mmm, suddenly got a feeling of writing about epf (employee provident fund) aka kwsp. to the majority of us non-government workers, this is our main (in some cases, only) fund dedicated to save money for our post-retirement life. it is a statutory saving plan, where both employee and employer paid a certain amount into the fund every month. in my case, 11% is deducted from my salary, whilst the company top up a further 15% into the coffin.

kwsp is the body responsible in managing the fund, and invests it into channels that would give areasonable return to its contributors. averaging 5% dividend annually, some would say it a bit on the low end. so i've been learning to fully utilise it to ensure a more handsome return. i've got an online epf account, which is really helpful since i can monitor the savings as well as know what my withdrawal limits are, macam kat bawah nie.

1. put into unit trust.
epf divided the money into account 1 and account 2 on 70/30 ratio. account 1 is meant for use after retirement (hence the larger portion), and account 2 is for other usage along the way (medical, buying a house, education, etc). however a few years back epf has allowed us to withdraw money from account 1 and invest it on several approved unit trusts, including funds from dear pnb and public mutual. i put some in public mutual's PIEF a year back and more recently in PIDF. Memang untung beb! Tengok return since i bought each fund macam kat bawah ni. My target is to sell back the units once I get 30-40% return within 3-4 years.

pief: 18.24% appreciation within 17 months (aug 2008 - jan 2010)

pidf 6.13% appreciation within 4 months (sept 2009 to jan 2010)

2. buy a house (or two).
i have a special interest in property. Niat dihati nak ada 2-3 apartments. the rental income(s) from property purchased by epf money can, if done properly, give a better return as compared to leaving the money in there. plus epf gives the cash to our personal account, hence we have options to invest it somewhere else (with higher return, of course).

epf withdrawal options:

a. to purchase a house.
we can withdraw all money in our account 2 for this purpose. all we need to do is to fill in form 9(c) and the money will be paid into our personal account within 1-2 weeks. i've never used this option before, but might use it to purchase second apartment later. my understanding is that we can apply up to 10% of the purchase value, plus refund on the deposit that we have paid to reserve the property. this cash can then be used either to reduce the loan taken or channel it to other things (nak downpayment beli keta pun boleh, hahaha).

b. to reduce/settle loan amount.
similar to above, all balance in account 2 can be used (using the same form 9c). the key is that the money must be taken out within 3 years of the date of purchase. we missed this window with our suriamas apartment. another important point is that for this option, the money will be paid to the bank's (lender) account, not to our personal account, therefore we cannot use the cash for other purposes (invest in asb ke, gold ke, apa2 ke). on the bright side, we can reduce the loan amount. for those who are brave and creatif tu, after they reduce the loan, they will apply for refinance (lower rate or longer term), dapat balik cash after the refinance process. invest laa kat tempat lain pulak. hebat2.

c. cash to settle monthly installment.
we also have this option, and the beauty is that money is paid to our personal account. heh heh (tanduk dah naik). minimum withrawal is rm100 per month, up to max amount limited by monthly repayment of that loan. the minimum timezone is 6 months. the excess cash that we saved after using this option then can be put higher return funds (or to pay outstanding personal loans / credit card debts with higher interest rate).

however, i must be diciplined enough and ensure that whenever i pull out money from epf, that money will work harder, or else i better leave it there. 5% a year is actually not bad at all!!!


wakif said...

good, i believe ur timing is right which is last year when the whole market down... but if you did in 2007, certainly different story... anyway UT is good if you know what u r doing...:)

JuRi said...


that's right. timing really does help. but selalunyer our tendency is takut to buy during market low.. so camner nak untung berlipat kali ganda ekk?

so better off buying it consistently, over long term memang naik punya. that's my strategy anyway.