Solving the Home Ownership Challenge for Young Singaporeans
In the battle for daily essentials – food, water and shelter, the war is already won if you’ve got shelter covered. Singaporeans are entrenched in a growing financial dilemma as a result of the steeply priced property market of an expensive metropolis. Housing costs are directly factored in with its proximity to the CBD district, furnishings, property history, additional facilities, etc. Unfortunately, it’s the twenty/thirty-something generation emerging in this windy economic weather that has quite a lot of ground to cover in order to buy a house.
If you happen to be a single or newly married aspiring homeowner, then let us first dissect the property market for you and highlight the demands that accompany each option:
Rent – S$7,000 to S$15,000 per month.
Rent – S$5,000-S$7,000
Rent – S$2,200 to S$2,700.
Rent – S$800-S$1,800 and between S$500 to S$800 per month for HDB flats.
Home ownership is the steepest financial slope you can ever encounter in your career; however, the uber-stressful debt-heavy lifestyle that once plagued you is going to be a lot easier to fight through when you finally acquire your dream home. As a young Singaporean, it is imperative to become as financially independent and empowered as possible in order to choose the ideal route to buying property since it is the longest investment commitment you will ever make. Here are some invaluable pre-requisites to consider before pushing the pedal on this transformative life decision:
1. You Possess a Reliable Contingency Fund
Fixed rate home loans are available for merely 3-5 years, beyond which your loan will revert back to floating rates that fluctuate frequently. Hence, a sizeable emergency fund is a huge asset to have on your side when interest rates spike up and your loan repayments become a lot more expensive.
2. You Have Got the Bank Loan Approval in Principle
Booking a house without getting your bank loan’s approval in principle (AIP) sorted on paper is akin to flying blind, as you risk forfeiting the entire booking fee for your home pointlessly. This isn’t much of a problem if you have a healthy Debt Servicing Ration (DSR) and have a good credit history.
3. Your Property Down Payment is Credit-Free
Saving enough money to cover at least 10% to 20% as down payment for your purchased property is essential to avoid sinking under the collective burden of debt that accumulates due to your home loan and another personal loan to cover its down payment.
4. Your CPF Security is Not Completely Compromised
As an enthusiastic young worker, it is tempting to ignore the option of utilizing your CPF to alleviate your home loan repayments. However, this is an unwise move to make from a long term perspective as it can jeopardize your retirement financial security.
Land scarcity ensures that property always delivers the healthiest investment growth rate and is best positioned to beat the extremely high inflation rate in Singapore. Hence, it is a lot wiser to own property than constantly be subjected to the fickle mercy of rental rates that can hold you financially hostage in the long term. Thanks to recent government policy changes, several single and newlywed Singaporeans now have the advantage of purchasing flats in certain non-mature estates for a mindblowingly affordable price of $16,000 – $32,000, depending upon the subsidies they qualify for. Singles who apply under this scheme must be at least 35 years old and have a monthly remittance of $5000 or below. Let us further examine the criteria for availing these subsidies:
- Single Singaporeans, who earn a monthly salary of $2500 or less, can avail the Single Singapore Citizen Scheme and get a $20,000 grant for the flat they purchase.
- Individuals who earn $1,125 or less a month can take advantage of a special CPF monthly housing grant worth $10,000.
- Unmarried Singaporeans can choose to apply for a flat utilizing the Joint Singles Scheme in order to get a collective housing grant worth $40,000 since they qualify for the benefits given to a married couple. In case they opt to get married later, they’ll be given a sweet top-up on their CPF amounting to $15,000.