Beginning January next year, elderly Singaporean home owners of small flats will receive S$550 per month if they take up the option to sell part of their lease back to the Housing Development Board (HDB).

The scheme, first announced last August, is to cater to the elderly folk who may not have as many options as those who are living in bigger flats. Under the scheme, proceeds of the sale will go to a Central Provident Fund Life annuity, which will provide a stream of monthly payouts for retirement while they continue to live comfortably in their homes.

Open to anyone aged at least 62 years, the scheme is expected to cater to about 25,000 households, which represents 70 per cent of the elderly folk who own two- and three-room flats.

If the owner outlives the lease, there will be an option to buy a lease extension. This may not be affordable for all, therefore HDB will assess housing options of each family and take into account their financial health.

Meanwhile, if the flat owner dies prematurely, his estate will receive a pro-rated refund on the residual lease.

Studio flats are another option for the elderly folk and the Singapore government is building more of these with many two-room flats available in its new estates. These are also less subscribed compared to bigger flats, therefore are available immediately upon completion.

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Tags: CPF, CPF life annuity, HDB, HDB flat, lease buy-back scheme, ms-singaporehdb


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