HDB lease buyback changes kick in

HDB lease buyback changes kick in

MORE elderly Housing Board (HDB) flat owners can apply for the Lease Buyback Scheme under rule changes that kick in today.

The scheme involves owners selling part of their lease back to the Government to generate retirement income.

Four changes that were announced last September have now taken effect.

Four-room flats are now eligible and the monthly household income ceiling has been raised to $10,000 from $3,000.

In households with two or more owners, each one will need to top up his or her Central Provident Fund (CPF) Retirement Account only to the current basic age-adjusted retirement sum, instead of the full retirement sum.

Another change allows households to choose how long a lease to retain. These can be 15, 20, 25, 30 or 35 years, provided that the lease covers the youngest owner until the age of 95.

Previously owners had to retain a 30-year lease.

The scheme is open to households in which at least one owner is a Singapore citizen and all owners are at least at the CPF payout eligibility age of 64.

Applicants must apply on the HDB's website, but can approach an HDB branch for help to do so.

Once an application has been lodged, the HDB will conduct a one-to-one financial counselling session to help owners better understand the scheme and other monetisation options.

For more information, call the HDB Branch Service Line on 1800-225-5432 between 8am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.

This article was first published on April 1, 2015.
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