The Seedly Money Framework: The Complete Guide to Winning Your Finances in 2022 & Beyond
“Eh? Idk where all my money disappeared to”.
If you’ve ever wondered where your money has magically vanished to or you’re one of those people who has had double digits left in your bank…
It’s high time that you take control of your finances!
All you need is The Seedly Money Framework and just a few hours to sort out your money.
If you already have your personal finances in check, you can still use the framework to conduct your regular financial health check-up. Even our government has to do it annually with the Budget!
Ready to get your life in order?
TL;DR: Sort out Your Personal Finances With The Seedly Money Framework in 2022
The Seedly Money Framework was specially created to help everyone start their personal finance journey on the right track.
It was distilled after many hours of poring through complicated money concepts and discussions with the Seedly community.
How to Use The Seedly Money Framework
It’s a really simple checklist with 15 key actionable items across 5 different categories.
The key actionable items are also structured into 3 different levels of difficulty.
Here’s how to use The Seedly Money Framework:
- Block out 5 hours (preferably on a Saturday or Sunday, so you can really dedicate yourself to it)
- Download and print out The Seedly Money Framework
- Read and understand what the key actionable items are
- Choose at least 5 key actionable items you wish to accomplish by the end of the year
- Paste The Seedly Money Framework somewhere where you can see it every day
- Follow the instructions listed for the key actionable items you chose
Yes, it’s really that simple!
With this simple framework, your personal finances could go from ZERO to HERO.
This category focuses on the key ingredient in your financial planning: your income sources and cash flow.
Income Level 1: Understand My Monthly Cashflow
- Why: Understanding the INs and OUTs of your monthly cash flow will help you to figure out how much you can spend and save.
- How: Refer to your latest 3 months’ worth of bank and credit card transactions to determine how much goes in and out of your bank account.
- What: Use a simple excel sheet or the Seedly app (on iOS and Android) to help you keep track.
Want to find out more about CPF?
Check out this MONEY FM 89.3 podcast where we talked about how to maximise your CPF savings:
Income Level 2: Automate My Monthly Cashflow (Pay Myself First)
- Why: By allocating your monthly salary into three separate accounts, you ensure that you can only spend from ONE account (Expenses).
- How: Set up a Standing Instruction (SI) to transfer money out automatically (from the account to which your salary is credited) to your ‘Savings’ and ‘Wealth’ account.
- What: Look for savings accounts are which are easy-to-use and have solid online interfaces so it’s easy to set up recurring payments.
Income Level 3: Work on Side Hustles and Upskill to Earn Extra Income
- Why: The digital world makes it easier for people to have side hustles and earn extra income either through investing or having part-time jobs and freelance projects. These days, it is also important to upskill and improve your value at work.
- How: Figure out what your current base pay is, upskill to provide more value, and find side hustles that can give you a high Return On Investment (ROI).
- What: Side hustles can be from anything like baking, using your expertise in a subject to give tuition, or utilising your skills to do freelance projects.
This category focuses on where and how you spend your money.
Spending Level 1: Monitor My Expenses (Weekly or Monthly)
- Why: It is important to understand where you are spending your money in order to control your expenditure. This can be segmented into Fixed and Variable expenses.
- How: Refer to your latest 3 months’ worth of bank and credit card transactions to sort your spending into categories (food, utilities, bills, etc.).
- What: Use a simple excel sheet, budgeting app or the Seedly app (on iOS and Android) to help you keep track.
Remember to check every nook and cranny of your transaction histories to ensure that you don’t have a ‘hidden’ subscription that you’re unnecessarily paying for!
Spending Level 2: Cut My Monthly Expenses by ___% (Weekly or Monthly)
- Why: The next step after knowing how much you spend, is to cut your expenses by managing your ‘Needs’ and reducing your ‘Wants’.
- How: Review your ‘Wants’ and prioritise what is important, cut what is unnecessary, and set short-term goals to achieve those that you REALLY want.
- What: Use a simple excel sheet or the Seedly app (on iOS and Android) to help you keep track closely.
Are you or your parents still on legacy phone plans that cost $40+ a month for a measly 2GB?
Or if you’re spending a lot on food…
Spending Level 3: Maximise My Rewards by Using a Cashback or Miles Card
- Why: You should only be in the ‘Credit Card game’ if you have control of your spending and are NOT overspending to begin with.
- How: Figure out if you are a cashback or miles person based on your goals and lifestyle.
- What: Use SeedlyReviews to compare and choose the best credit card, and pick one or two cards (max!) to use.
There are different credit cards best used for different purchases.
All of which can give you rewards, cash rebates, or even air miles.
For reference, you might want to check out our Cashback Credit Card comparison.
This category focuses on savings (both for an emergency as well as short and long-term goals) and how to manage or clear your debt if any.
FYI: we spoke about this at length on this MONEY FM 89.3 podcast:
Savings Level 1: Review My Overall Net Worth (Assets and Liabilities)
- Why: Take stock of what you have and figure out your net worth to get a better sense of your financial progress and goals.
- How: List out all your assets (savings accounts and investments) and liabilities (home loan, student loan, etc.).
- What: Use a simple excel sheet or the Seedly app (on iOS and Android) to help you consolidate everything.
You can use this simple template to list down and calculate what is your net worth.
Savings Level 2: Optimise My Savings Accounts (And Emergency Fund) for the Highest Interest
- Why: You should always have an emergency fund (3 – 6 months of your monthly expenses) because you’ll never know when you might be retrenched or get involved in an accident. Savings are also useful for short-term (for eg. to renovate your new home) and long-term goals (for eg. to pay for your children’s university education).
- How: Don’t leave your money in your bank account — which gives you a paltry 0.05% p.a. interest — because you’ll lose your money to inflation.
- What: Put your emergency funds into high-interest savings accounts or cash management accounts.
If you want some easy strategies to save up for your emergency fund, check out SeedlyTV S2E07 – Easy Strategies for Beginners to Save Up to learn the basics and even some special hacks!
Savings Level 3: Plan out My Debt Repayment Schedule and Re-Finance Loans
- Why: In Singapore, it is almost impossible to survive without taking on any debt (for eg. a home loan or education loan). And, if you don’t pay down your principal, the interest will slowly take a toll on your finances.
- How: Plan ahead and start saving up to avoid taking a loan, or take a smaller one. If you do take a loan, figure out how much you’ll need to pay monthly and whether you can afford it.
- What: If you’re on an existing loan and are out of your lock-in period, find out what the latest rates are and try to reprice or refinance to a loan with a lower interest rate.
Alternatively, you can approach your bank for assistance.
If you have any unsecured or personal debt, here are the best hacks to clear your debts fast and effectively.
This category focuses on protecting your finances and your dependants.
Insurance Level 1: Consolidate My Insurance Policies
- Why: Understand how insurance works and know what types of insurance policies you currently own.
- How: Review your policies or talk to a trusted insurance agent to find out more.
- What: By consolidating your insurance policies, you can determine if you have the key insurance policies needed for you and your dependants.
Insurance Level 2: Review My Policies With My Agent or DIY to Understand Gaps
- Why: Figure out if you need to buy more coverage or should you trim off the excess so that you’re not just paying insurance premiums for nothing.
- How: Review your policies yourself or talk to a trusted insurance agent to find out more.
P.S. This can get complicated, so you’ll probably want to allocate more time for this.
Insurance Level 3: Optimise My Policies Allocation (Cost vs Coverage)
- Why: For every dollar of coverage you get there are (sometimes) better alternatives you can consider.
- How: You want to spend the least amount of money, to get the most amount of coverage for you and your dependants (more bang for your buck).
- What: Fully consider all aspects before purchasing any form of insurance (for eg. the company’s reputation, level of service, ease of claims process and etc.).
The best way is to read real-user reviews about insurance products left on SeedlyReviews to find out for yourself!
Before moving onto this category, you’ll want to make sure that you have your Savings and Insurance sorted out!
Protecting your downside is WAY more crucial when it comes to proper financial planning.
We’ve talked about this on the MONEY FM 89.3 podcast:
Investment Level 1: Learn About the Different Asset Classes
- Why: Only invest in what you know. Period. Investing always comes with risks, so you’ll need to know how to manage them.
- How: Attend investment courses, read books about investing, read investment-related articles, and watch SeedlyTV episodes about investment.
- What: There are too many to name; Blue Chips, REITs, Stocks, STI ETFs, Singapore Savings Bonds, Unit Trusts.
In essence, there are various asset classes that you can pick from based on your risk level such as:
- Equities (Stocks)
- Property/ Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs)
Having a diversified portfolio helps to reduce your risks, which is great for beginner investors who just want to dip their toes into the investment world.
If you’re too lazy or simply do not have the time to do the research, you can also opt to invest with robo-advisors that will create portfolios for you.
Investment Level 2: Build My Portfolio and Make My First Investment
- Why: Think about what your portfolio should look like and expected returns when making your first investment.
- How: Depending on your risk level, create your portfolio.
- What: Your portfolio can consist of Blue Chips, REITs, Stocks, STI ETFs, Singapore Savings Bonds, Unit Trusts, and more
Investment Level 3: Optimise My Investments for Better and Higher Returns
Once you are in the market and have received your first quarter of dividends or results, you’ll want to figure out how to beat the market and push for higher returns.
- Why: This is the next level and I would grade this from Level 3 to 100. How far you go and how good you get at investing will depend on your years of practice and experience.
- How: You can use our REITs Tool or online stock screeners to help you invest better while continuing to invest and read widely.
An even faster way would be to ask questions and have active investment-related discussions with our friendly SeedlyCommunity!
Start Sorting out Your Personal Finances Today
It’s NEVER too late to start getting your finances in order.
In fact, the earlier you start, the easier it will be for you to retire comfortably in the future.
As the saying goes, the best time to start was yesterday.
And the next best time to start doing something about it… is TODAY.
Use The Seedly Money Framework as a starting point to help you learn important money habits and lessons on your personal finance journey.
If you’d like to receive comprehensive guides, useful tips, money hacks and find out about the latest Seedly events and updates…
Make sure to sign up for a FREE Seedly account too!
This way you’re part of a community of like-minded peers who can help you reach your personal finance goals even faster.
We promise to only send you the good stuff!