SINGAPORE: Married Singaporean couples who bought or plan to buy a second home over the next few weeks will now have more time to sell their first property and claim back their Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD).
This is part of the Government's temporary relief measures for the property sector for individuals affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Under the current ABSD regime, a Singaporean married couple buying a second residential property have to sell their first home within six months after the date of purchase if the second property is a completed unit, in order to be eligible for ABSD remission.
If the second property was uncompleted at the time of purchase, the couple have six months to do so, after the issue date of the Temporary Occupation Permit (TOP) or Certificate of Statutory Completion (CSC), whichever is earlier.
Under the temporary relief measures, the sale timeline for remission of ABSD paid on the second homes for Singaporean married couples will be extended by six months, said the Ministry of National Development in a joint press release on Wednesday (May 6) with the Ministries of Finance, Law and Trade and Industry.
To qualify for the six-month extension, the couple’s second residential property must have been jointly purchased on or before Jun 1, 2020.
The original timeline for sale of the first residential property must also have expired on or after Feb 1, 2020, the press release said, adding that the application for the remission of ABSD must be made within six months after the date of sale of the first residential property.
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The COVID-19 pandemic and public health measures imposed by governments around the world to stem the outbreak have disrupted supply chains and created manpower shortages.
A slew of temporary relief measures was also announced on Wednesday for property developers affected by the COVID-19 disruptions.
“The circuit breaker measures put in place from Apr 7, 2020, also saw the suspension of work at construction sites, operations at housing developers’ sales galleries, and home viewings," the ministries said. "This has affected construction timelines and the sale of housing units.
“The Government will continue to closely monitor the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the progress of work within the construction industry, and on the property sector, and will adjust our policies as necessary."
The Real Estate Developers' Association of Singapore (REDAS) said on Wednesday it welcomes the Government's "pragmatic decision" to extend temporary relief measures for property developers and individuals.
"This timely adjustment will help to some extent relieve the near-term concerns and needs of eligible Singaporean married couples who need more time to sell their first property and purchase their second property," said REDAS.