If there is one sure way to get people to stop talking to you, it is to bring up the subject of financial planning. Topics such as budgeting, saving and investing are usually conversation killers.
What isn’t a conversation killer is getting people to talk about their respective dreams in life, and how they intend to fulfill it. But if you listen to people who talk about their dreams frequently enough, you will notice that often, the monetary aspects of how these dreams are going to be funded are not thought through. It is almost as if dreams are free. They are not. At least not in real life.
The different types of dream: Short term & long term
While there is no fixed definition, we see a short-term dream as one that is between 1 to 3 years and a long-term dream as one that is 7 years or more. If we are being honest with ourselves, we may start realizing that most of our dreams tend to be short term in nature. This reflects the natural tendency of people. We crave for instant gratification. Nobody wants to plan for something which will only happen more than 10 years later.
Here are some examples of short-term dreams.
Planning for a wedding:
A wedding is expensive. According to our estimates, this could range from $44,000 all the way to $90,000. There are cases of couples spending beyond $100,000 and starting their marriage in debt.
Going overseas for post graduate studies:
The increasing importance of higher-level education as a prerequisite to go far in one’s career has led to many Singaporeans taking their Masters programme overseas. This can easily cost about $100,000.
For newlyweds, the cost of renovating and furnishing your home is going to be a big-ticket item. Cost of renovating and furnishing a BTO flat can easily range from a minimum of $35,000 to about $80,000 or more.
Going for an end-of-year holiday:
Heading for a 2-week end of year break to Europe can easily cost you between $5,000 (if you are really frugal) to $15,000 (if budget isn’t a concern).
Examples of long-term dreams
Long-term goals dreams tend to be more expensive. Yet, they are usually very important.
Buying a 2nd house:
Singaporeans love investing in real estate. However buying a 2nd house is not going to be cheap. You will need to put up a hefty down payment, which could easily be about $300,000, assuming you buy a $1 million dollar property.
Raising a child:
According to this article from MoneySmart.sg, the cost of raising a child up till secondary school is (only) about $276,400 –for each child. We are not even including the cost of university, which could easily set that back another $100,000.
Assuming you stop working at age 62 and live for another 20 years, that is a 20 years’ worth of income that you will need. That type of money takes a long time to accumulate towards.
Kick-start your dream today
From now till 2 August, United Overseas Bank (UOB) is inviting Singaporeans to share their dreams online at uobdream.com.sg. The best part about this is that UOB will be giving out 3X$20,000 worth of units in unit trusts from UOB Income Builder.
In our opinion, this is as good as cash, because there is no minimum holding period and redemption is free of charge. However if you do win that amount, we suggest leaving it in the fund and letting it accumulate over time rather than to spend it all today.
Aside from the typical Singapore dream such as buying a house, getting a car and saving for children’s education, there are some really interesting dreams that can be found in their Tapestry Of Dreams. In fact, one of our writers has also submitted an entry for his newly born daughter! You can support him by voting on his entry, or any other entry that you would like to.
Voters stand a chance to win $1,000 worth of units in Unit Trust. Regardless of the dream that each individual have, the most important element about this competition is the emphasis that is being put forward through this competition. And that is the fact that dreams usually require sufficient money to accomplish, money that takes time, planning and discipline to accumulate.
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