December 2020


There are several ways you can own a condo. You can choose the rent-to-own path, which gives you the option to make use of the unit right away. You can also buy it outright if you don’t mind paying full price. The most financially advantageous route, however, is to buy a preselling condo unit. This means paying for a unit even before the bu ilding has finished construction. While the turnover might take a few years, it’s usually worth the wait. 

Thinking of finally investing in a preselling condo unit this 2021? Here are some options below P4M. 

Galeries Tower Manila

Galeries Tower Manila
Image from Galeries Tower Manila

Location: Manila
Developer: Grand Taipan
Estimated starting cost: P3.2M
Target turnover date: 2024

Located just beside SM Manila, this preselling condo will have 34 floors in a single tower. Its units include a studio, an executive studio, and a one-bedroom unit, which are integrated in a mixed-use space.


  • Study Room
  • Gym
  • Function Rooms
  • Outdoor Lounge
  • Swimming Pool
  • Playground Garden Deck

S Tower at Sync

Image from Sync

Location: Pasig
Developer: Robinsons Land Manila
Estimated starting cost: P3.8M
Target turnover date: 2024

Along C5, Pasig, will stand a four-tower condo development 20 meters above sea level. The first tower to be constructed is the 21-storey S Tower, an L-shaped structure that has views of the Ortigas Center in the north and the Rizal mountains and the Pasig City skyline in the east. Units include a studio unit and a one-bedroom unit. 


  • Fitness center
  • Game Room
  • Function Room
  • Lap Pool
  • Kiddie Pool
  • Pool Deck
  • Kids Outdoor Play Area
  • Outdoor Lounge
  • Jogging Trail

Kasara Urban Resort Residences

Image from Kasara Urban Resort Residences

Location: Pasig
Developer: Empire East
Estimated starting cost: P3.9M
Target turnover date: 2023

If you’re looking for an oasis in the middle of the city, you might be interested in Kasara Urban Resort Residences. The huge development will have six towers and offers studio, one-bedroom, two-bedroom, and penthouse units with variations in between. 


  • Lake-inspired Swimming Pool
  • Kiddie Pool
  • Activity Area
  • Multipurpose Court
  • Children’s Playground
  • Clubhouse Bar with Multipurpose Hall
  • Jogging Paths
  • Water Feature
  • Daycare Center
  • Fitness Gym
  • Indoor Gameroom

Aurora Escalades

Image from Aurora Escalades

Location: Cubao
Developer: Robinsons Land
Estimated starting cost: P4M
Target turnover date: 2023

Just seven minutes away from Araneta Center, this preselling condo will have 22 floors and offers studio units and mixed-use space to students, young professionals, small families, and those who are interested in renting the unit out. 


  • Multipurpose Room
  • Network Lounge
  • Movie Den
  • Study Lounge
  • Lap Pool
  • Kiddie Pool
  • Kids’ Play Area
  • Garden Lounge
  • Sky Deck
  • Jogging Path
  • Game Room
  • Wellness Center
  • Fitness Center
  • Business Center

Not sure if you’re ready to commit to a condo? There are other ways to grow your money. Check out our wealth generation cycle manifesto here! 


If you’re like us, then you’re probably hoping that 2021 will be a better year. To make that happen, however, requires action from your end. Here are some suggestions that can help make the coming year a more fruitful one. 

Save more consistently.

If saving has become more of an afterthought than a priority, then it’s no wonder your savings account leaves little to be desired. In the coming year, be strict about your personal obligation. Instead of focusing on your goal amount, work on your ability to remain consistent. You don’t want another 12 months to go by only to be filled with regret. Not sure how to stay on track of your saving schedule? Here’s an easy way to save more on a weekly basis.

Update all insurance policies.

When was the last time you reviewed your insurance policy? Do you think that it’s still enough to cover all your loved ones’ needs? If your insurance policy earns dividends, will those better serve you invested elsewhere? It’s common for people to forget all about their life insurance policy once they’ve signed the contract, but it’s healthier to keep tabs on all aspects of your finances. This way, you can start the new year knowing that your family is well taken care of.

Diversify investments more.

You already know not to put all your eggs in one basket, but how much do you really follow this old adage? If you’re in a position to do so, consider exploring other varieties of investments. If you’re curious about Bitcoin, for example, you can read my thoughts about it here. If you want to start a small business but have never done so before, this cautionary tale might prove useful. If you want to get into the stock market, here’s a preliminary guide

Increase net worth.

If someone were to compute how much you’re worth, would you be happy about the number you’ll amount to? If the answer is no, then perhaps 2021 is the year to change that. Begin by calculating your current tangible net worth first. Follow this formula: Tangible Net Worth = Tangible Net Assets – Tangible Net Liabilities – Intangible Net Assets. Tangle net assets simply refer to assets that are convertible to cash. Knowing your baseline can help you create a roadmap to a higher net worth.

Pay outstanding debts.

If you have a credit card bill that has gone unpaid for quite some time, make it a point to clear it as quickly as possible. We’re not talking about monthly expenses, but debt that has been carried over from your last bill and the bill before that.

Live more simply.

2020 has proven that we can live without many luxuries. We’ve learned to let go of some of the things we didn’t really need and have seen value in making things from scratch. In the coming year, let’s continue on this trajectory. Let’s save more, spend less. 


Start-Up tells the story of Seo Dal Mi (Bae Suzy) and her resolve to outperform her overachieving sister, Won In Jae (Kang Han Na). The two are separated from each other when their parents divorced. Dal-Mi chooses to stay with their father who dies right after a pitch meeting with investors. Meanwhile, In-Jae follows her mother who remarries a rich businessman.

Later in the series, Dal-Mi and In-Jae reunite as two CEOs who are competing for investors in Sandbox—a start-up incubator in South Korea’s fictional Silicon Valley. Dal-Mi joins the Samsan Tech group of founder, Nam Do-San (Nam Joo-Hyuk), along with developers Kim Yong-San (Kim Do-Wan) and Lee Chul-San (Yoo Su-Bin). Together, they struggle to make a start-up that focuses on Artificial Intelligence (AI) work. 

While a love triangle with Do San and big-time capitalist and mentor Han Ji Pyeong (Seon Ho) ensues, Dal Mi’s tale becomes a journey that goes beyond romance. Hers is a story of hard work, determination, and priceless interpersonal relationships.

Below, the lessons we’ve learned from the series, which we can all apply to starting a business, big or small:

1. You need a clear purpose and a business plan.

Know your WHY.

Episode 8 sees a conference room exchange between Dal-Mi and Ji-Pyeong why she  believes their AI app Noon-Gil focused on helping the blind will succeed even if the financials don’t make sense.

“I’m not trying to achieve something new and great here. It’s just that for some people, what’s ordinary to us isn’t ordinary at all. I want our technology to help them. Even just a little bit. Even just a tiny little bit, if we can protect their everyday lives, I think that’s enough reason to do this,” explains Dal-Mi.

Sandbox founder, Ms. Yoon supports this saying, “They’re at least clear about their why.”

Ji Pyeong counters, “But that’s about it, they don’t know what to do or how to do it.”

Ms. Yoon then states, “As long as they know why they do it, the rest will follow.”

Takeaway, knowing your purpose keeps you focused and passionate about what you’re doing. The road to success isn’t straight nor is it always paved. Oftentimes, it’s winding, steep, and full of pitfalls. Your purpose is a compass that will keep you headed in the right direction.

2. To become an effective leader, you must have the audacity to make firm decisions.

Should I keep a majority stake in the company or should I give them up? Do I let go of a valuable asset or do they bog us down? Should we invest resources in R&D or do we expand? These are tough calls a leader has to make day in and day out. Whether a right or wrong decision is made, the leader’s job is to steer the ship towards a direction.

“‘What makes a great CEO?’ There’s no such thing. That’s as absurd as asking what makes a great politician. There are no right answers to politics or management. Why look for answers that don’t exist? So, instead of looking for answers, make choices. Whatever you choose, you’ll be criticized. You can’t make any decisions if you’re afraid of criticism. And if you can’t make decisions, you can’t be a CEO. What do you want to be? A good person or a CEO? Don’t be greedy. You can’t be both. Choose one. Just one.”—Han Ji-Pyeong, Episode 6

3. Good leaders believe in their team’s hard work.

Remember when In Jae almost fires Dal-Mi for thinking her company bogs her employees down?

Later that night, she shares her sentiments to her mother, Cha A-Hyun (Song Seon Mi), and her grandmother Choi Won Deok (Kim Hae Sook). She noted that their “tiny obscure company” is no match to Do San’s first-rate skills. 

“I’m not taking anyone’s side. It’s just that if I were In Jae, I’d fire a CEO like you, too,” said Dal Mi’s grandmother. “A ‘tiny, obscure company?’ Does your company bog its employees down? Does it?”

“It’s selling corn dogs and asking your customers, ‘Why would you eat this garbage?’ If that’s what the CEO is thinking, I’m sure it’ll go great for the company,’ she adds with sarcasm.

A great leader is able to add value to their customer and to their team. Working towards the team’s success should always bring out the best in each team member. You have to believe that the hard work you and your employees are putting in results in making a difference.

4. If you didn’t work for it, you didn’t earn it.

“Dad, I learned an expensive lesson, thanks to you. If the start is easy, then it’ll be taken away easily as well, and a CEO without shares is no better than a chewed-up gum. Thank you for the invaluable lesson.” —Won In Jae, Episode 3

Success is more gratifying when you know you’ve earned it. Conversely, success handed on a silver platter is hollow and can easily be taken away.

5. Everyone has important roles to play. There are no small tasks.

Not everyone can be the CEO. But just because you’re not the CEO doesn’t mean you’re not vital to success. Although Do-San doesn’t become a successful CEO of Samson Tech, he realizes he contributes best by solving problems and not by steering the ship.

6. Team chemistry is really quite important.

Skills alone won’t bring success. We’ve all heard the saying, “Teamwork makes the dream work.” And that only happens when we find people with the right fit. San Ha may have been the most competent person in the room, but without the willingness to work alongside her teammates, the team might have been busier tiptoeing around each other than focusing on the goal. 

7. Find a mentor.

No one was born a CEO. While potential may be inherent, a mentor can hone your talent and help you realize it. While experience may be the best teacher, a mentor will help you use what you’ve learned to be more reliant, independent, and grow your business or career. The Ms. Yoons and Ji-Pyeongs aren’t just found within the confines of your organization nor must they be your immediate superior. Find someone experienced who genuinely cares for your growth and development.

8. People who criticize you could be the ones interested in your potential. 

We have friends flatter us and that makes us happy, but we all need a friend who can tell us the harsh truth.

Navigating criticisms and compliments is a skill to be mastered. As Ji-Pyeong bluntly put it in Episode 14, “You know I only say good things to companies I’m not interested in. Why bother to check and criticize the condition of a car if I’m not going to ride it.” Flowery words don’t mean someone truly cares, learning to appreciate criticisms will help you add value. Remember, that person took the time to analyze things that you could have done better.

9. Don’t be afraid to aim high.

Every team needs a moonshot, whether it’s winning a multibillion won contract bid or setting record sales. If you miss the mark, you would have at least gained more than not aiming at all. Or as Do-San put it, the lessons learned from failure will help you navigate your way the second time around. Even in today’s progressive companies, failure isn’t considered a failure if you’ve learned lessons. Sayings such as “Fail fast, learn fast” are common phrases tossed around in agile work environments.

10. Have faith in yourself. Venturing out of your comfort zone takes courage.

Throughout the series, Dal-Mi’s story is all about taking risks, leaving your comfort zone, and just taking the leap. From quitting her job to start her company, to submitting a proposal to a bid where they were most likely out-gunned. Success would never have come if she didn’t take a chance.

But the contrasting tales of Ji-Pyeong and Do-San also show fortunes and misfortunes of staying in your comfort zone. The AI Yeong-Sil truly knows everything, “You are a faint-hearted batter, afraid of being called out, you are unable to even swing the bat. But if you continue to hesitate you will lose.” By not even stepping up to the plate, Ji-Pyeong strikes out and never gets to give the present he bought for Dal-Mi. Whereas, with nothing to show for, Do-San scores the home run by wearing his heart on his sleeve and pours his everything to Dal-Mi.

100% of shots not taken are missed shots.

Hindsight is 20/20.

When we rang in the new year in January 2020, nobody expected that the entire world would soon be battling a pandemic. By March, however, it was clear that the situation wasn’t going to get better. It wasn’t just our health and safety that were compromised. Many of us lost our jobs, too. Suddenly, our next mortgage payment—for some, their next meal—was in danger. Everyone was caught off guard—those with no savings, life insurance, or any form of a health plan even more so. Having lived through the worst of 2020, we’re hopefully better equipped to face what 2021 has in store for us.

Holding people accountable is important.

In the middle of the year, the entire nation was rocked by a scandal involving PhilHealth. Employees and employers alike are required to contribute to PhilHealth monthly, and in turn, the government agency provided universal health care to Filipinos. However, the exposure of a barrage of alleged malpractices within the agency has broken that trust. While the issue is far from resolved, the people’s demands for justice helped a lot in keeping it at the forefront of the news, and a top priority for our lawmakers. This shows us that staying passive will get us nowhere—whether it’s demanding that a government agency take responsibility for their actions or telling your friend to pay up on that loan.

We live in a world of excess.

Admit it: When the lockdown first happened, when we were forced to work from home, some things became less important. We realized that we could live in a world of basics. In fact, many of us probably embraced it. We learned to make our own food, grow our own plants, and even cut our own hair! We became more involved in our respective communities, bartering with neighbors and friends for things that are as simple as cookies or bread. We learned to pare down our expenses. While some of us have returned to our old ways—our spending on food apps alone is proof of this—let’s not forget times when we learned to live simply and carry that with us into the new year.

Risk can—and should be—managed.

While life can be unpredictable, there are certain risks that we can anticipate and that we should prepare for. If you own a property or a vehicle, consider getting the appropriate non-life insurance products. If you have a family that depends on you, consider insuring yourself. Risk products were created specifically to help you mitigate the losses you could incur in the event of unfortunate circumstances. Not all products are created equal, of course, so it’s important that you read up on each one well before you decide whether it’ll be of help to you or not.

Consistency is key.

Did you promise to start saving up last January in hopes of having a large sum to show for it now? If you were able to meet your savings goal, then congratulations are in order. But if you’re like most people (ourselves included!), then you’re probably depending on your 13th-month pay to make up for a lost time, if you haven’t already spent it on something else! When it comes to saving, consistency is important. More than increasing the number of zeroes in your bank account, it gets you into the habit of saving. In less than a month, a new year will be upon us. The question is: Will you be consistently rich or consistently poor?


Medical bills can stack up pretty quickly. A consultation with a doctor can cost you P500, while an overnight stay at a private room in a hospital can cost you P3,000. To prepare yourself for these expenses, consider getting an HMO plan or getting health insurance. An HMO plan is a kind of health program that gives you access to a specific set of healthcare practitioners and institutions. It’s also as good as cash. You can learn more about HMOs here

Health insurance, on the other hand, offers a wider range of inclusions. The amount is either reimbursed to you or given to you upon diagnosis of a disease. 

Here are some of the popular companies offering health insurance in the Philippines: 

Interested in life insurance instead? Click here!

FWD Life Insurance Corporation

If you think you’re likely to contract a critical illness more than once, FWD’s Set for Health allows you to make a claim three times over the course of your contract duration. It also waives premiums when you’re diagnosed with your first major illness and gives you 100% of your premium back if you end up not contracting a major illness before age 75. FWD also has a specific health insurance plan for cancer called Fight Plan. It covers you up to P2 million and protects you against all types of cancers for 15 years. If the cancer is at the early stage, you’ll get 20% of the benefit amount. As the disease progresses, so will the amount increase. Full benefit is guaranteed if you are beyond the cancer’s early, non-threatening stage.

Sun Life

While known for its life insurance and investment products, Sun Life also has health plans that cater to a wide range of lifestyles. If you’re specifically worried about medical bills from surgery or hospital confinement, Sun Life First Aid offers hospitalization benefits for 10 years. In the event of death, the premiums paid also act as a death benefit. If you’re worried about critical illnesses like stroke, cancer, or kidney failure, Sun Life Assure offers protection against 36 major critical conditions, four of which include surgery. Upon diagnosis, you get a lump sum cash benefit equal to your plan’s face amount. 

Check out Sun Life’s other health insurance products here.


Like most life insurance companies, Manulife also has a critical illness health plan. Health Choice protects you against 60 illnesses, provides daily hospitalization allowance, and rewards you for staying healthy. The life insurance company has also a specific health plan for men called Adam and another for women called Eve

Learn more about Manulife’s other health plans here.


If you’re looking for affordable health plans, AXA’s Health Start Lite might be an option. It doesn’t just protect you from cancer, stroke, and heart attack, the top three major illnesses, but also from nine minor conditions. It also acts as life insurance and can start for as low as P535 per month, depending on your age and health condition. There’s also Health Start, which provides greater coverage, not just for yourself, but your family. It has built-in coverage for your child (if you have any) and allows you to cover the health of a spouse, sibling, or parent. You can also customize your health plans with other health riders to get the exact plan that meets all your needs. 

Learn more about AXA’s health plans here.

Philam Life

No stranger to health plans, Philam Life also has a portfolio of health insurance products that might appeal to you. One of them is Health Invest, a plan that doesn’t just protect you against major critical conditions and accidents, but also creates an investment fund for you, which you’ll be able to use for healthcare and other costs in the future. In case you’re worried about contracting a critical illness past 75 years old, which is when most health insurance providers cap their health plans, you might be interested in the AIA Critical Protect 100, which gives you coverage against 100 illnesses until age 100. 

Learn more about Philam Life’s health plans here.


Dealing with a major disease while struggling with mounting medical costs doubles the amount of stress on you and your family, so having a backup plan in the form of health insurance is important. With PRULife’s PRUWellness, you get a daily hospital income benefit, long-term hospitalization benefit, dread disease benefit, ICU benefit, surgical expense reimbursement, and even death benefit from term insurance. There’s also PRUHealth Prime, which doesn’t just cover you against cancer, but also has investment features that’ll help ease the burden of medical costs. 

Pacific Cross

While more known for its travel insurance plans, Pacific Cross also has a wide range of medical plans that might interest frequent travelers. Younger clients might like LifeStyle, a medical plan designed especially for new clients aged 21 to 35 with limited coverage abroad. Blue Royale is a worldwide medical dollar plan that ensures you get the best possible care wherever you are.

Check out Pacific Cross’s other health insurance plans here. 


Here at PesoMatters, we’ve talked about getting into the Philippine stock market, investing in Bitcoin, and even investment gifts you should give yourself, but not all investments are monetary in nature. In fact, some people have found that other types of investments yielded better returns. Here are some of them:

An online course membership

In some ways, a work-from-home arrangement has benefited a lot of employees. Les, a 33-year-old marketing officer, found that it gave her more time to pursue other interests. “Before, I would be too exhausted by my daily commute,” she shares, “but since our company allowed us to work from home, I’ve been using the extra time to develop new skills.” In June, she signed up for SkillShare, an online program that gives members access to a multitude of courses, from creative writing to graphic design. “The skills I’m learning don’t just help me become a more capable person at work and my everyday life,” she says, “they’ve also made me feel less helpless the past few months, which, I think is pretty priceless.”

An ergonomic office chair

Ben, a 29-year-old, lead developer, put a great deal of money in something that was more tangible. “I spend most of the day sitting down, so I look at an office chair the same way I look at my computer,” he explains. “It’s part of my equipment.” Given its price tag, which Ben requested that we not share, the award-winning chair of European make is certainly a big investment. However, unlike other financial investments whose returns aren’t guaranteed, this one is already paying off. “I can spend longer hours in front of the screen without my back or my legs suffering for it.”

A weighted blanket

Not all investments have been about work or about personal growth. “The best investment I made this year was in my quality of sleep,” says Jade, 35, a freelancer who has been having trouble sleeping since the pandemic. “I invested in sheets with higher thread counts, an aromatherapy diffuser to help me sleep, and the biggest splurge of all, a weighted blanket!” According to Jade, the weighted blanket was the one that required the most consideration. It had seemed like another trend at first, but she did her due diligence and by the time she was ready to purchase, she felt more than confident with her decision.

A fitness device

Reggie, a 29-year-old developer, is very happy about his Apple Watch. “I’ve been trying to become more conscious about my health,” he says, “but it’s really been a challenge.” A regular gym goer, Reggie confesses that he’s been sliding towards the unhealthy side of the scale since he cut his gym membership early this year. “I bought a few weights and a bench press to create a home gym, but having the watch strapped to me almost every second of every day has been really instrumental in keeping me on track.” 

Investments can take on different forms. One of the most important ones you can make is in your education. If you’re interested to learn more about how to manage your finances, we suggest starting with our quick introduction to the wealth generation cycle here


As told to PesoMatters

It’s no surprise that we’re huge fans of food delivery apps in our household. We were already huge advocates before the pandemic, ordering milk tea during weekends and fast food meals on cheat days, but ever since March, we’ve come to rely on them so much more. After reviewing last month’s credit card bill and after seeing this article online, I felt inspired to make a change. For a week, I removed both Foodpanda and GrabFood on my phone. 

Here’s what happened when I abstained from my favorite food apps for a week: 


The first day of the work week has always been an excuse to treat myself. I tell myself that my favorite Tim Hortons or Starbucks drink from Foodpanda or GrabFoodwill make me work harder, but today, I stick to the instant coffee in the kitchen. I save myself P110. Lunch is liempo and sitaw cooked at home, so I don’t shell anything out. It’s the same story for dinner, too.


I congratulate myself for resisting temptation yesterday, but already, I can feel myself wanting to check my options at Foodpanda and GrabFood. Since I uninstalled them before I began this week-long abstinence, however, I have no choice but to get my food fix elsewhere: YouTube. I watch several food videos and suddenly develop a craving for dim sum, which we sadly don’t know how to make at home. On a normal day, I would have ordered Tim Ho Wan’s Baked Buns with BBQ Pork (P213), Pan Fried Radish Cake (P194), Vermicelli Roll with BBQ Pork (P235), Vermicelli Roll with Shrimp (P263), and Beef Ball with Beancurd Skin (P169). Normally, I would have easily justified this because I’d be sharing it with my family, but I don’t. I save P725. 


Hump day is traditionally another excuse to order food online. Starbucks and Tim Hortons is almost always on the agenda, and I resist as best as I can. It’s a lot harder though when someone in the family tells you that they’re ordering something from Foodpanda or GrabFood and asks you if you want anything. My immediate answer should have been no, but I stutter and stall for a good 30 seconds before ultimately deciding that I will have to pass. I save myself P110.


Back when I was still going to a physical office to work, I’d often eat out. I never developed the habit of bringing baon—although that would have saved me a lot of money—and neither did most of the people in my family. It’s no wonder that we’re not used to having to come up with our own meals every single day. The rotation grows old fast. Liempo and sitaw, bangus and kalabasa, fried chicken and pechay. This is why food apps have been so integral to our lives—not just mine. Today, I sit in front of the usual ulam and feel a strong urge to just order food online. Pizza sounds really good. At Shakey’s, we always fall back on thin crust Manager’s Choice (P417) and Classic Cheese (P675). I really want to suggest ordering it, but I don’t. I save P1,092. 


Finally, the work week is coming to a close. I eat lunch and dinner on autopilot, not wanting to even give myself a chance to think of what exciting food choices there are just a few taps away. However, I do have an e-numan session with friends later. Usually, this means going to and ordering a Yellow Tail Pink Moscato (P549), and while I technically wouldn’t be ordering from Foodpanda or GrabFood, I make do with water. It’s the principle of the thing.


Weekends are classified as cheat days and while the idea of ordering in sounds really appealing (honestly, when isn’t it?), I decide to make sinangag from yesterday’s leftover rice and cook SPAM and eggs for lunch instead, which, weirdly enough, makes me just as happy as if I ordered something from Army Navy, another weekend favorite. I would have ordered a Steak Burrito (P245) and a Liber Tea (P115). Dinner passes by without incident and I save P360.


The last day of my week-long abstinence can’t have arrived sooner. I’ve been good all week, and so I almost feel “allowed” to slip just once, to order an Avocado Shake (P180) from, which I realize I miss so much, but I hold on to my resolve. I avoid watching food-related content on YouTube and other social media apps and spend the rest of the day watching a drama series on Netflix. Dinner is the usual meat and vegetable combination and I breathe a sigh of relief as the week ends without further incident.

So, all in all, how was the experience? Did I learn anything?

By uninstalling the food apps on my phone for a week, I saved myself a total of P3,126. It’s a lot of money for just seven days, but I attribute this largely to the fact that I have a tendency to rebel against my own rules. The more I tell myself I’m not allowed to do something, the more I want to do it. That said, had I actually spent this much for an entire week, I’d have probably kept it simpler for the rest of the month. 

To paint a more accurate picture of how much I actually spend every 30 days, I looked at my Foodpanda and GrabFood bill history for November and saw that combined, I spent a total of P6,870. The month before that, my total bill was more or less the same. It’s a lot of unnecessary spending for a week, a month, a year.

I’ve since installed the food apps back on my phone, but I think I’ll be more conscious of the fact that I’m spending nearly P7,000 on these food apps. Having a number makes it so much more real than just telling myself I spend “too much.” 

To get into the habit of spending less, I’ve created an acceptable budget for myself for December, one that I’ll hopefully be able to lower even further in the next few months. I’ve also started involving myself in cooking at home, just so I wouldn’t feel justified in ordering food online all the time. It’s not a huge change, but my priority is sustainability. As they say: slowly but surely

Here are some of the online loan apps that you can try here in the Philippines.

How to apply for a loan online?

Tala Loan Application

Provide fast and personalized loans for all android smartphone users. Tala fulfills the needs of Filipinos in financial accesses. For inquiries, you may visit them at their main office at TIM Building, Osmeña Highway cor. Arellano Street, Makati City. There are also branches in India, Mexico, and Kenya.

Step 1: Go to the play store and download the Tala App on your mobile device.
Step 2: Register and answer all the questions in the app. Make sure that the details you provide are complete and correct.
Step 3: After you fill out the form, an admin will approve your application. Next, choose where you want to cash out your loan.

Cashwagon Loan Application

Cashwagon’s financial services address the Filipinos’ need by lending. They’re approve by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The loan application is open for all citizens here in the Philippines.

Step 1: Go to their website Cashwagon and click the register button.
Step 2: Sign up and provide the required details.
Step 3: Wait for the message from Cashwagon. Your loan application may be approve in less than a day.

Asteria Lending Application

Asteria lending Inc. is a licensed company, based in Makati. They consider the covenience and flexibility of clients to apply for loan and to pay for it.

Step 1: Go to and choose what type of loan you need (Personal loan, business loan, car loan, or salary loan.
Step 2: Complete the loan application form, by providing all the details needed. Within 24 hours, you will get the approval.
Step 3: After the approval, your cash loan will be sent in less than a day.

Robocash Loan Application

Robocash is a legit and licensed online loaning company with various branches in the Philippines. You may contact them by landline (02) 8876-84-84 or simply go to any of their branches nationwide.

Step 1: Go to the Robocash website and fill out the form. Make sure to give all the details correctly.
Step 2: Choose the most convenient way to cash out and pay your loan.
Step 3: Confirm your application by the confirmation code that will be sent through a text message. You will receive your loan within the day of approval.


Cashalo is a local lending company and fintech platform that helps Filipinos with their financial needs. All loans are financed by Paloo Financing Inc. recognized by Security and Exchange Commission (SEC). They are located at 16F World Plaza, BGC, Taguig City.

Step 1: Download the Cashalo loan app on the play store.
Step 2: Sign up with your mobile number, and give the required details. Verify your account and click apply.
Step 3: Wait for the approval of your loan, and choose where you want to cash out.

You might want to invest with little money. Just click here for details.

The holidays are often when you allow yourself to splurge as a reward for all your hard work the last year. You buy expensive gadgets, feast at high-end restaurants, and justify your purchase of designer goods. While there’s nothing wrong with treating yourself, it’s important to consider what gifts your future self might benefit from, too, especially if you don’t have much to your name yet. 

Below are some investment gifts you should give yourself this 2020. 

A life insurance policy
A lot of preparing for the future is preparing for the unknown, but while that seems like an impossible task, there are several ways to make sure that you and your loved ones will at least have options. Life insurance is one example. In the event of an accident or worse, life insurance (as long as it hasn’t lapsed) will give your beneficiaries a lump sum amount that you agreed on when you signed up, whether you’ve just started paying or you’ve been paying for 10 years.

A health plan
A doctor’s appointment at a private institution can cost you P500 or more—imagine how much more an overnight stay at a hospital would be. Of course, you might think that that’s a problem for the future—and maybe it is—but do you really want to be scrambling for cash in the middle of a medical crisis? We didn’t think so. Give yourself an investment gift of a health plan. Depending on the health plan you choose, you can get unlimited out-patient consultations, specific lab test inclusions, and even hospitalization benefits. 

A retirement fund
The age of retirement in the Philippines is 65, and while that might be decades away from now, you might want to start building your way up to a sizable amount while you still can. If you’re very conservative, you can choose to open a time deposit account at a bank and build your retirement fund by putting money in consistently. However, you can also choose to invest your money in different investments with better returns. You don’t need to jump right into buying and selling stocks. You can choose to invest in mutual funds or government bonds first. 

Real estate
Another investment gift you might want to consider is a house and lot or a condo unit, but don’t make this decision lightly. Buying a property requires a considerably more significant commitment than any of the items mentioned above. However, if you manage to complete your payment, you’ll have an asset to your name. You can rent it out as a way to get your investment back or as a source of income when you’re older, but you can just as well live in it and pass it on to your heirs in the future.


Holiday shopping can be stressful, but with a strategy in place, you’re less likely to feel overwhelmed. Not sure what your gift-giving style is or if you even have one in the first place? Read on to see if any of these sound familiar!

Made With Love

While it’s more convenient to buy your gifts, you prefer to create them from scratch. Whether it’s baking a batch of cookies or composing a song, you take pride in being able to offer your loved ones something of yourself in the process.

General Merchandise

Christmas shopping is a breeze for you because you tend to give all of your friends the same presents. While going to tiangges is not as easy this year, there’s no shortage of online shops that’ll probably carry what you’re looking for.

Christmas Espesyal

You believe in giving each of your loved ones gifts that are perfect for their personality. While this is more time-consuming, you take genuine pleasure in the hunt. In fact, it’s highly likely that you start searching for the perfect gifts as early as September.

Only the Essentials

You prefer function over form, choosing to give your loved ones gifts that you think will be of actual use to them. You have a sixth sense for sussing out what they need—sometimes, even before they know it!

Your Wish Is My Command

You don’t like to play guessing games. In fact, you often ask your loved ones straight up what they want for Christmas or sneak a peek at their Lazada or Shopee wish list. While you’ve lost the element of surprise, you figure it’s worth the perfect batting average.

Advocacy Campaign

You like to use every opportunity you have to push a cause or a charity that’s very close to your heart, and admittedly, there’s no better time to do so than the season of giving. Just don’t forget to consider the actual recipients of your gifts, too.

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

There’s no shame in re-gifting a present that would otherwise waste away in the back of your closet. As they say, one man’s garbage is another man’s treasure. Of course, if said gift will eventually end up in the back of their closet, too, then perhaps a change in strategy is due.