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Singaporean families in public rental homes are now homeowners

The Housing and Development Board has offered help through various housing schemes 

DonatasDabravolskas/Shutterstock

As reported by The Straits Times, around 4,600 public rental-flat families have become owners of Housing and Development Board (HDB) homes throughout the past five years via numerous housing grants and schemes.  

By 2023, HDB is aiming to provide flats to approximately 1,000 more families. 

According to the statutory board, three in four among the 4,600 households directly bought a flat from them, while the rest purchases a resale flat on the open market.  

About two-thirds of the families used housing grants such as the Enhanced CPF Housing Grant (EHG), which distributes up to SGD80,000 (USD60615.26) in grants to eligible buyers.  

Others had drawn on the Additional CPF Housing Grant (AHG) and Special CPF Housing Grant (SHG), which dispensed up to SGD40,000 in grants each. However, EHG has now replaced these two grants.  

The Fresh Start housing scheme allows families with at least one child below 18 years old, who live in public rental flats and have bought a subsidised flat before, to also buy a two-room flexi flat.  

Currently, there are nearly 50,000 households living in public rental flats.  

By 2023, about 1,000 rental households who have been evaluated in advance for potential in purchasing a flat will be contacted by the HDB’s Home Ownership Support Team (HST) via roadshows, phone calls, etc.  

HDB takes into consideration factors, such as the household’s ability to afford a flat and income stability when making such evaluations.  

As of 2020, the team has contacted 654 rental families. They will continue to track the progress of the remaining households and help them as much as possible.  

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Technician Jumali Remin is among the 4,600 families who are now owners of a Housing Board flat.  

“Initially, we were a little hesitant on whether we can afford a two-room flat, but after working out our finances and budget with the team, we were glad to learn that we could afford one,” Remin said.  

“Having lived in a two-room rental flat for close to a decade, we never imagined that we would one day be able to own a flat… It was something we have dreamt about for a long time and to see it finally materialise is one of the happiest moments of our lives,” he concluded.  

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