Figures from the Minister Khaw Boon Wan, for National Development, have shown that those senior citizens who have sold off their old apartments in lieu of moving into an SA, or studio apartment, have gained many benefits, including $200,000 in net sales proceeds per apartment. This was posted in the Ministers “Housing Maters” blog post. The figures were arrived at after calculating ay outstanding debts for loans on the old apartments had been paid off, as well as the new SA’s being fully paid for.
Seniors Prefer Studio Apartments
The purchase of studio apartments really can be a benefit to those seniors who, after having children move out on their own, are left with a flat that is too large for them. They do have the option of renting out rooms in a larger flat should they wish to keep it though. All of these incomes, whether rental income or sales proceeds, can all be put towards their retirement needs.
Aside from the financial benefit, SAs are equipped with fixtures that are elderly friendly such as emergency alarm systems and grab bars. Another convenience is that they are situated within HDB towns, giving seniors a wider array of access to public facilities such as day programs which are run specifically for seniors in Senior Activity Centers.
Mr. Khaw pointed out that another things which makes SAs attractive is that they are much easier to maintain than a large flat.
A study that was run by the ministry between 2006 and 2013 of the 7,600 households which booked studio apartments, has shown the following trends:
Of all of the applicants, 2/3 were under 65 years of age.
Half of these applicants had been living alone, were widowed, divorced, or never married.
A bit over 22% of these picked studio apartments in the same HDB town.
Almost 70% of the applicants previously owned 3-4 room flats.
Mr. Khaw pointed out that even though a senior may live in their studio apartment on their own, they still do need support from the community and family. Mr. Khaw has made a promise that his ministry would keep a watchful eye out in finding ways to nurture active and positive aging.
Mr. Khaw has also said that the ministry is taking studio apartments one step further by integrating them into established developments, such as in Kampung Admiralty. The studio apartments, which cover a two blocks, all have easy accessibility to public plaza, hawker center, childcare, healthcare services and care services for the elderly all in one area. These were purposely grouped together in order to promote better interactions between generations and allow for better bonding opportunities between senior’s children and grandchildren.