Sarah Chan - Seedly
Sarah Chan

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Sarah Chan

Social Media & Marketing at Seedly

106Upvotes

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Social Media & Marketing at Seedly

Sarah Chan

Social Media & Marketing at Seedly

106Upvotes
  • Answers (33)
  • Questions (0)
  • Reviews (1)

Credit Card

Bank Account

DBS

DBS Multiplier

DBS Live Fresh Card

POSB Everyday Card

Hey there anon!! I’m in the midst of planning which DBS/POSB credit card to get and complement my DBS Multiplier account too so here are the findings I got! I will be focusing on the following 3 credit cards that are the most popular among consumers. ! TL;DR: You should pair your DBS Multiplier Account with the POSB Everyday Card because: - There is no minimum monthly spend - There are lesser cashback caps imposed - There is a good variety of merchants to enjoy the cashback from 1. DBS Live Fresh Card ! Details: - This cashback rate is only applicable with a minimum spend of $600/month. - From now till 31 Dec 2019, you’ll get to enjoy an additional 5% cashback on your transport spend for the first 180 days from your card approval date as long as you hit the minimum spend of $600 every month. This cashback is capped at $20/month. - You can connect the DBS Live Fresh Card to SimplyGo, charging all your bus/MRT rides directly to it - This all-in-one card can also be linked to your Multiplier Savings Account and act as your ATM card 2. POSB Everyday Card ! Details: - No minimum spend - Your cash rebates will never expire - You can connect the POSB Everyday Card to SimplyGo too, charging all your bus/MRT rides directly to it - This all-in-one card can also be linked to your Multiplier Savings Account and act as your ATM card 3. DBS Altitude Visa Signature Card - Miles rate (local): $1 = 1.2 miles - Miles rate (overseas): $1 = 2 miles - Miles rate (travel): $1 = 3 miles - 10,000 extra miles with annual fee payment - Additional travel privileges exclusive to cardholders - You can connect the DBS Altitude Card to SimplyGo too, charging all your bus/MRT rides directly to it - The card can also be linked to your Multiplier Savings Account How do I decide which is the most suitable card? 1. Are you focusing on a credit card that rewards you with cashback or miles? 2. What’s your average monthly expenses? This is to ensure you can hit the minimum spend on cards with one. 3. What comprises your monthly expenses? Are they mostly online spending or grocery.etc? This is to ensure you’re milking your card to its potential. Based on the above findings, I would most likely go with the POSB Everyday Card . With no minimum spend imposed, I don’t feel pressurised to spend excessively every month to hit that target. The cashback given for shopping at Sheng Shiong and Watsons are great for me too, but the 20.1% cashback for petrol at SPC is even better for those that drive a lot! The $60 monthly cashback cap imposed on the Live Fresh Card makes it lose out to the POSB Everyday Card. Apparently, the cashback % was at 10% previously AND there were no monthly caps for the Live Fresh Card a year ago. But today’s terms aren’t so favourable anymore so I would really encourage you to get the POSB Everyday Card instead. If you’re looking for a credit card rewarding you with miles instead, the DBS Altitude Visa Signature Card has pretty decent features and can be linked to your DBS Multiplier Account too. Essentially, it boils down to how much your monthly expenditure is - the higher it is, the greater the interests you get to earn from the Multiplier Account. If you would be spending a lot in exchange for a better interest rate, why not milk the cashback from the POSB Everyday Card that doesn't have a monthly cap? I hope this was helpful!
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Savings

Loans

General

Hi there anon! I’m sure many undergrads & fresh grads are in a very similar position as they begin sorting their personal finance. Here’s my two cents worth of opinion! ! TL;DR: Follow our Seedly Personal Finance Guide & Seedly Salary Allocation Model Achieving financial independence begins with managing your personal finances well, which comprises of the following 5 verticals: 1. Income 2. Expenses/Spending 3. Savings & Debt 4. Insurance 5. Investments. I would touch on all of them in my sharing below but do refer alongside this Seedly Personal Finance Guide for more details :) For starters, I wanted to introduce you to Seedly’s income allocation model. I’ll be using $2,400 (your after-CPF salary) in the following example: - 50% expenses: $1,200 - 30% invest: $720 - 20% savings: $480 1. Expenses/Spending: 50% - Given that $500 goes to your parents every month, that leaves you with $700 for monthly expenses and insurance. I think it’s pretty alright if you have experience living on a budget from your university days but again, it’s dependent on your lifestyle . - Regardless, if $700 is insufficient for you, part of your passive income from giving tuition can be channeled to your monthly expenses! - As I’m unsure how much you earn from these monthly tuition sessions, I’ll still advice you to keep your expenses at bay . - On top of your day to day expenses, you’ve got to factor in your monthly insurance expenses too. Despite your debt situation, I would still encourage you to get health and term insurance at least! Additionally, if you’re thinking of getting a credit card, I would say pick those that will reward you with cashback ! This makes your expenditure feel a little more worth it / hurt a little less. I personally wouldn’t focus on any travel plans until my student debt is cleared, therefore, I wouldn’t suggest getting a miles credit card. Here’s a Seedly article recommending the top cashback credit cards in 2019. 2. Investments: 30% - I think $100 a month is fine right now as you still have debt to clear. - After your student debt has been cleared and you’ve set aside emergency funds (at least 6 months worth of savings), I would recommend you invest a little more and hit that 30% target. - In the meantime as you hustle your way to clear the debt and save your money, you can beef up your investing knowledge . Before embarking on your investing journey, you should do your due diligence at understanding the mechanics and risks associated with the various investment products. - Come up with a financial plan too - what goals do you have, when would you like to accomplish them, what’s your starting capital, what’s your risk appetite? You may read more about investing in our Seedly guide on investing for Singaporeans! 3. Savings (& Debt): 20% You didn’t mention anything about the amount you save every month at the moment besides the fact that you would like to grow it. That said, I’ve got 2 things I wanted to point out: - I acknowledge that the $480 channelled to your savings based on our 20% guideline is clearly insufficient to cover your monthly student debt repayment ($500). Hence, tweak the percentages according to your unique needs. If you choose to stick with our recommended 20%, I believe some of your passive income from giving tuitions can help in this area. - Picking the right savings account helps you in growing your savings too. Read this Seedly article on the best savings accounts with high interest rates that Singaporeans should get. I would personally recommend the DBS Multiplier Account paired with a DBS/POSB credit card. With regards to your question on what should be your benchmark, I would say your peers are definitely not it . Your peers have different jobs, family backgrounds, lifestyles, and investment preferences - it’s impossible to find someone remotely similar to you and your financial position. Therefore, you shouldn’t compare yourself against them and their financial positions, it’s not a fair match. In short, there’s no need to feel discouraged because the comparison shouldn’t even take place. I think you’re doing great because you are: 1. making some serious plans given your debt situation 2. side hustling to further aid your financial position 3. actively seeking advice from the community to improve your personal finance journey. If you REALLY want a benchmark for the betterment of yourself, I would recommend the checklist in our Seedly Personal Finance Guide. Check everything on the guide while living comfortably based on our Seedly income allocation guide and I would say you’ve achieved financial independence :) I hope this helped, all the best and keep up the good work!

Travel

General

Sarah Chan
Sarah Chan
Level 6. Master
Answered 2w ago
Hi anon! As a dedicated travel freak that's always on the lookout for travel deals, here's my input! 1. Keep your eyes peeled for NATAS Fairs! I've seen $600-750 SQ airfares to Korea and Japan before. If you're open to other airlines then the price would definitely go down. Alternatively, join the airfare Telegram channels! They'll blast promos for various airlines every now and then. Tuesdays are the best days to get your air tickets from Scoot too. 2. DIY/free & easy tours. I would only go for a tour if it's Europe and it's my first time there. Elsewhere, I would gladly DIY my own itinerary. I like the autonomy over planning what i'm doing when i'm traveling + it helps keep costs down as i get to decide which days are budget days & which days are those i would pamper myself with pricier food/attractions/shopping. 3. Read travel blogs and reviews to understand the nitty gritty details that can help you get to your destination when you're traveling free & easy. This also means taking the public transport as much as possible! Exceptions would be when they have cheaper & more convenient traveling options there e.g. tuk tuks in BKK. 4. Use Shopback when you're making your bookings! This applies to your flight, hotel, airbnb, attractions or travel insurance. Cashback helps you save a little and ease the burn in your wallet haha. 5. Agreeing with the other answers below too! Go with airbnbs or hostels if you staying in a hotel isn't your top priority when you're traveling. Also, get a miles credit card to redeem the miles if you're a travel enthusiast! At the end of the day, it's down to your spending habits when you're traveling. There're plenty of inexpensive food, attractions & shopping available wherever you travel, you just have to do your homework and find them online/in person. Here's a Seedly x The Woke Salaryman article on how you can save money while traveling! Have a read :) Hope this was helpful!

Investments

ETF

Robo-Advisors

Hi Dominic! I’ve been doing some research into the common investment options available and considered ETFs vs Robo-Advisors too so here’s my little analysis. Some quick facts about ETFs : - When you buy a stock of an ETF, you are buying into a basket of weighted shares. - They are medium to high risk investments that have high returns. - These are great for passive investors wanting to diversify at a low cost with relatively low effort. - E.g. STI ETF - We actually have a checklist on choosing the right ETF here! Some quick facts about Robo-Advisors : - Digital platforms that make automated and algorithm-driven investment decisions instead of going through an actual, human fund manager. - They are low to high risk investments with low to high returns (customisable). - These are great for passive investors wanting to diversify at a low cost with very little effort. - E.g. StashAway, AutoWealth, MoneyOwl, Endowus - We’ve done up a comparison of all the Robo-Advisor companies in Singapore too, check it out here! TL;DR You should make a long term investment in Robo-Advisors if you’re an investor that: - Don’t mind the lack of control over the exact ETFs or securities you’re investing your money in - Want a purely passive investment option that requires minimal effort but is highly diverse too - Don’t mind paying additional fees for the Robo-Advisor to do the manual work for you - Is new to investing and would like to explore this alternative of investing ! Now moving on to comparing between ETFs and Robo-Advisors: #1 What is being invested: - ETFs: If you’re looking at the STI ETF then it would be a local ETF. It would expose you to companies in various sectors in Singapore, albeit heavily focused on the banking & finance ones. Investing in ETFs as an individual gives you the freedom to DIY. - Robo-Advisors: They would usually invest in a basket of global ETFs (mostly US ETFs), exposing you to the global economy in different sectors. They are usually diversified through a mix of equities and bonds in the portfolio. Some of these ETFs are not available to retail investors too. #2 Degree of autonomy: - Investing in ETFs directly would give you full control and flexibility over which ones you would like to invest your money in. - Investing via Robo-Advisors wouldn’t give you as much control over the specific ETFs/bonds/equities you would like to invest in as the algorithm would help decide for you. Investing through the algorithm may not cater to your specific investment needs compared to investing with a human touch. HOWEVER, you would still be able to customise based on your risk appetite, income, financial goals .etc. #3 Method of investment: - ETFs: You can make a lump sum investment through a brokerage account OR make monthly investments through your bank account or POEMS. - Robo-Advisors: Each Robo-Advisor company has its own method of investment using different algorithms and models. - Investing through Robo-Advisors would usually be easier as there’s no need to submit any documents to the brokerage firm or pass any instructions down. Simply sign up and let the app’s algorithm do the work for you. #4 Costs associated: While the fees associated with Robo-Advisors are indeed lower than investing via a fund manager, you would still incur additional costs compared to buying the ETF and managing your investment portfolio on your own. Therefore, you should evaluate if these Robo-Advisor fees are worth it in the long term. Intermediary fees aside, do take note of minimum investments and transaction costs associated with investing in ETFs as an individual too. Some Robo-Advisor companies might have minimum investments too! Long term investments: You mentioned that you’re looking for a long term investment strategy and both ETFs and Robo-Advisors are great investment options for the long term as they are both liquid. This means that you can sell your portfolio whenever you deem fit, or in your case, when your ‘long term’ timeframe is up. I personally find Robo-Advisors more liquid than ETFs. Since the algorithm would manage your entire portfolio, you can decide to cease the long term investment whenever you like to. Investing in ETFs as an individual means managing and reviewing your portfolio on your own before selling them away. I feel that this process would take a tad bit more effort and time compared to leaving it in the hands of the Robo-Advisor’s algorithm. But at the end of the day, to each his own. More importantly, diversifying is key :) Ultimately, you can invest in both Robo-Advisors and ETFs at the same time as your long term investment strategy as they both help to diversify your portfolio. I hope this was helpful to you!
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AMA The Fifth Person

ETF

Robo-Advisors

Investments

Hi anon, I've recently answered a similar question and did a thorough analysis here! Do take a look :) At the end of the day, ask yourself the usual questions before investing: 1. What's your risk appetite? 2. What's your starting capital? Are you alright with paying for intermediary fees? 3. How much do you know about each type of investment? 4. How much effort and time would you like to spend on the investment? Ultimately, diversification is key! So you can actually invest in BOTH Robo-Advisors and ETFs at the same time :)

Savings

Lifestyle

General

Hi anon, I recently answered a similar question, you can have a look at my analysis here: https://seedly.sg/questions/i-have-been-working-on-a-plan-to-achieve-financial-independence-but-it-hasn-t-been-going-too-well-anyone-has-any-advice?aid=16497 My additional advice for you would be: 1. YES, keep those impulse purchases down. I'm quite a shopaholic as well tbh (used to be a super reckless spender too), but I try to keep my expenses at bay by following the following tips: - Cook more often to save money from eating out! Meal prepping is really helpful at saving money + attempting to be healthy haha. - Find free activities to do in your spare time, there are plenty in Singapore!! There are blog articles and Telegram channels sharing deals, promos & events in Singapore which are free or really inexpensive. Here’s a Seedly article compiling all the Telegram channels in SG that you should follow! - Use money saving apps & tools to help you save a little while you’re spending. Check out our Seedly article on money saving tools a Singaporean should use! My personal favourite is Shopback for online shopping & ShopbackGo for meals. - Do your expense tracking . Of course, I would like to plug the Seedly app for expense tracking because we have a really intuitive & user friendly interface! You can also set limits on certain categories of expenditure (this is how I limit my Grab rides haha). - We all grew up with the 3Rs in Singapore, yeah? Environmentalists believe in 2 additional Rs: Refuse and Repair . Refusing is the way to go if you wanna control your expenditure, especially if it's a want instead of a need. 2. Follow our Seedly salary allocation model diligently!! It's a good tool for starters beginning their personal finance journey. Thereafter, you can plan for the other components of your personal finance too, i.e. debt and insurance. 3. Read up! Like many other answers, you should definitely read to beef up your investing and personal finance knowledge. You can learn more on our Seedly blog for FREE! We've got plenty of articles on all 5 verticals of personal finance :) Hope this helped! All the best :)

Savings

Retirement

Hi there anon! I recently answered a similar question here, you should check it out: https://seedly.sg/questions/i-have-been-working-on-a-plan-to-achieve-financial-independence-but-it-hasn-t-been-going-too-well-anyone-has-any-advice?aid=16497 I think the first step to personal finance is to sort out your current financial status according to the 5 verticals in personal finance. For starters, check out these 2 articles! - https://blog.seedly.sg/read-me-first-your-personal-finance-journey-starts-with-this-article/ - https://blog.seedly.sg/beginner-series-tips-seedly-money-framework/ Next, you should take a course of action based on the 5 verticals of personal finance. 1. Income: adopt our Seedly 50-30-20 salary allocation model 2. Expenses: track them with the Seedly App 3. Savings & Debt: pick a high interest savings account 4. Insurance: get life & health insurance at the very least 5. Investment: start reading up about investment options and make a financial plan Managing your personal finance isn't that daunting, you just have to begin somewhere. I hope I've brought you to that somewhere! You can read up more on personal finance on our Seedly blog, everything is FOC :) All the very best to your personal finance journey!

Investments

Savings

Bank Account

Hi anon! I recently answered a really similar question here, have a look: https://seedly.sg/questions/i-have-been-working-on-a-plan-to-achieve-financial-independence-but-it-hasn-t-been-going-too-well-anyone-has-any-advice?aid=16497 Here at Seedly, we follow a 50-30-20 salary allocation model. It comprises of 50% expenses, 30% investments and 20% savings. The % is flexible and up to your unique needs. I would say clear your outstanding debts, set aside some emergency funds (as mentioned by Hariz) and beef up your investing knowledge before you begin investing. Use your savings % to help clear any outstanding debt too! Hope this helped, all the best!

Credit Card

General

Hi Anon! I’ll start off by recommending you this Seedly article breaking down the differences in CC benefits. Understanding the differences among the 4 types of benefits can help you in deciding which CC to prioritise in the future! That aside, what I get from you is that: 1. You’re an avid Grabber and would like to benefit from your frequent expenditure 2. You are currently using/would like to use a Visa CC ! With that, I would be focusing on earning miles and cashback from your monthly expenditure as they’re the more common benefits. Here are my recommendations: ! My summarised list of recommendations aside, I do advise you to do your own research on the various CCs to take note of the exceptions in expenditure and see if the terms match your expenditure behaviour. Based off what I’ve researched, UOB seems to have the best deals with Grab (refer more here: https://www.uob.com.sg/grab/). I’ve narrowed it down to the above 2 UOB CCs based on your expenditure behaviour ($800/month). Hope I helped!! :-
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Lifestyle

Savings

Shopping

Hi Vanessa! EZ-Rewards is more of a points/rewards system. After accumulating the points from your rides, you can use them to redeem various types of rewards. Check out this Seedly article for more info on the rewards you can redeem! SimplyGo makes traveling less troublesome as payment is directly credited to your credit/debit card. Therefore, there won't be a need for manual top-ups anymore. Check out this Seedly article about SimplyGo and the rewards you can get during the current promotion period! As a university student, I'm assuming you are using concession to travel. Between the rewards during the SimplyGo promotion period VS the cheaper fare rides from concession, I would say stick with concession and not switch to SimplyGo. There's only this much you can save from the cashback/rewards from the promotion period, afterwhich you would have to continue paying adult fare for your rides. Therefore, staying with your concession is best! But bear in mind that concessions do not qualify for EZ-rewards! It's a tradeoff between cheaper student fare, EZ-rewards & the ease from SimplyGo. Hope this was helpful! Happy traveling :-)
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