Financial Planning for Foreigners in Singapore

Welcome to Singapore! Based on my experience serving my expats and foreigner clients over the last 15years, here are

5 areas of financial planning you should look into if you want to Preserve and Grow your Wealth while working in Singapore:

  1. Medical Insurance
  2. Income Protection
  3. Save Tax using SRS
  4. Wealth Accumulation
  5. Nominations & Will

Medical Insurance for foreigners

1. Medical Insurance for foreigners

Most employers would have provided some form of medical insurance. But if the coverage is lacking, you may top-up with your own personal medical insurance. There are 2 main types of medical insurance in Singapore:

Local health insurance / integrated shield plans: These are low cost, value-for-money medical insurance for inpatient hospitalization in Singapore, where the annual limit is $1,000,000 – $2,000,000 for admission to private or government hospitals in Singapore.

International health insurance: Although these plans are more expensive, they are great for more comprehensive coverage like outpatient specialist, or international coverage. Also, if your dependant is on social visit pass and does not have a FIN number, you may choose this option too.

Although local health insurance plans are the cheaper option, there are some limitations to such plans, including coverage for selected outpatient cancer drugs only. Click here to read more on coverage for Cancer treatments after September 2022

Tip! Before choosing your personal medical insurance, you should check your company’s medical coverage such as:
• For admission to private hospitals, or government hospitals only
• Claim limits per year or per treatment
• Is the medical plan portable if you leave the company?

Income Protection for foreigners

2. Income Protection for foreigners

Did you know there is an economic value on your health? For example if you earn $100,000/yr and intend to work for 20yrs, you would have earned $2,000,000! But if there’s pre-mature death or illness, you would have lost this earning capacity.

There’s where a life / term plan would pay a lumpsum benefit upon death or critical illness. This would help replace your income and provide funding for living expenses, as well as pay for treatments not covered under medical insurance.

How much do you need?
For Critical illness protection, a general guide would be to calculate 5 years of your living expenses:
Eg $5,000/mth x 12mth x 5yrs = $300,0000

Read more on Income Protection for Foreigners in Singapore

How foreigners can Save Tax using SRS

3. How foreigners can Save Tax using SRS

Singapore has a relatively simple income tax structure. But there are ways to reduce tax payable, especially if you earn > $100,000/yr.

One of the schemes is the Supplementary Retirement Scheme (SRS), where the amount you contribute will reduce your taxable income.
For example if you earn $150,000 and contribute $30,000, you would only be taxed based on $120,000!

Not only does the SRS contribution reduce your taxable income, you can even use these funds to save and invest to grow your wealth!

Click here to find out more on how you can Save tax & Invest the smart way using SRS

Wealth Accumulation for foreigners

4. Wealth Accumulation for foreigners

Singapore dollar is fairly strong, and even with USD appreciating this year due to Fed hiking interest rates, it remains resilient. That is why many foreigners hold Singapore-dollar assets in insurance and investment products to grow their wealth. Singapore dollar may become rare global winner as MAS tightens

Click here to read more on 4 ways to Grow your Wealth for foreigners in Singapore

Nominations & Will for foreigners

5. Nominations & Will for foreigners

If you have been working in Singapore for a few years, you would have accumulated assets such as:

• Local bank account(s)
• Insurance policies
• Investments

As your family members are likely to be residing overseas, it’s best to ensure your assets can be transferred to your loved ones in a quick and efficient way.

Nominations
The easiest (and free) way would be to do nominations for your insurance policies (where applicable). This will ensure your loved ones can access the payouts within 4-6 weeks upon your passing.

Will
Do consider setting up a Will in Singapore to take care of your Singapore assets like bank accounts and investments.
This would enable you to appoint your preferred Executor and choose your beneficiaries.

Without a Will, it will become a costly and complex legal matter to determine your domicile and laws of intestacy.

What’s next

I will be posting weekly content with more details on the above, do subscribe to my content if you wish to receive them!

Meanwhile if you have any questions on financial planning, do email me at winniechan@fapl.sg or drop me a message

Important: The information and opinions in this article are for general information purposes only. They should not be relied on as professional financial advice. Readers should seek independent financial advice that is customised to their specific financial objectives, situations & needs. This advertisement or publication has not been reviewed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore.

Published By:

Chan Wen Li Winnie

Winnie is a Certified Financial Planner with more than 10 years experience in financial advisory services, helping many of her clients to achieve their financial dreams, while protecting their families. 

With more than a decade of insurance claims experience, she has tangibly helped many clients receive their claims pay-outs successfully, relieving their financial burden.

As part of her community outreach program, she finds it very meaningful to conduct financial talks for companies where the staff can benefit from the talks. Some of the companies who have benefitted include National Kidney Foundation, Singapore National Eye Centre and Singtel. 

Despite her busy schedule, she enjoys working out at the gym and playing the piano (currently pursuing Grade 6 ABRSM).

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