Why the need to help first timers buy a HDB flat? Why the need to help newly weds to buy their first flat? What is the problem? Why is housing such a complex problem?
When the big fire flattened Bukit Ho Swee, it was a serious problem. Thousands of families were homeless. That was compounded by the thousands living in cubicles, squatters, attap and zinc huts across the whole island. It was a huge problem. But it was solved quite easily. And the only thing that the govt needed to do was to build and build and build until everyone had his flat. Nothing complicated at all. Big problem simple solution.
Then someone screamed that there was a huge stock of unsold flats. And some statisticians started banging the computers and claimed that so many billions of dollars were stuck because of unsold flats. So it was a big problem. Really? Or was it a big mistake?
It was a big mistake alright, but not because of over building. When one joker was panicking that so much money were tied down and furiously trying to get rid of the unsold flats, another joker was happily bringing plane loads of new migrants into the country. And they all needed housing. Obviously the two jokers were not on talking terms and it ended up in a hilarious situation when all the unsold flats were gone in no time, and now a bigger shortage problem.
And this shortage seems so complex that even our super talents could not resolve it and needed many years to hope of unwinding the mess. Could anyone believe that the housing problem today is worst than in the Bukit Ho Swee days?
The problem is so complex, very true. It is like travelling to town from Yishun. It was quite a straight forward thing. People used to walk or cycle to get to town, or to take a bus. Today it is a very complex problem. They need to computate which is the shortest route, the fastest route, the cheapest route. They have to check the number of ERPs, their operating hours and how much each will cost. They need to weigh whether it is better to take a bus or a train, or drive. They need to time when to leave the house, how late to stay in the office.
Why is life so complicated and so complex? Still didn’t get it? Just add more rules and regulations, add more obstacles and fees to get from point A to point B. And bring in more people into the island to keep the GDP growing. Then we have a very serious and complex problem that needs very talented super talents to try to unwind the mess. And because the problem is so messy, so complicated, you need to pay the super talents higher salaries to work on them.
In the times of Bukit Ho Swee, working class couple getting married only need to rent a room. Today, there are a thousand and one regulations and conditions before they can buy a HDB flat. And they are expected to wait for 3 or 4 years for a flat. And some can buy, some cannot buy, some dunno can or cannot buy. It sure is a very complex issue. It is like creating a maze and then help the people to navigate through it and claim credit. Why don’t they just remove the maze? KNN.