Tuesday 29 December 2020

A Lost Year


Year 2020 felt like one. A lost year. At least to me.

I guess from that perspective, I'm one of the "luckier" ones.

I'm sure we know of friends or family members that have lost their jobs, got pay cuts, or are worse off financially speaking this year.

Year 2020 is not a lost year to them. It's life changing. 

Then on the other end of the pendulum, there are those who blur blur got bumper harvests from this Wuhan virus pandemic.... 

That's if you work in the "right" industry - sell face masks, manufacture hand sanitizers, online marketing, video games, etc. 


Some dreams were shattered, some were put on hold, while some had their dreams came true earlier than thought!

Quite surreal.

Same event.

Different people; different perspectives.

Thursday 24 December 2020

Merry Christmas To Tarzans and Wonder Women At This Watering Hole!


Its nice to have a bit of rain to get into the cool Christmas mood. 

Man, I do miss spending Christmas where there is actual snow or having temperatures near to zero.

I have a lot to be thankful for this year.

Healthy. (OK, still pre-diabetic, but it has not gotten worse. Can be reversed one!)

Siblings and parents doing well too. 

All of us still gainfully employed.

I struck the HDB enbloc lottery. (Still waiting for the Toto one. 30 years and counting...)

Blogging wise, I'm humbled and thankful despite my paucity in written posts this year - beasts and fairies; tarzans and wonder women - all still took the time and effort to engage with us in scintillating conversations.

And some good hearted humour and pokes!

The only fly in the ointment is that I'll probably end this trading year in the red... Again. 

Oh well, can't win them all! 


Merry Christmas everyone!

Stay safe and vigilant.

Especially all you old fogies out there!

Don't happy happy make money, throw caution to the wind, be complacent, then kenna Wuhan virus, go sell salted eggs early...



Tuesday 15 December 2020

Views From My Balcony


I pretend pretend my HDB flat is overlooking New York City's Central Park:

Living Room View

View To The Left Standing On Balcony

Front "Central Park" View Standing On Balcony

View To The Right Standing On Balcony

View Looking Down On Landed Properties Below

The landed properties opposite are earmarked for future condo developments. I don't think big daddy will touch them though for the next 10 years, going by the glut in condos at the moment.

Even if developed, the plot ratio in the Master Plan showed the new condos max cannot exceed 25 floors. 

I'm safe. I'm on the 40th floor. 

They can't block me. 


In case anyone not familiar with the area in Queenstown, the opposite far end of the "Central Park" is our former CMPB. That's where us old fogeys young that time report for our National Service.

Fingers crossed big daddy will gently transform Dempsey Hill into one vibrant and cool place. Hopefully not too commercial, and retain as much of the natural greenery as possible.


Thursday 10 December 2020

Got My HDB Cake For Free?


Yesterday, I collected my keys to my enbloc replacement BTO flat from HDB.

Yup. Its like Aladdin of the Arabian Nights... Old lamp change new lamp. 

With new 99 year lease to boot! Sweet! (Fake American alert!) 

Which also means I am totally debt free now.

Time really flies when we are having fun! Let me re-introduce you to this post I wrote 9 years ago:

My Aim Is To Have My Cake And Eat It  

1.   Taking a 30 years loan does not mean I have to pay and pay bank interests until 30 years. 

I've repaid this housing loan 12 years early. 

Its does feel better to negotiate from a position of strength.

Rather this than to go to the bank with cap-in-hand to ask for an extension due to pay cut or retrenchment because of Wuhan virus circuit breaker... 

All because you wanted to have the shortest bank loan to save on the bank interests. Or so you thought. 

If only life would always go according to your plans (I hear god laughing in the background)... 

2.   Do you remember the missing dollar puzzle?

I got a case of it with my enbloc compensation...

a)   I paid $125K for my existing HDB resale flat. 

Except for a few extra thousands in cash for real estate agent commission and legal paper work and all that jazz, the initial deposit and subsequent bank repayments all came from CPF deductions.

b)   Got Singles grant of $11K, and enbloc grant of $15K from HDB. They were used to offset  my current resale and enbloc BTO replacement purchases.

c)   The enbloc compensation for my resale flat is $398K. I used it to purchase my enbloc replacement BTO for the same amount at $398K (That's the sacrifice for 3 room top floor with balcony). 

d)   HDB used my $398K compensation to first repay my outstanding bank loan (initial loan at $100K). Then repaid CPF for the withdrawals and accrued interests that I've used to pay this bank loan for the past 18 years. 

e)   I was pleasantly surprised when HDB told me I will get cash $102K??? 

Got advanced $35K cheque yesterday, while the balance will be given to me 4 months later when I surrender my existing 3 room resale flat back to HDB.

Eh? Nani?

Math is not my forte. 

I thought compensate $398K, buy $398K; no earn, no loss. That's that!

I mean CPF restored to as if I've never used it to buy property. All the accrued interests gotten back. 

So where did this extra $102K came from???

Initially, I thought its from the $11K and $15 grants, but that only explained $26K of the $102K...

For a moment, I thought I had my cake, and ate it:

i:   CPF restored as if I never used it all for housing.

ii:  Got a brand new fully paid HDB 3 room flat. 

iii: And got extra $102K out from thin air!?


Then I figured out. 

I'm dumb.

But lucky!



P.S.   I'll update my HDB 99 year lease journey when I age 65. There's a few options open to me:

*   Sell remaining lease back to HDB since I got no dependents (That's if I l still love the outstanding view and location after 12 years. Then again, I'm a man whore...)

*   Downgrade to 2 room but still located in Queenstown (I love Queenstown!)

*   Move to ulu new HDB estate but still stick with HDB 3 room (The new Tenah estate looks interesting. I need my gaming and trading room)

*   Move to ulu new HDB estate and downgrade to HDB 2 room for seniors with 35 years lease (Old oredi, can't game or trade anymore...)

No matter which option I choose, that would mean since age 35 onwards, I've lived "rent free" until I die. 

And I've got every cent back from the $125K I've paid for my current HDB 3 room flat to kick things off in the first place!!!

Who's afraid of 99 year lease again?

That is why I poked the young girl who "over analysed" when she did her exercise on whether to buy or rent.

When rent is lower than the monthly bank repayments of a 30 year bank loan, RENT!

When rent is higher than the monthly bank repayments of a 30 year bank loan, BUY!

Sunday 6 December 2020

HK con men use romance and get-rich schemes to trick victims in Singapore


I don't normally do Public Service Announcements.

I'm not a bleeding heart.

Then again, if someone else has done the heavy lifting, I wouldn't mind help create more awareness for it.

Hong Kong online stocks con men use romance, get-rich-quick schemes to trick victims in Singapore, Macau

There are too many scams in Singapore nowadays. 

Let's help to keep a lid on it.

The last thing we need is for scammers of the world to think Singaporeans are an easy mark...

Just promise the moon and bei kambing Singaporeans will believe anything and everything!

Thursday 3 December 2020

No, You're Not Their Customer


We can get new email accounts for free nowadays. 

Old fogeys may remember there was a time during the dial-up internet days that we have to be paying customers of a internet service provider before we can get access to our own email accounts.

Now why do Google or Microsoft give us web email accounts for free?

How about Facebook or YouTube?

You don't pay a single cent right?

OK, there are premium accounts where we do pay to avoid those annoying ads.

Got ads free; no ads must pay....

Hold that thought.

Using Google is free. Hosting my blog at Blogger is free. A lot of mobile games are free to play too.


We're not their customers.

How can we be their "customers" when we are not paying them anything?

We are in fact on the menu that they offer to their paying customers. (New readers may want to watch the video in my previous blog post)

Want to reach out to youths from age 18 to 25?

Females only.

And located just in Singapore, JB, and Batam?

No problem! 

Ahem, this is my fee.

Anyone still wondering why traditional media like print and TV are suffering... While social media is booming?

Targeted ads.  

(Targeted sounds innocent; but can be quite scary when you think about it. Big brother watching you...)


For most people. We don't care. Just as long anything that's free, its win-win! 

Look, we are nobody. Who cares if someone knows what websites we've visited for the past month? 

Or our email or WhatsApp conversations can be recorded and pried by interested parties?  


Fair enough.

But what if we are paying customers yet we are still on the menu?

The 1MBD scandal is quite telling.

Imagine paying for independent research yet the so called analyst report turned out to be just an advertorial for their real paying customer who just want to unload their stuffs onto you...

How about your friendly and ever so helpful independent broker (can be equities, property, or insurance)? 

Is his real customer you or the principals he representing? 

This example even more sad. 

You happy, happy pay for an overseas property investing course, without realising you are the captive audience for that overseas developer that's paying your guru above industry average commissions to offload their unsold developments... 

And you paid to get caught some more!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...