Friday, January 20, 2017

The Month When Money Flies Out

Pleased to come home to a beautiful pile of handwritten cards sent via snail mail; there's a second stack of boring white envelopes full of bills and all notices. Ah yes, my birthday is coming. This is when my notices for insurance (policies) renewal come in. Ugh. To remind me of my mortality and how much higher is the percentage of needing to use these benefits which will lead towards an inevitable death eventually. Well, I don't like to pay for anything via GIRO or set recurring automated payments. I very much prefer to take a look at my accounts and manually sort out them bills.

January is also the month I review the donations to registered charities in order to gain all tax reliefs possible before IRAS hits me with the demand for income tax in April. Each year, I swop out these charities, although I gravitate towards funds and campaigns looking after the elderly and the ill. This isn't really 'giving from the heart'. I'm giving to these charities so that IRAS doesn't take my hard-earned moolah, and hoping the amounts contribute towards a well-managed pool required for daily operations by the respective registered organizations.

When I'm done hitting minimum requirements for maximum tax benefits, I look at portioning the budget for donations to Singapore charities or social organizations whose causes I believe in, but aren't IPCs (Institutions of a Public Character). That means these donations are highly personal, and I'm not likely to suggest that the friends donate to them too. Unless I'm very aware of how the closer friends feel about certain movements and similar causes. I don't discount charities based overseas, say shark conservation, Planned Parenthood and all that. Now this tier of giving, is slightly more altruistic. Chances are, they make me feel better about how I don't contribute to advancing social and environmental causes as much as I should be.

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