HDB to monitor resale market to ensure property market stability

National Development Minister Mah Bow Tan has assured Singaporeans the Housing and Development Board (HDB) will continue to monitor the resale flat market closely.

This is to see if additional measures are needed to maintain a healthy and stable property market.

In a written reply to questions in Parliament Monday, Mr Mah stressed that HDB flats are intended for long-term owner occupation.

He noted that some people may buy HDB flats in anticipation of future price increases, even though they may not be in need of housing.

And this is one of the reasons for the strong demand.

Mr Mah added that flat prices may rise or fall in the short term.

So his advice to buyers: be financially prudent and remember that HDB flats are meant for their long-term occupation.

The HDB recently announced that it will offer up to 16,000 Build-To-Order (BTO) flats this year to cater to the strong demand.

Mr Mah said this is almost double the 9,000 BTO flats offered in 2009.

And at the rate of 16,000 flats per year, the HDB will offer more flats than the total number of flats in Bukit Panjang or Pasir Ris town in just two years.

Mr Mah is confident the substantial increase in the supply of new flats will cater to the needs of first-time flat buyers and siphon off some of the housing demand that is driving up resale flat prices.

To provide more housing choices for flat buyers, he said the supply of 16,000 BTO flats will be augmented by some 5,200 housing units under the Design, Build & Sell Scheme (DBSS) and Executive Condominium Housing Scheme (ECHS) already tendered in 2010.

Mr Mah told Parliament that the HDB is prepared to launch more sites for DBSS and EC if there is sustained demand.

Source : Channel NewsAsia – 16 Aug 2010

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