Hello there! I am Kevin and the author behind the Turtle Investor blog.
At age 37, I hit CPF Full Retirement Sum (FRS) of $176,000 on the last day of 2019, twelve years after graduating from university.
I am married and owns a 4-room apartment. I continue to be gainfully employed to build up my portfolio and provide my loved ones with better lives. Leaving everything behind and transitioning to a digital nomad life in Bali remains an option but not something that I’m actively pursuing now 🙂
In the beginning
I was born in the 1980s and grew up living in a 2-bedroom apartment with my parents, my brother, and my aunt. Until I enlisted in the army, I didn’t have my own room and spent my nights sleeping on the floor – either in the bedroom or the living room.
I was perfectly fine with it. Life was simple – my family wasn’t wealthy but we have what we needed. My father ran a small business and supplemented his income by driving a taxi at night, or with mahjong sessions. Yeah, he is REALLY good at it. As the business grew, my mum went to help him out and I was left to fend for myself, mostly.
Although I wasn’t financially savvy in those days, I knew enough to budget my own money and learned to make them last the whole week, or month.
It was the same throughout my days in the army as well as my time at the university. When I took up part-time jobs, I ultimately spent all the money I earned with my then-girlfriend and now-wife.
A new direction
My investment journey started towards the end of 2012 when I picked up a copy of Andrew Hallam’s Millionaire Teacher. To be honest, I couldn’t quite remember why I started reading. Perhaps I was jaded with my work life at that point and needed to find my direction in life.
Andrew, being an English Teacher, is gifted with the ability to write clearly and concisely, and was able to make the topic of personal finance and investment rather easy to understand. That’s when I finally decided to take action and dive into the exciting world of investment.
It would be fair to say that I look up to him tremendously. If not for his book, I would not have embarked on my investment journey, and there wouldn’t be this blog.
Information on index investing in a local context (Singapore) was rather hard to come by back then, which was why I started a blog back in December 2012 to document my journey and share my experiences.
Starting a blog
Titled Index Investing In Singapore, I mainly blogged about the information I have come across, the things I have done, the resources I have found, and stuff like that.
Along the way, more and more people who were interested in index investing found my blog. A few asked questions, and I answered them when I could. Well, it turns out there were many people just like the “old” me, who were interested in index investing but just didn’t know how to get started.
I began to put in a little bit more effort into my blog. And because so many people were always asking me the same questions over and over again, I put up little tidbits of information – frequently asked questions, links to resources, and even little guides of my own. I was creating exactly what I was hoping to find when I just started index investing!
Rebranding my blog
One year after I started my blog (November 2013), I decided to start my own website which is this blog that you are currently reading – Turtle Investor. Much like the fable involving the tortoise and the hare, I felt that index investing was the slow and steady way to financial independence.
For the first year, I donated my earnings and sponsored the very first Turtle Investor Free Book Giveaway. Of course, it had to be Andrew Hallam’s book! I figured if it could inspire me, then it could do the same to someone else too.
Guess what? That turned into a yearly affair.
Turtle Investor 2020 and beyond
Turtle Investor will remain my special project, a place where I can continue to share whatever I want, and learn together with you. I frequently write about investments and personal finance, my FIRE journey, crafting alternative income streams, plus money and travel hacks.
My blueprint for financial independence functions much like a sitemap for the best articles that I have written on my blog.
I periodically publish a variety of reports (Central Provident Fund, alternative income, net worth, KrisFlyer miles) on my blog for growth tracking and accountability. – people enjoyed reading those the most.
Moving forward, I would be continuing to focus my energy on growing this blog and adding value for readers like you. This precious outlet for financial literacy could very well end up as my final ikigai pivot after making some crazy career choices. My dream is to run a bed-and-breakfast pool villa with a sea view one day.
Last but not least, as the author of this blog, I disclaim any liability, loss, or risk taken by individuals who directly or indirectly act on the information provided on this blog.
More blog posts that are a little more personal –