As revealed by some reports in the media, property experts have been urging that authorities have a review of the studio apartment scheme, as the government starts to increase the construction of 2 room Housing and Development Board flats.
Botanique at Bartley Studio Units
The reasoning behind this is that studio apartments and 2 room flats in Botanique Bartley have a similar size and layout, yet offer differing lease periods.
Nicholas Mak, SLP International Property Consultants’ Executive Director of Research and Consultancy, has stated that one possible consideration that the Government should look to is whether or not to entirely do away with studio apartments while taking the more desirable features of a studio apartment and implementing them into 2 room flats for the elderly.
Another suggestion that has been posed is that the Government extends the studio apartment lease period for Botanique Bartley. However, by doing so the Government would be minimizing the difference between 2 room flats and studio apartments. This once more raises the question of there being a need for pointing out the differences between these two products in the future if the plans are to make them very similar to begin with.
Botanique Bartley Studio
A 30 year lease is offered for studio apartments, whereas 2 room flats offer a 99 year lease. Studio apartments must also be returned to the HBD if an owner should pass away and is not allowed to be resold on an open market units in Botanique Bartley.
As pointed out by real estate firm, PropNex, there is the possibility that shorter lease periods could possibly make studio apartments a less popular option to seniors, which has been the target market for this product.
Lim Yong Hock, the Key Executive Officer of PropNex for Botanique Bartley, has pointed out that, when looking to purchase an HDB flat, a number of elderly will be considering what will happen when they do pass on. Will they be allowed to leave said property to the next generation of their kin? Having a lease that is only 30 years could result in making many seniors uncomfortable about buying one, feeling that the property itself does not belong to them and they won’t have that option of passing it down to the next generation of their family. And this is one of the largest setbacks faced.
Botanique at Bartley UOL Limited
In the mature MacPherson area studio apartments fall within the range of $114,000. However, 2 room flats in the less matured town of Bukit Batok sit at $80,000, grants being exclusive.
On its website, the housing board pointed out that studio apartments and 2 room flats where not similar offers. This is why comparing prices between the two is not appropriate. For example, both types of flats could be set in different locations. Studio apartments are usually found in estates that are more matured and are closer to amenities and nodes of transport.