Saturday, February 29, 2020

Won a free Samsung Galaxy Watch

Today I won a Samsung Galaxy Watch Active!

It is from the Shake and Win in UpGreat app by Great Eastern.

A consolation prize for my plummeting portfolio value and net worth. This toy still retails for $239 in online stores

Anyone can download this UpGreat app for instant offers, shake and win lucky draw and gift rewards. For Great Eastern customers, there will be more rewards.
We can earn UpGreat points and redeem free vouchers from Robinsons, Shell, Fairprice, Watson etc.

The troublesome thing to earn UpGreat points is through another GetGreat app that allows you to clock steps and perform fitness quests. I have been earning the points consistently for more than 1 year and have redeemed lots of free vouchers already.

Who does not like free things? Live Rich Life Free! Thanks for reading.

With Love & Peace,

Friday, February 28, 2020

Portfolio Update Feb 2020 - BLOODSHED Edition

My portfolio value plunged by $10.5k or 5.3% from $196.5k on 31 Jan to $186k on 28 Feb 2020. This correction was kind of expected due to the great impact of Covid-19 on the worldwide economies and businesses but as this is a long term income portfolio for financial freedom, I have no fear and should not worry about short term volatilities. I believe that this correction in the stock markets presents ample opportunities to add on quality businesses and Reits. In a recession, cash is king and as cheaper properties, cars and other assets will on offer.

No purchases or sales were made to this portfolio in CDP. However, I have sold Frasers Commercial Trust and bought ComfortDelGro in my SRS portfolio, which turns out to be at a wrong timing but no regrets and it is already history. I get to invest in the land transport business i.e bus, mrt and taxi over the long run as CDG is still the world's second largest transport company that owns 75% of SBS Transit, MRT Northeast Line, has a cashcow subsidiary Vicon and numerous global operations. Giving a decent 4% yield, I think the rewards are more than the risk in the long run. 

I have opted for scrip dividend scheme for Aims Apac Reit so in Mar there should be a few hundred shares to be credited in together with dividends from Ascendas Reit. 

The dividends from Reits have started to stream in this month. They will go back to my Poems Money Market Fund and SRS account to build up my ammunition for next investments.

$108.00 Ascott Trust - Ascendas HTrust (10 Feb)
$203.50 Mapletree Com (26 Feb) 
$386.00 Cap Com (28 Feb)
$155.50 Cap Mall (28 Feb)
$117.35 Suntec Reit (28 Feb)
$168.26 Frasers Com (28 Feb) SRS
$144.91 Keppel Reit (28 Feb) SRS

In Mar 2020, I hope to add SATS at below $4.10 and OCBC at around $10.70 to the SRS portfolio and it will be status quo for this portfolio in CDP. Despite feeling sad seeing the portfolio value plummeting, actually I like to see bloodshed in the stock markets as we can add on to our investments great bargains by dollar cost averaging. This is only the beginning of the bear ride. It is not for the faint hearted and irrational folks. I will stick to my game plan of slowly and steadily building an income portfolio for financial freedom.

No fear no greed! Thanks for reading! 

With Love & Peace,

Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Why I don't track my expenses?

It is common for financially savvy folks to budget and track their daily, monthly and annual personal or family expenses. I used to have a spreadsheet to keep track of my spending during my uni days but I have stopped doing that since 8 years ago.

Laziness? Lack of self discipline? Yes partly but those bad habits are not the main reasons.

Our Expenses become the Revenue of businesses
When I buy a $3 cai png (vegetables rice), my 2 dollar note and 1 dollar coin goes into the cash register of the mixed vegetable rice stall and becomes the revenue of the stall. When I buy a new iPhone through recontracting my mobile plan with Starhub, the $847 I paid contributes to the revenue of Starhub. The money we spent no longer is our money. The money we spent become the revenue of businesses. I do not want to track money that do not belong to me.

Budgeted Low Expenses
Though I did not track my expenses, I actually allocated a fix amount of $300 cash and $700 of credit for spending every month. I have the discipline to channel my monthly cashflow to savings in war chest first before allocating to expenses. In a way I will not exceed my allocation for spending because I have prioritised beefing up war chest over spending. I feel comfortable since I can eat whatever I like within $300 and buy whatever I need withing $700 using credit card for 30 days in a month. I do not want to go down to the exact dollars and cents that I have spent.

Channel away time and effort
I would rather spend the time updating daily spending item list, calculating total monthly expenditure on finding next investment, ways to earn more passive income, how to increase my cashflow and assets and cashflow management instead. I think tracking expenses is a micro-managerial aspect of personal financial management that is still useful and important but does not suit everyone. We can still focus on the big picture such as planning for financial freedom and retirement without tracking every single cent that we spent.

Have a great sense of freedom and free from stress
Free from the shackles of spending money, there will not be any guilt if I overspend on a nicer meal or buy a nice shirt that I see in Uniqlo. When there is flight promotion, I will not feel disappointed to go for the booking. I buy and spend whatever thing I need whenever, wherever. I do not need to worry about spending more than last month or last year. This will make living less stressful and more enjoyable.

Focus on tracking Net Worth
I do not want to rely on tracking spending to cut down or control my expenses. I find it enjoyable to focus on tracking what I have to motivate myself instead. It will become obvious if my net worth decrease or increase at a slower rate for certain month and I can find out the real cause due to portfolio drop or overspending. Having a target net worth, dividends cashflow or portfolio value will spur us to reduce unnecessary spending in order to achieve personal targets.

In a nutshell, we need to find the most comfortable path towards achieving our goals. Budgeting and tracking expenditure is a useful but not necessary way for everyone to limit or control spending.

Thanks for reading!

With Love & Peace,

Saturday, February 22, 2020

Own the Banks or let the Banks own our Money?

The 3 local banks, UOB, DBS and OCBC have announced their impressive Q4 and FY2019 financial results this week. All 3 banks registered not just increased revenue income and earnings, but RECORD HIGH annual earnings. What is worth highlighting to income investors is that they all dished out dividends of around 5%! which is higher than some of the branded Reits.

OCBC in particular has achieved a significant 34% increase in Q4 2019 earnings and increased their FY19 dividends by a whopping 23%. Dividends from OCBC used to lag UOB and DBS in terms of payout ratio due to their conservative management style. So they could have finally woke up.

The outlook for 2020 will be very challenging with the Covid-19 virus affecting China and the world greatly. The gloomy economy prospect and highly possible recession in Singapore and APAC region could result in massive retrenchments, unemployment, poor businesses and result in increased defaults in personal and corporate loans. Hence, there could be more bad debts and will have a huge impact on the bottom lines of banks. 

It is too early to tell how much the banks will suffer but I would anticipate the banks to not do as well as in 2019. Their share prices should fall and dividends may not increase in FY2020. It will be a good opportunity to start accumulating these bank shares as they start to decline, especially after they XD.
Dollar cost averaging is a good strategy to accumulate bank shares for long-term investments over a horizon of 1, 2 or even 3 to 5 decades. As the share price of banks are highly volatile, they offer opporunities for traders to take up short or short-term long positions to profit from the price swings.

I am biased towards accumulating more OCBC shares for long term at around their Net Asset Value price of $10.50 as they offer scrip dividend reinvestment consistently every year. This allows us to leverage on the power of compounding effect to grow our money till we retire as we can reinvest the dividends collected from OCBC shares back into OCBC at no cost. Over time, the rate of accumulating OCBC shares will increase exponentially. Hence, OCBC will a mainstay in my SRS portfolio. UOB and DBS, on the other hand, have stopped the scrip dividend scheme since 2017, so the dividends will be collected in cash, and if reinvested, will incur brokerage fees.  

Since DBS changed their dividends payout from bi-annually to quarterly, they have become more like a special 5% Bond with characteristics of a Reit paying quarterly dividends. This is especially enticing and attractive to income investors who favour consistent income of 5% or even higher if one could accumulate below share price of $25. When I have more ammunition in my war chest, I would whack DBS into my CDP account.

Instead of putting our spare money in the banks savings accounts to earn 0.05% or multiplier accounts to earn 1.5% interest rates with lots of conditions to fulfill in order for higher rates, we can simply purchase bank shares to own the banks that own our money and other people money to earn around 5% yield. Of course, that comes with risk of capital loss. However, for the long term, it makes sense to collect consistent dividends annually and ignore the day-to-day share price fluctuations of the banks. If we leave our spare money to let the banks own them, the banks will use your hard-earned money to loan out to companies or people buying properties or cars, without you knowing it. What you can see is just numbers of your money on the account balance but behind the scene, your money has been spent. I believe the benefits of owning banks will be highly rewarding to beat inflation and earn decent returns in the long run.

Thanks for reading! 

With Love & Peace,

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Shit becomes Gold? - Starhub on its way to recovery

Starhub (CC3. SI) released its 4Q 2019 and FY2019 financial results today. Overall, the results are not impressive, a far cry from its glory days in the past but it is evident things have improved and stabilized under the new CEO.

Positive Highlights:
1. Q4 2019 Net Profit doubles from $15.4m to $33.3m
2. Revenue from Enterprise, Managed Services & Cybersecurity grew
3. CAPEX was 7.5% of Revenue instead of 8 to 9%
4. Free Cash Flow for FY2019 increased 50% from $145m (8.4cents/share) to $218m (12.6cents/share)
5. Dividend per share maintained at 9.0 cents for FY2020

Expected declines in FY2018
1. Total Revenue dips 1.3%
2. Net Profit continues to drop 10.9%
3. Revenue from Mobile business declined 7.2%
4. Revenue from PayTV decreased 20%
5. Revenue from Broadband decreased 5% despite increase in subscriber base

As shared during my portfolio unveil post, Starhub is one of my initial investments when I started to build a long term income portfolio in 2016. Having suffered heavy paper losses, it is too painful to cut loss so I can only continue hold my handful of Starhub shares and start believing that Starhub has started on its recovery from rock bottom.

The increase in free cash flow to $218m gives confidence that the dividends of 9 cents are sustainable. In FY2018 the free cash flow of $145m was not even able to cover the $155.7m of dividends paid to 1.73b of outstanding shares. This is a good sign.

Profit margins from their traditional businesses no longer bode well. With the influx of Netflix and android TV boxes, PayTV will become obsolete sooner than later. While broadband and mobile plans get cheaper with more competition from virtual mobile operators and incoming TPG, margins get squeezed from existing telcos.

Starhub and Keppel owned M1 have jointly bid for 5G license. Hopefully it is the beginning of 5G era in Singapore. The sunk in CAPEX should be recovered in the long term. The prospects of enterprise and cybersecurity business seems rosy too though they do not contribute much to the overall cashflow.

The recovery of Starhub will be a long and rugged journey. It could be 5 to 10 years. I can only continue collect dividends, wait patiently and secretly hope that a sugar daddy appear to acquire Starhub just like how Keppel did to M1.

Thanks for reading!

With Love & Peace,

Monday, February 17, 2020

Bought Comfortdelgro

I bought 5,000 shares of ComfortDelGro (CDG) today using the proceeds from the sale of FCOT in SRS.

CDG share price plunged to its lowest in the past year and breached the support of 2.13 after they announced their lustre FY2019 results on 14 Feb 2020. After my order at 2.09 was filled, it continue to dip to 2.06.

While revenue increased by $100m, net profit decreased $40.6m or 11.3%. This is not a surprise considering the overheads from its acquisitions and disruption of its taxi business due to emerging technologies favouring private hire vehicles.

The main surprise is the cut in dividends from 6.15 cents to 5.29 cents. Factoring in the interim dividend of 4.5 cents, the total dividend for FY2019 is 9.79 cents. At 2.09, this is a 4.68% yield which is not too bad but it is probable that current dividend is not sustainable if the cashflow continues to drop below  $600m for >2b outstanding shares.

I decided to take up this short term position trying to catch a possible quick rebound. If the share price plunged further, I will hold to collect FY2020 dividends and average down at below 2.00 when the opportunity arise.

Hopefully the stimulus for the rebound comes from the support package announced by the government in Budget 2020 or from a dead cat bounce.

Thanks for reading.

With Love & Peace,

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Net Worth crawling towards SGD 1 million

Unveiling my Live Rich Life Free Net Worth!

My net worth has surpassed SGD900k for the very first time and hit the HIGHEST in my life.

This is after the latest CPF contributions for Jan 2020 and having collected Feb's paycheck.

I include CPF numbers into computation of my net worth because I still believe the numbers are my illiquid assets.

I also included the surrender value of my whole life insurance, endowment plans and savings plans into my net worth.

As I do not own car or property yet, I have no loans and my very low liabilities are due to some credit cards debts only.

I understated the value of my Supplementary Retirement Scheme Account (SRS) by accounting for only the amount contributed to SRS. Though I only contributed $55.9k in the past few years, the portfolio has actually surpassed $68k.

I have always been adopting a conservative slow and steady approach towards investing. I used to trade and do not keep any long positions. Less than 30% of net worth is invested in the stock market  and I have a high proportion of cash in fixed deposits and savings bonds. I do not dare to hold above 50% investment position. I still believe that Cash is King and by holding war chests of cash, we can well prepare ourselves in times of emergency or capture good opportunities in times of crisis. I will continue to be slow and steady in my investment journey but I know that I am still very far behind in terms of achieving full financial freedom. The journey is tough and rugged but it is definitely not impossible!

In 2020,  I intend to grind it out and march towards achieving a net worth of SGD 1 million. I will continue to live frugality and simply. Being a millionaire means nothing much actually in today's world however, psychologically it will be a morale booster and will give me the confidence to take on riskier investments for higher returns since I can well afford to lose. Coming from a low income family, the desire to achieve this millionaire feat was a dream and if I could reach this milestone, would be a mini achievement for myself. 

Moving forward, I am tempted to buy a car and/or a property to contribute to the economy. I have applied the Toa Payoh BTO today to try my luck and making a step forward in property purchase.

Besides the pursuit of wealth, it is also important to stay healthy in the face of Covid-19 virus and also exercise regularly to keep fit. 

Thanks for reading!

With Love & Peace,

Site survey of Toa Payoh Ridge - Feb 2020 HDB BTO

Having visited the site of Canberra Vista, I remembered that a few months ago in Oct 2019, we have also visited the site of Toa Payoh Ridge.

We wanted to have a sense of the environment and amenities nearby Caldecott MRT before deciding if this BTO project is worth applying.

The site survey began with a visit to the exhibit of Toa Payoh Town at HDB Hub Basement.

We then walked from Toa Payoh Central to Caldecott MRT. It took around 20 mins under the scorching sun.

From Caldecott MRT, we took a 6 mins walk to Toa Payoh Crest, a 2012 HDB BTO project which TOP in 2017. This project is similar to Toa Payoh Ridge as it also has 4 blocks of 40 storey flats and they are northwest and southeast facing.

We headed up to 25th and 40th storey of all 4 blocks in Toa Payoh Crest - Blk 131B, Blk 131A, Blk 130B and Blk 130A to catch a glimpse of what views they offer.

View from 25th storey of Blk 131B - The plot of construction site with piling works is where Toa Payoh Ridge reside

At 40th storey, you get a better northern view. On the top left is Braddell Heights, the former HUDC that attempted to went en-bloc 2 times unsuccessfully. On the top right, the school is RGS (secondary). The top landscape is Bishan and Ang Mo Kio.

A clear view of the entire Toa Payoh Ridge plot. Once construction completes, the residents of Blk131B of Toa Payoh Crest will be blocked and no longer enjoy such breathtaking Northern scenary of Singapore.

We then went up to the 25th storey of Blk130B and from the rubbish chute area, this is a glimpse of what we can see. The top landscape is Macritchie Reservoir. The orange buildings are Thomson 800 condo, a freehold property along Thomson Road.

This is the scenic view from corridor of 40th storey of Blk 130B in Toa Payoh Crest. This is the scene we can expect to enjoy from the bed rooms and living room windows of Toa Payoh Ridge too. The construction is for Caldecott MRT Thomson line.

Last but not least, this is the view from another Blk131A of Toa Payoh Crest. This view again will be blocked by the uprising blocks of Toa Payoh Ridge.

Besides the panoramic views that one can enjoy by living in Toa Payoh Ridge, for other units in the project, it is very convenient to make a short walk to the nearby mrt stations and commute to work or travel by public transport. Amenities wise, Toa Payoh offers a Hawker centre in almost every Lorong, and both Toa Payoh Central and Braddell has many shops that can offer more than what we ask for. Top schools in Singapore are within a stone's throw. Located at the heart of Singapore, there is little reason to say no to living in this precinct. 

At the time of writing, it is no wonder why this project has attracted overwhelming applications. 6 times for a 3 room unit and close to 7 times for a 4 room unit.

Paying a $10 for a chance to live in Toa Payoh East or Caldecott, the new gem of Toa Payoh. Why not?

Thanks for reading the site survey report of Toa Payoh Ridge. 

With Love & Peace,

Saturday, February 15, 2020

Site survey of Canberra Vista - Feb 2020 HDB BTO

I went down to the plot of Canberra Vista for a site survey of this BTO project today.

I wanted to check out the environment, amenities and flats located nearby Canberra MRT to have a sense of how it is like living in Canberra Vista.

I met up with Ms Doraemon at Yishun MRT and we took a 15 min walk to Canberra to have a sense of the distance of Canberra from Yishun. It is a smooth stroll along the park connector along the MRT track.

As we closed in on Canberra MRT, we were greeted by Sungei Simpang Kiri, the blue river depicted in the artist impression of Canberra Vista. I thought it is really a river, but actually it is a big drain canal filled with dirty water and litter. Disappointed that artist impression can lie.

Sungei Simpang Kiri

Nice River?!

Piling works has commenced for Canberra Vista

Then we went to check out the newly built Canberra MRT Station. It is extremely quiet and barely has less than 10 people on a Sat afternoon. An MRT Station in a ghost town?

We also checked out the Canberra Plaza which will TOP soon.

The usual shops that will be opened in Canberra Plaza. They will serve the bare essentials and needs of the residents of Canberra. But the Plaza is a far cry from a Shopping Mall.

And we headed up to the 12th storey of a newly built HDB block in Eastlink I @ Canberra BTO to check out the view. From top and far, the drain canal indeed looks like a river. The construction site is the plot where Canberra Vista is located.

We tried to walk to Sembawang Shopping Centre by cutting through Jalan Sendudok Park.

It is a scenic park near a private estate enclave. A handful of joggers can be seen. This park will be swarmed with more people when the Canberra Vista project is TOP.

After cutting through the park, we then took a 15 min walk along Jalan Sendudok and Jalan Jeruju to reach Sembawang Shopping Centre, which has many more shops and is larger scale than Canberra Plaza. It has a Giant hypermart, Daiso, Value shop, fast food eateries such as Burger King and Chic-a-boo etc. It should serve the residents of Canberra Vista well in future.

I believe that Canberra Vista is still a nice and peaceful place to live in. Located beside an MRT station, it offers convenience for residents commuting to work and travel. In terms of amenities, it does not have the richness of a matured estate but with Canberra Plaza at the doorstep to server basic essentials and a shopping mall nearby, upcoming Bukit Canberra Integrated Hub nearby at Sembawang, there is much for those lucky applicants of Canberra Vista to look forward to. This project offers great value and opportunity to live in an uncoming new town and a great investment for young couples to make their first pot of gold. As of writing, it is no wonder that the application rate has hit close to 6 times for a 4 room unit and 10 times for a 5 room unit.

Thanks for reading my site survey report of Canberra Vista for Feb 2020 HDB BTO. I will also post another report on Toa Payoh Ridge from the site visit in Oct 2019. Stay tuned!  

With Love & Peace,

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Sold Frasers Commercial Trust

I just sold all 7,011 shares of Frasers Commercial Trust (FCOT) in SRS portfolio today on 13 Feb 2020.

I bought 6,800 shares at $1.47 in Apr 2019 and collected 4 rounds of dividends - 2 rounds in scrips dividend shares and 2 rounds in cash. Total returns in 10 months is $2.1k or 21%.

Main reason for selling is due to the merger with Frasers Logistics & Industrial trust (FLT) . As I already own 12,000 shares of FLT in CDP, I do not want another 8,644 shares of the same thing in SRS after merger. 

Another reason is that FLT do not have scrip dividend scheme, which is an inducing factor when I bought FCOT. Original intention is to collect scrip dividend shares for the long term enjoying 6.8% yield compounding and reinvestment. 

Third reason is the limited upside of FCOT till delist. Instead of waiting for the merger to complete, why not lock down the profits, encash into SRS account and hunt for new opportunities? There are potential preys such as ComfortDelGro, SATS, Thai Beverage, OUE Commercial Trust and banks just to name a few to catch and keep hold for the long term. I am on the lookout for them but ideally I would like to add on to SATS or OCBC in my SRS portfolio.

I am contemplating selling of Keppel Reit and ST Eng to lock down profits in my SRS. Meanwhile, I am also waiting for the dividends to trickle in to boost my war chest. On the Covid virus, it is still early to know what impact it has on the economy and businesses. I do still believe a recession is looming and there may be a deep correction to the markets when the truth is revealed. Hence sometimes it is best to stay on the sidelines and don't do anything. Thanks for reading!

With Love & Peace,

Home Purchase or Property Investment? Feb 2020 HDB BTO

Canberra Vista 

Toa Payoh Ridge

Kim Keat Ripples

The Housing and Development Board (HDB) announced 3,095 build-to-order flats in Sembawang and Toa Payoh for sale on 11 Feb 2020. The Sembawang project, Canberra Vista consists of 15 blocks of 1,467 flats sprawled beside Canberra MRT. The 1,628 Toa Payoh flats are in a development, Toa Payoh Ridge beside Caldecott MRT and near Braddell MRT and in another Toa Payoh East's Kim Keat Ridges plot. 

As a northlander for close to 3 decades and working in central Singapore for close to 1 decade, I am appealed by both projects when it comes to buying my first home or rather, making my maiden property investment. Both BTO projects, in my opinion, are no-brainer sure wins for staying as well as investment. 

Let me do a quick analysis of the 3 BTO projects on whether they are good home purchase or investment. 

Toa Payoh Ridge is situated centrally at the heart of Singapore. It is beside the Caldecott MRT (both Circle line and future Thomson line) and 600m away from Braddell MRT (North South line). Orchard, Holland Village, Bugis, Marina Bay and Downtown can be reached easily within 20 mins.

Kim Keat Ridges is located more than 1km walk away from Toa Payoh MRT or require a short feeder bus trip to the bus interchange. However it is great for those who drive as the development is just beside the intersection of PIE and CTE. Nonetheless, Toa Payoh East is still Toa Payoh anyway in the central of Singapore.

Canberra Vista is in the former Canberra ghost town between Sembawang and Yishun. Situated beside the newly launched Canberra MRT, this place is no longer ulu anymore. Going to City Hall by North South Line will take around 40 mins, and venturing overseas up north Malaysia's Johor Bahru will take lesser than 40 mins. This development is in fact better positioned that the earlier built executive condominium, Brownstone, the recently launched Parc Canberra and past Canberra BTOs - Eastlink, EastCrown, EastDelta @ Canberra. Though being too close to the MRT tracks means having to endure some rumbling noises of MRT trains. 

Toa Payoh Ridge has 2 nearby Hawker centres at Toa Payoh Lor 1 and 4 that will serve plentiful of local delicacies. It is very near to the Raffles family of schools in Bishan, girls schools like Marymount Convent and CHIJ Toa Payoh. It is 1km away from the nearest NTUC fairprice supermarket in HDB Hub. However, a mixed commercial retail complex will be built when other Caldecott BTO plots are also developed. The only downside of living in Toa Payoh is the lack of a cinema and top grade shopping mall.

Artist impression of Caldecott development from Remaking of Heartlands initiative by HDB

Kim Keat Ripples is near to Pei Chun Public School, and other neighbourhood schools such as First Toa Payoh and Beatty Sec School. It is near to my favourite Kim Keat market and Hawker Centre which has a lot of cheap and nice food that beats inflation. It is within close proximity to temples and upcoming church. Toa Payoh SAFRA, Stadium and Sport Hall are the other nearby sports facilities.

Canberra Vista is located within distance to shopping malls such as Canberra Plaza and Sembawang Shopping Centre and neighbourhood schools such as Canberra Pri and Sec Schools, Endeavour Pri School, Sembawang Pri School and Wellington Pri School. No hawker centres, wet markets and much fewer choices of food as it is a new non-mature estate. However, a Bukit Canberra Sports and Community Integrated Hub housing indoor and outdoor sports amenities, hawker centre, community and lifestyle facilities will TOP this year in Sembawang.

The Toa Payoh BTO is priced at a premium and is quite pricey in my opinion but what you pay is what you get. Ranged from $395k to $666k for a 4 room flat of 93sqm, I suppose the $395k unit is a lv 2 4 room in Kim Keat Ripples while the $666k unit is a 40th storey 4 room flat in Toa Payoh Ridges. $395 psf for a low floor Toa Payoh unit and $665 psf for a top level scenic unit overlooking Macritchie Reservoir waters and greenery. Compared to Toa Payoh Alkaff Oasis BTO in 2016 with 4 room units priced starting from $440k, this Toa Payoh BTO in 2020 does reflect the dip in transacted resale HDB prices.

Canberra Vista seriously offers top value for your bucks in my opinion. Priced between $272k and $320k for a 4 room unit and between $350k and $406k for a 5 room unit of 113 sqm, it only costs at most $334 psf for a 5 room flat that possibly overlook the Sungei Simpang Kiri River.

Return on Investment
To estimate conservatively on the return on investment on a 4 room flat in Toa Payoh, I will overstate the purchase price based on the top tier price of $666k. I did a quick search on the last 5 transacted resale value of a 4 room flat in Toa Payoh Central. The units are aged around 10 years and fetch between $663k to $788k. Hence, we can expect at least a 12% returns based on investing $666k and selling at $750k after 5 years. But we should realistically expect a 5 year Toa Payoh 4 room HDB flat to be worth around $850k and the purchase price for a 20th to 30th storey unit to around $550k to $620k so the ROI would be much higher.

For a Canberra 4 room flat, there is not enough data for past transacted resale prices for close to 5 year old units. However a quick search on Property guru yields results of homeowners listing $410k to $430k selling price for their 4 room Canberra HDB units with 95 years lease left. If we assume the purchase price is $320k, and safely use $400k as the selling price 5 years in, we can expect a 20% returns minimally for the Canberra BTO. Again, realistically we should expect a higher return as the purchase price would be much lower than $320k and selling price for a 5 year Canberra 4 room flat with 95 year lease can possible hit above $450k in 2029 or so. I believe the returns from Canberra BTO in percentage terms will be relatively much higher than that of Toa Payoh BTO as the Canberra BTO is more of a value investment play waiting for more potential to be unlocked while the Toa Payoh BTO is a vintage purchase of a luxury well located HDB flat.

In conclusion, both projects in this Feb 2020 HDB BTO are very attractive and has received overwhelming applications of more than 5x ratio from Singaporeans at the time of writing midway before applications closed. Both locations are well connected to MRT, amenities and ideal for couples, families, elderly and children. Overall the Toa Payoh BTO is a better home for living but from an investment perspective, the Canberra BTO do potentially offer higher ROI. Making an application by paying $10 is aka to buying a token to spin the jackpot for a slim chance to purchase a decent home as well as to generate a 12% to 20% returns on your capital. For homeseekers out there, what are you waiting for? Thanks for reading!

With Love and Peace,

Thursday, February 06, 2020

It's time to save money by eating porridge

This is my typical humble Teo Chew porridge style with 3 dishes of 1 meat, 2 veggie - cabbage, fried chicken and bittergourd egg. How much do you think it costs?

It is from a popular mixed vegetable rice stall at  Kim Keat hawker in Toa Payoh Lor 7.

This meal only costs $2.20! Less than a cup of Koi bubble milk tea. A fraction of Starbucks coffee.
When I ordered the same dishes at Ban Heng Teo Chew Porridge outlet, the same meal costs $8! More than 3x in cost but does not generate more than 3x of satisfaction for me.

It feels great to beat inflation. A simple meal for cheapo like me striving to achieve financial freedom.

I am usually happy with just a cheap simple meal like porridge, rice with a slice of fruit. It costs less than $3 in this hawker. When I dine in coffeeshops, I do not order the overpriced drinks. When I am busy to go out for lunch, I would pack $3 veggie rice from food court or fast food from Mcd using great deals from the Mcd app.

Similarly to the idea of value investing, I like to look out for undervalued meals in sg. Though I am happy to see many people queuing for overvalued bubble teas and restaurants in malls owned by Mapletree Commercial Trust and Capmall because they contribute to the rental that these Reits collect and ultimately my dividends collected.

 I believe it is not difficult to save money from reducing expenses on basic needs like food, shelter and essentials. Saving up money to build up war chest for investments is not difficult at all. Occasionally we should still splurge a bit to enjoy better food and living experiences during the journey to financial Freedom. However with the worsening coronavirus pandemic, uncertain times and high possibility of an economic recession looming, it is time to tighten our budgets, boost our war chests for more ammunition to scoop up valuable assets on the cheap. 

With Love and Peace,