By: Leong Sze Hian
New HDB Fresh Start Housing
When I watched the Channel NewsAsia news clip (2 minutes and 13 seconds) on the new HDB Fresh Start Housing scheme – I was left with an obvious question in my head – how come the 2.13 minutes news clip didn’t say anything about the indicative prices of such HDB flats?
No prices in the media?
Well, I waited until this morning (Dec 2) to read the news in the Straits Times and Today.
Both these newspapers’ articles on this new scheme also did not mention the obvious and arguably the most important piece of information – what are the indicative prices?
Only available to needy HDB rentees?
According to the Straits Times article – “Applications to be on the Fresh Start Housing Scheme are now open for families who once owned a flat but now live in public rental units.
The scheme allows the families, who must have at least a child below the age of 16, to apply for a new Housing Board flat with a grant of up to $35,000, the Ministry of National Development and HDB announced in a statement yesterday.
After getting on the scheme, families have a year to apply for a new flat in the HDB’s regular Build-To-Order or Sale of Balance Flats launches.
The scheme has several conditions. For instance, at least one of the applicants must have been in stable employment for the previous 12 months. The family must also be assessed by the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF). The MSF and HDB will do regular checks to ensure the families are on track.
The scheme helps by letting them buy a two-room flexi flat on a shorter lease and giving them another HDB concessionary rate loan and a new Fresh Start Housing Grant of up to $35,000.
Mr Wong said: “We are starting with a more targeted approach. So the number of Fresh Start families may not be large to begin with.”
Interested families must apply and be placed on the scheme before applying for a flat. They can do so on the HDB website, at HDB branches or at Toa Payoh HDB Hub.
Mr Wong has also appointed a Fresh Start Advisory Committee to support outreach efforts and give guidance on implementation.”
2-room flexi prices
In this connection – an example of the prices for a 2-room flexi flat in the past, was $110,000, $62,800 and $36,700 for 99, 40 and 15 years lease, respectively.
Do you think the shorter lease prices are reasonable? What do you think?
HDB web site – also no indicative prices?
So, with still no information on the indicative prices of this new scheme – I went to the HDB web site’s link on the scheme – also no mention of the indicative prices!
One has to use your Singpass to access the application link – which gave me a message that I was not eligible as I was not renting a HDB rental flat.
“You are not eligible to apply for the Fresh Start Housing Scheme as you are not a tenant currently renting a flat from HDB under the Public Rental Scheme.
For more details, please approach the HDB Branches”
So, why is there no information on the indicative prices?
For example, what are the indicative prices for the shorter lease 2-room flexi flats, under this new scheme?
Prices so low that only few can see?
Could it be that they are so low that only HDB rentees are allowed to see or to know?