Tag Archives: People’s Action Party

Mah Bow Tan on housing

The highest price for a five-room flat in April’s BTO launches was S$484,000. Will the price of BTO flats reach half a million dollars and more in future?

Mah Bow Tan: Depends on the location. If you’re building one in Queenstown and in the central area, where land is more expensive, because HDB has to buy the land, it’s possible. I think Singaporeans would appreciate that it’s not just absolute cost alone but value for money … If the value of a comparable private flat is higher, then it may happen. But that’s not cause for concern unless it isn’t affordable … If you look at the sums … somebody earning S$8,000 to S$9,000 will be able to afford that.

You had said a couple can use little cash for their home. Some people said their CPF savings would be wiped out to pay the mortgage.

Mah Bow Tan: So you convert the money in the Central Provident Fund to equity in the house, which is going to be higher than the equity in the CPF … if the economy continues to do well, which is the basic underlying assumption. If it doesn’t happen, all bets are off, even your CPF money. So we must assume there must always continue to be good governance … So the answer to the question (that) I pay for my house for 30 years, I get nothing, is wrong, right? I have a house which has a value. I can unlock that value in so many ways.

Source : Today – 5 May 2011

PM Lee sorry about housing issues

Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said the government could have moved more quickly and efficiently to address the shortfalls in the country’s housing and transport industries.

The Prime Minister also acknowledged that things do not always go as planned and there might be side effects from the government’s decisions.

The government has had to “watch the wind and the tide and we have to pick our chances when we can and when the wind comes, put up your sail and go with it,” said PM Lee, likening the country to a “small boat on a stormy ocean (and) not a nuclear (powered) aircraft carrier.”

He also addressed the mistakes made by his government and said that he is sorry for them. He noted that his team is doing their best to address the problems.

“We can’t go exactly on a straight line, from point A to point B, and have everything just perfect in every spot. There will be detours, sidetracks, side effects from our decisions,” he said.

The examples cited included the increasing influx of foreign workers, the flooding of Orchard Road, overcrowding on MRT trains and skyrocketing home prices.

“These are real problems. We will tackle them,” he said.

“When these problems vex you or disturb you or upset your lives, please bear with us. We’re trying our best on your behalf. And if we didn’t quite get it right, I’m sorry but we will try and do better the next time.”

Source : PropertyGuru – 4 May 2011