REVIEW OF CONDITIONS ATTACHED TO OWNERS BUYING HDB EXECUTIVE CONDOMINIUMS GIVEN NEW CLASSIFICATIONS OF HDB FLATS
Recently, I noted a BT article in which it was stated that “Executive Condos are still residential market darlings”. The authors further stated that “for many Singaporean families, buying an EC is akin to getting a golden ticket to owning a private property”.
As is well known, HDB recently reviewed the BTO system with a view to making housing fair, accessible and affordable. I felt it necessary to ask whether the review should extend to ECs too so as to minimise the “lottery effect”. Hence, I filed a PQ asking whether HDB will take any measure to ensure that HDB Executive Condominiums (ECs) will remain accessible and affordable in the resale market. and housing affordability for the same.
My PQ and Minister Desmond Lee’s answer are set out below.
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Mr Murali Pillai asked the Minister for National Development having regard to the Government’s announcement of the new classification of HDB flats and conditions attached to Plus and Prime housing models in August 2023, whether there will be a review of the conditions attached to owners purchasing HDB Executive Condominiums (ECs) with a view to ensure that the ECs will continue to be relatively affordable and accessible in the resale market after completion of the minimum occupation periods.
Mr Desmond Lee: The Executive Condominium (EC) Housing Scheme was introduced to provide an affordable option for higher-income Singaporeans who aspire to own private housing. EC developments are strata-titled and have similar design features and facilities to private condominium developments. There are also fewer restrictions on the purchase of EC units as compared to HDB flats.
The measures in place to keep EC units affordable include eligibility conditions such as citizenship, age, and income ceiling to buy EC units directly from developers, and restrictions on ownership and resale. There is a minimum occupation period of five years from the date of issue of the Temporary Occupation Permit, during which the EC units cannot be sold on the open market or fully rented out. Thereafter, during the next five years, EC units can only be sold to Singapore Citizens or Singapore Permanent Residents. From the eleventh year onwards, EC units can be transacted as regular private housing. The resale restrictions help to moderate the prices of resale EC units.
Since 2021, three rounds of cooling measures have been implemented to promote a sustainable property market.
The Government will continue to review our housing policies to ensure that the EC Housing Scheme remains relevant in meeting the housing needs of Singaporeans.