Friday 15 November 2013

3Gen flats popular: Khaw Boon Wan

National Development Minister keen to facilitate multi-generation living
By Rachel Au-Yong, The Straits Times, 14 Nov 2013

THE latest three-generation living approach by the Housing Board (HDB) looks set to continue, given the number of young families with elderly members who applied for September's offerings.

Noting the positive response on his blog, National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan said: "The launch of 3Gen flats has clearly encouraged more to consider multi-generation living. This is a good sign.

"We should continue to facilitate multi-generation living for Singaporeans who wish to do so."

The HDB had offered only 84 three-generation units in Yishun, as it was "not sure of demand" then.

But a third of the 1,152 applications for three-generation units and five-room flats were from multi-generation households.

This is in stark contrast to last year, when only 3 per cent of five-room flat applicants applied to live with their parents under the Married Child Priority Scheme, wrote Mr Khaw.

The three-generation units are a new type of flat offered by the HDB.

They have four bedrooms and three bathrooms, and are about 5 sq m larger than current five-room units.

The Housing Board bundled the three-generation flats and five-room units so that applicants would have an "alternative housing option" if one type ran out, Mr Khaw said.

Second-time applicants signalled strong interest in these larger flats, forming two-thirds of the applicants.

Among first-timer multi-generation families, six in 10 are either expecting or have young children below age 16.

Their median age is 39, higher than the previous median of 30 among first-time applicants for five-room flats.

One in 10 first-timer households has no children, and their median age is understandably lower at 32.

Mr Khaw said: "I am happy they are planning ahead to move into a larger flat to better take care of their ageing parents and future children."

Singapore is projected to have one in five people aged 65 or older by 2030.

"As our population ages, family support will become increasingly important for the well-being of our seniors," said Mr Khaw.

"They also help to enrich family relations by sharing their experiences, and lending an extra hand in caring for their grandchildren."

Another 100 three-generation flats in Jurong West will be available in the next HDB exercise later this month.

* 3Gen flats in Yishun going fast
79 of the first batch of 84 flats in Yishun Ave 1 have been booked, says Khaw
By Rachel Au-Yong, The Straits Times, 15 Feb 2014

THE first batch of three-generation (3Gen) flats in Yishun has seen a "strong reception" with 94 per cent of the flats having been booked, National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan said in a blog post yesterday.

Successful applicants took up 79 of the 84 3Gen flats in Yishun Avenue 1. These flats are spread across several blocks in Saraca Breeze@Yishun, a Build-To-Order project that was launched in September last year.

Each of these 3Gen flats - and those in other estates where such flats were launched recently - is about 115 sq m in size, or 5 sq m bigger than a typical five-roomer.

It typically has four bedrooms, a living area, a dining area, a kitchen, three bathrooms, and a store room-cum-apartment shelter.

Families which live in such 3Gen flats need to include at least a married couple and one parent, a courting couple and one parent, a widowed person and one child and one parent, or a divorced person and one child and one parent.

Mr Khaw said: "3Gen flats are designed to facilitate extended family togetherness, and I am glad that these families can look forward to living together and providing mutual support and care."

One of the successful applicants is Madam Chan Yen Teng, 28. The sales executive currently lives in her mother-in-law's four-roomer, also in Yishun, with her husband and their four-month-old son.

"We liked that there are two main bedrooms equipped with toilets," she said.

"That way, my husband and I can have one room, and my mother-in-law can have her own too."

The average size of families living in 3Gen flats is 5.1 persons. This is larger than families living in five-roomers which have an average size of four while those in four-roomers have an average size of 3.6, Mr Khaw said.

Subsequent 3Gen flats launched in Jurong West in November last year and in Punggol last month have also drawn strong response - the Housing Board received nearly 300 applications for the 164 flats in these two projects. A similar project will be launched in Sengkang next month.

In his post, Mr Khaw noted that yesterday was Chap Goh Mei or Yuan Xiao Jie, the 15th day of the Chinese New Year - during which it is customary for many Chinese families to gather for a second reunion following the first on Chinese New Year's Eve.

"We will continue to help extended families who want to live together, or close to one another, fulfil their dream," he said.

"This will be a key priority area for me and for my ministry over the next few years."

** Larger 3Gen HDB flats for multi-generation families popular, with 8 in 10 units booked since its launch in 2013
By Rachel Au-Yong, Housing Correspondent, The Straits Times, 14 Feb 2018

The best part about Mr Wong Khai Beng's new Buangkok Crescent Housing Board flat is that he gets to share a room with his wife again.

For almost two decades, the mechanical parts salesman, 55, shared a room in his old Kovan four-room flat - which has three bedrooms - with his son, 22. His wife, also 55, shared one with their daughter, 19, while his parents, 83 and 77, took up another.

But last week, Mr Wong's family moved into a three-generation (3Gen) flat, where the married couples, as well as son and daughter, each get a room.

Each 115 sq m 3Gen flat comes with four bedrooms and three bathrooms, two of which are attached to the bedrooms, to provide extra comfort and privacy for its occupants.

"We can still take care of my parents, the kids get their own space, and I get to be with my wife," he laughed.

Such 3Gen flats, rolled out in 2013 for multi-generation families to live under one roof, have been popular, with eight in 10 such units booked, HDB said in a statement on Wednesday (Feb 14).

Close to 1,500 of these flats across 24 projects have been put up for sale as at the end of last year, about 400 more than at the end of 2016. They are still a fraction of some one million HDB flats in total.

Among the 1,100 flats that have been booked so far, 44 per cent were by first-timers while the rest were by second-timers. They have been popular at four projects, where all 252 units across Saraca Breeze @ Yishun , Punggol BayView, Tampines GreenRidge and Tampines GreenVerge - launched between 2013 and 2016 - had a take-up rate of 100 per cent.

To be eligible for 3Gen flats, applicants must form a multi-generation family comprising at least a married or courting couple, and the parents of either spouse.

Resale conditions are stricter: These flats must be sold to other eligible multi-generation families.

The next batch of 3Gen flats will be offered in Yishun in the upcoming Build-to-Order sales exercise in May.


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