FLAT owners who sublet rooms in Housing Board flats have until the end of this month to register with the board if the subletting began before Feb 1.
For subletting that started from that date or later, registration must be done within seven days from when the subletting began.
This requirement is in line with ongoing efforts by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to eradicate loan-sharking activities and help protect HDB residents from being victimised by such activities.
When some people borrow money from loan sharks, they move to a new location but give the loan sharks their previous addresses. This way, if they fall behind on payments, those living at their former addresses will be the ones harassed by the loan sharks.
The new rule enables HDB to capture the particulars of those who rent rooms in HDB flats and allows MHA to trace the movement of borrowers.
HDB may impose a penalty on those who fail to register their subletting. The penalty could involve a fine of up to $3,000, and for recalcitrant cases, HDB could take back the flat.
For further information or inquiries, the public can call HDB's toll-free Subletting of Flat & Rooms Enquiry Line on 1800-555-6370.
Source: Straits Times, 16 Jul 2010