facebookThe Average Singaporean Household Income: Where Do You Stand?


The Average Singaporean Household Income: Where Do You Stand?

profileMing Feng

We wrote about what is a good pay in Singapore, where a typical Singaporean worker’s median monthly salary stands at S$3,875.21 (excluding employer CPF).

While it is good to know where you stand when it comes to your individual salary, a better number to look at will be your household income.

The average monthly household income measures the combined incomes of all the people living under the same roof. It includes every form of income such as salaries, employer’s CPF wage contributions and investment returns.

TL;DR: The median Singaporean household income is $9,425

  • Household income is the sum of gross income of all the members of a household.
  • For households with at least one working person, the median household income for Singaporeans is at $9,293
  • The median household income from work per household member, however, is at $2,792.
  • The median household was $9,425 in the year 2017, hence, indicating a 3% increment in the year 2018.
  • The top 10% of Singaporeans brings home $13,581 per month per household member.
  • 12.1% of Singapore’s household is without monthly income from work. These are households with no working person.

We usually use the median for better representation, since average income is often skewed by top earners. 

Where do you stand alongside the rest of the Singaporeans?

The household income of an average Singaporean: Where do you stand?

As for the rest of the household population, here’s the percentage of their monthly household income:

  • The median household income is at $9,425.
  • This means that, if you add up the monthly income of all income earners in your household and it exceeds $9,425, you are better off than 50% of the households out there.
  • Singapore households now have 12.1% of household with no income ($0 per month) and 87.9% of households with income from work.

A more detailed distribution of Singaporeans in terms of monthly household income

Percentile Income GroupAverage Monthly Income
(Year 2018)
Percentage increased when compared with the year 2017
1st - 10th$5702.7%
11th - 20th$1,1242.6%
21st - 30th$1,5833.2%
31st - 40th$2,0333.4%
41st - 50th$2,5223.2%
51st - 60th$3,0822.5%
61st - 70th$3,8043.2%
71st - 80th$4,8334.0%
81st - 90th$6,5594.0%
91st - 100th$13,5812.3%
  • The 71st to 90th percentile income group saw the highest growth at 4% to their income.
  • The difference between the 81st – 90th vs 91st – 100th percentile is the widest at more than twice the increment.

Median household monthly income per person: $2,792

  • Household income can be inaccurate as different household comprises of different amount of members.
  • A household with only 2 members is better off than a household comprising of 5 members, given the same household income.
  • Household monthly income per person is calculated by taking the total gross household monthly income divided by the total number of family members living under one roof.
  • The median household income per household member is S$2,792 and the average at $3,969.

Hence, if your household income per member in the household is above $2,792, you are better off than 50% of the households in Singapore.

What does it mean for you?

” It is what you do with your income that matters.”

Falling below the median for household income does not necessarily mean that you are poor. In fact, we know of more Singaporeans who are poor despite earning a higher income. This is because, with an increasing salary, people often start spending more. We should ultimately aim to have an increase in expense lesser than the increase in income.

What can you do about it?

If you fall below the median household income, here are some ways to not let it get in your way:

  • Getting proper coverage and your safety net will always be your first step.
  • Household income includes every form of income, including investment gains. One can look to increase his household income through investments.
  • Simple things such as getting on the best savings account for that extra interest rate can help you in the long-run.
  • Married couples can look to come out with a possible budgeting formula to help them save better for their household. Here’s one of the method we wrote about which can help a couple save an extra S$120K.
  • Another good life hack as Singaporeans will be to make use of Skillsfuture to upgrade yourself in terms of knowledge and skills.

Further Reading: Demographics of Singapore’s household:

  • Out of all the household headed by a Singapore citizen or permanent resident, 12,1% is without a monthly income from working.
  • 8.6% are retiree households where it comprised only non-working adults over 60 years old. This has an increasing trend from 4.9% since the year 2008.
  • 3.6% are households with no working person. This is excluding households with non-working adults over 60 years old.

source of data: Singstat.gov.sg


About Ming Feng
A stint in Bloomberg gifted me with a beer belly, which only grew larger when I moved on to become a Professional Trader. Now I turn caffeine into digestible finance-related content.
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