2-room Flexi flats see encouraging response

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Many elderly buyers have booked 2-room Flexi flats as they offer shorter leases.

The Housing and Development Board (HDB) on Sunday (5 March) said the 2-Room Flexi Scheme has received “very encouraging” response, with 87 percent of the 6,070 units offered in four sales exercises already booked, reported Channel NewsAsia.

The four sales exercises involved one each in February and May 2016, and two in November 2015.

Elderly buyers accounted for 45 percent of those who booked the flats, while the rest were singles and families. Of the elderly buyers, 85 percent opted for shorter leases.

This comes as the scheme provided elderly buyers aged 55 and above with flexible lease options ranging from 15 to 45 years, in five-year increments. Flat prices vary based on the lease tenure, and elderly buyers pay for the units via cash or CPF savings, instead of a mortgage loan.

With 697 bookings, the 40-year lease emerged as the most popular option. The 35-year lease was the second most popular with 599 bookings, followed by 30-year leases with 344 bookings.

Nicholas Mak, Head of Research and Consultancy at SLP International, noted that the flexi-lease scheme appealed to retirees since it offered them a feasible option to downsize.

“With this flexi scheme, the elderly get to monetise their existing four- or five-room flats by selling it and then buying another one…They still get to live in a place of their own,” said Mak, who was quoted by The New Paper.

“A lot of money and CPF are tied up in their flat, so by buying small and selling big, they can draw some money out,” he added.

 

Romesh Navaratnarajah, Senior Editor at PropertyGuru, edited this story. To contact him about this or other stories, email romesh@propertyguru.com.sg