1,700 flats surrendered to HDB in past 5 years due to various reasons, including divorce or break up

This was revealed by Senior Minister of State for National Development Sim Ann in Parliament on March 2.

Tanya Ong | March 02, 2021, 01:02 PM

1,700 flats were surrendered to the Housing Development Board in the last five years.

Of these flats, about half were 2-room flats, one-sixth were 3-room flats, and one-third were 4-room or larger flats.

This was revealed by Senior Minister of State for National Development Sim Ann in Parliament on Tuesday (Mar 2) in an oral answer.

Sim was responding to a question by Ang Mo Kio GRC MP Gan Thiam Poh, who asked about:

  • The number of HDB flats that have been resold to HDB in the past five years,
  • the reason why these these flats are resold to HDB instead of in the open market, and
  • whether HDB will consider assisting these sellers by offering their flats in HDB's open booking system.

Around 1,000 were short-lease flats

Sim said that around 1,000 of the surrendered flats were short-lease flats.

This comprises Studio Apartments, 2-room Flexi flats bought on a short lease, and flats whose owners had opted for the Lease Buyback Scheme.

Sim explained that owners of short-lease flats who no longer wished to retain their flats or who had become ineligible to do so, are required to surrender their flats to HDB.

They are not allowed to sell them on the open market.

700 surrendered due to changes in owners' circumstances within MOP

The remaining 700 flats were surrendered to HDB mostly due to changes in the owners’ circumstances within their Minimum Occupation Period, which rendered them ineligible to own an HDB flat.

As these owners had not fulfilled their Minimum Occupation Period, they were not allowed to sell their flats on the open market.

Sim said that the most common reasons for surrender of flats were divorce, break-up of fiancé-fiancée relationship, and annulment of marriage.

Sale of balance exercise

For surrendered flats, HDB will offer them for sale through the Sale of Balance Flats exercises.

If the flats remain unselected after the Sale of Balance Flats exercise, they may then be made available under open booking.

Top photo via Unsplash/Chuttersnap.