Recently, I had the opportunity to facilitate a financial management workshop for WOMEN:Girls NGO. One of the questions I asked the group who said they’d prefer to be employed (rather than be self-employed) is what they think they can do to earn a high salary in Malaysia.
And I don’t know if it’s just that particular group, or if this is the common view among the overall population, but they seemed to think that the way to earn a high salary is to basically:
Be good at the job
Be loyal to the company
Get rewarded with promotions in due time
At this point I was like, hmm how do I tell them nicely. Even the sponsors who were sitting at the back of the room (folks employed at a big cosmetics company) were laughing good-naturedly, mouthing ‘no’.
It’s still a little bit surreal. Like many of you, I grew up thinking that 9-6 working days is the default. It’s even more surreal when I remember that this work from home thing was an accident. The plan was actually to do a bit of freelance writing to make some extra income while I find myself a new, stable job.
Then somehow work turned to more work and I just never stopped and here I am? Sometimes I still catch myself thinking ‘ah how nice would it be to work from home wait Suraya you do work from home you dolt’.
No matter how much we may want to deny it, there *are* bad people in this world. People who don’t think twice about taking your money from you through illegal and unethical means. They do it easily, without guilt or remorse.
This article is a compilation of anecdotes by real people, who were scammed or almost got scammed. Thank you to all who contributed.
This article is dedicated to everyone who ever uttered the phrase: ‘I can’t afford housing in Malaysia, it’s so expensive!‘
Which, if I’m honest, is the majority of you, at one point or another. It’s one of your favourite complaints. The default, almost.
(You are right though. It is expensive, especially in Kuala Lumpur and Penang. According to Khazanah Research Institute, property prices in Malaysia is ‘severely unaffordable’ at 4.4 times the median annual household income in 2014. A more acceptable range is 3x.)
(Having said that, Malaysia’s housing market is nowhere near as bad as the Top 10 most unaffordable locations globally. Hong Kong is 20.9 times (!!!) the median annual household income as of 2018)
But still, ok, just because we’re not the worst doesn’t mean the situation is good for us. What can you do if you can’t afford the housing in Malaysia? What are your options when it comes to living situation?
Here are some alternatives.
#1 – Pick one: A Just-OK place in the city OR A Great place far from the city
It all started when I posted this on Ringgit Oh Ringgit’s Facebook and Twitter page:
It got some pretty freaking amazing answers. Rather than losing them forever in social media, I thought I’d compile them and turn it into unpopular opinions: money edition-article. Thank you so much for everyone who gave me permission to post their answers here.
Here are some unpopular opinions about money, in no particular order:
#1 – ASB and EPF will no longer deliver high returns