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Old 21-07-2003, 05:55 PM   #4
sunsetbay
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From ST, 21 July 2003

Singles can buy bigger HDB flats with others

I REFER to Mr Chew Chee Meng's letter, 'Ease 3-room flat prices, allow singles to buy... Bigger resale flats, please' (ST, July 12).

Our public housing policy is pro-family in orientation. As a general policy, flat applicants have to form a family nucleus to qualify for the purchase of new and resale Housing Board flats. Single citizens are a part of the family unit and are encouraged to stay with their parents for mutual care and support.

Nevertheless, the Government recognises that some older Singaporeans who remain single may prefer to live on their own. Under the Single Singapore Citizen Scheme, single citizens aged 35 years and above can buy a three-room or smaller resale HDB flat in which to stay on their own.

A three-room flat can be as large as 70sq m. This is two to three times the national average of 24sq m of living space per person, and is more than adequate for a single person. To ensure optimal use of scarce land resources in Singapore, four-room and bigger flats are meant for family-based households comprising at least two persons. Singles who wish to buy bigger flats can do so jointly with other eligible singles under the Joint Singles Scheme.

Mr Chew also commented that the HDB should moderate the prices of three-room resale flats. Resale HDB flats are transacted in the open market on a willing buyer and willing seller basis.

Those in popular locations such as Holland Village would tend to fetch higher prices, but there is a wide range of three-room flats in different locations and at different prices for buyers to select from, according to their financial means. With about 220,000 three-room flats in Singapore, there is no shortage of these flats.

The HDB will continue to review its housing policies for singles regularly to ensure that they remain relevant and fair.


LEONG CHOK KEH
Deputy Director
Policy and Property
for Director
Estate Administration and Property
Housing and Development Board
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