money

Latest: Preparing for individual income tax relief in the year 2019

Individual tax-filing season in Malaysia has finished recently. Most of the time, people keep forgetting to keep the claimable receipts for tax relief and consequently, end up with paying more tax to the government. Thus, the task of trying to save as much as we can while filing our taxes becomes a giant of an undertaking.

Nowadays, it is very for my husband and me to file the tax through online. It is a learning process from not knowing which category when filing online, to missing out on claiming for rebates on tax-relief items and getting the updates of tax-relief-qualified items each year. There are so many things to consider when filing for taxes.

To prepare for filing our individual income tax in the year 2019, I’ve come up with the list of updated tax-relief items to help you, as a Malaysian to save a little bit of money.

Those who have monthly income RM3100 or more in the year 2018 need to file the individual income tax.

individual income tax Malaysia
2019 useful individual tax-relief items

Above lists are those items which are common to most of the employees and you need to keep these receipts and invoices for tax-filing in the year 2019. There are still a lot of tax-relief items where you can refer to the LHDN official portal.

Every single cent counts. It may be a tiresome task to know where you can save on taxes, the amount you could potentially accumulate at the end of the day could ultimately worth the effort.

baby stories, money

Open a savings account for my baby

Having a baby soon will change everything in my family. As a new parent, other than planning the extra costs for taking care of the baby, I will also need to plan about my baby’s financial future carefully. It doesn’t have to be difficult, and I start with a simple savings account as my baby’s lifelong financial education.

In Malaysia, we can open junior savings account at any age from when he or she is a newborn to the age of 18. Thus, choosing the right bank with the best interest rate for my baby’s savings account can make a huge difference as the money grows in the bank.

Open a savings account for baby
it is important to start saving for my baby

The features of a junior savings account

  • for those below 18 years old
  • encourage more savings by restricting withdrawal
  • require a low amount to open an account
  • provide extra benefits such as free insurance coverage

The benefits of a junior saving account

  • higher interest rate
  • extra benefits such as personal accident insurance coverage
  • teach the child the value of money and how to manage them

There are many types of junior savings account available in Malaysia.  By comparing some of junior savings account from major banks, I hope these can help you, those who are Malaysia and reading my post to decide which one is the best for your baby and your child. The comparison sheet is downloadable.

Click on the link and download it for your reference.
Junior Savings Account Comparison Spreadsheet (updated 2018)

Are there any junior savings account in your country? What is your opinion on the junior savings account? I’m glad if you can share with me using the comments below.

baby stories, money

Awesome benefit for Malaysian babies born in January 2018 onwards

1   ADAM50 (Amanah Dana Anak Malaysia 2050)

For Malaysia babies born from the year 2018 until the year 2022, they will receive a FREE RM200 worth of unit trust incentive. According to ASNB (Amanah Saham Nasional Berhad), the main objective of ADAM50 is to encourage savings and investment of Malaysians from the early age, by distributing free incentive units as initial investment capital.

This RM200 free unit trust incentive will be credited to ASB (Amanah Saham Bumiputera) for Bumiputera babies or AS1M (Amanah Saham 1Malaysia) for non-Bumiputera babies once registration is completed.

The good thing is parents can make additional units to the babies’ account until reaching the maximum limit set by ASNB.

ADAM50
Amanah Dana Anak Malaysia 2050

For more information, please visit the ASNB website.


2   Skim Insentif Kelahiran Anak for babies from Kedah

This scheme consists of a financial aid amounting to RM100. To qualify for this scheme, your babies must

  • Be a Malaysia citizen who is born in Kedah.
  • The parents must be born in Kedah and reside in Kedah.
  • A parent who is not originally from Kedah but has resided for more than 5 years and is registered voter who is voting district is in Kedah.

For more information, please visit the Kedah government website.


3   Program Anak Emas Pulau Pinang for babies from Penang

This program promises a one-off help of RM200. In order to qualify for this, your babies must

  • Be born as a Malaysian citizen.
  • One of the parents must be a registered voter who is voting district is in Penang.

For more information, please visit the Penang government website.


4   TAWAS for babies from Selangor

Babies from Selangor will be eligible for RM1500 upon reaching the age of 18 years old. There are 3 ways that your babies can qualify for TAWAS:

Condition 1

  • Be a Malaysia citizen that born in or outside of the Selangor from 1st January 2008.
  • Have a mother or father who was born in Selangor or KL before 1st February 1974.

Condition 2

  • Be a Malaysia citizen that born in or outside of the Selangor from 1st January 2008.
  • Parents who are not born in Selangor but have been residing in Selangor for a minimum of 5 years.
  • Have been officially certified as Selangor resident.

Condition 3

  • Be a Malaysia citizen that born outside Selangor but within the same district that borders the Selangor state from 1st January 2008.
  • Parents are certified a permanent resident of Selangor by the official certification from the Ketua Kampung, Penghulu and Pengerusi Taman Perumahan of the area.

For more information, please visit the TAWAS website.


In conclusion, I hope you have found some useful information for your future baby’s planning. For me, I don’t live in any of the states mentioned above, thus I’m only entitled to the ADAM50. The best thing I can do right now is to create a saving account for my baby to provide them a better financial future.

Are there any benefit schemes for your baby in your country? Share with me your thoughts and ideas in the comment section below.

money

Money I made doing online surveys

I’m always looking for different ways to earn money online so I can increase my personal income. More and more people are discovering that the internet is a big place full of potential to earn money – and we can get started earning money right now.

I would like to talk about making money with paid online surveys. I first heard that you could be paid for online surveys about 4 years ago. I signed up some survey sites, did a few surveys with limited success. As time went on I found I was receiving more offers, and in the end, I received my first online income in the year 2014.

There are now lots of legitimate survey sites that allow you to make money doing surveys. Nevertheless, I couldn’t join some of the reliable survey sites due to my location (I’m from Malaysia). Even there are some local survey sites, I couldn’t find any better than this. This is an easy way to make the additional income. It is little, but still, I  used it to pay my first blogging site on WordPress.com.

I’m sharing with you what I’ve learned about doing online paid surveys and how you can be successful and get paid!

To have success the first step for you is to find legitimate paid survey offers. You may search on the internet and you can find lots of survey sites which have been reviewed by users.

The only survey site I joined is Global Test Market and this is my recent income from this survey site.

my recent PayPal payments from Global Test Market
my recent PayPal payments from Global Test Market
  • 4931 LifePoints = $10 (updated July 2018)
  • You can redeem LifePoints with PayPal and vouchers

If you want to consistently get paid for doing surveys, you need to

  1. Be consistent – if you want to get paid to do surveys regularly, you need to prove you’re up to the task. It shows that you take the offers seriously and you’re still alive and ready for more surveys. Better quality offers will come in the future.
  2. Be honest – the survey sites will cross check you. I treat those offers seriously. From my point of view, someone is really paying me to take part in research and although I’m only doing it for money, I still need to be honest so I can help those researchers to get reliable data.

In conclusion, it does require some effort to get paid by doing online surveys. You need to fill in your profile entirely after signing up. This will immediately filter out surveys that not suitable for you and pave the way for real offers that pay money.

If you participate in any legitimate survey sites which allow residents from Malaysia to join, please leave a comment here. Your recommendation is much appreciated!

money

How to budget: calculate monthly income and expenses

Making a budget is the most important step I can take to make a clear view of my financial status. What exactly is budgeting? It is the details of spending you intend to make. It estimates how much money will come in during the months ahead and it allocates enough money to cover expenditures such as housing, insurance, and food. A good budget also includes our regular savings.

I used to have my ledger to record my income and expenditures. I stopped it due to the lack of encouragement from my family and friends who rely on guesswork or wish list of things they’d like to buy without having a long-term financial plan. Before long, my expenses easily outstrip my earning leading to a financial meltdown.

I am a teacher. I usually ask my students to make an outline before they began writing the term papers in school. In my opinion, a budget is like that,

A plan for where my money will go before I earn it.

It won’t protect you and me from disasters, but it can help us avoid them. We need to be honest when we get ready to budget.

To start, I go for paperless and open a new spreadsheet on Google Drive (you can choose any platform that convenient to you). You can keep budgets on paper, but there are also lots of apps and software that can help you plan your cash flow more efficiently.

I choose to use the spreadsheet on Google Drive because I can easily share it with my husband, and easy to manage through my phone. When it comes to a budget, forget about pre-tax earnings. I just record the only income that my family can spend or save.

It is difficult to remember all of my monthly expenses. I start by listing out the bills my family pay regularly each month. These will include:

  • mortgage and rent
  • auto expenses
  • student loans
  • mobile data plan subscription

After this, I’ve also listed the other variable expenses including:

  • utility bills (electric & water)
  • gas and tolls
  • groceries and eating out

Now I’ve identified all of my expenses. Here is an overview of my family monthly budget:

budget spreadsheet
my household monthly budget in 2018

Luckily, my household income still exceeds my expenses and there is a little surplus money. However, my budgeted expenditures are about 95% of my family income! That’s mean I still need to cut down 5% of spending to make sure the expenditures are lower than 90%. God Bless Me……

OKAY! Now I know how much money I can deposit into my savings account as a backup, and what I need to do is to control my spending and manage my budget starting from NOW.

By the way, my family will have a new member coming soon at the beginning of August…

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