Updated: 03/11/2014 02:21

MND to relook at option for elderly to "reverse mortgage"

MND to relook at option for elderly to "reverse mortgage"

The National Development Ministry is re-looking the option of allowing Elderly flat owners to do a "reverse mortgage" on their flats to unlock some cash. 

Minister Khaw Boon Wan revealed this in the Parliament today. 

"When we engaged the elderly in Our Singapore Conversation, many told us they preferred to age-in-place and would also like to retain an asset which the bequeath. It is timely to revisit reverse mortgage as additional option for our seniors. MND has begun a serious study of this option. We hope to formulate a practical scheme for our elderly." 

The reverse mortgage option, where the owner uses the property as collateral for a loan, was last introduced in 2006. 

MND says the take-up rate then was low. 

Reasons include unfamiliarity with the scheme. 

The Ministry is also reviewing if the lease buyback scheme, where the owner sells part of the flat's lease back to HDB for cash, should be extended to larger flat types. 

It's currently available to those in 3-room or smaller flats. 

About 220,000 HDB flats are owned by Singaporeans aged 55 and above.

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