upset man with glasses

SINGAPORE: A Singaporean shares how he budgets S$1000 monthly. The man is in his twenties and shared his goal to “save as much as possible early on” while ‘”cutting living expenses to the bone'”.

He said on social media, “Just wanted to share what my (26M) budget looks like… I am trying to save as much as possible early on so the compounding effect is greater. As you can see, this is definitely not for everyone – this is a barebones lifestyle. And I am lucky that my parents are only willing to accept a small contribution from me towards household expenses.”

Breaking down his living expenses, he added:

  • Phone bill – $10.80
  • Food – 22 days * 2 * $4 = $176 (same caipng stall every day, lunch and dinner)
  • Public Transport – 22 days * 2 * $1.38 = $60.72
  • Weekly dates – $50 * 4 = $200
  • Contribution to family expenses = $600 (includes breakfast and weekend meals)

One Reddit user named Wheynelau commented he shared the same concern about the need to save before, but then he realised that one could easily lose one’s savings. He shared, “I was very concerned about savings as well, then I read about some news or an article about how you might just lose your savings the next day. I was even ready to stay in my job (Government related) till 60. Terrible mental health and wlb but it’s everyone’s favourite ‘iron rice bowl’.”

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As he offered advice, he added, “The better approach is investing in yourself, in terms of skills and mental health. Don’t save too much but don’t splurge.”

Another Redditor, lost_bunny877, chimed in and shared, “there is living and then there is barely surviving. You are barely surviving. You are only 20 once. You need to invest in yourself. Gain experiences in your 20s by GETTING experience. Saving money is NOT a way to gain wealth. Making more money is.”

Showing concern, chiviet234 added, “Make sure you get enough nutrition from your food. Health issues in the long run will cost significantly more than the amount you can save eating the same $4 meal everyday.”

BrokenCatMeow shared valuable insight on the matter saying, “A very different POV from most in this room; You will only be 26 once and many things that you could be doing at this age will only be available during this period. Don’t limit your life now, money will come later if you work hard and smart. Enjoy your youth, because it is the right time to do it. Running a barebones budget now just to save a couple of Ks that may not even be financially material in your later years is just missing the point.”

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Hoping he got his point across, he added, “I hope you understand what im saying. I’ll gladly take my youth over a few hundred grand today. Enjoy life when life is the most colourful and fun.”

Ultimately, finding the right financial balance is a personal journey, where saving for tomorrow and embracing life today intersect.