Channel NewsAsia

326 households on Enhanced Lease Buyback Scheme: Khaw

Speaking in Parliament, Minister of National Development Khaw Boon Wan also gave details on the type of flats Singaporeans aged 55 and above own, with 44 per cent staying in 4-room flats.

SINGAPORE: A total of 326 households have signed up for the Enhanced Lease Buyback Scheme since it was updated in February 2013, according to National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan.

Mr Khaw was speaking in Parliament on Tuesday (Aug 5), in response to MP Dr Intan Azura Mokhtar's question on how many lower-income elderly Singaporeans have signed up for the scheme.

The Enhanced Lease Buyback Scheme is a monetisation option to help low-income elderly households in 3-room and smaller flats to unlock part of their housing equity while still living in their homes, and receive a lifelong income stream to supplement their retirement income, according to the Housing and Development Board's website.

Under the Scheme, elderly flat owners sell part of their flat lease to HDB and retain a 30-year lease. Their proceeds from selling part of the flat lease will be used to top up their CPF Retirement Accounts. Flat owners will use their full CPF Retirement Account savings to purchase a CPF LIFE plan to give them a monthly income for life.

Dr Intan also asked for the breakdown of the flats Singaporeans aged 55 years and above live in, and how many in each flat type is considered a lower-income elderly.

Mr Khaw said: "There are about 367,000 households with at least one Singaporean flat owner aged 55 years old and above, living in 3-room, 4-room and 5-room flats. Of these households, 32 per cent are 3-room flats, 44 per cent are 4-room flats, and 24 per cent are 5-room flats"

He added that the Housing and Development Board does not have the income information since it does not require flat owners to update their income.

Tweet photos, videos and updates on this story to  @channelnewsasia