Friday, March 26, 2010
On foreigners owning property in Singapore
Local news reported today that resale prices for private homes have shot through the roof this year. According to one analysis, foreigners make up the majority (60 to 70%) of the buyers of private homes in Singapore, thereby propping the prices up.
Even foreign celebrities, such as Jackie Chan and Emil Chau, have gotten into the act, and purchased a number of condominium units last week, spending in excess of S$10 million.
But Singapore is land scarce, and many local citizens face great difficulty affording their own homes. The incredible rate at which housing prices have been permitted to go up compared to local salary rates is an extremely disappointing reflection of the PAP government’s understanding of the local populace’s housing difficulties.
This author is of the opinion that foreigners should only be allowed to purchase residential properties in Singapore if they actually live in them. Singapore is far too small a country to allow foreigners to speculate in and drive up the prices of residential properties beyond the affordability of the main local populace.
Actually, this author views that ideally, foreigners should not be permitted to purchase properties in Singapore at all. Given Singapore’s limited land area, there is no good reason why foreigners should be allowed to acquire property at the hardship and expense of Singapore citizens (who should be given a decent chance to aspire to owning a private home someday). The PAP government should not have permitted foreigners to purchase private homes, much less, the majority of private homes in Singapore.