“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” ― Winston S. Churchill
There are countless articles out there talking about the difficulties of getting married in Singapore financially. However, people fail to realise that there are actually a lot of benefits of getting married early. So here I am today, sharing my personal experience on finding a house and the process of getting married in Singapore.
Picture Credit to: Owner
How it all began:
Failing to get a queue number for BTO is pretty much a common topic in Singapore. But failing ten times? Yes, this fairly dramatic affair did happen to me and some tears were even shed during my conversations with the HDB customer care officer when I pointed out a lack of understanding on statistics.
In the end, urged by the new $50,000 first-timer grant (also for staying near parents), we looked for a re-sale flat instead. We were initially worried after reading about how much it would cost to be buy a house and be married in Singapore, but this got us thinking:
How much exactly do you need to get married in Singapore?
- This is Home Truly – but how much is a 4-room flat lah!?
Picture Credit to: Dollar and Sense SG
Before we even start discussing how much money is needed to own a 4-room HDB, I would like to emphasize that the number one mindset to first get rid of is thinking that your first property is a financial investment.
Your first house is not a financial INVESTMENT! The logic is simple, even if your HDB appreciate by 20% in 5 years’ time, and you sell it. You’ll still need to buy another property when the general market has also increased in value.
Remember that – and choose a place where you’ll have the best support network (near parents, near work place e.g.)
A HDB can be affordable in the below scenario, where you may not need to fork out a single cent from your actual bank account.
*The above assumes 4-room HDB cost $350K, 2 adult earning $3.4K/month each (median fresh grad)
Many of you might be asking, where got so easy lah? What about the furniture cost, renovation cost?
The fact is, a typical working adult should have built sufficient cash flow over the next few years. A typical BTO takes at least 3 years to come, and most likely, your income would increase over the next few years. Also, what about your bonus? These are all bumps to your cash flow.
However, nothing in life is for free. Savings is a very important part of this equation for success. Let me recommend reading Li Ka Shing’s advice on savings.
My logic is simple, by the time you can afford the 10% down payment – you’re ready to go!
Estimated out-of-pocket cost: $0
- Buying that ultimate engagement ring; Ignore that 4C?
I’ve previously written an article about choosing the ultimate engagement ring. You can check how much you need below:
Budget = Monthly earnings x 1.1 x Height of girlfriend
With the above in mind, a typical fresh grad will need to spend about $6000 to impress their girlfriend. What if $6,000 is too much? The simple solution is to drop the carat weight.
Estimated cost: $3,500 – $6,000
- Booking your dream 5-star hotel banquet + wedding packages
Picture Credit to: Amara SG
As a matter of fact, booking a 5-star hotel wedding is no longer as cheap as 6 years ago, when it cost only $100/person at Conrad Hotel. A swanky 5-star hotel dinner banquet will now cost about $1,700 -$2,000 nett per table. It also doesn’t help that hotels are now stricter in their payment terms and require 15% (down payment), 35% (6 months before) and 50% (1 month before).
You’ll need roughly $60K cash to book your dream 5-star hotel. It sounds scary! Should I be worried? What if I will tell you – No, you shouldn’t. A typical wedding expenditure in worst case scenario should only be 15% for the average Singaporeans (please invite the right people you are close to and not strangers). That works out to only $9,000 of expenses. You can find out more on my part 1 series of Wedding Finance 101.
Estimated cost: $9,000
I know that this article is a very optimistic view financially of how much it costs to get married in Singapore. Many people may disagree because I am not taking cash flow into account, while only factoring in expenses. But, I am optimistic and you should be too! In fact, there are plenty of benefits of getting married early, and this article is meant to get you questioning the general consensus on how difficult and expensive it is to get married in Singapore.
Total cost of getting married in Singapore: $10,000 – $15,000
Picture Credit to: Owner