I cowrote this book with Amy Sipagal, who is also the cowriter of Teaching Your Kids about Money.

It is a list of frequently asked questions about personal finance.

Now, I would like you to post a personal finance related question here in the comment section (either with Facebook or WordPress comment, or both if you enjoy doing it). By simple posting a personal finance question, you stand a chance to get a complimentary copy of this brand new book : Top 93 Personal Finance FAQ in Malaysia.

One winner will be announced each week until end of February. Try your luck just by simply posting a question below.

Announcement: The winner….

1st winner of the book: Daniel Foo

2nd winner of the book: Sarah.

Sarah posted:

I have been contemplating on getting a property near my parent’s house in Subang area. However, I find it difficult to get new landed property for less than RM5k, and I think I may have to settle for an apartment for that budget which I felt may not be worth it.

The plan is to rent it out for investment since there is no need to move out from my parents house yet, and perhaps one day move in to my own place. At the rate property price is spiralling up it looks like it’s almost impossible to purchase one at any time!

I’m the eldest in the family, and my sibling is not willing to share to purchase property together. Furthermore, the current house is in need of repair and renovation, and I may have to contribute to the fund as part of my responsiblity. What do you think I can do at the moment – to invest in something else in the meantime or get property now before the prices goes up even higher?

Also, is it a good idea to get an annuity plan from the insurance company so that I can get reduction in income tax?

If you are the winner, please contact me using the contact form to provide your mailing address and phone number. Congratulations!


Personal finance author and trainer

    105 replies to "New Book Contest: Top 93 Personal Finance FAQ in Malaysia"

    • Lee Chin Soon

      May I know roughly when will the book available in Popular or MPH or Boarders? Thanks.

    • Yves Lee

      If I am borrowing a mortgage loan of 500,000 for a spread of 30 years at a fixed rate of 4.5%, lets assume total interest to be at 400,000 and at the end of the 360 months I will be paying back a total of 900,000(principal + interest).

      For the fact that I am paying the 900,000 as an absolute term BUT if I am spreading this payment out for the next 30 years, does it mean that banks are in fact losing money at the end of the day?

      If we take inflation into account, the 400k may not be worth as much as today in the future. IF inflation is above 4.5%, we might even end up paying back less than the principal amount which the bank originally borrowed us?!

      Are we heading for this direction ultimately?If we are, then I would certainly love to go for the maximum loan amount and tenure available in the market for all my investment properties!

      • Eunice

        I think there is a risk. Touch wood to say if recession, where to get money & pay bank. To me, got money pay back bank, loan faster finish.

    • Lee Chin Soon

      I would like to buy this book. But still not available at Popular book shop or MPH. Can you expedite the books to those book shop? Thanks.

      • KCLau

        Hi Lee, I am urging my publisher to distribute the books fast. Thanks for your patience.

    • sarah

      I have been contemplating on getting a property near my parent’s house in Subang area. However, I find it difficult to get new landed property for less than RM5k, and I think I may have to settle for an apartment for that budget which I felt may not be worth it.

      The plan is to rent it out for investment since there is no need to move out from my parents house yet, and perhaps one day move in to my own place. At the rate property price is spiralling up it looks like it’s almost impossible to purchase one at any time!

      I’m the eldest in the family, and my sibling is not willing to share to purchase property together. Furthermore, the current house is in need of repair and renovation, and I may have to contribute to the fund as part of my responsiblity. What do you think I can do at the moment – to invest in something else in the meantime or get property now before the prices goes up even higher?

      Also, is it a good idea to get an annuity plan from the insurance company so that I can get reduction in income tax?

      • KCLau

        Hi Sarah,

        Congratulations! You are the 2nd winner of my book.

    • JM rita sumathi

      Dear Kclau
      actually we can doing some titibits business but the profit we gained does reach to your target each time we run business the money we banking will be use for other purpose we fill upset couldn’t do the saving of profit in proper method
      can you advice us how to gain the profit how stabilized your saving monthly our target for our monthly saving is Rm 500 and another advice to how to clear my debt on car loan and house loan

    • Teo Teck Guan

      What investment tool that you think we should go in as a beginner? Mutual fund? Gold? Stock market? Property?

    • Andre Ooi

      Ever since I stumble upon you, I’ve been a vivid follower. I’m piano player myself by hobby and engineer by profession. After SPM I was contemplating between music and engineering but chose the later as it made more financial sense. But you showed me music can also generate huge income if we put our heart to it.

      My question is: What are the risks of investment in different asset class (i.e. mutual trust, stocks, gold, property etc.) ??

      This may sound very simple but I find that a lot of so called investment books /course focus so much on how to make money but never put EQUAL emphasis on the risk as to what might go wrong and how it might go wrong. I was hoping to get a book on “TOP FAQ on investment risks”. LOL.

      I find it odd that risk profiling forms requires one to fill in risk appetite. I am young and want to grow my net worth so obviously I would put agressive. But nobody ever explain in detail what aggresive, moderate, conservative actually means. We select them based on individual pre-conceived ideas like completing a survey form.

      In my opinion, risk management is part and parcel of wealth management.

    • Name

      How to settle debts which were con by con-man?

    • sin

      i m begginer in buying property, but i wish to buy one property now for investment, in penang but a bundle of question in my mind that stopping me from carry out the first step. do we need need hire an agent to buy a house for first time? my friend alway say : don buy apartment la not worth,and so expensive, buy landed which is cheap(as you know, even apartment in penang is expensive), for eg, around 200K u can get one landed in ipoh, but u cxan only get apartment in penang. i wiah to buy for keep in penang. in this case, is my friend saying the correct things? but property in penang definitely can’t compare with other places right? do you think i should just focus on cheaper landed in ipoh(for flip) or can go for apartment in penang?what is the thing to consider when deciding this problem? is 2012 property too high to buy and we should stop?

      • Vincent

        Is your friend a property investor, a successful one? Good friends advising each other on subjects (especially investment) which are not their expertise is unfortunately a bad formula for success. First step, you need to invest in yourself by signing up for property investment courses to gain basic knowledge and start networking with investors and other like minded people. . Doesn’t matter if it costs you RM4000. If you are serious (I mean you really take lots of action after the course), the ROI will be the highest of any investment. The answers to your questions are all in the course. Good luck.

    • eugene

      What is the best way to do business ? For example: Real Estate, Event Management, Showbusiness, Stock Market, Multi-Level Marketing, Write and Sell Books etc. Which one will give you the most profit ?

    • Netmask8

      Greetings + G’Day,

      Invest some $$$ in books and understand it very well. E.g Books like :-

      1. How to get rich, stay rich + be happy by Fred Young talking abt real estate, businesses and stock market.
      2. The ultimate guide to achieve financial freedom by Yap Ming Hui.
      3. How to make $$$ from your stock investment even in a falling marker by Ho Kok Mun
      4. Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits by Philip A. Fisher
      5. ..etc..etc
      Knowledge + Wisdom ==>>> Wealth

      Basic Rule:- DO NOT PUT YR HARD-EARNING $$$ into investment that you ARE NOT CLEAR / UNDERSTAND.. Beside that buying books ==> Tax Rebate / Incentive .

    • David

      After go through 1/3 of the new book “Top 93 Personal financial question in Malaysia”, I would like to have some question as below:

      1. I agreed that value averaging can gives investor better returns as it will lower the average unit price. Unfortunately, if the unit price keeps on increase, to lower the unit price, we need to sell the number of unit bought. At the end, we may sell out all the number of unit that bought.
      For value averaging mean, it may suitable for short term investment. When the unit price go down, we can buy more unit to lower the unit averaging unit price and when the unit price increase and over the averaging price, we sell it to get the return. Of course we need to deduct all the necessary charges.
      What is your opinion?

      2. Dollar-cost averaging strategy is suitable for people that already plan their budget and easy manage. To lower the averaging price and we really look good on the fund, I proposed to continues save the money (fixed amount) when the unit price increase. When the unit price drop, we may used value averaging strategy to buy more number of unit to lower the averaging unit price.
      What is your opinion?

      3. Most of my friends will have the same situation as below:
      I would like to save money to start my own business, investment and buy a new house but most of them commented that they unable to save money. When I try to help them to calculate their monthly personal cash flow and net worth, most of them will reject and reason as below:
      a) Monthly income too low
      b) Too many burden (such as parents expense, car installment, insurance premium, house installment)
      c) They will earn more money in future, no need to save money now
      d) They will invest their money in stock market but I found out that they never learn and just “tembak” whichever stock that look good

      For my opinion, the top question that they faced is “Do you really want to be financial planner for yourselves to achieve financial freedom and how keen you are”

    • Chang

      I would like to ask will the book bring us insights on how to free ourselves from the 9 to 5 job cycle and achieve financial freedom by doing what we like??

    • Daniel

      Once, there is one of my friend asking me some question about finance. He came with a smiling face and approach me and start asking, ” hey daniel, i have a savings of 20,000 and i would like to take it out to invest in equities or putting it in mutual fund. What do you thing? By the way, he is around 27 years old and wanting to earn side income in investing and asking me for opinion what is the best investment vehicle should he be investing. Of course, i am not a professional, so my reply was if i had the 20,000 i will invest in equities in share market. He wanted to invest in mutual fund as he claim that it pay off nice interest rate and its risk free. As a two cent opinion, Mr.Lau, put yourself in the guy shoe without any knowledge of investment and willing to learn how to invest, what would you do with the money? thanks.

      • Parameswara.K

        who says mutual fundS RISK FREE?
        Invest in Mutual Funds is with investor own risk. But it less riskier than direct stocks.

        Interest/dividedns/distributions in Mutual fund is like take the money frm left hand and pass it to right hand.
        The most important is how the money grow.

        my 2 cents.

    • sayni

      Previous years I’ve put money through unit trust and saving, but the return not high. Then, I bought an apartment and flat for rental and homestay purpose. Based on my experience doing homestay did make high return than rent. Would like to know and share for other better tips of property investment.

    • ck5354

      I have a 1 year + daughter which I not yet buy any insurance for her. My company do cover health insurance for her.
      What is the most suitable insurance I should buy for her future? Some say life and some say education. Anyone have any better suggestion? Thanks. Some say ask me buy an apartment better rather than insurance.

    • Daniel Chong

      How does a property investor get all the funds needed to purchase more properties?

    • JJ

      Many financial matters are influenced by selfishness, greed and fear. Any better alternative?

    • sim

      I m now 25 years old. Should I start retirement saving plan or better use that money to invest in small business, share or unit trust? Any idea to estimate or guarantee when I reach 55 years old, i have enough money for life after retirement? Thank you.

      • Parameswara.K

        THere are a few things u need to concider before start the planning.

        1. put abt 6 months ur monthly expenses as emergency funds.
        2. enough insurance?
        2. waht is ur expeted amount for upon ur retirement?
        4. there is no guarantee for any investment unless capital protected with T n C or in FD (saving) with limited protection by PIDM for depocitors.

        an example only at http://www.pk31-retire.blogspot.com/

    • YK

      Hi! KC,
      I am trying to explore and workout more ways of increasing my earnings to save for my retirement age. Areas aiming at including REITS/Unit Trust/Equities/Fix Income Invsmt etc.
      I hv abt 120K in my EPF, 25k in bank, NAV 27k in UT(ini cost 24k), equities 11k, net pay of 3.8K/mth(grs 4.2k), retirement TL plan 0.45k/mth, saving abt 2K/mth. No hsg/car loan. No crd card(bad credit in the past due to business failure, fully repaid recently).

      I am single. Aiming at retiring at 55, trying to rebuild my credit with the bank (intend to take up c/card to ease pymt instead of carrying cash). Please provide me with some guidance on my route to success.

    • M.S Dhaliwal

      Assumingly that I have RM100k cash in hand. What would a wiser thing to do:
      a) invest all in property
      b) wait till the end of the year for investing in property as property might depreciate
      c) Invest in share market first, make some money and later invest in property ?

      • Sharif

        hi, first what is your objective? is it for a long term or short term? you clarified first then you find which investment is near with your goal…

      • Parameswara.K

        20% as cash for emergency fund.
        30% as share market.
        50% as in property.

        make sure u know what are u buying.

        my 2 cents.

    • Shatish

      I’m planning to start investing in shares online with OSK. I want to invest a small amount for now, maybe rm100o, and take it as a learning experience before going all out.

      What are the first few things I should do as a beginner, before investing in shares?

      • Parameswara.K

        Invest urself for investment knowledge.
        Attend seminars abt stock trading.
        Subscribe to Theedge personal money.
        Read the news abt financial daily.(local & foreign)
        For beginning, do some paper trading.
        Plan wisely.

    • Cynthia

      Hi there,
      I need advice in buying property for the year 2012. Ever since a few years back, there are rumours that the property bubble will burst soon. But property prices have not stop rising till today. May i know what is your advice on what kind of property to buy? There are so many options that i should consider. Which is one do you think is the best for long term investment? Should it be landed or high rise and should it be residential, shop lots or agricultural land? What is your take on it?

      Thanks in advance:)

    • Thum Hok Yen

      Today’s mortgage interest rates are historically very low. Likewise, bonds are yielding very little, and the stock market may not be as lucrative as it once was, due to world-wide economic bubbles collapsing. So, given today’s circumstances, if one has the ability to pay off their mortgage, does it make sense for them to do so in order to eliminate their personal debt, or should one leverage that debt in investments in order to try to grow their personal wealth? Should one withdraw from retirement accoutns, EPF for example to pay down personal debt such as unsecured debt from credit cards or is it smarter to continue to save while carrying debt? I wonder if it’s smart to have money saved and still have outstanding bills especially when retirement plans haven’t earned nearly what one would have hoped in recent years. Thank you.

    • ahmad

      hi. What do you think property in semenyih? Going to boom?saw in tv3 last night

      • KCLau

        I am not sure about that area.

      • Raja Noor Izzuddin

        Hi Ahmad,

        Good question. My hometown is in Semenyih so I may give you better insights on the property there.

        Over the years, Semenyih is rapidly becoming more accessible, thanks to new highways (such as the Kajang-Seremban Highway and the Kajang SILK Highway), and more attractive due to new development (example, the Malaysian campus of the University of Nottingham, TESCO Semenyih, McDonald, KFC, Pizza Hut).

        This transformation from town to metropolis is also reflected in the growth in its population. The 15100 people recorded in the 1991 census had grown to over 45000 by 2000. This corresponds to an annual growth rate of 12.9%, compared with the national average of 2.66% over the same period.

        My friend’s friend bought a double storey terrace house at Pelangi Semenyih last 3 years for a price of RM 180,000. Now the house was valued about RM 300,000. Sweet, right?

        For further info on the developments in Semenyih, please click the link below:-


    • JASON

      I just started my new business join ventures with few partners and thinking of having some saving for my marriage, investment and retire. Most of my saving is dumped into the business. My aim is to invest wisely which could lead me to hassle free later. Which sector do you recommend? I did drop by property but still thinking of whether should drop in stock and forex. I believe this is not an easy task, it require us to learn, understanding and practice. How to speed up the learning of equity?

      • Parameswara.K

        Invest urself for investment knowledge.
        Attend seminars abt stock trading.
        Subscribe to Theedge personal money.
        Read the news abt financial daily.(local & foreign)
        For beginning, do some paper trading.
        Plan wisely.

      • Raja Noor Izzuddin

        Hi Jason,

        I lauded your effort by daring to take a risk by decided to explore an opportunity in business. This reminds me of the Rockefeller and the Kennedy at their prime.

        To answer your question, I would like to share where to keep or invest your money despite good or bad time.

        Economy Good, Politic Stable –> Stock Market
        Economy Good, Politic Chaos –> Real-Estate
        Economy Bad, Politic Stable –> Bonds
        Economy Bad, Politic Chaos –> Gold

        Gold has been speculated so much that it MAY no longer be the standard of money.

        There used to be only ‘property’ in the city. Now there are satellite towns, suburbs … agriculture lands have become valuable real-estates too. While real-estate remains the right category to invest into whenever economy is booming, but predict the right future seems like tougher than buying lottery.

        Government bonds used to be de-Facto action when a country is stable. But in today’s world, a country is as smart as a taicon’s finance. One day they are the LARGEST, the next day they are GONE.

        Stock market used to be the back bone of a country’s economy. However, the market of derivatives has become so HUGE that the REAL and PHYSICAL is NO LONGER more real than VIRTUAL

        So in 21st century, the element of Stock-Real Estate-Funds-Gold is really questionable. However, one fundamental that doesn’t change is that
        you will have to identify what to do at what time that is BEST for YOU.

    • Daniel Foo

      Parents medical attention is my headache now. When I realized that I need to have some financial planning for my elderly parents, it was too late because my father is already over 60 and I could not buy a medical card for him. While for my mother, she is at the last year of being eligible for getting a medical card. I contacted my insurance agent and she has helped me to submit an application for my mother (few days back). But yet to be accepted by the insurance company.
      My question is, apart from saving for cash, what can I do to prepare myself for my parents’ future medical needs?

    • Daniel Foo

      I was attending a live comedy last night. It was funny how the speaker made fun of Chinese about we ask discount for EVERYTHING. Yes, I have to admit I do that too. Even in business, I have always learn to negotiate to get a better cost. But I remember once when I negotiated and asked for a discount an item that cost about RM2000+, I got a *not very friendly* feedback that sounds something like “the seller is in business, the product is cheap enough already, please lar….” – in a rather rude manner. I mean, what’s wrong with asking discount? If that’s really the seller’s bottom line, the seller can just politely say no discount, right? KC, what’s your view on asking discount?

    • Helpless

      People always say invest in property, own a property so at least you hv an asset What people fail to mention the process of getting even one property! It cost my husband and I our lifetime savings and now we belong to category of poor people. We have debts mountain high, depleted all savings, shares, gold bla bla. Dont let me start how we felt cheated by lawyers. ( hello not everyone knows how to read lawyers jargon & it’s ‘not so clear underlying meaning) so please stop saying ” it’s stated in s&p agreement Dont-read-lawyers-jargon need interpretation. And we can’t afford lawyers to help us read between the lines. Lawyers fails to highlight the key important points simply because they know we don’t even understand if we try to read it anyway. I haven’t start on their fees, stamp duty bla bla bla. I wish I can sell the property but we are stuck with till-we-die mortgage. Oh I didn’t share on the basic renovation on the house, did I? Notice I said basic not luxury? we were so careful with personal finance but purchasing our 1st property cripple us for rest of our lives.

      • KCLau

        Hi Helpless, so sorry to hear about your situation. Wish you the best of luck.

      • Netmask8

        Greetings + G’Day,

        Mortgage loan is a very long-term commitment. If u confirm and able to get monthly rental + collection through “good” location/venue, u r able to get good yield / surplus income.. However, “should” the business/ economy turns the other way, it is very to get it rental out while banks still continue to ask for payment. Your lifetime hard earning savings/other high net worths might need to dispose/fork out to pay MONTHLY loans, and this will make u poorer. Real Estate + Property are for super rich players which have huge cashflow reserves/business turn-around funds to put their $$ in high net worths.

        Today’s generation / culture, many of “going to be wed-couples” prefer to own latest design house and own “”1st hand property”” in newly develop property area which the price is determine by developer/contruction company. 2nd Hand Home/Properties price are determine by the property adjuster and homeseller itself. With easy EPF Acct 2 withdrawn/great mortgage loan interest rate(BLR – %), many ppls prefer to own home than paying monthly rental (unless u r student / temporary assignment worker that need short-term accomodation at designated venue).

        Just a thought..Thanks

    • Rama

      I went through some difficult times about 7 years back. Now I have a steady job and regular income. My repayments to banks is on time. However there are some accounts under “special attention” category in my CCRIS report. Due to this reason (I presume), I can’t seem to get a personal loan at any bank (even the one with special link to my workplace). I still have some debts outside the banking circle with high interest, and it would be a relief if I could arrange a personal loan from a bank just to consolidate these “outside” debts. Any idea how I can solve this problem?

      • KCLau

        Normally CCRISS need 12 month from the month you make payment to clear from the systems
        Please be patient, DO NOT APPLY ANY LOAN or FACILITY NOW. It will effect your application after 12 month

        There are 2 type of payment cleared, 1)cleared only the arreas and 2)cleared the whole outstanding balance (full settlement)
        For Number 1, your record will remain in the ccris database for 12 months upon your repayment and
        for number 2, your record will be delete from the database within 30 days or 15th of coming month upon the full settlement

        Refer this page:

    • Ames

      What exactly is financial planing?I am new to this and am hoping that your book will help me to have better finances for my future and my child’s future. I am almost 50 years of age and do not have enoguh money to retire comfortably. My friends tell me that they own houses here and there and have rental income and retirement income, and quite frankly, I have nothing like that and am starting to get worried.

      • KCLau

        Hi Ames,
        In the book, part 3.c. is about financial plan.
        Of course if you have the plan early, you have longer time to make adjustment and work towards it.
        Don’t worry that you are almost 50. Just remember that KFC is founded by Colonel Sanders at age 66.

    • crab

      the question : how do I win the book ? plz

      i post this comment for purposely to win your book….

      i like your book, quite simple quite easier to understand

      • KCLau

        We try to make everything simple because only the simple thing will stick to our mind.

    • Pam

      I am beginner in money matter. i just bought condo worth RM300K with 90% loan. I still have RM30K cash in my bank account, should i put in current property or new property or like many people, go stock market….i m confuse!!! does your book can gimme answer?

      • KCLau

        Hi Pam, this is about evaluating where you can get the best return of your money.
        Part 2.a.3 of the book may be useful to you. To evaluate which investment will give you the best return, you need the technical know-how on calculating the return on each opportunity you come across.

      • Daniel Foo

        Hi Pam, if you have no clue at all about investment and prefer not to bother about the investment technicality, I suggest you put your RM30k into your loan account as principle reduction (provided your loan is a semi-flexi or full-flexi loan).
        The advantage by doing this is you can be rest assured your RM30k is helping you to save on interest for your house loan. It’s about 4.x% of saving depending on the terms in your loan.
        The disadvantage of doing this is 4.x% is obviously a small return. If you are willing to spend time, energy and effort into the investment game, you can easily double this %.
        Hope it helps!

    • Jackson MMA

      I would like to know about the difference in dividend payment options, i.e. single vs. double payments per year.

      For example, the double-payment option: 6.0% (half yearly) and 4.0% (another half yearly) vs. the single-payment option of 10% per year.

      I’ve done the comparisons between these two options and found that single-payment option gained more money than the double-payment option.

      And why is that happened? Was it due to “double taxation”?

      Thanks for the reply(ies)!

    • SilverIsle

      I’ve been working for almost 2 years now and last year, together with my other half, we bought a property together. Besides throwing all savings into the full-flexi mortgage account, I don’t know where else should I invest my money into to get higher return? The different terms and schemes in the financial world all sound so complicated to me, really wish there’s an idiot guide for me to look at while starting to learn about investment – and here I’m hoping to win your newly published book to aid me in my completely new and challenging journey.

      • KCLau

        Hi SilverIsle,
        I believe this book will be very useful to you.

    • Netmask8

      Greetings + G’Day,

      Buy many famous investment books and go through it several times to understand it well, before putting your hard-work money to work even harder for you. Appetite and Risk-takings are varied through different demographic ..

      Knowledges and Wisdom ==>> Wealth.

      Note :- Buy books can get tax rebate / incentive when declare your annual income..

    • TS Ong

      I am already working for 8 years since I graduated and save some money and just purchase a condominium in Penang for investment last year, I do not know wheather the investment in the condo is correct or not as currently I do not has any more extra income for saving and invest into other area.

    • Derick

      whats the best hybrid investment model you’ve heard of, and whats the % recommended for each segment?

      • Vincent

        You gotta ask yourself what level of risk you are prepared to take simply because what is best for one person may be nightmare for you. Investment is not like a mathematical model that everyone can just apply and get the same ressults. Everyone has to deal with their own fear and greed in this so call best investment model and adjust accordingly in order to get consistent investment results. Your question, i am afraid, has no satisfactory answers.

      • KCLau

        Hi Derick,
        Most financial planner will recommend a portfolio according to your risk appetite and financial goals, and how long is the duration to achieve those goals.
        I don’t think there is a best portfolio that act as one size fit all. In this book, answers found on 2.a.15 and 2.a.3 will be useful.

    • Azua

      hi KCLau,

      i am fresh graduate work in oil & gas company with monthly income of RM5K(trainee). i have few plan for my future that i think about but im not sure which is the best. can u suggest the best for me.

      1: saving(save about 2 years)+ straight to real estate investment
      2: save in Tabung haji/ASB to get the dividen
      3: save in unit trust (this one i’m not so sure)

      i’m dont want to involve in the stock exchange/ forex(whatever it call) since don’t have the internet access (sometimes) when im going offshore

      thx in advance

      • KCLau

        Hi Azua,
        you can do no.2 – save in ASB or Tabung Haji.. then
        do No.1 when you find great property worth investing, liquidate the necessary fund accumulated in ASB.

    • The 8th voyager

      The average lifespan of people has been rising from the previous 60+ to 70+ and now approaching 80+, thanks to the improved civil and medical technology nowadays.

      However, this has also brought a financial issue for us to think about and plan properly.

      Consider you have both your parents able to live above 100+ years old, and your spouse’s parents also able to live above 100+ years old. Now they are at their 70’s, still got at least 30+ years to go. Sure they have retired from work, and their insurance coverage, especially medical one, is no more.

      However, their medical expenses increases when their body become older and older. They will need to be hospitalized more and more frequent, especially after 90+ (still got at least 10 years to go…)

      As their children, we have to bear for their expenses, which could go from hundreds, up to thousands or more than thousands per month.

      How to include these non-negligible parents’ expenses into our personal finance?


      • Michelle


        • KCLau

          Yes… part 1.a. is dedicated to question related to insurance.

      • Vincent

        I must congratulate you for bringing up this topic because it is something a lot of people choose to close one eye until they are forced to face it which is too late. My suggestions:
        1) Share resources with your siblings to have an affordable medical and accident insurance coverage for our parents when they are still insurable.
        2) In accordance with their health conditions, come up with a health maintenance plan for our parents. The plan should include annual health check, supplements and activities which promote better physical and especially mental health. Again, resources should be shared with siblings if feasible. This is a preventive approach.
        3) Do the above for ourself because we don’t want to be the same burden for our children (if they still care for us).

        • The 8th Voyager

          Well, this extends to more questions.

          Last time, people tends to have big family, and having 5 children or more was common. Nowadays, people tends to opt for small family, most will say having 2-3 kids is enough, and some even go for double-income-no-kid kind of lifestyle.

          In that case, sharing will siblings will not help a lot.

          And for the DINK families, how can the old couples help themselves?

          I think annuity could be a solution for that. This had been a hot topic during early 2000s, but somehow some flaws had been found in the annuity scheme at that time, then it went quiet for quite a long time. I am still waiting for good new annuity product, either from insurance company or our government.

        • KCLau

          Again, great answers!

      • KCLau

        This is a great question!
        1. There are whole life critical illness insurance that covers until age 87 and older, depending on what plans is offered. It doesn’t cover the medical fees, but at least act as a saving to fork out the money when critical illness strike.

        2. If private hospital is no longer affordable, there are still government hospitals one can go to.

        3. Eat and live healthily. Eat only plant based whole food. Avoid meat and processed food. Less illness means less medical expenses.

        Good luck!

        • The 8th Voyager

          Hi KCLau,

          The most common type of illness that need long term medication, that majority of the people will hit especially after 40-yo, including high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, osteoporosis, etc. and those that might need surgery operation such as hemorrhoids, hyperplasia of prostate, cancer, etc. are normally avoided by the insurance company. Those are definitely not under “critical illness”, and will also be excluded from your insurance policy if you get them at young age (don’t be surprise nowadays some people at 20+ already hit by them) before insured.

          One example of long-term disease that need expensive medical treatment: kidney problem that need dialysis.

          There are people around me who is vegetarian, who live a very healthy lifestyle, yet hit by such long term health problem. I am sure there are people around you getting the same situation too. Being healthy can reduce the chances, but not able to avoid them.

          Let’s continue the brainstorming…

          If you read Chinese newspaper, you will occasionally read about certain families gone into deep financial problem because one family member hit by disease or severe accident, which need long term medication and/or hospitalization. Sure insurance can help, but there are loopholes within insurance coverage, that we might gone into situation that insurance will not help. So, beside asking for donations, what else can we do?

    • vinext

      without a large pool of fund & large choices of low risk/risk free assets to invest in,
      should one buy:
      1) PA+medic insurance (low premium, high coverage) which is cheaper
      2) buy whole life with medic rider which is more expense
      3) imitate own insurance scheme by buying PA n invest in stable return assets.
      The problem is u cant buy a liquid assets such as MGS/ treasuries but only houses which has return that match insurance scheme, but it has liquidity problem
      note: cheap/ expensive in terms of coverage per rm1 premium paid

      • KCLau

        One can get insurance coverage to covers comprehensively and meet most of the needs by not spending more than 10% of his/her income. In this book, Part One 1a is dedicated to answer this question.

    • Johnnie Walker Yong

      I have not read or own your book so i can’t comment on your book, but what is the difference between your Book and other Personal Finance books in town ? If i were to follow diligently your instructions/advice from your Book, can i slowly become wealthy ?

    • Ong Kar Chong

      Where can I get financial education in Malaysia? How do I find books/seminars/CDs that are relevant to the financial climate in Malaysia instead of the USA?

      • KCLau

        You will need to get the books and courses by local authors and trainers. Of course there is not many to choose from.

    • Colin Tan

      May I know what’s the difference of this book compared to your previous books?

      • KCLau

        There are more issue being discussed that is not previously discussed in Top Money Tips for Malaysians.

    • Audrey

      my husband and i are looking into buying our first home. we have been working for 9 years in civil service, combined salary about 12K/month. 2 preschoolers with no other loans/settlements. price range of our targetted house is 800K-1M (it’s the state and location). for savings, mine; cash 160K, 20K unit trust, for husband; cash 150K, 600+ K in land/agriculture investment (just started, hence would need more investment later). i have to admit that i never had any financial planning done previously, and i regret this! how do u think we should go about in achieving our dream home and have cashflow for other investments/commitments? thanks!

      • KCLau

        Hi Audrey, great question.
        It needs a comprehensive plan that looks into your cash flow, and your future financial goals other than purchasing a dream home.
        If you are interested to have a family financial plan, please contact me with your phone number and your location.

        In this book, part 3.c answers the question
        – do you need a financial planner or adviser?
        – is financial planning really important and necessary

    • Thum Hok Yen

      Where can I find a good financial planner?
      How do I go about creating an estate plan?
      How can I get my debt under control?

      • KCLau

        Hi Hok Yen,
        There are somehow similar question answered in this book:
        3.e.7 – How to pay off your credit card debts
        4.a.3 – How to divide your estate fairly.

        “Where can I find a good financial planner?” is a great question.
        I will include it in the next edition.

    • Yves Lee

      I have the following real estates on hand:

      1) undercon DSCH – estimated capital appreciation (20% within 24-30 months)
      2) undercon 2-room 850 sqft serviced apt – Renting purposes
      3) 3-room 1050 sqft serviced apt – Current residing but converting for rental purpose

      As we all know that landed properties aint fantastic rental fetchers and the fact that DSCH needs a hefty amount(Rm 2,900) to hold each month after completion, Im hoping to flip the liabilty off asap.

      I’m looking at investing into more apartments/condos(200-500k) with the profit I make from the DSCH and converting them all for rental purposes. Ultimately, the goal would be running a company to maintain all the real estates and to have more than 10 apartments and shops all rented out – millionaire landlord

      Does this sound like a realistic plan? Am I too late to have this plan at age 30? Will I be able to achieve financial freedom by age 45?

      • KCLau

        It is a realistic plan when all your properties turn up to be generating great rental yield.
        Thanks for participating.

    • Yap Chun Hing

      First of all, I would like to congratulate you for publishing the new book. Just a bit curious, why is it Top 93 but not Top 100? Does it means that personal finance’s problems will never go beyond 100? In other words, does it means most people will be more likely to have the same or similar problems? As for my financial problems, I have invested a mutual funds for about 2 years. At starting, I put RM1000 in the fund and then pay RM100 monthly. To date, I have invested RM3800 in the fund. I have re-invest the distribution for twice that actually will summed up to RM286.99 (if I withdraw the money).

      The unit balance is 6441.88. where 471.43 is the reinvested units)
      To date, if I sell the fund at NAV at 0.6554, I would get the return of RM422.22.
      If I do not reinvest the distribution in the past, I would get the return on RM399.
      The difference is just merely RM23.
      Mutual fund is long-term investment, but I feels uncertain that the NAV will end up 1.0000 in future.
      If I have invested in share, I could have make much more returns. What would you recommend? Is mutual fund a good vehicle for investment? By the way, I am just 26 years old. Hope to hear from you.

      • Parameswara.K

        Yes, UT is a good investment, but with risk too.
        UT, is a medium to long term. And it need some time for break even due to Service Charge. Normally 5.5% for equity funds.

        as per ur Q, ur unit price not nessacary to reach RM1.000 to give more profits. its depends on how lower ur average price frm market price.

        ur total investment is RM3800, total units u hv, 6441.88,

        ur average price (include the SC) = RM3800 / 6441.88 = RM0.5899
        every time u top up, or re-invest the distribution, ur average price will change.

        furthermore, distribution or unit split, will effect the NAV.

        If the NAV is RM0.6554, if the distribution RM0.05 declare, the NAV will re-adjucted as RM0.6554 – RM0.05 = RM0.6054 after the distribution.

        If u think, u can make profit in short term in direct stock, yes, stock is the good investment for u.

        Either UT or stock, understand/reaserch/analize/study the market and plan wisely. Both cannot avoid from risk.

      • KCLau

        Unit trust involved higher cost because of the management fee and high upfront load.
        Of course you purchase the stock they hold directly you will be making better return.

    • Vincent

      This book for kids or guide to parents?

      • KCLau

        Hi Vincent, this book is especially useful for those who started to manage their money and need some reference to start with.

    • ong

      Dear KC,

      Over the many years of working, I have saved up some money. But, what trouble me is that, most of my saving is in the form of fixed deposit and it represents almost 60% of my total net worth.

      My problem is that I am not the kind of risk taker but I want to make more…. In fact, I always think that I can but just fear to do so. This makes me angry of myself and I feel stress sometimes – I want my investment to be safe and at the same time giving me 6 – 8% annual returns. Reasonable right? How to breakthrough and any recommendation?

      • Parameswara.K

        for 6-8%, still need to take some risks too.

        u can concider Bond Funds with miner risk. But risk still the risk.

      • KCLau

        Hi Ong,

        I believe that you fear to take risk because you don’t know much about that particular investment.
        I recommend that you start by going to courses relating to the investment you are possibly passionate about.
        The two great choice to start with is property and stock.
        Wish you the best of luck!

        Part 2.a.3 in the book is about “You want to invest money, what type of investments do you choose?”

    • Eddie Ooi

      Is it a must to pre-allocate % of your income into several catagories of your expenditure / saving irrespective of your level of income?
      example : 30% to all your loan & debts, 20% for saving & unit trust & investment, 30% for households etc.
      What is the best % allocation for each catagories for different level of income ?

      • KCLau

        Hi Eddie,

        It is discussed thoroughly in MA$ course. I believe you are one of the lifetime members, right?

    • Daniel Foo

      I’m a saver and am very bad at spending money. I often find the myself not willing to spend money because I feel those items with expensive price tag is not “worthy”. For example, I am reluctant to go for expensive and fine dinner because I feel RM4 is a dinner, RM40 is also a dinner, why would I want to spend so much money on one dinner? I know it is important to spend some money to pamper ourselves so that we could recognize ourselves we deserve it and we could make even more money. But somehow something in my DNA is stopping me from spending money. I even tried to setup a different account as my “Play Jar” and I told myself to blow it every month. It work well in the first month, but subsequent months I always find myself have surplus in that account. What else can I do?

      • Vincent

        It is important that we know the difference between spending and investing. In your case i hope you are actually asking about your reluctance to spend. Reluctant to spend helps in financial planning. Reluctant to invest would be a major handicap in your financial plan because the plan would be lack of the muscle needed to accelerate the wealth accumulation process. Today’s economic structure and financial system don’t reward savers and that’s why savers are losers. To force you to spend when you are not a spender is only going to make you feel miserable. To blow your Play Jar, just spend it on what makes you happy. Or, spend it on someone you care about. You can also reduce the allocation for Play Jar and increase the portion for the other five jars.

        • KCLau

          Vincent, you’ve made a great sharing here.
          Thanks for that!

      • KCLau

        I don’t think this is a bad syndrome though, sincerely 🙂
        If spending that play jar money is not fun for you, just don’t spend it.
        Some people love seeing the bank numbers building up.

    • Daniel Foo

      My brother is a fresh grad and has accumulated few thousands of ringgit. He works in KL. He occasionally need a car to travel to his work place during weekday. He needs a car mostly on weekend to go out doing his own things. Well, you know, not having a car is a real time waster in Malaysia. His plan is to buy second hand car like Viva. However at the same time, he also concerns about buying a decent property. Property price is getting more expensive each year. If he buys a car now, his property plan will have to postpone at least another 3-5 years which the property price could become even scarier. What can he do?

      • KCLau

        I would go for property in this situation.
        When I first started, I bought a RM7000 Datsun 120Y while my peers are driving Wira, Saga if not a Toyota. He can get a car for 3-4k nowadays.

    • Daniel Foo

      I would like to increase my net worth. I have done my best in cutting down expenses and maximizing my earning potential. What else can I do?

      • Peter Lim

        There are 4 areas of a person’s financial statement:
        1) Income
        2) Expenses
        3) Assets
        4) Liabilities.

        If you’ve done your best in (1) and (2), then focus on (3) and (4). I suggest reading the book titled “How to be smart with your money”, written by Duncan Bannatyne. He himself having a networth around USD 300 Million.

      • KCLau

        Hi Daniel, the book is divided into 4 parts. One of it is about Accumulating Wealth where we answers question related to career development, business venture, real estate investment and portfolio investment.

      • KCLau

        Daniel, congratulations! you are the first winner of the book.
        Please kindly contact me with your mailing address and phone number.

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