Singvestor's awakening

Where are you and where are you going?
Gilberto de Piento
Posts: 1728
Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 10:23 pm

Re: Singvestor's awakening

Post by Gilberto de Piento »

Hang in there singvestor. I wish you the best. Is the knee issue something you can work on and maybe improve, or is it permanent?

singvestor
Posts: 169
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2015 12:48 am

Monthly update #71: May 2021

Post by singvestor »

Thank you, Viktor and Gilberto! April was a bit of a low point, but in May/June I managed to improve things. Feeling a lot better, especially now that I restarted the sport program.

Monthly life improvement update:

I decided to tackle the issues mentioned in the last post by trying to change habits.
Still doing too little sports, but have ramped up efforts again in the second half of May.

The biggest improvement was that I joined a small environmental NGO, which I liked very much. I can use my specific skills to help them and it has been a very inspiring time for me, working on a big project and interacting with a different type of people from my work. I enjoy the purpose, but also the creation and interaction.

At work I decided to take it easy. I only do the important things and now can work 35-40 hours a week instead of 60. Feels great! I keep looking for things to make my work day more efficient and now that Europe is starting the summer break, I will slack off happily.

Spending and saving rate

In May I spent SGD 2,738 - a rather cost-efficient month.

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My saving rate in May was 82% - thanks to the higher income because of a yearly bonus. The bonus payout was much smaller than previous years, but I am lucky to receive a bonus in the first place.

Portfolio development

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In February my portfolio increased from SGD 746,347 to 771,514 (~USD 581,300). Fresh investments of SGD 22,610 were supported by gains of SGD 5,185.

Dividends received

My holdings paid out SGD 1,005 of tax free dividends.

Asset allocation

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Hypothetical income at 4% WR
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SGD 2,572 - I am reaching a level where it is imaginable that I could survive without working.

When can I retire?


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Things are going in the right direction.

Outlook

Feeling a lot better than last month. Got first shot of vaccine, feeling hopeful that parts of normal life can resume. At the same time dreading the idea of going back to the office, after fully remote work for 1.5 years I am quite used to it.

singvestor
Posts: 169
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2015 12:48 am

Monthly update #72: June 2021

Post by singvestor »

Monthly life improvement update

The sports program is going well.

Volunteering at the NGO is very fun and fulfilling.

In a wild turn of events I have been talking to an interesting startup in the medical field and it seems I might join them as a consultant for a few days each month. Fingers crossed!

Life suddenly got a lot more interesting.

Spending and saving rate

In June I saved an ok 67% of my income and spent SGD 4,172. Quite an expensive month, including quite high costs for my car (SGD 822). I have a cheap car, but taxes, inspections, parking... etc add up. Lifestyle redesign would definitely go hand-in-hand with a carfree lifestyle.

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Portfolio development

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In June my portfolio increased from SGD 771,514 to SGD 790,044 (~USD 580,000). Fresh investments of SGD 9,947 were supported by gains of SGD 8,583.

Market is unreal, I sold my DBS shares to reduce individual shares in my portfolio. Holding quite a lot of bonds and cash to reduce risk in this frothy market. March 2021 I gambled nearly all my bonds into stock, now I have built my bond allocation back up with fresh investments. Market timing, but it worked.

Asset allocation

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Dividends received

My holdings paid out SGD 956 of tax free dividends.

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When can I retire?

In the end it all boils down to this chart.

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Hypothetical passive income at 4% WR is SGD 2,633 - it is getting to a point where I could potentially survive off the passive income if needed.

Outlook

I have been in the office three days in the last 17 months. The thought of putting on a suit, shining shoes, sitting in traffic for half an hour only to do video calls with my international team from the office seems even more absurd than before.

8 more months of Europe assignment to go… These days I often wonder if I should really go back to Singapore afterwards. I miss Singapore so much, but the job waiting for me there is not that exciting. My portfolio is quite large and I could supplement the passive income quite easily… I am leaning towards some lifestyle redesign with more freedom.

I will use the next eight months to continue investing heavily and after a potentially huge bonus in April (business booming) I should have a large enough portfolio to take some lifestyle design risks and leave the standard employee life behind at age 40. Fingers crossed!

JollyScot
Posts: 187
Joined: Thu Feb 26, 2015 3:44 am

Re: Singvestor's awakening

Post by JollyScot »

Isn't one of the key benefits of Singapore the far less onerous tax treatment for just about anything but consumption. I seem to remember that your Europe role has the tax treatment equalised for you. That is not a particularly normal thing to happen.

So if you were to choose to work in Europe longer term then the taxes really begin to bite if you are on the consulting route. I am trying to wind down my hours and stop the full time working. Watching 60% walk out the door every paycheck ends up making you more bitter. It is probably why most taxes are "at source" now. It will stop everything from thinking about it.

Out of sight out of mind.

You probably need to consider what your gross work is worth to your company. If you consider staying in a high tax place to work. As you will need a higher number than you think to keep take home income high. Especically as a consultant.

singvestor
Posts: 169
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2015 12:48 am

Monthly update #73: July 2021

Post by singvestor »

Jollyscot, you are right, the special tax deal has made my assignment so great. I have started working a bit as a consultant as a side job, mostly because the topic is interesting. They asked for my daily rate and I just gave them a very high number to match my current net salary after 55% tax.

Monthly life improvement update

The sports program is still on track, but weight has increased by 1 kg, because of eating too much.

My part time consulting gig is very exciting so far, earning money is only a welcome side effect. In August I will create my first bill, the income should show in September.

The ramp up costs for my company (renaming, initial tax consulting and so on) came with quite a bit of costs. As a fulltime option the current setup would not work, but as a sidegig I will end up with a few thousand after tax extra a month.

Spending and saving rate

In July I saved an ok 67% of my income, just like in June. Unfortunately, I spent SGD 6,190. 20% of this amount was spent on gifts for parents’ birthdays etc. Generally speaking, an expensive month...

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Portfolio development

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In July my portfolio increased from SGD 790,044 to SGD 791,550 (USD 581,900). Fresh investments of SGD 10,675 were offset by paper losses of SGD 9,169.

Asset allocation

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All on track.

Dividends received

My holdings paid out SGD 1,922 of tax free dividends.

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When can I retire?

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A lot more effort to reduce expenses is needed.

Outlook

August is nearly too exciting at this moment… Consulting gig, normal job and volunteering at the same time means that I have absolutely no time to do anything else. I asked for a six month sabbatical while waiting for my new job in Singapore to begin. Boss was supportive and the sabbatical will hopefully start in March next year.

singvestor
Posts: 169
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2015 12:48 am

Monthly update #74: August 2021

Post by singvestor »

Monthly life improvement update

In August I started a long road trip vacation, using three weeks of paid time off. The vacation has been great and I stopped thinking about work on day 1. During the vacation I have been working a few hours here and there for my consulting sidegig and it has been quite fun.

Spending and saving rate

In August I only managed to save 54% of my income. I spent SGD 5,593, out of which SGD 1,233 was spent on the business. First income for my business will be received in September.

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Portfolio development

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In August my portfolio increased from SGD 791,550 to SGD 797,295 (USD 594,000). Fresh investments of SGD 8,710 were offset by paper losses of SGD 2,965.

Asset allocation

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All on track.

Dividends received

My holdings paid out SGD 1,396 of tax free dividends.

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When can I retire?

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Need to reduce expenses as usual.

Outlook

In September I will have to go back to the office three days a week. After 1.5 years in home office I am dreading the idea of putting on a suit, driving for half an hour only to sit in an office and have video calls with my global team. The idea seems absurd. On the bright side my current contract is ending and I have just six months to go, until my sabbatical (hopefully!) starts.

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