With effect from yesterday’s Build-to-Order (BTO) launch, the income ceiling for two-room flats in non-mature estates has been raised from S$2,000 to S$5,000 — bringing it in line with the income ceiling for these units in mature estates.
In March last year, the Government raised the income ceiling for two-room flats in mature estates but decided against raising it for these flats in non-mature estates, citing the need to “safeguard” such flats for low-income families. Nevertheless, National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan said earlier this month in a written parliamentary reply that the Housing and Development Board (HDB) was reviewing the income ceiling for two-room flats in non-mature estates.
ERA Key Executive Officer Eugene Lim said the move would alleviate the demand for three-room flats from small households earning more than S$2,000.
Separately, couples comprising a first-time buyer and a second-time buyer will now enjoy the same priority as a couple who are both first-time buyers, the HDB said yesterday. The priority for first-timer families includes a higher proportion of flat supply set aside for them, additional ballot chances and eligibility for schemes such as the Parenthood Priority Scheme and Parenthood Provisional Housing Scheme.
The change will help singles who subsequently marry after buying a two-room BTO flat to buy their new matrimonial flat. It will also benefit reconstituted families comprising a first-timer and a second-timer applicant, such as divorcees who remarry, the HDB said.
Mr Colin Tan, head of Research and Consultancy at Chesterton Suntec International, said the size of the group of potential beneficiaries is small and he did not expect any impact on the chances of first-time couples.
Source – 31 Jul 2013 – Today