U-Save rebates are here again. Here’s all you need to know about the latest round of payment.
With the Singapore Budget 2021 just over, it can only mean another GST Voucher – U-Save (GSTV – U-Save) to help with your household utility bills. This rebate is especially timely, considering the year of increased work-from-home days, which has invariably bumped up our usage.
So, if you’re wondering how much your family will receive, we’ve got you covered.
What are GST Vouchers – U-Save rebates?
U-Save rebates are a component of the assistance scheme started by the Singapore Government in 2012 to help lower- and middle-income Singaporeans offset some of their GST expenses — the two other components are GSTV – Cash, and GSTV – Medisave.
Designed to help households with their utility bills, U-Save rebates are credited directly to each household’s utilities account.
For 2021, additional one-off U-Save rebates (known as GSTV – U-Save Special Payment) have been announced, which will bring further relief to households struggling to cope with utility bills. In total, Singaporeans can receive an additional $120 to $200 U-Save rebates this year as compared to during regular years.
When are GST Voucher – U-Save rebates given out?
Regular U-Save rebates are paid out over 4 payments, one in each quarter — April, July, October 2021 and January 2022.
This means that the next U-Save rebate payment that will be credited in April will consist of the regular U-Save rebate, as well as additional U-Save Special Payment.
Who is eligible to receive GST Voucher – U-Save rebates?
Only HDB households are eligible for U-Save rebates, and will only receive the benefits subject to these following conditions:
- If you own and live in your HDB flat, there must be at least one Singapore citizen owner or occupier in the flat; or
- If you have partially rented out the HDB flat that you own and live in, there must be at least one Singapore citizen owner or occupier in the flat; or
- If you rent an entire flat, there must be at least one Singapore citizen tenant.
Also, immediate family members living in the same flat must not own or have any interest in more than one property.
What other U-Save rebates can Singaporeans look forward to?
In the light of the particularly onerous year, there are two additional GSTV – U-Save Special Payments that will be given out over two payments — in April and July 2021.
As such, this means that in April and July 2021, all eligible Singaporean households can look forward to one regular U-Save rebate payment and one GSTV – U-Save Special Payment. Amounts differ and would heavily depend on the size of your home.
How much U-Save rebates will each household receive in 2021?
|April 2021||June 2021||October 2021||January 2022|
|HDB flat type||Regular GSTV –U-Save||GSTV –U-Save Special Payment||Regular GSTV –U-Save||GSTV –U-Save Special Payment||Regular GSTV –U-Save||Regular GSTV –U-Save||Total amount received|
|1-room and 2-room||$100||$100||$100||$100||$100||$95||$595|
1- and 2-room flats to receive the largest amount of U-Save rebates
Looking at the numbers, you may be wondering why do larger HDB flats receive less rebates. Shouldn’t these flat types receive more rebates, considering that they are likely to contain more electrical points and consume more power or water?
Well, 1- and 2-room HDB households receive the largest rebates, as they are most likely to be occupied by families with lower income.
According to the Ministry of Finance(MOF), this will benefit about 950,000 Singaporean households.
4 tips to help you reduce your utility bills
Unplug unused electronics
You don’t have to believe in vampires to be a victim.
Electrical devices are increasingly designed to go into sleep mode rather than a complete shut-down. This creates the rather Halloween-ish sounding problem of ‘energy vampirism’, where devices plugged into outlets continue draining electricity from the grid.
This adds to your utility bills, making you pay extra for energy that is essentially wasted – all for the dubious pleasure of having your electronics awaken at a touch.
To prevent this problem, develop the ruthless habit of unplugging your devices whenever you are done for the day. Often overlooked common household culprits are smart TVs, laptops, game consoles and power banks.
Invest in efficient machines
Aircons, washing machines, dryers, refrigerators, large-screen TVs and other necessities are not made equal — especially when it comes to energy efficiency.
If you want to manage your utility bills without forcing your family into a Luddite lifestyle, switching to energy and water efficient machines will make a noticeable difference.
Sure, you’ll likely be paying more upfront, but investing in machines that use less water and energy on a daily basis will set you up for savings in the long run.
Switch your energy provider
The Open Electricity Market (OEM) has been a thing for like, a while now. And judging by the lack of complaints about disruptions or disasters, the OEM is the way to go.
Now, with every third-party supplier offering lower prices than the regular tariff, it doesn’t make sense to continue paying full price. There’s literally no difference whether you buy your electricity from SP or another provider.
If you haven’t already, please consider switching and start paying less in minutes. There’re even renewables-only plans on offer, so you can save money and fight climate change in one stroke!
Pay with a cashback card
Another way to reduce your utility bill is to pay with a cashback credit card. One popular option is the OCBC 365 Credit Card, which gives you 3% cashback on your electricity bills.
Read these next:
Best Credit Cards for Paying Utility Bills in Singapore
How Will (The Extended) COVID-19 Support Grant Help You Financially
Phase 3 In Singapore: What Can You Expect?
Green Lanes, Travel Bubbles, Air Bridges From Singapore: Where Can I Go Now?
The Real Cost Of Working From Home (WFH) May Surprise You
By Alevin Chan
An ex-Financial Planner with a curiosity about what makes people tick, Alevin’s mission is to help readers understand the psychology of money. He’s also on an ongoing quest to optimise happiness and enjoyment in his life.