I’m not anti-social, but sometimes I’m quite reluctant to go out with my friends.
While I love catching up with them, I don’t like how much money I’ll end up spending on food and drinks.
If you’re still staying with your parents, you might really be able to save a lot of money if you don’t head out at all.
This is going to feel so suffocating but even if you don’t head out for a whole month, there’s still a lot of expenses going out for a typical household!
TL;DR – Not Going Out? You’ll Still Spend $3.9k Per Month
Of course, we all have different needs and lifestyles, so every household is going to be different.
We took on the following scenario to find out how much your household will spend, even if you don’t head out for a month:
- A married couple with a child in primary school
- Staying in a 3-room flat
|Amount Per Month
|Housing Loan Instalment
|Service & Conservancy Charges
|TV / Entertainment Subscription
|Home & Personal Care
|Child's School Fees
|Child's School Bus Fees
|Contribution to Parents
What Will My Household Spend On Even If We Don’t Go Out?
Housing Loan Instalments
Ain’t no one’s gonna pay off their house at one go, so we’re all stuck with housing loan instalments, regardless of whether you took a CPF loan or a bank loan.
Let’s assume you got a 3-room BTO in a mature estate, you’ll be looking at a $300,000 housing loan, with monthly instalments of $1,361.
One of the most important aspects of our lives, but it’s so easy to take water for granted since all we need to do is to turn on our taps.
Some households may have excellent water-saving habits, which will also help to lower this portion of their bill.
But on average, a 3-room HDB household pays $39 per month for their water supply.
Probably none of us here had to start a fire just so that we can cook or keep ourselves warm.
An average 3-room HDB household will find that their electricity bill comes to an average of $117 per month, even though it differs largely based on your usage.
Now that Singapore has an open electricity market, you can save more on electricity on top of your conservation habits!
Well, not going out means cooking at home to feed the family, so you’ll definitely need gas right?
Unless you’re team #inductioncooker all the way?
Your monthly gas bill will differ depending on whether you’re using piped town gas or whether you purchase bottled gas cylinders.
But let’s assume that you are using piped town gas, the gas portion of your utility bill will reflect an average of $12 per month for a 3-room HDB household.
Service & Conservancy Charges
You know you’re not paying service and conservancy charges for nothing right?
It’s what keeps your estate clean and in good condition!
The rates differ depending on which town council you are serviced by, but for a 3-room flat in a mature estate, you’ll be charged about $48 per month for service and conservancy.
I wonder what happens when we take the smartphones away from Singaporeans for just one day, we’re probably going to stare at each other blankly and get bored really quickly.
We’ve only got that many service providers to choose from and the prices are pretty competitive.
With increasing popularity for SIM Only plans, it’s only cost you about $25 per month each for a lot of mobile data!
I don’t know about you, but if I don’t head out, I’m most likely going to have a movie marathon at home.
Maybe not every night though.
But generally, a fibre broadband plan from one of the service providers is going to cost you slightly less than $40 per month.
Well, maybe I’m not well-informed but I’d rather stay home and watch shows since we have rather limited night time activities.
Traditional TV seems to be just background noise nowadays and if you subscribe to any alternative TV plan, that’s going to cost you about $10 per month, just to entertain yourself and your family.
Depending on your lifestyle and your needs, you will need different insurance coverage to ensure that you and your family are taken care of.
If you factor in the key insurance policies for your family, your household will be allocating about $400 per month to ensure ample coverage.
One of the most common money-saving tips I’ve heard is to cook at home instead of eating out.
Plus, you get to plan your own meals and make your diet healthier!
Your average grocery cost definitely differs depending on where you shop from and your choice of ingredients.
Assuming that you do meal prep for the whole family, $500 per month should cover a wide range of groceries for a variety of delicious home-cooked meals.
Personal & Home Care
I don’t know about you, but if I ever have a big house, I’d want a bathtub.
Let’s put bath bombs out of the picture, you’ll still need basic personal care items, along with household cleaners to keep yourself and your house in a clean condition.
While some of these cleaning products can last more than a month, there’s still quite a lot of miscellaneous items involved, which can average about $100 per month.
Well, the initial idea of this article was really if we were not to head out for a whole month, not even for work.
But that’s a pretty unlikely situation unless both of you have achieved financial independence.
Even then, I’d assume that staying at home for a whole month is going to be pretty boring.
Granted that you are just travelling between home and work, $100 per month seems reasonable for each of you.
Child’s Primary School Fees
This happened so long ago, I can’t even remember much anymore, but primary school education is free for children who are Singapore Citizens.
You only need to pay for miscellaneous fees, which amounts to about $13 per month.
Take this time to save up for their tertiary education, guys!
I’ll always remember how I used to buy cheaper options to save some money so that I have extra money to buy nicer stuff at the end of the week.
By meal prepping, you can also give lesser allowance for your child.
Since they don’t have to buy anything at the canteen, a daily allowance of $2 should suffice, which brings you to $40 per month.
Child’s School Bus Fees
Since your child is still too young to take public transport on their own, you may be engaging school bus services.
Some parents are able to get their family members to help fetch their kids from school, which can help to lower the cost.
Otherwise, you’ll be paying about $150 per month for two-way school bus services, depending on the distance and capacity.
Contribution to Parents
As working adults, we usually contribute to our parents to help with their daily expenses as well.
While this largely depends on your income and their needs, as a married couple, let’s assume that both of you contribute $400 per month each to your own parents.
While it is unlikely that we will not go out for a whole month, understanding your baseline expenses is a good way to budget for the family.
Are there some expenses that you should relook, or are there alternatives that can help you save some money?
Do you have some amazing money-saving household hack that every family should know about?