Feb 4, 2010 - PropertyGuru.com.sg
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A 36-year-old Singaporean single lady by the name of Toh Siew Peng has written a letter to the Straits Times Forum, complaining about the discriminatory policies of the HDB against singles.

Qualifications for a housing loan and grant, as well as the chance to purchase new HDB flats are limited only to married Singaporean couples.

Singles will have to wait until they are above 35 years old before they can avail for flats in the resale market. However, permanent residents (PRs) are not subjected to a similar restriction.

In the letter, Ms. Toh claimed that she wrote to HDB five years ago, asking if she could purchase a flat at the age of 30, to which HDB allowed. However, she did not proceed with the purchase due to “unattractive conditions” as she did not qualify for the housing loan and grant from the HDB.

Now at 36, she tried to buy a flat under the singles scheme, but her application was rejected as her income exceeds $3,000.

She was upset that HDB “took the same circumstances into consideration” in permitting her to purchase a flat five years ago, but not now.

“HDB staff advised me to get a bank loan, but I cannot fork out the huge amount of cash upfront. The bank will loan me an amount equivalent to only two times my monthly salary,” she said.

“I feel that the HDB should increase the income ceiling. Five to 10 years ago, a three- or four-room HDB resale flat was priced from $150,000 to $250,000, but now the price has increased to $280,000 to $350,000. In addition, there is the $20,000 to $40,000 cash upfront.”

HDB flat prices, especially that of resale flats have increased in recent years due to rising demand fueled by immigration, and a limited supply of new flats.

Some Singaporean singles are left with no other choice but to compete with PRs in the resale market as they do not qualify to purchase new flats, which are to “encourage” Singaporeans to marry and start a family.

MM Lee Kuan Yew has admitted that the prices of properties have sky-rocketed as a result of foreigners and PRs.

“We’ve grown in the last five years by just importing labour. Now, the people feel uncomfortable, there are too many foreigners. Trains are overcrowded with foreigners, buses too; property prices have gone up because foreigners with permanent residency visas are buying into the market.”

Singaporean singles like Miss Toh will either have to wait till their parents pass away to inherit a roof over their heads or get married to buy a more affordable BTO flat.
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Reader Comments: (10 comments)

Gordon Yan - Nov 22, 2010
PRs are also subject to marriage before they can purchase HDB flat. Somemore, it is only second hand with high COV. Don't be spoilt, Singaporeans. Please know how fortunate you are as a Singaporean.
Guan Yeong Yong - Feb 16, 2010
well, i dun think the policy really favor PRs. They hope they can buy 1st hand flat with government subsidy also but they could not.ultimately they hv to fork out money to buy the 2nd-hand and pay the high COV..
casper flor - Feb 12, 2010
how can i start my own family when i dont even have my own flat? i didnt know marriage license is already one of the requirements in owning a flat duh!
ying - Feb 11, 2010
u mean singles can only RENT but not OWN a unit? bullshit!
KT - Feb 8, 2010
Yeah very sad....as a Singaporean, I believe it is time for the authority to review their policy so that everyone (not only married couple) can afford to buy and own a house in their home land.
Angry Single - Feb 8, 2010
I am 41 and I had enough of the stupid policies which favors PR more than local......Single Singaporean in this case.
Boon Guan Soh - Feb 8, 2010
to Kylie rosales: this is no longer my OWN land. I'm not no longer qualified. so, good luck to those who ever still qualified to be in their OWN home.
Donna Lim - Feb 8, 2010
Totally agree with the frustrations. Singapore govt is really taking care well of the foreigners than to us Singaporean.. If I'm rich enough, I'll leave Singapore for good and settle in another country.
Eve K - Feb 5, 2010
Why are they "forcing" us (singles/divorcee without kids) to settle down just to enjoy the benefits? We too need roofs over our heads! C'mon! We need more help!! Not more burden!!! The rules & regulations seriously need to be changed!!!
kylie rosales - Feb 5, 2010
to Boon Guan Soh: why do you endure all the burden, when you have all the right to live a happy and decent life in your OWN land

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