Mar 8, 2013

Latest News: After 50 years of public housing, it is good to revisit some key policies.

That is what National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan spoke about in his budget debate speech today in Parliament where he outlined a slew of new plans to make housing more affordable and accessible for all Singaporeans.

In a bid to prevent a property bubble and fix the temporary imbalance in housing, the government will ramp up its construction of Build-to-Order (BTO) flats with another 25,000 units to be launched this year.

Mr Khaw also said BTO flat prices are kept separate from the resale HDB market with more subsidies in place and this will continue until the market stabilizes.

Meanwhile, singles aged 35 years and above with a monthly income of up to S$5,000 can buy new two-room flats directly from the housing board, while all married HDB first-timers will be able to rent more affordable rental flats while waiting for their new flats.

The government will also provide further assistance to first-timer married couples under the recently launched Parenthood Priority Scheme which will be extended to pregnant mothers starting from the BTO launch in May this year.

For second-timers, the quota for two- and three-room BTO flats in non-mature estates will be doubled from 15 to 30 percent. Moreover, five percent is to be set aside for divorced or widowed second-timers with children below 16-years of age.

To further help divorcees who face debarment from subsidized flats, the period will be shortened from five to three years.

The elderly will also not be left out. More studio apartments will be built for seniors with 50 percent reserved for those who buy near their flat or close to their children.

At the same time, the government will cap the subletting period of flats and rooms to non-Malaysian foreigners at one-and-a-half years.

Info courtesy -