Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Measures that PM Lee SHOULD Have Announced, But Didn't

There's a huge hulabaloo on the internet about PM Lee's national day rally speech and the measures he has announced and why they are crappy and inadequate. I agree generally that it was quite a crappy speech and some of the measures announced were silly and reveal that even right now with all the clanging on the internet and the growing resentment on the ground, the PAP still has no clue.

But instead of criticising PM Lee and joining in the chorus of why the PAP is fucked up, I shall instead propose SOLUTIONS to the problems facing our society today.

1. Ban PRs from purchasing hdb flats.

There is already a bad enough shortage of public housing for Singaporeans alone - so why should foreign residents be allowed to purchase hdb flats? They come in and jack up the housing prices with their demand and destroy the affordability for Singaporeans who have made sacrifices to defend this country. The only viable solution is to kick them out of the hdb market - and leave them free to compete in the market for condominiums. If these PRs cannot afford the private housing market then they are not the kind of foreigners that we want in our country (unless the fall in love with and marry a local then they will be eligible for hdb)

2. Ban foreigners from being allowed to rent rooms in hdb flats

This is a similar argument to point 1. HDB housing should be meant for Singaporeans since the HDB is a Singapore government agency. HDB housing should not be for foreigners. Let the foreigners have their own governments look after them. It is not the business of the Singaporean government to take care of the welfare of foreigners. PRs could potentially be allowed to rent HDB flats but I prefer otherwise.

Allowing foreigners to rent hdb flats also gives hdb flat owners the perverse incentive to monetise their flat as an investment vehicle, when they should be using their flat as a place to live in and not to make money. banning foreigners from renting flats eliminates this perverse incentive that is causing the hdb market prices to soar uncontrollably.

3. Ban owners of private property simultaneously owning hdb flats, and vice versa, regardless of whether they have completed a so-called minimum occupation period.

The aim of public housing should be to provide an affordable roof over the heads for Singaporeans. It is not meant for investment or speculative purposes. Banning dual public & private home ownership will eliminate speculation. Currently the rules still allow for someone who has completed the minimum occupation period (MOP) to still buy private property while holding on to their hdb flat. This practice should be banned. If someone has the means to own private property then they no longer need the public housing and their flat should be passed on to someone else who is in need of the affordable housing.

4. Eliminate the minimum occupation period.

The MOP is perhaps one of the dumbest rules in the book. Once you implement rule 3 above, it effectively eliminates speculation from the hdb market. Eliminating the MOP allows Singaporeans to upgrade easily from 3-room to 4-room / 4-room to 5-room as their needs require and as their income growth allows. It allows them to expand their home as their family grows and makes it easier for them to have children.

Currently if somebody buys a 3-room flat they are stuck there for 5 years (retarded new rule for the non-subsidised flats) and then what happens if they have a couple of kids in that 5 years? they cannot upgrade to a new flat until the 5 years is up. This is a completely stupid fucked up rule that should be demolished and replaced with suggestion number 3 above.

5. Allow all single NSmen to purchase hdb flats, no matter their age.

NSmen have sacrificed sweat and blood to protect and defend the nation in order to ensure its prosperity. Allowing NSmen the privilege of purchasing hdb flats when they are single acknowledges their sacrifices, gives them a stake in this country and makes them more eligible in the dating process and more ready to start a family.

Currently the dumb BTO process means that couples can only get a flat 3 years after they ballot - which is again another completely fucked up PAP system.

Allowing single NSmen to ballot for flats means that they already have a place which their wives can move into once they get married and they will be ready to start a family! This will greatly improve the living conditions for young families and make starting a family easier.

6. Remove the Income Ceiling for Purchasing HDB flats

There is no reason why HDB flats should be restricted to people below a certain income. On the contrary, person with high incomes and who choose to live well within their means are displaying prudence. Once Measure 3 is introduced, it effectively removes speculation from the HDB market. Thus there is no need to impose an income ceiling on purchasers of HDB flats.


The above measures that I have proposed form a comprehensive system to
  1. Acknowledge the sacrifices of NSmen 
  2. Making sure that Singaporean citizens come first
  3. Ensuring that the Singapore government works for the Singaporean people (and not for foreigners)
  4. Alleviating the reproduction problem
  5. Controlling the housing price problem and making it affordable for Singaporeans
The only people that get the short end of the stick of my proposals are the foreigners. So PAP will never adopt, or even think of, the above solutions because they are so completely enamored with their messed up 'foreign talent' delusion.

But hey, this is Singapore. Isn't it about time that the people of Singapore make sure that the government of Singapore works for them and not for foreigners?


Anonymous said...

you are missing the point on minimum occupation period, they need to look like they are doing something without actually doing anything.
But at least after a long denial of a foamy housing market, they are doing something with a little nibble, neveraless it is still not enough. The best tool is to raise real interest rate, but the government needs the low interst rate for their wanton expansionist goal

axt said...

imho, whatever the govt have done now is too little and too late.

I just wonder whether this is due to their inaction or due to red tape within the ministries involved?

Anonymous said...

So, let us say, you have bought a 5-roomer last year at S$475K in AMK. Gov implements the rules as recommended by you. The property price now goes down to say S$200K. Yes it is "affordable", is that acceptable to you?

I suspect the gov is caught in a catch-22 situation where any major change in policy will impoverish lots of singaporeans.

Anonymous said...

let's get back to roots. the prices of hdb flats started rising quite a bit after PM2 went on about how our assets would increase. an interesting coincidence. they really started soaring when the welcome mat was put out.

Anonymous said...

The root of the problem is Singaporeans are greedy with the "asset enhancement" trap. So they will not buy your suggestion which will depress their asset values hence, no quick profit. Who cares if the future generationwil find home ownership unaffordable. They are "pragmatic realists" who want to cash in on their asset appreciation with PAP's blessing.

ser guan said...

Not all PR are rich enough to buy private property.

E.g. Nurses. Majority of Singaporeans are not willing to do the dirty and shift work required for nursing work. However, our hospitals need nurses on long term PR basis so that they can gain experience and upgrade their skills.
While the nurse are in singapore, they also want to leave in a decent place.

Anonymous said...

Me has only one suggestion and that is; all residential properties be owner occupied.

No one be allowed to own multiple residential properties as SIN has little land left.

However, if there are developers willing to build floating cities and or underground towns that are good, safe and fit for human occupations, do it by all means to accommodate the rising population.


Anonymous said...

While your suggestions 3 (simultaneous) ownership is good, a removal of MOP will result in a situation of flipping. The purpose of MOP was to remove flipping, which because HDB is essentially public housing, it should not have this element of speculative demand.

Income ceiling bans the wealthier consumers to purchase HDB. They have stronger purchasing power, which results in prices going up. Unless you prohibit the ownership of HDB and a private property altogether, the wealthy consumers will price young lower income families out of the market.

The issue we have in Singapore (and anywhere in the world) is how to find an efficient allocation of resources.

Your policies support the lowering of prices of HDB to some extent, but it neglects the desires of sellers (who want a high price). The government has to play a difficult role in balancing both desires.