Saturday, February 28, 2009

how to be frugal

not that i m trying to make anyone depressed, but the economy is really going down south.

i made a few adjustments to my lifestyle and i am sharing with everyone:-

1. i changed my broadband package to 'streamyx combo', took the lowest package which is rm60. my previous package is rm44 for 60 hours, which on top of that i need to pay rm29 for the phone line rental. the savings is not much but i get unlimited access instead of 60 hours monthly.

2. the same for mobile phone, i usually cant finish the talk time, so i downgrade my package. it's also wise to sub the line to spouse. cos it's usually free to call and sms to yr sub line.

3. i cook and eat at home as frequent as i can. my cooking is improving. eating out is limited to weekends.

4. i try not to go too far for lunches or dinners with friends. it sucks but first, i get to save and second, i lower my risk of being robbed or carjacked.

5. i buy clothes from warehouse. FOS is my fav. but i am very choosy. only buy good material. cos some are not that good. rm100 can get me 3 or 4 outfits. i am becoming a warehouse junkie. i also surf and weekly to see if there is anythong interesting, and cheap, of course.

6. i restrained myself from getting a new phone/ PDA. lets see how long i can last. (i failed at my previous obsession, LCD TV!!)

7. for this year, i say no to traveling overseas. it will be more to local trips. i swap timeshares with friends. i m bored with my hotel network, they are bored with theirs, so it's win-win.

and beginning this year, i m managing my finances better.....

8. i put in more money in my study loan repayment. there is this saying 'settle debts before saving'. i try to clear my credit card every month (tried very very hard)

9. i put a small amount into unit trust regularly, to dollar cost average, and it i have more, i will put in more, considering the values is low now. and hoping that it will go up in two to three years.

and for the environment,

10, i try to bring a shopping bag when i am out. i refuse to take a plastic bag if i only buy one or two item. just toss them in the hand bag.

there u go.......10 big steps for the year 2009

auction property?

bank negara had just announced another drop is the base lending rate. i am not a economist, i simply take the news as 'banks lowering interest rates'.

as a saver or a investor, the person will complain. now the fixed deposit rate has gown down to 2.5% p.a. which is very bad. and during such time, who dares to invest in the share market? considering prices of shares are way too erratic. some owners may even take their company private. some may close down like those in the united states.

for those who borrow to buy properties, i am so happy for them. the BLR has decreased from 6.74% to 5.55% now. this make a huge difference in their home loan repayment. borrowers can either shorten their loan term by continue paying the previous monthly repayment amount or maintain the repayment term but reduce the repayment amount monthly. if there is no change in income, i strongly advise to reduce the repayment term.

there are some who sees opportunity in this down time, fishing for property in auctions. so sad to hear that so many have lost their jobs and had to give up their homes. first i had a colleague who keep a look out for shop lots and another friend, looking for apartment. being curious i keep a lookout too. funny thing is, only 'news straits times' had such ads on auction properties. my usual paper, 'the star' does not have much ads.

just a few days ago, i saw one double storey terrace in seremban 3, selling for rm130k. it's way below the market price. and i saw an apartment in kelana jaya selling for 150k. both are simply 20%-30% below market value. slurps!!!!