atans1

The real truths about public housing

In Property on 21/06/2018 at 11:13 am

Not Hard Truths but the truths about public housing as revealed by “Tan Jin Meng, a postgraduate from the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy. He has an interest in social policy and economics.”.

But first, a reminder why the topic of HDB housing is a problem for the PAP administration what with its “asset enhancement” policies.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whatever happened to asset enhancement since 2013 Q2 is a question being asked by more than the anti-PAP activists and their allied cybernuts.

Back to Tan Jin Meng and his truths about HDB: writing in CNA he says

An over-emphasis on home ownership can come at a cost to society. Time for a review of public housing policy

And

Singapore’s housing policy started out with the aim of providing basic, comfortable and safe housing security for Singaporeans. Over the decades, strong public policy support may have led to an over-emphasis on housing ownership, leading to unintended consequences …

Read more at https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/commentary/emphasis-home-ownership-hdb-lease-review-of-public-housing-10423116.

But if time-challenged juz read these two extracts

The first explains that the PAP administration has by way of subsidies (Uncle Leong and cybernuts will ask though “Subsidies? What subsidies?”) created an entitlement mentality in public housing:

Addressing the 99-year leasehold issue or the retirement security issue without a cost to the home owner would effectively need a cross subsidy from future tax payers.

Any changes to housing policy that impact prices would need to consider the fact that most voting Singaporeans have a vested interest in keeping house prices up.

The continuous subsidy of housing in Singapore has been underpinned by the Land Acquisition Act of 1966, which had used historical cost for acquiring land, managing to keep new HDB flat prices low. In 1959, the State owned 44 per cent of all land, and by the mid-2000s, it was 85 per cent.

Effectively, the Government redistributed land wealth from land owners to the rest of the population, aided by a growing economy supporting prices. This, however, cannot continue forever as housing leases start to run out, our economy slows, and our population ages.

The Government had, over the decades since independence, resisted calls to liberally expand the social safety net, in order to avoid the development of an entitlement culture – that once you give someone something, you cannot easily take it back without antagonising that person, and you may end up with an intolerable burden for future generations.

Yet, housing remains one social programme where much resources have been poured into.

The other very important truth is

A house is not just a shelter. It is also a leveraged financial asset. You are taking risk on both property prices and interest rates. Singapore’s rapid growth over the first 50 years from independence has led many people to believe that home ownership is a “sure win”, as house prices also rose from wage and population growth.

Sounds like the “asset enhancement” policies got a lot to answer for, and so has our PM who was DPM and the economy czar in the 90s, when the policies were introduced to fix the Oppo.

“Asset enhancement? What asset enhancement?”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Only if buy BTO flat leh, PAP will say. Go back and read what the PM, DPM and other PAP ministers said.

Wonder if our our constructive, nation-building media’s articles from the 1990s are as amendable as the media articles in Airstrip One in “1984”.

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  1. the policy actually arose unintentionally: with increased immigration, PRs not entitled to buy from HDB were allowed to buy on open market, and could pay more than HDB prices; citizens then began to sell then buy new ones from HDB; the government found it politically advantageous in the short term (it was part of the long string of ST forum letters between matthias yao and CSJ), but now has to cope with various consequences

  2. No worries man! PAPies already got policies to solve. Will unleash in GE2025 and GE2030 to shore up votes.
    Current narrative by LW & gang is to prepare & marinate sinkies well & good for the Stockholm syndrome to come.

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