Showing posts from 2019

Australia: May Pera Sa Basura

YES!! You read that right 'may pera sa basura!!'. If only we should have known it right away, we  had kept all the soda cans we drunk when we arrived. 
The introduction of the state-wide container refund scheme, Containers for Change, gives people an incentive to collect and return containers for recycling in exchange for a 10 cent refund payment. It also provides benefits to social enterprises, communities and regional and remote areas by creating new job, recycling and fundraising opportunities. 
NSW - QLD - ACT - SA -

We had our second drop-off few weeks ago and that was $6.80.  😊

Australia: How much Is My Net Salary? - Medicare Levy and Net (Part 3)

Medicare gives Australian residents (permanent residents and citizens) access to healthcare. It is partly funded by the Medicare levy which is 2% of your taxable income. You pay a medicare levy in addition to the tax you pay on your taxable income. You'll know that when you receive your NOA (notice of assessment). Below is a sample NOA I got from the web and since we haven't file any yet, I can't verify the proper presentation. I think it will be similar with the NOA in Singapore where it will show the calculation and tax payable. In the Philippines, we do not have any NOA since we have the so called 'substituted filing' with some exceptions (Professionals whose income and/or have multiple sources of income and those who exceeds the threshold needs to file an annual ITR). 

You may get a reduction or exemption from paying the Medicare levy depending on your (hohusehold) income and it will be determined from the information you provide in your tax return.

You may al…

Australia: How much Is My Net Salary? -Superannuation (Part 2)

Superannuation, often called super, is money you set aside during your working life to provide an income to live on when you retire from work. Currently employers must by law contribute 9.5% (until June 2021, 10% from July 2021-June 2022, 10.5% from July 2022-June 2023, 11% from July 2023-June 2024, 11.5% from July 2024-June 2025, 12% from July 2025-June 2026 onwards.) of an employee's ordinary time earnings(OTEs are what you generally earn for ordinary hours of work like bonuses, allowances etc. OT is not included)into a super fund. Super contributions are remitted at least every three months (quarterly). Employers have 28 days after the end of each quarter to make the payment. Also, there is a maximum limit on any individual earnings base for each quarter. The maximum limit (FY 2018/19 is $54,080 per quarter) is indexed each year and is announced by ATO. Example: If Joe salary is $250,000/year. His employer has to contribute $54,080 x 9.5% per quarter only. (For me, I feel like…

Australia: How much Is My Net Salary? - (Tax) TFN Declaration Form (Part 1)

To know how much is your net salary, we'll discuss first some basics.

Once you are employed by the company, the common list of forms that would be typically handed out at the commencement of employment are TFN Declaration form, Superannuation choice form, Fair Work Information Statement, Contract, New Employee Form (internal document to capture banking details and emergency contact).

Question 1 - TFN: It is not an offence not to quote your TFN. However, if you fail to quote your TFN after 28 days, the employer must withhold an amount at the highest marginal rate plus medicare levy from any payment made which is 47% as of writing. (TFN is also quoted to the superannuation fund when making a contribution)
Question 6 - Basis of Payment: If you are in doubt as to which category to fall under, check with the payer. A full-time employee has ongoing employment and works, on average, around 38 hours each week. The actual hours of work for an employee in a particular job or industry are ag…

Brisbane: Things To Do

Once you are here down under, don't stress yourself too much. Slow down and enjoy the moment. Yes, enjoy the moment as it comes. 

Driving in Queensland - Part 2 (Written)


We decided to get an L licence on the first week of January 2019. I think it was a good way to start the year. We chose to do the written online exam so we registered on the website and went to the nearest centre beside St. Stephen Cathedral to pay the fee and confirm our identities. You can pay online first then do the exam. The online exam will take you 4-6 hours to finish depending on your pace and is valid for 12 months. Because we were so excited, we finished it in one seating (haha) for about more than 6 hours though.
You need to acquire the 3 keys before doing the final challenge. Read the module (can't skip), pass the exam (16/20 correct) then the key.
Your Driving Attitude - discusses about the fatal 5, being a better driver, risk profile and driver values.Signs and Rules - discusses about road signs, giving way, parking and hazardous situations. Review well the 'giving way' especially on roundabouts and intersections.Sharing the Road with Others -

Driving in Queensland - Part 1

Reference: Keys to Driving in Queensland
If you are visiting Queensland and driving on a foreign licence, you can drive vehicles allowed under the class C licence. You must carry your licence at all times and if licence is not in English, you should carry a recognised English translation of it at all times.
Three Months Residency Rules However, you can no longer drive on your foreign licence if: Australian citizen and have been residing in Queensland for 3 months.A permanent visa or a special category visa under the Migration Act 1958 and have been residing in Queensland for 3 months.Obtaining a QLD drivers licence Go to the nearest TMR officeand show your foreign licence and supporting evidence of identity documents (bring all like passports, birth certificate, grant letter, medicare card, atm card etc.).An application form and a customer reference number will be provided. Pay the road rules test fee and pass. Pay the practical test fee and pass.Have your photo and signature taken digit…

Why Queensland?

Queensland (QLD) is an Australian state the continent's northeast, with a coastline stretching nearly 7,000 km. Its offshore Great Barrier Reef, the world's largest coral reef system, hosts thousands of marine species. The city of Cairns is a gateway to the reef and tropical Daintree Rainforest. The capital, Brisbane, is flanked by the surfing beaches of the Gold and Sunshine Coasts.

Queensland has a lot to offer aside from being one of the affordable states to live in Australia and it's great weather.

Test Your Aussie Slanguage

How well do you know the Australian language?


Aussie Culture and Slanguage

When we decided to migrate here in Australia, we never thought about learning it's history and culture. Maybe that's the reason why we had a little bit of culture shock upon arrving and we would like to share a little bit of what we know.

HistoryDid you know that the first Australians were the Aboriginals (collective term for all the indigenous peoples from the Australian mainland and Tasmania) and Torres Strait Islanders  (indigenous inhabitants of the Torres Strait Islands, partly Queensland)? That's why some applications ask whether you're from the above indigenous people.January 26, 1788 - Europian explorers sailed to the coast of Australia and claimed it for Britain. A new outpost was put to use as a penal colony and the first fleet of 11 ships, carrying 1500 people, half of them convicts arrived in Sydney Harbour. When penal transportation ended in 1868, more than 160,000 men and women had come to Australia as convicts. (Source:…

Being a Stay at Home Mum (SAHM)

As mentioned in my previous blog, one of the reasons we moved down under was due to the long distance relationship we had with our son. So when we moved here, that was my first job, a SAHM but now that my son is in full time daycare for 5 days, I am now a job hunter (hehe).
Being a stay at home mum is tough especially if you are used to working and have a lot of bills to pay and is more distressing when you are in a different country with no relatives and friends to talk to. Sometimes you'll feel depressed but you can't for the sake of your family.

When we moved here, we were planning to put our son in childcare after maybe a month or two but we decided not to until he is fully adjusted. He was 3.6 years old then. We started his daycare January 2019 and he was so ready and excited by that time. He learned how to read (a few), write (more practice) and numbers (a little bit of addition) in that short span of time being with him. Compulsory education here in Australia starts wh…

Decluttering Your Life

“I used to be the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of a chemical company. But I am embarrassed to tell you the things I used to do in corporate. When we wish to fire people who work in corporate jobs, instead of offering a severance package, we make life very difficult for them.
We humiliate them in meetings, we tell them they are not performing, we restructure the organization and reduce their seniority, and put junior people as their bosses. Eventually even the strong cannot ‘tahan’ and they will leave themselves. This is what they taught me in corporate, and this is what I did. But you don't realise it all eventually comes back to you. Sadly, the company is never short of its people to volunteer to do the dirty job of undermining their own colleagues, not realising that one day they may be the victim themselves. If you are mid-manager level, it's fine because you are purely operational. Once you get to senior manager position, that’s when the politicking starts. People get jeal…

Commuting in Brisbane

They said when you live in a first world country, usually you need to learn how to drive. I really never understood this until I arrived here in Brisbane.
Usually the waiting time for buses on weekdays is shorter, maybe around 30 minutes or more while in the weekends, it is around an hour. We took pictures so that we'll know what time to wait. That's why when we go to an unfamiliar place, we always check first the timings of the bus. Sometimes the last trip would be until 3pm only depending on the location.
← When you are not in the city area, you need to look for that to tap your card. It is near the entrance or exit.

For easy navigation, download the Moovit app. Very useful if you are not familiar with the area you are going. It will indicate what bus/train to take, estimated arrival time and estimated total travel time. You can also use google maps but I do not like the setting. You can also use 'journey planner' in the transitlink website.
Below is my travel histo…

My First Investing/Trading Books

When I was learning about investing in the stock market, I needed books for more information. There are a lot of free pdf on the web but the books that I like, I want to have a hard copy of it so that my children maybe can read it someday. Maybe that will be the legacy that I'll be leaving them. I want them to know money management as it is very important. If only I have known that when we were kids, maybe I have chosen a different path.

So, I went to check the bookstore and EXPENSIVE!! I searched for online bookstores that offers affordable books like amazon and I found at about BOOK DEPOSITORY.

These are my first books.
Jesse Livermore's Methods of Trading in Stocks - Richard Wyckoff
This was my first ever book about trading. It has only 32 pages and can be read in one sitting but full of information. It tells about how Livermore's preparation before and after trading, money management, news, stocks to trade and pyramiding.

How To Trade in Stocks - Jesse Livermore
I bough…

Queensland: ITA Requirements

When you're invited to apply, you'll receive an email on what to do next.

BSMQ Settlement funds declarion form - click to know how much fund is required. They only need supporting documents for your liquid assets (Those that can be converted to cash immediately like cash in bank, stocks.) while no need for illiquid assets (property, car) but you can include them if you are going to sell it. We made an excel sheet to list what we have in pesos and sgd then converted it using XE currency converter(I think we used Oanda currency converter. The conversion rate should be on the day or at least a few days before submission of the requirements so that it will not have that much rate difference. All assets should be under the applicants names (joint or not) like deed of sale, title certificates etc.) Bank Statement - we submitted statements generated from our online banking or screenshots. It needs to show your name on it.Skills assessment - Vetassess outcome letterStatement of servic…

Centrelink: Benefits and How To Claim

The Australian financial or fiscal year starts from July 1 - June 30. Because we arrived July 2018, we are on FY 2018/2019. If you arrive May 2019, you will still be under FY 2018/2019. Why is this important? Because at the end of the financial year, centrelink will be balancing your family assistance payments. They will compare your income estimate with your actual income to ensure that they have paid the correct amount.

To be able to transact easier with the government, you need to create your mygovaccount. After creating, secure your medicare number, CRN and TFN. Once you have them, link all your accounts to mygov and you can transact from there.

Click on centrelink once you log-in in your mygov account.You will be redirected to the centrelink website.Click on "Make A Claim" then fill in the forms. You also need to upload some documents like proof of identity, child birth certificate, tenancy agreement, TFN etc. Family Tax Benefit(FTB)** -  this was our first claim. This …

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