Sunday, October 12, 2014

Will RM2,500 Suffice For Fresh Graduates in Kuching?

Reading from The Star Online earlier this week on whether RM2,500 will suffice for fresh graduates , I think it's interesting to see the sample of a fresh graduate budget. This is a sample of a monthly budget for a fresh graduate in Kuching with a monthly salary of RM2,500:  

EPF contributions (11%): RM325
Daily pocket money and food allowances (RM20x30days) : RM600
Car loan installment (Myvi @ 9 years): RM450
Accommodation (inclusive of water and electricity): RM300
Petrol/Fuel: RM250
Phone/Internet Connection: RM100
Study loan (PTPTN): RM150
Insurance: RM100
Clothing, body care, hair care and other miscs: RM125
Savings: RM100
Total: RM2500
(Note: the figure is based on my observation and some assumptions)

The above has not add in other spending such as movies, special outing, dining, cool gadgets, emergency needs, medication and others. RM2,500 seems to be quite a lot but after taking care of the basic needs, not much left. Perhaps fresh graduates can choose to stay with parents or family members to save on accommodation. Also, have to adjust on food allowance for more cash to be spent on others. It seems like a big portion of the monthly salary spend on transportation (RM400 + RM250 = RM650). Other alternatives to reduce on transportation cost will be change to motorbike or car pool or share a family car or perhaps getting a smaller or second hand car with much lower monthly installment. In Kuching, we can't rely on the public transport, so the idea of using public transportation to go around is not a solution for fresh graduates.

The budget above still looks OK because there's savings of RM100 per month and there's a basic insurance coverage. I believe most of the fresh graduates had neglected the insurance part.

With some adjustments and 'temporarily sacrifice', it looks like RM2,500 seems to be sufficient for fresh graduates in Kuching. For fresh graduates in bigger cities such as KL, Penang, JB and other major towns where the cost of living (room rental, toll charges, food allowances) is higher, with monthly salary of RM2,500, it's quite hard to survive. Seems like they need to make more sacrifice and adjustment.

photo credit: Shawn | Shiyang Huang via photopin cc






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