Last Updated on 2023-02-13 , 5:21 pm
You might already know the answer before you read this, but be prepared for a plot twist.
So, can a family in Singapore survive with $2,000?
No doubt some people dismissed that as bullshit, so here’s the maths for you. Firstly, it must be understood that the man is earning $1,400 per month, but the entire household (including his wife) could be drawing $2,000.
So, taking $2,000, let’s see whether one family of four (parents + two kids) can survive in Singapore.
Do note that for a $2,000 gross salary, the take-home pay is $1,600 after CPF deductions.
Let’s say the entire family all have their three meals at home—if one needs to work or study, they can pack the food to work. Ingredients for a family of four can be around $10 per day—we’re referring to basic ones like chicken and vegetables, and not abalone or organic vegetables.
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Monthly expenses: $310
With CPF, and a small two-room HDB flat, the CPF is able to pay in full for the instalment. In other words, there’s no need to fork out cash. The utilities will be less than $120 if they do not have any air-conditioner. There’s an additional $30 for the toiletries needed in the house.
Monthly expenses: $150
An Internet connection at home is about $50, and with a router, everyone can share the connection. For handphones, they can opt not for postpaid plans but pre-paid ones, and choose not to have data connection—with that, the most one need to pay is $10 per person. Trust me, one can survive without a data plan—if people want to WhatsApp you, just tell them to SMS you instead.
Poor man can’t complain: they just need to have MediShield that will cover any unforeseen hospitalization expenses. MediShield can be bought with CPF, so cash upfront is nil.
Presuming that each one of them travel often, one person’s expenses without taking any taxi is about $50 or less.
Shocking, I know.
Before you go apeshit and wonder whether anyone can survive with this kind of lifestyle, you might want to ask yourself another question: How do you define “survive” and “lifestyle”?
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You see, it has almost become a norm to have a smartphone, a data plan, meals in restaurants, air-conditioning and even taxi rides, so much so that we’ve completely redefined the meaning of survival.
But do you need them to survive?
The question here shouldn’t be whether one can survive with such an income: the question should be this: can you accept this kind of lifestyle?
In other words, it’s a fallacy to say that you can’t survive with such a salary just because the meaning of the word survive has been distorted.
You can watch this video (watch to the end, please) to understand how our reality has been distorted by social media:
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