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2022 CPF Top Up and Voluntary Contribution done.

Sunday, January 2, 2022

How time flies and it has been more than 5 years since I became a retiree, just a few months before I turned 45. 


In my case, financially, the biggest negative aspect of being a retiree is probably the lack of mandatory CPF contributions. 

I mean my passive income is large enough to replace my past earned income and then some. 

So, I suppose my cash flow is healthy enough. 

However, as I believe in growing my CPF savings so that it continues to act as a meaningful bond component of my investment portfolio, I would do Voluntary Contribution every year to the maximum allowed. 

Yes, I have been growing my CPF savings without any help from mandatory CPF contributions which those who are employed receive. 

Makes me wonder if I should return to the workforce? 

Exchange my time for money again? 

Lazy me working again? 

PTSD!


Of course, even in my retirement, I was not able to do any Top Up to my CPF account as my CPF SA has exceeded the prevailing FRS. 

Year after year, the interest earned by money in my SA would exceed any increase in the prevailing FRS. 

Yes, without me having to do anything, my SA stays above the prevailing FRS. 

See: 
CPF SA is not a myth. 

This year, however, I am allowed to do a Top Up but to my MA, not my SA. 

If you missed my blog in November last year on the topic, please read: 

CPF Amendement Bill 2021 and AK talks to himself.


What did I do this year?

In my case, I am interested in pumping as much cash as possible into my CPF account. 

So, for maximum cash injection into my CPF account, I first did a $3,000 Top Up to my MA to hit the new BHS of $66,000. 

Then, I did a Voluntary Contribution or VC3 (i.e. VC to 3 accounts) that is equivalent to the CPF Annual Contribution Limit of $37,740. 

The order is important because if I had done the Voluntary Contribution first, then, the money would have flowed into my OA, SA and MA, leaving less room to Top Up my MA. 

As I did the Top Up to my MA first, I could inject more funds in total to my CPF account and money from the Voluntary Contribution or VC3 flowed only into my OA and SA, effectively becoming VC2.

AK so witty.

Compared to the last few years, total voluntary cash injection into my CPF account this year is higher at:

S$ 40,740.

Those of you who complain that AK has not been giving 4D might see a potential 4074 here.

Kidding!


I have said it countless times but CPF members are a fortunate bunch. 

Albert Einstein said compound interest was the 8th wonder of the world. 

He who understands it, earns it. 

It is the same with the CPF. 

Happy New Year! 

Recently published: 

Related post:
CPF interest income in 2020.


26 comments:

Jimmy L said...

happy new year!
maybe do some simple job just to past time and contribute to the society ;)

AK71 said...

Hi Jimmy,

Happy New Year!

Your comment reminds me of what someone told me a few years ago.

See:
Finanacially free AK should be ashamed!

LOL! ;p

CupcakedCrusader said...

Hi Ak, thanks for showing us the way to accumulate wealth in CPF. Been doing OA to SA xfer and SA Topup ever since graduation and will be on track to attain FRS at age 35!

P Lim said...

i think u cant do a top up to your MA.. as i tried to do on 1 Jan 2022 to top up to 66k. Some of the money will auto flow to OA.. then when i try to top up 37740 to all 3 accs, they said the limit is hit! so can only top up 37740 minus the MA earliest top up

AK71 said...

Hi CupcakedCrusader,

Congratulations! :D

Very happy to see your progress!

Gambatte! :D

Reminds me of this blog:
FRS by 35 and $1 million in CPF account.

AK71 said...

Hi P Lim,

I did not experience the issue you mentioned.

I did a $3,000 top up to my MA yesterday to hit the new BHS of $66,000.

This was followed by $37,740 voluntary contribution and this money went to my OA and SA.

So, I confirm that it can be done.

Just sharing my experience in this blog.

Since your experience is different, you might want to give CPFB a call to find out what went wrong in your case.

Henry said...

I faced a similar problem. I TOP UP to $63K BHS. Then my MA interest was moved to OA. So no compounding go forward.

AK71 said...

Hi Henry,

The BHS in 2022 has been increased to $66K.

For those of us with max amount in the MA last year, we will start 2022 with $63K in our MA.

In such a case, interest earned in the MA last year will move to our OA if our SA has hit or exceeded the FRS.

So, now, we can do a $3K top up to our MA to hit $66K which was what I did yesterday.

AK71 said...

Hi Henry,

I dug up a blog from 2018 where I discussed the matter with another reader:

Voluntary contribution to CPF MA in 2019.

Hope this helps. :)

Henry said...

Hi AK

Thank you. I didn't know about this. Should have consulted you earlier. Now $6.3K gone just to reach 2021 BHS. No more money to top up to this year's BHS lah. :(
Should I withdraw last year's SA + OA Interest to top up to 2022 BHS then? Hope you can share your view on this. And also about the sequence of Withdrawal.
Thank you AK Sifu.

Siew Mun said...

Happy New Year AK. I top up $3000 to my MA, another $3000 to my wife's MA. Then I top up $9000 to my RA to reach 2022 ERS. My wife and I still gainfully employed will let monthly Employer/Employee mandatory contribution happen

AK71 said...

Hi Henry,

If you are 55 or older, you can withdraw all the money in your OA and SA once you have set aside the FRS in your RA and the BHS in your MA.

If you are withdrawing only some of the money, you have to withdraw from your SA first.

See:
Withdrawing CPF savings: How much and when?

As money in the SA and MA both earn 4% interest per annum, unless we want some tax benefit, moving the money isn't going to help generate more interest income.

You can always do Top Ups to your MA if you have some spare cash later on in the year. :)

AK71 said...

Hi Siew Mun,

Happy New Year!

Being gainfully employed is a good thing for you and for Singapore! :D

If everyone is lazy like AK, Singapore is in trouble. -.-"

I am always happy to read comments like yours.

Makes me feel that talking to myself in ASSI isn't just good for my mental health. ;p

Thanks for the update! :D

retiree5559 said...

Hi AK,

Thank you for your very informative blogs (including queries & replies), especially on CPF related matters. Often, I can't find the info I am looking for in the official CPF web-site.

We intend to "return" ~$2 mil to CPF that my wife and I withdrew for properties purchased (first withdrew in 1986, we are in the 60s, amazing how the sum compounded over time!), using proceeds from the sale of one of our investment properties and a $1.2m equity loan just taken up (fixed 1.12% over 3 year).

The monies are currently parked in bank account that earn interest on a daily basis. Recall from reading somewhere that CPF interest is compounded monthly based on balance for the previous month. Will appreciate your take on this. If true, then it will be better off for us to return the sum closer to the end of the month. Thank you again

AK71 said...

Hi retiree5559,

I am glad that talking to myself here in ASSI has been useful in more ways than one. :)

As for the way CPF calculates interest, yes, it seems like making contributions closer to the end of the month makes sense.

However, in terms of incremental interest income, it probably doesn't make a big difference unless a big sum of money is involved.

Now, because you are in your 60s, you do not need to do a refund to your CPF when you sell a property unless you do not have the FRS in your RA.

You can do Top Ups to your RA and MA if you have yet to hit the caps.

Of course, as a retiree, you should be able to do Voluntary Contribution (VC3) to your CPF and that has an annual limit of $37,740.

Of course, you should give CPFB a call to be sure. :)

Newer readers might be interested in these blogs:
1. Almost 55 and worried about CPF.
2. How to stop accrued interest from growing?

retiree5559 said...

Hi AK,
Thank you for the prompt response. We topped up our ERS to the prevailing cap every year (will do so soon for 2022, no more top up for MA, already maxed out at $60,000).

Aim of our equity loan is to exploit the current low borrowing cost to extract value from our fully (almost) paid out residential property. Have been doing this for some years, but thus far investing the loan proceed in investment grade bonds instead. With the current low bond yield, CPF 2.5% is attractive (1.38% spread, 2.5% minus 1.12%), "free" and safe ~$20,000/year passive income.

Adeline said...

Hi AK, if I move my money from OA to SA to hit the FRS, then I wouldn't be able to top up $8000 (cap for 2022) for income tax relief? Is my understanding correct?

AK71 said...

Hi retiree5559,

Since you already have the ERS in your RA and have maxed out the MA for your cohort, the only thing left to do is Voluntary Contribution (VC3) to the CPF Annual Limit of $37,740.

You should check with CPFB regarding voluntary refund to your CPF since that is on your mind now although I think that option might not be available in your case.

AK71 said...

Hi Adeline,

I have just the blog for you to read:

Sensible to do OA to SA transfer?

Hope it helps. ;)

retiree5559 said...

AK,
Thank you. You are very helpful. Will make an appointment with CPF/

AK71 said...

Hi retiree5559,

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, my mom couldn't just walk into any CPF branch in the last 2 years.

I had to make appointments for her visits but it was fast and easy with the CPF app.

See what CPFB has to say. :)

Adeline said...

Thanks, AK. :)

AK71 said...

Hi Adeline,

Just talking to myself, of course. ;)

Gambatte! :D

AK said...

Hi AK,

Seeking some advice from you as I am new to voluntary top up and it was only after you inspired me to do so.

If I top up $37740 on 1st jan every year to maximise the interest earned, and since I’m still working with CPF contribution, how/when will I get the refund back from CPF?

Also, is it even wise to move money from OA to SA given that I’m still in my late 30s and may possibly move HDB once more in my life?

Thanks!

AK71 said...

Hi fellow AK,

I have just the blogs for you to read:

1. When not to do VC to CPF?
2. Should I do CPF OA to SA transfer before buying a HDB flat?

The related posts at the end of those blogs could be interesting too.

I don't give advice.

Just talking to myself here in ASSI. ;)

Unknown said...

$63K BHS is Yr2021 it will be $66k BHS for wef Yr22 so interest earned in Yr21 from in MA will be moved from MA to OA


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