A recent consumer sentiment study found that more young Singaporeans, compared with older age groups, are considering renting and flat-sharing. But most still intend to buy a home within the next two years. The reasons they cited included current property prices being too high and an interest in alternatives such as shared housing. This could mean renting a common room in a flat, or co-living spaces with common facilities. These findings tie in with data showing that it is increasingly common for young people to live outside the family home. Between 1990 and 2020, the number of Singaporeans and permanent residents under the age of 35 living alone or away from their parents rose from 33,400 to 51,300.
Some argue that public housing policy should, therefore, accommodate the growing and diverse rental needs of Singaporeans, and that HDB rental flats should not be seen as being just for the less well-off who cannot afford to own a home. However, there already are a wide range of open market rental options, including co-living, a growing trend that the authorities are studying. Also, the benefits of home ownership go beyond having a roof over one's head.