by OrangeTee & Tie Pte Ltd.

HDB 'lottery' conundrum: analysts weigh in on ways to mitigate it

SRX HDB Resale Data

SRX HDB Resale Data

SG, 03 Dec 2020

When HDB flats complete their five-year minimum occupation period (MOP) this year, some owners unloaded them on the resale market for a startling 60-70 per cent gain. 

Of course, not all HDB flats can fetch that kind of profits, but such deals, among other factors, are raising concerns about the affordability of resale public housing units in prime locations. 

The subject was brought into focus this week when National Development Minister Desmond Lee acknowledged the "lottery effect" of HDB flats in prime areas, which may result in a "likely windfall" for those who sell government-subsidised build-to-order (BTO) flats on the resale market.

While the government may put in place curbs or eligibility criteria on who can buy these resale flats, such rulings may not fully deter cash-rich buyers, or those with strong financial support from affluent parents, said OrangeTee & Tie's head of research and consultancy Christine Sun. 

She pointed out that another possible way is to mandate that owners sell back these prime flats to HDB. "In this way, there may be some form of 'control' over the resale prices and capital gains," Ms Sun added.

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