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First-Time HDB Buyers To Get More Help, Wong

The authorities will unveil new measures aimed at providing more help to first-time buyers of new and resale Housing Board flats next month.

This comes as Minister for National Development Lawrence Wong revealed in a Facebook post that his ministry and the Housing and Development Board (HDB) have been exploring ways on how they can further help first-time buyers.

He noted that the quarterly HDB sales exercise set to be held this month had been moved to next month to enable more home buyers to benefit from the changes.

About 3,350 flats in Tampines and Punggol will be offered in the next Build-to-Order exercise, reported The New Paper.

The authorities have rolled out several policy changes in recent years to help home buyers.

From 2017, the housing grants for resale flats have been increased to up to $50,000 from up to $30,000 previously.

In 2018, HDB also allowed young couples, including national servicemen and undergraduates aged at least 21, to apply for grants for the earlier purchase of flats, instead of placing such plans in the back burner due to lack of income history.

It also introduced flats with shorter waiting times of around 2 ½ years, down from the usual three to four years.

“These changes have improved housing affordability and helped young families to secure their own homes earlier,” said Wong.

OrangeTee & Tie research head Christine Tun, however, noted that younger buyers may find it hard to purchase older flats following changes to the amount of CPF money that could be used for such homes.

“This could be relooked as some of these young people may like to stay near their parents in mature estates or prefer to stay near the downtown area,” she said.

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