Exclude investors from votes on collective sales

Mr Tan Cheng Siong's concern about the "majority shall prevail" rule in collective sales and his call against tearing down buildings that are less than 20 years old are both valid (Minority's power in collective sales hurts progress; April 10).

Collective sales are necessary when owners of ageing buildings cannot afford the high cost of replacing damaged underground pipes and cables, upgrading lifts, repairing leaking roof membranes and inter-floor damage, and so on.

However, the new objective of collective sales is to make money.

Condominiums are no longer the dream upgrades of Singapore citizens and permanent residents.

Many owners are now foreign investors who buy the units to push for collective sales, to the detriment of locals who regard the property as their home.

Perhaps foreign and corporate owners should be excluded from votes on collective sales, and the 80 per cent majority rule should be applied only to Singaporean and PR owners.

This would add transparency and prevent abuse of the rule.

Francis Zhan

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on April 15, 2018, with the headline 'Exclude investors from votes on collective sales'. Subscribe