By Imelda Saad | POSTED: 27 Aug 2013 6:43 PM | CNA

SINGAPORE

The government has introduced a slew of measures aimed at making the purchase of homes here more affordable.

To help middle-income families afford their first home, the Special CPF Housing Grant of up to S$20,000 will be extended to middle-income households with a combined income of up to S$6,500.

That is up from the current household income ceiling of S$2,250.

This Special CPF Housing Grant scheme will also be extended to four-room flats in non-mature estates. Previously, the grant was only for two- and three-room flats.

Singles will also benefit from the new measures.

The current Special CPF Housing Grant income ceiling for singles buying new two-room flats will be raised to S$3,250.

National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan said this is a “significant shift in policy” as the government is going beyond helping the low-income to also extend help to the middle-income to buy their first flat.

Low-income families will be given help to upgrade through a Step-Up CPF Housing Grant of S$15,000.

This will apply to families living in subsidised two-room flats who want to three-room flats in non-mature estates.

Mr Khaw said this is a significant move as it will help low-income families upgrade to a bigger flat.

“It will give them and their children more space and a more valuable asset,” he said.

The two new initiatives will start from the July 2013 BTO exercise.

– CNA/fa

http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/more-housing-grants/792054.html