Title

Singapore’s housing policies: Responding to the challenges of economic transitions

Publication Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date

1-2016

Abstract

Singapore has developed its own unique state-driven housing system, with three-quarters of its housing stock built by the Housing and Development Board and homeownership financed through Central Provident Fund savings. As a result, it has one of the highest homeownership rates amongst market economies. This chapter provides a historical perspective of the main housing problems faced by successive prime ministers and their respective policy responses. Under the leadership of Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew (1959–1990), the government established an integrated land-housing supply and housing finance framework to channel much needed resources into the housing sector to deal with a chronic housing shortage. Under Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong (1990–2004), asset enhancement schemes to renew aging estates as well as market deregulation measures were implemented. Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong (2004–present) has been confronted with a different set of challenges — investment demand for housing, rising inequalities and rapidly aging population. These problems have brought about the introduction of carefully crafted macroprudential policies, targeted housing grants to assist low and middle income households, and schemes to help elderly households monetize their housing equity.Singapore has developed its own unique state-driven housing system, with three-quarters of its housing stock built by the Housing and Development Board and homeownership financed through Central Provident Fund savings. As a result, it has one of the highest homeownership rates amongst market economies. This chapter provides a historical perspective of the main housing problems faced by successive prime ministers and their respective policy responses. Under the leadership of Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew (1959–1990), the government established an integrated land-housing supply and housing finance framework to channel much needed resources into the housing sector to deal with a chronic housing shortage. Under Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong (1990–2004), asset enhancement schemes to renew aging estates as well as market deregulation measures were implemented. Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong (2004–present) has been confronted with a different set of challenges — investment demand for housing, rising inequalities and rapidly aging population. These problems have brought about the introduction of carefully crafted macroprudential policies, targeted housing grants to assist low and middle income households, and schemes to help elderly households monetize their housing equity.

Keywords

Singapore, housing policies, housing finance, economic conditions, government policies

Discipline

Asian Studies | Public Economics | Real Estate

Research Areas

Applied Microeconomics

Publication

Singapore’s economic development: Retrospection and reflections

Editor

Linda Y. C. Lim

First Page

221

Last Page

248

ISBN

9789814723473

Identifier

10.1142/9789814723473_0010

Publisher

World Scientific

City or Country

Singapore

Additional URL

http://doi.org/10.1142/9789814723473_0010

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