Singapore, a country with limited land space to develop. The government have to provide 99-years leasehold properties for the people here in order to conserve land.

I stumble upon this news when I was looking for an apartment in Singapore. The million dollar question that every HDB owners want to know "What will happen to their HDB after 99 years lease is up? ". Although there are some flats build before Singapore independence but none has reach close to end the lease.

HDB clears the air on lease expiry
Below was a HDB reply to Mr Wong Pang Yee's letter, 'Allay uncertainty over HDB leasehold' (April 13, ST).

HDB flats are 99-year leasehold properties. Like all leasehold properties, the land will revert to the Government when the lease on the land expires. The overwhelming majority of HDB flats today are far from expiry of their leases.
However, some flats in older estates may be selected for redevelopment under the Selective En Bloc Redevelopment Scheme, if it is economically viable. To maintain the value of older flats, the Government has also introduced various upgrading programmes such as the Home Improvement Programme and Lift Upgrading Programme.
Chan-Wong Jee Choo Lily (Mrs)
Deputy Director, Policy and Property
Housing & Development Board

Current resales HDB price
I did a search on current resale price of HDB website. A 4-room flat and average of 88sqm (about 947sqf) in ANG MO KIO with remaining lease of 50 odd years was sold for $460,000.

A search result of the current resale price of 4 room flat in Ang Mo Kio

Paying $162,370 interest over 30 years

A down payment of 20% ($92,000) of the total property price is required to secure the purchase. After the compound interest of 2.6% for a maximum loan period of 30 years on the remaining 80% ($368,000) of the flat.Every month of the 30 years lease will cost the buyer $1,473.25, this price does not include stamp fees, lawyer fee, property tax and miscellaneous fee for owning the flat. The final price for staying 50 years in this house is likely to exceed $700,000.

With the ever rocketing resales price of HDB, most couples had to work half their life to fully pay off the HDB /Bank loan.But at the end, they do not actually own the flat because the land does not belong to them in the first place.

In the reply, some flats in the older estate maybe selected for En Bloc, but most the tenants will be retires grandma and grandpa who have live half their life in that area. These selected flats are mostly in good location. Although a sum of money is given to them but they have to move away from the place where they are familiar in and move to another location with poorer amenities. If they are lucky, the compensation amount will be enough to get them another flat. But depending on the market, if the compensated amount is lower than the current market. They may have to service another 30 years loan for a new 99 years old flat. It will be a shock of life to let a retired couple service another loan.

Are the government and the HDB working in conjunction to keep the people indebted all the time? By buying a flat, we fall into the trap. Hopefully, we can get out of this debt prison, else we are just going to follow HONG KONG footsteps.

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