Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Financial Freedom Update

I love those Q&A articles that are always featured on the Straits Times. So...I have decided to do my very own Q&A down here:

Q: What are your money habits?

I try my best to save first before I spend. Once my monthly salary comes in, I will usually set aside 10 to 15% into another bank account as part of my savings. Other than that, I buy stocks every once in 2 to 3 months. I am much more a saver than a spender. I only spend on things that are necessary.

Q: What financial planning have you done for yourself?

I have a long term view for my investments. My wife and I have set aside cash amounting to close to $100,000. The rest of my money is mainly invested into equities with a small portion in commodities unit trust. Equities are mainly into Singapore stocks while we have some exposure to Canadian Royalty Trusts and US stocks though that makes up only 10% of our equity portfolio.

My Singapore stock portfolio was structured firstly for capital gains and later on in the years, I have started to focus more on dividend yields. Around 40% of my portfolio is currently into REITs or dividend yielding stocks. Some of my stock holdings including Pac Andes, Kingboard, China Aviation Oil, First REIT, Ascott REIT and Suntec REIT.

Q: What about insurance planning?

I am covered for about $600,000 for death/disability and $400,000 in critical illness. My wife is covered for $300,000 in both life insurance and critical illness. We are both covered under hospitalisation plans. We are looking to increase the coverage for my wife to $500,000 and for myself to $1 million.

I use a mixture of term insurance, whole life, and ILPs for insurance coverage. The surrender value of my whole life plan is currently at $15,000 while my ILP's surrender value is around $34,000

Q: How did you get interested in investing?

My dad .

Q: Your best investment to date?

My flat. Bought it for $300,000. It should be valued at around $450,000 today.

Q: Your worst investment to date?

Bought into Unifood during its high of close to $0.50. Lost around $8,000

Q: Any other investments?

Education and reading of books. Investing time into my family too.

Q: Moneywise, what are your growing up years like?

I was taught to save money for a rainy day. Both parents were really frugal though they were quite willing to spend on things like holidays.

Q: Your home is ...?

A HDB flat

Q: Your car is ....?

A 1.6 litre car


  1. Hi FF,

    I think that technically, our HDB flat cannot be considered an "investment" per se because you bought it to live in. If it was a second property which appreciated, then it can be classified as investment property. The problem with realizing a gain on our HDB flat is that we will have no where to live in, and will be "forced" to take up another loan to purchase an abode with which to stay.


  2. Hi MW,

    Thanks for the comment. Will take note of it. Always appreciate your frank comments and opinions.


  3. Interesting post. Love the Invest section of Straits Times too!


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