If you dream of working or living in Singapore, you may be thrilled about this opportunity considering how truly progressive this country is. The modern infrastructures, high quality of living, along with the friendly locals will surely make your stay worthwhile. However, it is also worth noting that being an expat can be a little challenging at times. Particularly in a place where the cost of living can be steep, you may experience some financial concerns when your funds run low. This is why there are those who consider going to a money lender Singapore citizens recommend for a wide range of loan products and services including personal loan, payday loan, and foreigner loan, to name a few. A licensed money lender in Singapore can offer the support you need for your financial issues when it is impossible to take out a traditional bank loan. You will also appreciate the quicker approval process involved when you decide to apply for a loan from a reputable money lender in the country.
To help you get by in a foreign country, we have prepared for you the following tips that may be able to ease the burden on your finances. Check out our financial guide for foreigners in Singapore, which can come in handy during those tough times.
Singapore offers a wide variety of banks whether local and foreign. When it comes to safety by global standards, you can rely on popular banks in the country such as UOB, OCBC, and DBS. These banks are known for their accreditation from renowned and reputable risk rating authorities. The banks in the country are also regulated by Monetary Authority of Singapore. Accounts that are SGD-denominated (not exceeding $50,000) are insured by the SDIC or the Singapore Deposit Insurance Corporation.
But prior to deciding on the bank where you want to open an account, you need to take into consideration your specific banking needs. If you want to have a chance to withdraw with ease, then you should look into the options available. The same holds true when it comes to opening a foreign currency account. Just make sure you look into these factors that will affect your choice of bank.
Expats may benefit from a multi-currency account since this will allow them to manage their funds and do transfer to and from Singapore and abroad. The DBS, for instance, offers an Expatriate Programme that caters to expats based in Singapore. The multi-currency account they offer enables foreigners to hold funds in SGD with a maximum of 12 other foreign currencies. You should be able to make fund transfers abroad. Plus, you can receive an Altitude Credit Card that may be used for earning 3 miles for every $1 you spend on hotel transactions and online flight booking.
The Global Currency Account by UOB lets you select from as much as 10 currencies available in the bank. Also, you can earn interest daily on the selected currencies. As for the Global Savings Account by OCBC, you can chose from the 9 major currencies for your bank account. Then, you can have your preferred currency for your savings account.
2. Credit Cards
Sometimes when you are low on cash and there is a need to buy an item right away, a credit card will surely come in handy. The same holds true when you are making online transactions in which credit cards are only the only means of paying for your purchases. This is why it is important to have your own credit card while in a foreign country.
In Singapore, credit cards are widely accepted and commonly used for your payment convenience and ease. If you want to get a credit card in Singapore, you may choose to apply for your own. There is a minimum requirement for a credit card application, which is an annual income that ranges between $45,000 to $60,000 for expats. You should also present some documents required by the bank to complete your application.
With a credit card, there are several benefits you can enjoy with every points you earn. Some cards let you receive petrol discounts, air miles rewards, and even cash rebates. But at the same time, you have to be aware of the fact that credit cards should be used responsibly to avoid going through so much debts. Be sure to limit your credit card usage, which also means not going beyond your budget and being mindful of your spending habits.
Another thing about credit cards in Singapore that you may need to know is the annual fee charged by banks. There is an open secret known to most credit card owners that whenever you use your card too frequently, you may request for the fee to be waived when you contact the bank. Hence, you can save on the expenses of having to pay the annual fee.
The Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore administers the payment of taxes in the country. You may file the taxes or your company will do it for you. A progressive basis is followed when it comes to personal income tax in Singapore. This means to say that the higher your income, the higher your taxes will be. The tax chargeable begins at 2 percent, which applies to earnings from $20,000 up to $30,000. The maximum tax is 20 percent for $320,000 or above annual income.
If you stay in Singapore for 183 days a year or more, then you become a tax resident in the country. The same applies to those who have a permanent residency status. But if you earn a foreign income, you are not required to pay taxes.
4. Renting an Apartment
For expats who wish to stay longer in Singapore, renting an apartment is the most convenient way to go. After all, you would never want to stay in a hotel room for several days during your stay in the country. Fortunately, you will not have a difficult time finding a rental property since there are several property portals that you can find. These even enable you to search for a property according to your budget, as well as the size of the apartment, type, and its proximity to a public transport. If you are ready to start looking for an apartment here in Singapore, among the best options for a property portal include 99.co, ST Property, The Edge Property, and propertyguru.com.
Most properties for rent in Singapore will require you to sign a 1-year lease as the minimum length. You will also have to put down either a 1 or 2-month deposit for your rental. Expats may want to check a diplomatic clause in the contract, as this enables you to terminate your lease after a period of 12 months when you give a notice 2 months before your contract expires. This is suitable for expats who may be transferred by the company to another country.
It takes some time for any foreigner to adjust in another country as there are several things they need to be more familiar with including the culture, dealing with the locals, housing, and the financial aspects overall. In Singapore, it should never be too hard to adjust because of how organised the systems are from banking to apartment rentals and even taxes. You should also have an easier experience in this country even if it is your first time here because of the modern infrastructures, efficient public transportation, and excellent healthcare system in the country.
So, if you are considering living in Singapore for a while, be sure to keep in mind our tips that can help you get by in terms of your financial and other concerns. From banking to setting up your tax payments, we got you covered to help you transition smoothly and give you a more comfortable stay in this progressive country in Asia.