by SAYEED 31.3.2010
Sayeed is a senior manager in a large MNC in Penang. Following his association with the world of investments focused in the past 5 years, both Sayeed and his wife are confidently leading to a financial successful lifestyle, his wife retired as an employee and today runs her own business, blessed with 2 kids, this couple have learnt through tough times about their financial literacy. Sayeed is currently focus in accumulating wealth and dreams of helping others achieve financial success. You can read his first post here.
Recently sitting in a restaurant, my buddy, commented on the few articles I have written before at KCLau.com; “Sayeed, why are you so materialistic. You wanna have big house, big car, million ringgit, various properties, just to show others, and how well you want to do!?” he continued, “Is this a satisfaction to you?, or show off to others of what you’ve got?”. Well, being a friend of mine, I didn’t really expect him to ask such a question, but to a certain extent he was really looking at the other side of coin that I have not seen yet. I knew that the reason I shared my story in earlier blog was to give hope and support to others that if I suffered, yet able to do it, so can you, and also put in a few strategies that may help others. Well, good, at least his question had me to share an interesting concept, on reasons why I want to have a Million.
Let’s go back to our current lifestyles, we live on an income, and we have expenses and tax that are unavoidable. Let say our household income is $10k a month, with expenses of house mortgage, car loan (some people got 2), child care, utilities bills (water, electric, phone, internet etc), credit cards, groceries, pocket money (inclusive of petrol money, food, drinks, movies); and finally let say we save $2000 a month, which means that our monthly living expenses would be $10 income – $2k saving = $8k expenses. While assuming all our months are same in terms of daily activities and expenses, which is not true, we need $8k to survive without savings. Now, I am not saying that all of us have $8k lifestyle, some people only live on $3k, $5k, while other may live on $15k, $20k depending on the lifestyles. So let’s take the example of $8k expenses monthly. Which means in a year, we need $8k x 12 to survive, which is $96k per annum. Do you agree so far? Now I am not putting in other expenses like holidays, festive season shopping etc with assumption we have had buffer in the $8k lifestyle.
The question would be, if we are not working after 55, or 60, our expenses remains the same and the source of income that stops for those employees and most employment in Malaysia are without pension schemes. So where is your source of income comes from ? Most people have a few options :
a. Live with their children, baby sit the grand children so that you get roof and food daily. – the lifestyle have changed, no free meals, even from our children in future. I know many may disagree with me but this is the truth.
b. Work part time while you can, but with the part time job, you may not earn as much as you were an employee, so re-size your lifestyle to what you can earn while keeping yourself fit for the job – better option would be not to retire anyway.
c. Have savings to earn up and replace your salary with similar returns as passive income, retire with a stagnant income as per your employment or even better.
I guess, you have already got the option right. (c.) Have savings to earn up and replace your salary……but there is an interesting twist to this. So I am very worried about my future now, what would happen to me when I pronounce retired!!, I wouldn’t want to be at (a.) or at (b.) that is a choice for now and the only way we can, while we can, change that is now to plan our future.
First of all, is the question of what type of passive income business is there with ROI for us to generate $96k lifestyle per annum ? Well, if we barely look into cash and savings accounts, at 3% interest, it would be $3.2M savings, if 5% then we need $2M and if 8%, we need $1.2M, finally with 10% returns, we still need $1M. So, if there is a savings or investment scheme (proven/legal/working) that gives us a 10% return per annum, year in year out, we need to have a saving of $1M!!.
The news is if you are 30 years old and plan to retire at 60, for the next 30 years every month you need savings of $2K to achieve that million (assuming all the compounding interest). Now that is if you have a place with 10% returns!! It doesn’t exist, what would be the best return rates that we have in market today – 5%?, 7%?, or 8%? The fix deposit is hardly at 3%, EPF 4%….so let say we got the best deal of 7% somewhere, Bank A; then we need to have savings of $1.4M !!, again if you are 30, and retiring at 60, so you need to start saving $3.5k a month, you can do the math.
So whether it is, fortunate or unfortunate, savings may be only one of the options here. But those already hitting at a million, you are save for now. I am not going to confuse all of us with the inflation rates and so on because your $8k lifestyle may not be the same in terms of buying power in next 10-15-20 years. But let’s assume, we are okay with that number and hope Malaysia will rule the world in terms of economy and the inflation doesn’t goes that high up. We have high hopes, Malaysia Boleh!!. What would be the other options ? That is part of the strategy that you ought to put into your plans, how are you going to achieve these retirement planning? Can the financial advisor and an insurance agent sit down with you to outline the retirement plan, if yes, then sit with them and have a plan, with a goal that when we say “RETIRED”, we want to retire in style.
I don’t see anything wrong, if we want to retire with a monthly steady income from our investments, with that income not only we are able to survive, but be able to provide to others, our spouse (that is a great time travelling and spending time together), our children (although earlier I said no free meals, but parents are always parents), our grand children (imagine them having to come to grandparents house to be pampered), and have our health taken care ( that should come from our insurance policy and not savings).
Do you have your plan ready ? Have you thought about it? Remember, procrastinating each day, you are losing the interest rates and days in mathematical calculations for your saving plan. We are still lucky to have started at 35. You?