Monday, April 19, 2010

Think before selling HDB flat, says DPM

It’s a key source of financial security upon retirement, home owners told

DEPUTY Prime Minister Wong Kan Seng yesterday urged home owners to think before selling their HDB flats in the current upbeat property market.

‘In today’s brisk market, some of us may be tempted to sell our flat for a profit. I urge you to think carefully before you act on it. Your HDB flat is meant for you to keep for a longer term. It is a key source of financial security upon your retirement,’ said Mr Wong, who is also Home Affairs Minister and MP for Bishan-Toa Payoh GRC, yesterday.

‘There are various ways of monetising the value of your HDB flats when you are ready to do so. But please do not sell your flat until you are satisfied that you have another place to stay.’

Mr Wong was speaking at the HDB’s 50th anniversary celebration near the Bishan MRT station.

As part of a series of year-long celebrations to commemorate 50 years of public housing, the ‘Storeys of Our Homes’ exhibition will be on the move throughout the heartlands until July this year.

Held in the towns representing the five main zones – Eunos, Bishan, Choa Chu Kang, Woodlands, and Tampines – the exhibition is set to move on to the zone celebration in Choa Chu Kang next month, followed by the ones in Woodlands and Tampines in June and July, respectively.

The exhibition will cover the main milestones that have come to mould public housing today, and recent developments like Remaking Our Heartland plans, The Pinnacle@Duxton and Treelodge@Punggol.

‘In the early years, housing conditions were deplorable. There was a severe housing shortage, with many living in slums and squatter colonies,’ said Mr Wong.

‘The first task HDB faced was quite an uphill one – to re-house the large numbers of people from the squatters and farmlands urgently. HDB built basic housing that was cheaper and faster to construct.’

Mr Wong pointed out the upgrading that eight towns – Ang Mo Kio, Toa Payoh, Bishan, Serangoon, Kallang/Whampoa, Queenstown, Bukit Merah and the Central Area – had enjoyed to date.

‘The government has spent nearly $3.4 billion to complete the upgrading of the living environment for more than 150,000 households in these eight towns,’ said Mr Wong.

‘It has also committed another $1 billion to upgrade the living environment for yet another 85,000 households. I can assure you that as long as we have the financial resources, the government will continue to extend upgrading to all other households eligible for upgrading.’

Source: Business Times, 19 Apr 2010

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