So last week EPF, the Malaysian pension fund launched Belanjawanku, an expenditure guide for Malaysian Individual and Families, for the first time. You can download the report here.
I thought it’s really useful for the Malaysians who are financial illiterate or financial literate but with excessive spending habits as opposed to saving habits. So I would highly recommend that you take a look at it and use it as a guide. It gives you an estimated minimum amount you need every month to survive, i.e. covering all the basic necessities such as food, car, house.
One thing that I don’t agree is on the housing assumption for married couples. They’ve assumed a flat rate of rental of RM870 per month for married couples with and without kids. I think that’s quite simplistic. Married couples naturally stay in only 1 bedroom house/apartment and then they will start scouting for a bigger house when they start having kids as they need more rooms.
Anyway, EPF is planning to update and publish the report on a yearly basis. I hope this will help Malaysians to start manage their finances better for their future, to start thinking of how they can increase their household income so that they can live a more fruitful life. The estimated amount only covers the basis needs, it doesn’t include other important things like your kids’ education, or savings for investments to fund your future needs or even rainy days. But it’s a good start.