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Jacob Chong

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Jacob Chong

Executive Financial Advisor at PIAS

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Executive Financial Advisor at PIAS

Jacob Chong

Executive Financial Advisor at PIAS

  • Answers (17)
  • Questions (0)
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Loans

Home Loan

HDB BTO

Refinancing

Interest Rates

My parents are old and serving a 25 year home loan. Would it be possible for them to refinance now to take advantage of the lower interest rates? If they are not, is there anyway I can help?
Anon, Is your parent home a HDB or Private? If it's private, you can ask for Repricing (within the same bank) usually easier. For Refinancing (out of the current bank) there may be some checks which would render the application null (unsucessful). Age, income, TDSR / MSR (HDB/EC) would be taken into consideration. If all else fail there is a debt reduction program where one can paydown 3% of the outstanding loan to get a approval. If you intend to get a HBD on your own don't put your name (agree with Hariz, you can't anyway). It will hinder your applicaiton for a new flat. ( A family nucleus can only own one HDB, so you need to bear that in mind. )
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Insurance

Do insurance agents use overinflated values (e.g.life coverage of 10x annual income) to get people to buy expensive policies? Are these values grounded/realistic?
Hi Anon, In your questioning, I sense a tint of indignant in regards to what your advisor may have proposed to you in term of your life coverage. Some of my personal experiences with my clients is that there are many people out there who feels "nah, insurance is just a hoax", "those agents are just out there to earn/cheat my money", "I am healthy why do I need any coverage", or some that I have come across who says "hey I only need to take care of myself so i don't need any insurance payout". I wound'nt say there aint some black sheeps our there that taint our profession but hey a bigger majority of us professional follows the rules and guides to find the right solution for our client. As to why financial advisor would recommend 10X your annual income to cover for Death and 5X your annual Income to cover for Critical illness do refer to the link below. There are statisitcal studies involve to come out with the numbers. this is the link from Life Insurance Association https://www.lia.org.sg/tools-and-resources/faq/mortality-protection/ No one should recommend you a coverage that is out of your financial means that's not what financial planning is about. But of course (many of who are in the same industry as me) would have experience client who have excess cashflow of 10,000 a month finds a insurance plan that is 500 dollars a month expensive to protect their life; but are willing to spend thousands of dollars a year for Car Insurance so as to protect their beloved Car. So prioritize what is most important to you. (YOU) When nothing happens to an insured, the insured says "wah buy insurance is a waste of money" but if you talk to those who are/ or have been Critically ill or to the family whose breadwinner has passed on without any form of insurance they would have a very different story to tell you. The Sum Assured paid out could have save the family from many adverse stiuation. Like what's is currently happening to a close relative of mine. Now , I would suggest if the premium is somewhat too high for Wholelife Plan then go Term protect yourself through the peak of your working life so that at least there is some form of coverage be it Death of Critical illness. But do beware that once the term expire there is no more coverage so choose your term(length of coverage) of the policy wisely. (Additionally, term is not always cheaper, some wholelife plan with limited pay feature can be cheaper if you add the total premium paid for term and compare to the limited Pay Wholelife Plan). i.e term premium for 40 years is 900/year total 36,000 compared to Wholelife Plan 25 years premium for 1200/ year is 30,000 You may also buy a lower wholelife plan with Critical Illness rider and add the rest of the gap with Term insurance . (You need to compare across different insurer to find the most value for your buck, dont just stick to one insurer. Just like how you would compare price on Shopee, right?) Your life / presence is the most important thing in this world to yourself and to your family, other things are non-material. Prioritize Stay Safe and Stay Sane Pm me if you want to compare across different insurer
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Investments

Career

Trading

Passive Income

Stocks Discussion

Online Brokerages

Robo-Advisors

Hey guys! Starting to learn more about personal finance and investing and I was wondering if its worthwhile to learn about trading. What are the usual returns for successful traders?
Hi Anon, I have to first applaud you for taking that first step in looking into knowing personal Finance and Investing. It's been studied that many Singaporean are still ignorant or procastinating to managing their Personal Finance. When we talk about what consitute to a sucessful returns for a investor what we are actually asking is how much returns is considered good for a investor. Then we have to quantify what is deem good for that particular investor. Some Investors that you may come across with higher risk appetite demands a returns of over 10% to deem it as worthy and there are more risk adverse client who deem some where between 5 - 6% on thier investment good enough. So let's address that question first, how much do you expect your investment to return. Bearing in mind that higher returns warrant higher risk taken. So when you have determine that specific returns worthy then you can look into those investment that matches those returns with the risk undertaken. Learning about trading is always good. Knowledge is the key to many things and always good. There are course available for you to attend to some ranging from a couple of hunderds to a couple of thousand so really depend on your comfortable range. With that said always take some time to understand what the course entails before you attend them. Some very fanciful classes may require a lot of time from your normal work to achieve their stated possible returns. With all these said, I must also address something as well. How well are you covered in terms of Risk Management. There is a spectrum of behaivor between investors, those who are 100% into investment solely without any proper risk management in mind assuming that nothing bad can happen from investment, and there are those who are very risk adverse who keeps their money in pure cash (cash is King). So take some time to understand your cashflow, your risk management and then we can look into investment. These can be done concurringly but will be prudent to make sure that you have suffice risk management to ensure that if bad (touch wood) were to happen, you have enough coverage to ensure that your family is well taken care of and should the investment turn south you also have the cash to hold through the tide. I hope I shed some light and possibly (hopefully) guides to start your sucessful trade.
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Savings

Insurance

Any expert opinion on Etiqa AmplifyFlex?
Hi Anon, I have studied this policy in depth and I can tell you. Yes the Guaranteed Returns on the 16th year is the highest jump, and YES the guranteed returns is not inclusive of any Bonus included. This is only applicable for 20 year premium Plan. If you are looking for a regular saving plan for children education, general savings etc. this provides a good saving returns with GUARANTEED returns. Remember, when the Product Illustration has indicated as guaranteed surrender value and the insurance company has accepted your application. It is a binding contract between you and the insurance company. So yes at the very bare minimun the surrender value at the 16th policy is what you are expected to get regardless if the econmony has been so bad for the next 16 years after you take up the plan. There are so many plans out there that promises you all these big numbers return after a certain number of years of savings but we need to peel the Product Illustration and see what percentage of those big number returns are the guaranteed value and what percentage are based on the performance of the PAR FUND . There are other components too as well such as Terminal Bonus (TB) (this is wholely dependent on the year you wish to surrender the plan) the higher the Terminal Bonus (sometime 300-400%) the bigger the value you see on the surrender value in the Product illustration (Guaranteed + Bonues). TB are dependent on the performance of the economy specific to that particular year you wish to surrender. So if you were to surrender at a year that is not favourable you can see TB drop drastically or even near 0. (this has had happened before with one insurance company) So when you really are looking for a good endownment plan do look for plans that comes with high guarantees i.e. such as the one you mentioned. PM me if you have more enquires on this.
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Investments

Retirement

Robo-Advisors

Stocks Discussion

Online Brokerages

SeedlyTV S2E05

What is the best (most risk free) method to earn at least 5% interest per year assuming I have 1 million dollars in cash?
We need to be realistic on our objectives. Metaphorically, if we rephrase the question "how can I lose 5kg (return) with effort- free (risk) method without exercising". The answer is more often than not impossible . Even when there is a Fixed Deposit that can offer such returns (which at current most banks are only offering 1% or lower now), more often than not we are blind-sighted by (neglected)risk such as interest-rate risk, reinvestment risk etc. With the current situation that we are facing now, we have to adjust some of our expectation. Interest rate around the world has plummet, as governments around the world fight hard to keep the economies intact with lower borrowing cost. This translates to lower deposit rates across all banks in Singapore. Even Singapore Saving Bonds 10 years is approx 1.05%p.a (assuming you keep to 10 years) So I hope I have given you some light on the expectation that you are looking for. Futher that, if there is any companies that can PROMISE you 10% p.a or more within a short period of time and with complicated instrument please beware and do check with a qualified advisor on the soundness of such scheme. These are usually PONZI scheme. (Still many Singaporean falls victim to these schemes because of their own unrealistic expectation and greed of fast money) Investment inevitably comes with risk, but if we do calculated risk management we can still achieve a decent return for a desired objective. Also returns has to be sustainable so that we don't expose ourselves to irrational decision and actions when the market turns not in our favor. PM me is you have queries on schemes or product that you offered and want to know more if that particular investment is sound.
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Payments

Family

Loans

Property

Savings Accounts

Is it possible to pay the downpayment for a bank housing loan in monthly instalments instead?
Jacob Chong
Jacob Chong, Executive Financial Advisor at PIAS
Level 4. Prodigy
Answered on 25 Feb 2020
No You cannot convert the 5% into monthly installment. The only possible route is via cashline offered by Credit Facility of Credit card. Frankly if there is an issue to 5% DP to the property I would suggest to relook into your finances before commiting to the high loan amount when the Property Loan is fully disbursed.
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ETF

Investments

What do people mean when they say “ETF”?
Jacob Chong
Jacob Chong, Executive Financial Advisor at PIAS
Level 4. Prodigy
Updated on 07 Jun 2019
As most of them has explained... What ETF stands (a lot of my clients asked this and are clueless as to what they really mean how it works). So i will explain in this manner to them and i hope it will help you as well. In Layman terms, ETFs tracks the index of a particular market that you are interested in comprising of the similar made up of the index. i.e. - STI Index, - FTSE ST Mid Cap Index - etc There are mandy index out there and also in different segment for example Marinetime industy has - FTSE ST Maritime Index So you get that picture what Index are? Now ETF as echoed by Yang Teng is a fund that track these indices for example STI ETF tracks STI index, ST REITs ETF Tracks the Reits index etc. Investor buys ETFs because they have a certain confidence/view in the Index they want to track in to reap the performance of it but at the same time do not have that huge captial to copy the exact allocations of it is made up i.e STI comprises of 30 stocks, DBS, UOB, GENTING etc. Can you imagine buying each of this stock at one LOT (1000 shares) each that's a huge capital to invest in for any retail investor out there. As such there is ETFs that allow investors to contribute a small amount of investment into a pool that tracks the indices they want to invest in. Do note that no ETFs are able to track 100% to the index because there is some techincal tracking errors and other factors as well, but in general they do track closely to index.
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CPF

Loans

Resale HDB

Property

I'm planning to purchase a 3 room resale flat within the year with a budget of 250k-300k. Should I go for a SIBOR linked loan or FD linked one? Or would the usual 2-yr fixed rate loan be more beneficial to me?
Jacob Chong
Jacob Chong, Executive Financial Advisor at PIAS
Level 4. Prodigy
Answered on 30 Jan 2019
No 1. on the list is do check with the banks and see if the loan quatum is the amount that they are willing to take. No 2. If i am not wrong there isnt many FD linked rates now. OCBC, UOB and Maybank have taken that down. No. 3. Dont take Sibor if you are someone who is worried about interest movement. 3months SIBOR has you to jump out of bed every 3 month because the rate changes and in current climax definetly not SIBOR. Leaving you with Fixed and Variable rates. Fixed Rates across all banks are about 2.3- 2.48 some higher. For that minimal saving of 0.2% off from HDB loan rates why bother. Variable are different across all banks. Some have Mortage Rate with a markup (ie. MR+0.75= 2.25 therefore you MR is 1.5 ), Some uses preferred rate (currently about 5.5%) then gives you a discount (Ie Preferred Rate -3% = 2.5%). Ranging about 2.18- 2.3 there about so there is still risk in the interest rate movement ya... Above are some of the examples and rates that I have gotten for my clients. Not for actual reference or quotation I hope what i mentioned will help you. CHeers
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Property

Investments

I recently seen the I Quadrant's advertisement on Facebook where they advertised to help Singaporeans own 34 properties in 2 years with little or no money. Is it MAS approved? What are the risks?
Jacob Chong
Jacob Chong, Executive Financial Advisor at PIAS
Level 4. Prodigy
Answered on 30 Jan 2019
Hmm.... Honestly I am very intrigue by their so call 0 downpayment and owning all the 34 properties without any cash down payment. I have been in the Banking industry long enough to know where they are going on with the scheme of theirs. Lets take things into prespective: Legally, if you are to own another property (investment) you will be subjected to ABSD of 12%, Legal Fee, and what have you, of about 15% in total... That's to the Government. Now after securing your so call investment property, you have mortgage to take note, Maintence fee, rental, Property Tax, insurance etc.... I have seen people doing de-coupling of properties so as to escape the ABSD, then what about the legal fee and the rest.... (In the end, its the lawyer, the bank and the Agent most of all the earns the most) not you. Think about it, when you have no financial means to pay the mortgages who is being sued? Bank takes back the property (no lost) Lawyer wash their hands off, because they are only doing the conveyance (money already collected) Agents earned their comm and now long gone (again money collected) You? Charged for bankrupcy because you should have known better about your finances. The funny thing about all these that I have mentioned there are still people in Singapore wanting to buy up property for retirement, for captial gain. When these ads comes up in FB or any social media many rushes in to see and roped into it. A 1million property (which is very rare now) would cost you to lose 15% to the Government. Thats a Whooping 150k. How then can you make back this 15% initial Loss in a matter of 2 years, 3 years or even 5 years.... Foreigner you say? Foreginers will make up for that 15% lost you made. Statistically, you will know you are just trying to comfort yourself. Government has already limited the number of Foreigners into Singapore, and looking that the tax that they are paying i doubt so. What they are trying to make up is a Private investment scheme to properties under many co-owners pulling funds and resources together and since you have a miserable 5% share of the subject property you are considered as OWNED A PROPERTY. I don't know about you but i will Definetly GIVE this A BIG MISS. When Sh s hits the Fence, you know those gurus that say they are just teaching Singaporean how to own 34 properties for free(trust me they get kick backs from lawyers, agents, developers there is no such thing as free) are already long gone and there isn't a think you could do to them because they are not regulated.
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Investments

Retirement

I am a 35 year old single male. How should I plan for retirement considering that I do not plan to be married and start any family in the near future?
Jacob Chong
Jacob Chong, Executive Financial Advisor at PIAS
Level 4. Prodigy
Answered on 28 Dec 2018
First Determine the Age that you want to retire. if 55 to retire then you have 20years to save, 65 then 30 etc. (Stick to it) Then work out your expenses per month add inflation computation, add another 10-20% more (you be shock that actually early retirement can cost you more because of more time to travel and more time to engage in activities which you wouldnt thought about it whilst working. Look at your average family male life expectancy (thats an indication of your own life expentancy +/-then reverse work the sum out... but always plan for longer life expentancy) You have your Retirement Sum. then again there are some blinds spots that Single also mention to me. Why should i get Early Critical Illness, why life plans at all when i dont even want to leave anything behind for anyone... Some of these Blind spots though not really a blind spot but client just choose to ignore them are Early Critical illnesses can happen to anyone anytime and at any age. The payouts from these plans are meant for your own treatment and expenses should you be stricken before the retirement age. So you got to be prepared ya Cheers and Well Done on making that first step to think about Retirement
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