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Renewing Older Housing Estates with SERS
SERS is part of the Government’s efforts to renew older housing estates. Under the scheme, the Government acquires selected blocks in precincts with redevelopment potential, and redevelops them to optimise land use in land scarce Singapore. This allows for new and better homes to be built for Singaporeans.
SERS is a highly selective scheme, and each site is carefully evaluated, taking into account factors such as:
While the age of the precinct is a consideration, there is no fixed age criteria to determine if a precinct should qualify for SERS. The average age of precincts at the time of their SERS announcement was 27 years old, based on lease commencement date. (For Blocks 562 to 565 Ang Mo Kio Avenue 3, which were announced for SERS in April 2022, the flats are about 41 years old.)
SERS flat owners are compensated based on the valuation of their existing flats. Independent third-party professional valuers determine the prevailing market value of residents’ flats at the time of the SERS announcement, based on multiple factors, taking into account:
Determining compensation based on market value is an important principle to ensure equitable treatment for SERS flat owners and other existing HDB flat owners. The market valuation reflects what a buyer would have been willing to pay for the flat in the open market. This ensures discipline in the way we value HDB flats, allowing owners to have a stake in our nation’s growth and benefit from some asset-appreciation, but at the same time, ensuring that the value of the remaining lease is accurately reflected, as is the case with the value of other leasehold properties – both public and private.
SERS flat owners who have concerns about the valuation of their flats, can present their own valuation to the Appeals Board, provided for under the Land Acquisition Act, for the neutral tribunal’s assessment.
On top of market compensation, eligible SERS flat owners can also enjoy rehousing benefits, such as a SERS grant of up to $30,000 which can be used to pay for a replacement flat at a subsidised price.
All SERS flat owners will also receive:
Depending on their needs and preferences, SERS flat owners can consider the following rehousing options:
The flats at the designated replacement site come with a fresh 99-year lease. As with other flats bought from HDB, the replacement flats are priced with a significant subsidy, making their prices considerably lower than comparable resale flats in the vicinity.
Here is a comparison of the estimated prices of the 4-room replacement flats for the SERS exercise at Ang Mo Kio Avenue 3 and nearby resale flats at the time of the SERS announcement:
^ Refers to the estimated area of the flat computed based on the centre line of the apartment wall. The area of the air-conditioner ledge is excluded for this computation.
@ The remaining leases for the resale comparables are about 80 years. SLA leasehold table is used to adjust this remaining lease to a fresh 99-year lease for new flats.
* The approximate floor area includes any recess area purchased, space adding item under HDB’s upgrading programmes, roof terrace, etc.
Starting from the SERS and Acquisition sites announced in 2022 (i.e. Ang Mo Kio Avenue 3 and Marsiling Crescent/Lane), flat owners who do not need a full 99-year lease for their replacement flat can consider options with shorter lease flats if this is able to last them till at least age 95:
Alternatively, SERS flat owners can also consider applying for a flat from HDB under the Build-to-Order (BTO) or Sales of Balance Flat (SBF) exercises, or under open booking. Such flats are also sold at subsidised prices.
Up to 10% of the flats offered in BTO or SBF exercises are set aside for priority allocation for SERS flat owners*.
* This excludes flats launched under the Prime Location Public Housing model.
SERS flat owners can also choose from a wide variety of flat options in the resale market, with various locations, prices and lease lengths. They will not need to pay a resale levy when they buy a resale flat, as the resale levy only applies to those buying their second subsidised flat from HDB.
SERS flat owners can either sell their SERS flat with rehousing benefits, or return the SERS flat to HDB and receive an ex-gratia payment.