4 Things You May Not Know About CPF

Here are four things about CPF that could deepen your understanding and potentially better your retirement outlook.

October 26, 2023

Following the Budget 2023 annoucement, there are 3 changes to enable more members to benefit from CPF: 1) Increase in the CPF monthly salary ceiling; 2) Increase in CPF contribution rates for senior workers and CPF Transition Offset; 3) Increase in minimum CPF monthly payouts for non-CPF LIFE members.

Singapore’s Central Provident Fund (CPF) is a pivotal scheme aiding citizens in their retirement planning. Here are four things about CPF that could deepen your understanding and potentially better your retirement outlook.


Understanding CPF

The Central Provident Fund (CPF) serves as a multifaceted savings infrastructure in Singapore, necessitating both employers and employees to allocate funds for the employees' future, encompassing retirement, healthcare, and housing finances. It is structured into three distinct accounts:

  • Ordinary Account (OA): Predominantly designated for housing expenditures, insurance premium payments, investment ventures, and educational costs.
  • Special Account (SA): Tailored for retirement savings and investments in retirement-centric financial instruments.
  • Medisave Account (MA): Reserved for hospitalization charges and sanctioned medical insurance premiums.

The schema for contribution rates to these accounts is delineated based on an individual’s earnings and age bracket, with a graduated increase in the percentage of wages directed towards CPF as one advances through their professional timeline. This progressive system is designed to bolster the financial fortification, ensuring a steadier accumulation of savings as individuals approach retirement.

Maximizing CPF Savings

Elevating your CPF savings is attainable through a myriad of strategies, designed to fortify your financial security as you journey towards retirement:

  • Top-Up Accounts: Embrace the opportunity to make voluntary contributions to your Special Account (SA) or Medisave Account (MA), an endeavor that can significantly augment your retirement and healthcare reserves, providing a cushion against unforeseen expenses.
  • CPF Investment Scheme (CPFIS): The CPF Investment Scheme is a pathway to potentially expand your savings by investing your Ordinary Account (OA) and Special Account (SA) funds in a diverse array of investment vehicles. By navigating through the available investment options wisely, you could potentially grow your CPF savings over time, aligning your financial trajectory with your retirement aspirations.
  • Voluntary Contributions: Opt for making voluntary contributions which are apportioned equally across your Ordinary Account (OA), Special Account (SA), and Medisave Account (MA), subject to an annual cap. This proactive approach not only amplifies your CPF savings but also lays down a solid financial foundation for your golden years.

CPF Life Scheme

CPF LIFE stands as an annuity scheme, orchestrated to provide a monthly income for life, initiating from the payout eligibility age, thus underpinning a stable financial edifice for retirees. It unfolds three distinctive plans, each tailored to cater to varying preferences in terms of bequest and monthly disbursement:

  • Standard Plan: This plan is synonymous with higher monthly payouts, albeit at the cost of a smaller bequest. It's an optimal choice for individuals prioritizing a more substantial monthly income to cover their living expenses during retirement.
  • Basic Plan: Contrarily, the Basic Plan scales down the monthly payouts but compensates with a larger bequest. It's a well-suited option for those who are inclined towards leaving a more considerable sum for their heirs.
  • Escalating Plan: The Escalating Plan is characterized by an initially lower payout structure that progressively augments over time. This increment serves as a hedge against inflation, albeit with a trade-off of a smaller bequest. It's a prudent choice for individuals who envisage rising living costs and wish to shield their purchasing power in the long run.

Each plan within the CPF LIFE scheme presents a unique set of advantages, catering to the diverse financial landscapes and post-retirement aspirations of individuals. Making an informed decision on the plan that aligns with one's financial outlook can significantly impact the financial ease experienced during the golden years.

Comparing CPF with Other Retirement Plans

The Central Provident Fund (CPF) is a sturdy pillar in the retirement planning landscape of Singapore. However, integrating it with other retirement savings avenues can orchestrate a more holistic retirement blueprint:

  • Supplementary Retirement Scheme (SRS): This voluntary scheme is a commendable adjunct to CPF, offering tax incentives that can be instrumental in amassing a more substantial retirement corpus. The tax advantages accorded by SRS can significantly propel the growth of your retirement fund, offering a financial springboard towards a comfortable retirement.
  • Private Retirement Plans: Diversification is a cornerstone of financial prudence. Engaging in private retirement plans or insurance products can usher in additional security and the prospect of higher returns. These private plans often present a wider array of investment options, enabling you to tailor a retirement strategy that resonates with your risk tolerance and financial goals.

Understanding and harnessing the merits of CPF, in concert with other retirement savings plans, can markedly bolster your financial fortification as you transition into your golden years. The synergistic effect of a well-rounded retirement planning strategy can provide a financial sanctuary, ensuring a serene and secure retirement.

How by tweaking one simple thing in your CPF will allow you to get a 30% more payout without extra effort, extra money, extra resources than what you already have**

Unlocking the full potential of your CPF savings could be as straightforward as making a single, well-informed adjustment. This tweak, grounded in a thorough understanding of CPF rules and opportunities, could significantly enhance your retirement payout, propelling you towards a more financially secure retirement without demanding additional resources.

Are you intrigued to discover this simple tweak and elevate your financial foresight? Contact me today to schedule a complimentary consultation. Let’s embark on a journey to unveil the full potential of your CPF savings and lay the groundwork for a prosperous retirement.

Your gateway to a more lucrative CPF payout is merely a click away. Don’t let this opportunity to amplify your retirement funds slip through your fingers.


**Specially for those between Age 55 - 65, and currently owns a property

Junwen Chen

My mission is to educate and empower people to design their lives so that they can live in abundance.

Let me partner with you, to design and nurture your dreams and ultimate life goals.

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