 am
I use that UOB one card when I get groceries, I also have the fairprice membership card which allows me to accumulate points that can later be redeemed for a discount.
I just can’t achieve the minimum spend consistently for the UOB One card. Even my Citi SMRT which recently upped the minimum spend to $500/mo is a challenge, so I’ve started buying groceries ahead for the following month and skip a month. All of our fresh food comes from the wet market paid with cash.

The NTUC points didn’t used to be available for online. My entire points balance last year was forfeited because of this. But just in the past few months you can now earn and redeem points online — so if you haven’t linked your points to your online account, be sure and do it.
Since the pandemic we avoid eating out so we go through groceries like nobody’s business. Unfortunately, I have no problem hitting the minimum spend hahaha.

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Re: Am I insane to spend this much on rent with my salary

Post by midlet2013 » Tue, 31 Aug 2021 11:00 pm

I pay credit card in advance. Every month I add 3-4K over 3-4 cards in advance and spend without any worries of missing payments. You can advance pay the min monthly spend . No harm if ur CC balance is positive.

Also, I wish all my friends a happy and long life cuz u guys will need it to enjoy all ur savings :)

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Re: Am I insane to spend this much on rent with my salary

Post by malcontent » Tue, 31 Aug 2021 11:19 pm

Giro is a really wonderful thing. I know some here don’t trust it, but you can always stop it before the bill is paid if you don’t agree with it. I’ve got about a dozen Giro payments that hit my checking account each month. I’m a big fan of automation, especially when it comes to finance. Just put it on autopilot and never have to worry about it — that’s my ideal state.

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