HOME OWNERSHIP FOR SINGAPOREANS
Mr Lee noted that home ownership for Singaporeans continues to be a focus.
“People feel a lot of assurance in owning the home that they live in,” he said. “In other parts of the world where people principally rent, they’re at the mercy of the landlords, and when the life circumstances change and they can’t pay rent, then they’re under stress.”
Mr Lee said he understands that Singaporeans also consider their home as an asset.
“As people who are going through different stages in life, you’re looking at the home first and foremost as a place for you to live – a shelter, a place for safe harbour, a place to raise your family,” he added.
“But most homebuyers also want to look and say, is this a good property or not? Because ultimately, I might need to move and when I move, I need to have the resources from the sale of this property to buy my next home, to renovate it, to make it ready for my family.
“And that means that home is both a home and an asset, and you want to make sure that you address both needs.”
As a small city state, Singapore faces challenges in managing the needs of its people as well as their aspirations.
“They want a good home. But they also want some other things in life, like they want green spaces, they want all old familiar spots to be conserved, especially if they are precious national memories. And so they rightfully have high expectations of Singapore,” said Mr Lee.
“And we want to be able to meet those aspirations, and this conversation constantly with Singaporeans about the tradeoffs that we have to manage, in order to meet growing aspirations on this very small island of ours,