High COE prices going to disrupt family life
Hooray, my old car has appreciated in value. Many old car owners are jubilant and praying that the COE prices will continue to rise, to hit the $100k mark. And in tandem the value of their old cars will rise as well. But beware, this orgasm is short lived. Just one last time. No more orgasm subsequently for many. After the old car’s life span is expired, some would not be able to cough out another $100k for a new COE and a new car. Many have the same experience in owning HDB flats. Prices going up, happy like hell. But don’t ever sell, no chance to buy back unless one still got one more chance with the HDB. What is disturbing in the two great price hikes is how they will eat up the limited disposable incomes of many families. Some families rely heavily on the car for their mobility, to bring children/seniors to schools, to care givers, to all kinds of classes and activities. Minus the car, life is going to be very disruptive and miserable. But there are convenient and easily accessible public transports available, the MRT, buses and the taxis. When time is an issue with tight schedules, shuttling between work, home, schools, tuition centres, parent’s homes etc etc, it is going to be hectic and a frustrating waiting game for taxis even if they can afford to. Our social system is getting to be less caring and less family friendly. Can families who really need the car make do without them? Is the high COE prices really unavoidable, like high HDB prices, high medical prices? Where are we going? For the sake of the poor motorists and those who really need a car, the present COE bidding system must be changed. No more stupid explanation that it is the best system. For one, no bidding by car companies. Two, the bidders shall pay the price they bid and not the lowest. This will prevent the crazily rich from bidding $100k or $200k for his COE knowing that they need not pay for what they bid. And neither can the car companies bid as high as they want while the helpless real buyers suffered in silence. Let’s hope the super talents will use their talents for the good of the motorists. But worst is to come. When more people give up car ownership, the MRT is going to be bursting in the seams. And they would be another good opportunity to hike fares to provide better services!