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Numy came to my house the other night. He likes the new place. Then he asked a very simple question - is it like Miss Wong's house? Miss Wong is a mutual friend. I said I am not sure as I have not been to her house.

Later, it occurred to me that Numy has no idea how houses are designed and sold in KL, despite being here for almost 20 years of his life. He does not know what is 22 by 75 feet nor the typical built-up area of a terrace house. His ignorance is due to the fact that all his life, he has not lived in a terrace house before. His parents stay in a semi-D house in an opulent area. His wife grew up in a bangalow in Bangsar - she probably has no idea of a terrace house either. Both of them stays in Melbourne in their own house, a non-linked house.

When we grew up together, I used to hang out in Numy's place in the afternoon. As a kid, it never occur to me that his house is big. It's just Numy's house, you know. Now that I have a place of my own and that I have the experience of house hunting and stuff, I realize his parents' house is big, by today's standard. I wonder what it is like to grow up in a big house with a nice kitchen and huge living room.

***

For the past few months, I have been haunted by IRB (Income tax). I believe I am taxed at a 20 plus percentage bracket and yet I feel the pinch. The bloody government is bleeding us dry! 20% tax is not the highest bracket in Malaysia. I can't recall what is the highest. 30%?

Anyway, Numy said in Australia, he's taxed A$20K a year. The highest rate is 44% and is applicable to anyone who earn more than $60K yearly - that's almost like EVERY professionals. He said for people like us with 5 years of working experience, we can easily earn $60K a year. So everyone like us will fall into this 44% bracket. 44%!!! That's daylight robbery! It may be progressive like in Malaysia (ie not 44% on your $60K income) but it is still very high.

This is something to consider if I really want to move to AU. I guess if I am migrating (ie staying > 10 years there), there's some value as I get to enjoy a lot of things that I paid taxes for. But if I am just planning to work there for a couple of years.. is it worth it?

More headaches.

http://www.ato.gov.au

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