2017 Yearender: Housing

Smoke detectors mandatory for new homes

Single-storey homes must have a smoke detector in the living room; multi-storey homes, one on each floor.
Single-storey homes must have a smoke detector in the living room; multi-storey homes, one on each floor. PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO

It will be mandatory to install smoke detectors in all newly built homes, including Housing Board flats, from June next year. This applies to those that have their building plans submitted after the new Fire Code kicks in.

Second Minister for Home Affairs Josephine Teo said last month that the ageing demographic of residents was an "important consideration" when updating the Fire Code, which is currently in its seventh edition.

All new single-storey homes will need only one device in the living room. For multi-storey homes, each floor will need at least one device, and floors with combined living and dining room spaces of more than 70 sq m will require at least two.

Existing homes that undergo fire safety works after June, such as renovations involving a fire-rated door, will also have to install smoke detectors.

The installation cost for new homes will be borne by developers. Owners of existing homes will have to pay for them, although about 50,000 households in public rental flats will have them installed for free.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 28, 2017, with the headline 'Smoke detectors mandatory for new homes'. Print Edition | Subscribe