Am I disappointed with SDP’s NOM?
The main thrust in SDP’s housing proposal is the Non Open Market Scheme, ie buying flats from HDB and must sell back to HDB. I think this is like reinventing the wheel and trying to look clever. No need to.
Look, the problems and unhappiness are caused by the current housing policies. 1. Not building enough to meet the demands of Singaporeans. 2. Selling HDB flats to PRs, in the resale market. This is a very dangerous thing to do if the PR population is not curtailed. In the future, many public flats would end up being owned by PRs. 3. Selling HDB flats at ‘airy fairy’ market subsidy price. Stop this scam and go back to cost plus pricing.
Just address these problems. There is no need to reinvent the wheel to come up with more ‘airy fairy’ schemes if the fundamentals of public housing are put right, ie building flats to ensure all Singaporeans can buy them at cost plus and shit away with all the market forces and market subsidy nonsense. Just build more HDB flats for the people and keep it for Singaporeans only, even in the resale market. The prices will stabilize and be lowered progressively. Owners of public housing must not aspire to see their flat prices shooting to the roof like private properties. But the good news is that all Singaporeans will have a roof over their heads and not having to pay through their noses and emptying their CPF and savings. There will be money left for retirement and some finer things of living. The flat would still have real value and no need to sell back to the HDB and creating more unseen problems in the future.
The Housing Minister has made public housing so complicated and confusing. That does not mean that the solution must be complicated and confusing. Do not create new schemes that would make the situation more complex and hazy. Just work with the current system, get rid of some of the nonsense.
The solution must be straight and simple. Build more flats for Singaporeans at cost plus, not that the govt must make a loss, but with the aim of providing the citizens, not PRs, with decent and genuinely affordable housing. Not the kind of flexible affordable housing that can be stretched like rubber bands. Is this so difficult to do? Think simple. No need to think clever. When a house is infested by termites, there is no need to build another house. Just treat the termite problem. And often the problems in a country are due to too clever people in charge. What a country needs is good men and not very clever men. With good men and good intention, many unnecessary problems will not arise, like the housing woes today.