Increase in two-room flats to aid younger singles

Younger singles may soon stand a better chance of getting hotly contested new two-room flexi flats.
Younger singles may soon stand a better chance of getting hotly contested new two-room flexi flats. PHOTO: ST FILE

Younger singles may soon stand a better chance of getting hotly contested new two-room flexi flats, as the Government works to clear the backlog over the next two years by ramping up supply.

The application rate per flat last year for this group of singles aged between 35 and 54 was 6.6, much higher than the total application rate for families, the elderly and singles, which was 2.7 last year.

It means those applicants have "to try several times before they are successful", said National Development Minister Lawrence Wong yesterday.

"If you look at the overall picture, the situation for elderly singles is getting better... The one group where the application rates are still very high is the non-elderly singles," he said.

 

But the Government is ramping up the supply of two-room flexi flats - which come with shorter leases - over the next two years, the minister told Ms Lee Bee Wah (Nee Soon GRC), who asked for more measures to help repeat applicants get such flats.

Singles have been allowed to buy new two-room flats in non-mature estates since July 2013. To address the demand, the Housing Board has increased the supply of two-room flexi units in non-mature estates from 320 units in 2012 to an average of 4,000 units per year between 2014 and 2016, Mr Wong said.

About 40 per cent of these flats are set aside for elderly applicants, including singles, aged 55 and above.

The remaining flat supply is divided equally between non-elderly singles and families.

Meanwhile, any balance flats not taken up by the elderly or families are offered to singles, he said.

Rachel Au-Yong

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 04, 2017, with the headline 'Increase in two-room flats to aid younger singles'. Print Edition | Subscribe