Review of studio flat scheme

There will be a review of the studio apartment (SA) scheme, Minister for National Development Khaw Boon Wan said yesterday.

He said the SA scheme was introduced in 1998 after HDB stopped building small flats, and it provided a smaller flat option for seniors who wanted to right-size.

But things have changed since new two-room (2R) flats are now available.

Marine Parade GRC MP Seah Kian Peng asked if HDB could consider shorter leases of 70 years for smaller flats as this could help Singaporeans who prefer a more affordable flat and have no wish to pass it on to their heirs.

Said Mr Khaw: "We may be able to use the suggestion of shorter leases to rationalise the SA and 2R flat schemes.

"For example, if we have a new 2R flat scheme, offering varying lease tenure and lease terms, it may allow us to cater to different groups with varying needs, and unify both schemes."

His ministry and HDB are working on this and will also gather input from the public.

To clear the backlog of singles who want to buy two-room flats, HDB is also setting aside 50 per cent of such flats in each BTO launch, up from 30 per cent, starting from the next BTO exercise in May.