Priority is to help S’poreans own first flat: Khaw

National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan has said imposing an income ceiling for resale flats will deprive flat owners of the full market value of their flats.

He was answering a question in Parliament on Monday on whether the ministry would consider limiting the sale of 3-room or smaller flats to lower income Singaporeans.

Chua Chu Kang GRC MP Zaqy Mohamad noted that the Cash-Over-Valuation (COV) for 3-room flats is much higher than that for 4- and 5-room flats in recent years.

He added that the huge COV is a barrier for those who need to downgrade from a bigger flat.

Mr Khaw said: “Our priority is to help Singaporean families own their first flat. But here, the member is obviously talking about second-timers, somebody who has bought it and then sold the flat for whatever reason, and then try to come back, and face difficulties.

“The data do not quite suggest so because I’ve been looking at the median income of BTO flat applicants, the latest batch. For 3-roomers, it’s about S$2,500 per month.

“But for resale flat, again the latest data, the median income is S$3,000, so which is not significantly different from the BTO applicants…

“I think our advice to our constituents is we will help you, we’ll help practically every Singaporean family to own their first flat, and buy within your budget and then please keep it.

“If you want to upgrade, that is a good development, but make sure, do your sums and then you should not have a problem doing so.”

Source : Channel NewsAsia – 16 Jan 2012

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