The Government should make sure that housing policies do not exacerbate the social divide through the lottery effect (Million-dollar HDB flats: Location, type and size count; Feb 4).
In recent years, the focus has been to ensure upward mobility for all Singaporeans, as there is a bigger divide across socio-economic status which threatens our social fabric. However, housing policies exacerbate this divide as only a lucky few benefit from them by successfully balloting for a Build-To-Order Housing Board flat in a coveted location.
While these few stand to make a handsome profit from either selling or renting their flat after the minimum occupation period, those profits are ultimately being subsidised by taxpayers.
In such situations, I hope the Government will take measures to ensure better distribution of wealth, such as imposing a capital gains tax on the sale of subsidised flats with the tax decreasing incrementally with the owner-occupation period.
The funds collected could be channelled into helping the less fortunate.
Ultimately, HDB flats are heavily subsidised and meant for owner-occupation, and not to benefit a limited segment by giving them the windfall of a lifetime.
Lee Yong Se