Charissa Yong | The Straits Times | Friday, Aug 02, 2013

SINGAPORE

Second-time buyers will stand more chance of bagging a flat under the new rule changes.

Those who have bought a Housing Board unit in the past and want to do so again with a new partner will now be treated as first-timers.

This means they move up in the queue.

The policy change, which kicked in on Tuesday, will help divorcees and those who have previously bought a flat with a sibling or parent.

In the past, they would have been considered second-timers and less likely to get a unit during a launch.

Project engineer Zheng Kai Ling said that she and her fiance were at a disadvantage when they applied for a flat together last year, because he was a divorcee on his second purchase.

“It was quite unfair,” added the 30-year-old.

“I was a first-timer, but we were categorised as second-timers.

“In terms of priority we were far behind first-timer couples, so we were left with flats which were not in good locations.”

In the end, they managed to get a new unit in Sengkang’s Rivervale Delta, which was not one of the most popular projects.

“It’s too bad for me that this move didn’t come sooner, but I think it’s good for couples in similar circumstances,” said Ms Zheng.

Tuesday’s new Build-To-Order exercise is due to close next Monday.

http://business.asiaone.com/property/news/more-qualify-first-timer-couples-new-flats