Suraya's Monthly Budget Update

Budget Update: August 2016

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August Budget Update Summary

#win on so. many. levels. August was AWESOME. Was super productive and hustled like nobody’s business. August was my most profitable month yet! (If everyone pays) I earned RM7k! Breakdown of that income:

  • RM200~ Affiliate income
  • RM1300~ Advertising/sponsorship income
  • RM5500~ Writing jobs

But on the flip side I also spent a lot in August. I spent RM5800. Granted that includes my Japan trip (RM2500), and there were quite a few major purchases for professional use, so I ain’t that mad. I got my website banner redesigned, too. Did you notice? 🙂 What do you think of it?


Yay of the Month:

  • I registered my sole prop! You’re now reading the works of Suraya Zainudin Communications, nyeheheh. I have no idea why I didn’t do this sooner. According to available information, if you make RM3k and above per month you’re supposed to pay taxes, and I’ve always been skema about these things. I don’t want to get into trouble with the law, plus I think going to prison for tax avoidance is like, the least sexy thing a person can do. Now my Google search includes terms like: ‘what can I claim for small business’, ‘cloud accounting software’ and ‘how to do bookkeeping for small business’.
  • I also updated my Hire Me page 🙂 It looks damn professional ok. I’m very proud of it. (Coincidentally, I think I found someone who straight out copied the page format and use it for their own freelance page. Ah, imitation is a form of flattery I guess.)
  • After last month’s success with my first sponsored post (here), I’m happy to report that I got two more sponsored gigs! One for a property near KL Sentral (this one. If I’m honest I saw this property about a year back while it was still developing and thought to myself, dang that is good location), another for a hardware bitcoin wallet (this one). I also sold a banner ad space 🙂 For all the ways I monetise this blog, you can check out this post.
  • Got additional writing jobs. I provided writing work and wrote press release and articles for various companies. I got a job offer because of this website as well – after sharing this post about incomes and expenses of freelance writers in Malaysia to a FB group, I was contacted by a company and now I have a part-time role there. This will bring me additional income starting from September 🙂
  • Went to Osaka and Kyoto, Japan. Was short but sweet. Ate like a pig. Here’s the breakdown of my trip expenses.
  • Bought new pants from Uniqlo and shit it fits. I’m kind of at the lowest weight I’ve been in a while. Well to be fair the pants stretches, but I feel good about this so let me, ok? It was RM149.90, a bit steep than my usual wardrobe budget (I shop at thrift shops; many of my clothes cost like, RM5 each), but I literally ran out of pants. Again.
  • Spayed my cat. RM150 at a nearby pet clinic.
  • Bought 2 personal finance books. One’s called ‘The Rules of Wealth’ and another’s called ‘Emotional Currency: A Woman’s Guide to Building a Healthy Relationship with Money’. Both are really good. I want to do a proper review on them so watch future posts from me for that. The second one especially, woah. It helped me to realise that as much as I think I am rational with money, I make emotional and irrational decisions too (not necessarily bad, according to the author).
  • For vanity: bought this under eye brightening cream thing (promoted by a YouTuber – see what I mean by emotional purchases? By the end of the video, I wanted that particular brand) and teeth whitening strips thing. Went for facial that I got from Groupon for less than RM30. I did learn how to groom my own eyebrows though so hopefully I don’t need my RM35 eyebrow sessions any more.
  • Got myself Personal Accident insurance. Additional RM31.80 a month from now on. Along with my medical card (RM120.13), that’s about RM150 a month I wave goodbye to, every month. I guess it’s ok. Insurance is something you get and hope you never have to use it.

Nay of the Month:

  • Paid an outstanding Maxis bill (finally). I’m no longer blacklisted. Lesson here: Never use your name to open an account for your friends and even (irresponsible) family members. If they don’t pay, you’re stuck with the bill. I’m serious about this. Don’t open a credit card for them, don’t make hire purchase for them, don’t be their guarantor. If they love you, they’ll understand. If they claim you don’t love them because you refuse, that relationship is toxic and one-sided anyway.
  • This is my current dilemma. Remain on prepaid (and still enjoy this hack to save money on prepaid) or switch to postpaid (more data = more value for money). I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT TO DO. I’ve never had postpaid. People who switched from prepaid to postpaid, do you like it or do you regret it? Help me make a decision 🙁
  • I smoked. A lot. I’m quitting again. I hate having yellow teeth.

Things to Look Forward to:

  • A lot of job potentials in September and onwards. RM10k per month goal is still on!
  • Do more good. I miss my previous job as an NGO worker terribly. I miss the NGO world. I just wish the NGO world pays more. Money, or more accurately the security that money gives is important to me.
  • Make grow! We just hit 100 likes on FB woo! (We’re hiring Malay-language writers! Please pass this to your friends! I’m friendly to newbie writers!)

Bring it on, September.

To read about my past monthly budget update, click here.

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  1. I switched from prepaid to postpaid.

    Pros: never have to worry about buying top up.
    You can set your bills to auto charge to your credit card and get rm5 rebate.
    I got a hack to get you the best price for your plan but it’s kind of abusing the system. Hint: read up on Maxis issue that blew up on social media this year.

    Cons: when I maxed my data and it’s not set to renew. I have to pay extra 🙁

    1. I’ve heard about Maxis and its tendency to charge extra for data. So if I decide to go with postpaid it won’t be Maxis kot.

      Good feedback, thanks so much! Didn’t know about the rebate system, I’ll look into that and factor that in my choice.

      (wow about the Maxis hack thing. A quick google search brought so many links. Don’t maxis know??)

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