KWSP Belanjawanku: Is our Salary Enough? A Simple Guide to Your Financial Planning

Last March, in collaboration with University of Malaya (UM); KWSP or EPF published a guideline showing the minimum monthly expenses on each category of goods and services for different households in Malaysia. While the guideline could be used to plan our monthly expenses, please note that the guideline is based on the expenses of Lembah Klang's resident.

Belanjawanku is a guideline focusing on the minimum expense on needs which are deemed important to achieve what is considered a quite good standards of living. Besides focusing on the survivability and self-sustainability of a group of households, it also focuses on the social welfare of the group.

Note that the guideline doesn't limit itself only to basic needs, and includes other categories of needs like social participation and discretionary expenses which are believed needed to promote better social welfare.

The six groups of households considered by the research and guideline are single (using public transport or own a car), married couple (without, with 1, or 2 childrens), and elderly couple.

According to Belanjawanku, the minimum expenditure needed for a single commuting with public transport is around RM1870, while those with car is around RM2490. For those who are married without children, the minimum is RM4420, and for each children they have they should add another RM1100. For elderly couple it is about RM3090.

Most of the expenses are on food, housing, transportation and child care. Depending on the size of your family, your expenses on food could be more than what you spend on housing and transportation. Please refer the photo above for details on expenses for each group of households.

Please be reminded that although Belanjawanku is meant to be a financial guideline, its data and information is based on resident living in Lembah Klang. The expenses needed might be different depending on where you live. If you live in rural area, the cost of living is lower and you don't need as much expenses.

The guideline is also based on several assumption. (1) Housing expenses for single is based on room renting rate, (2) the distance traveled to work is 30KM, (3) married couple own at most only one car and one motorcycle, and (4) consumers are wise in their spending.

Apart from that, the finding shows that many Malaysians are still being paid lower than what is suggested. Based on a report from 2016, the median household income of B40 in Malaysia was RM3000, lower than the recommended expenses for a married couple.

In fact, we could also notice the minimum wage of RM1100 is way lower compared to what is recommended in the guideline for single who doesn't own a car. Even after considering only the needs, ignoring the saving they still need RM1180.

For more information on Belanjawanku, click here.

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