Singapore Property Update

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Ethnic minorities have difficulties finding buyers for their HDB flats

An ethnic minority in Singapore J.M. Davies (Miss) has written to the Straits Times Forum today request HDB to exercise more flexibility in allowing “people from minority races who own HDB flats older than 25 years can sell them to buyers of any race.

Under the HDB’s Ethnic Integration Policy, owners of HDB flats can only sell their flats to another buyer of similar rice to ensure diversity in heartland estates and prevent the formation of ethnic enclaves.

 Photo by Muhd Asyraaf


In her letter, Miss Davies lamented that it is difficult for minority rate flat owners such as Indians and Malays, will find it difficult to find another Indian or Malay buyer as the critical mass of this small group of potential buyers is just not there.

“In Bishan, for example, some HDB flats are already 30 years old and minority-race owners are finding it difficult to find eligible buyers unless the property goes for a song.I know of a minority-race owner of a flat in Bishan who has tried to sell the property for a very long time without success. The bank finally took over the flat and put it up for auction recently. There was no bidder. Now it is back in the market again with an agent to find a minority-race buyer,” she added.

Miss Davies wrote she also heard of a couple in their 70s who have been unable to sell their flat for money they need to pay their medical bills and other expenses.

She proposed to HDB that HDB flat owners who are from minority races be allowed to sell their flat to HDB after an independent market valuation and HDB can then take time to sell the flat to another minority-race buyer, thereby relieving the pressure of the sellers.


What do you think of HDB’s Ethnic Integration Policy? Are you a minority owner experiencing difficulties in selling your HDB flat? We want to know. Email us at:


Updated: September 7, 2018 — 10:11 pm

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