Thursday, October 2, 2008

The Biggest Killer in Malaysia Personal Finance Planning

I did start this blog with Malaysia in mind.  All previous postings are general in concepts and may apply everywhere.  Now let's look at specific challenge in Malaysia.

So let's talk about CAR ... one of my daily routine item ...

I bought a 2nd hand car in 1995 for $10,000 and eventually scrap it in 2005.  
So $10,000 divided by 10 years of usage is about $1000 a year.  
Divide it further by 365 days is roughly $3 a day.

That means I had been paying $3 a day for that car.

Then I bought a Wira in 1998 for $55,000 and today its worths about $15,000.
Following similar calculation, I have been paying $11 every day for this car.

So I used to pay $3 for my vehicle back in 1995,
Now I have to pay $11 for the same in 2008.

This alone is more than 10% compounded infation !!

I haven't mentioned I bought a Hyundai for $90,000 in 2003 and now its worth about $20,000.  That is more than $38 / day !!

Ok ... some of you could be smart enough to see the flaw in above calculation.  I am still using my Wira and Hyundai.  So as time goes, the average cost of ownership should go lower.  It is TRUE BUT don't forget the car resale value also becomes lower as time goes.  So give and take, its still not much difference.

I haven't included car loan in above calculation.  The actual total price I paid is more than $68,000 and $110,000 for Wira and Hyundai respectively.

For every car you buy in Malaysia, you pay more than Double the car's value. That means at the moment you buy an imported new car, you lost half of your money instantly !

This is due to various ways how goverment increases the car price in the name of protecting national own pride, make of our own cars.  I was in Total Support IN THE BEGINNING !  And that was more than 20 years ago ...

Right or Wrong put aside.  Buying car in Malaysia is the #1 killer in Personal Finance Planning.  No matter how little your income is, if you do NOT own a car, you probably can still have a great solid finance ground.  And no matter how rich you are, the cars you own are burning big holes in your pocket, an easily 10%-30% depreciation rate.

Lastly, if owning car is a MUST like me, think of it as paying for the experience.  So the next time you get in your own car, be happy ... because you are getting more out of what you already paid.  Else you lost both your money and the enjoyment.  Drive Safely ... and Happily !!

How to Buy Car in Malaysia ( personal finance point of view )
1.  Try your best to buy car with CASH only
2.  Get the loan with the Smallest Amount and Shortest Time possible
3.  If possible, go for limited edition super famous car.  That way, it may become a capital that may appreciate.