HDB launches new co-living housing option for low-income singles

For low-income singles in Singapore, getting a rental flat can be a Catch-22. 

That is because while the security of having a place to call home is desirable, sharing a space with a flatmate does not always end in harmony. Sometimes, homelessness might even be a better option for some when disputes escalate. 

Fortunately, these difficulties have not gone unheard by the PAP Government, and maximising land space should not be at the expense of personal welfare. 

As a result, we are now seeing more housing options for low-income singles in recent years. 

Launched yesterday (Mar 13) by Minister for National Development Mr Desmond Lee and Minister of State (MOS) for National Development Dr Faishal Ibrahim, the Single Room Shared Facilities model is the latest housing concept by the HDB.

A co-living experience 

Refurbished from the former Anderson Junior College hostel, the new housing model will provide each tenant with a single bedroom and basic furnishing. 

And somewhat similar to a co-living experience, there will be shared facilities such as a kitchen, dining area, toilets, and showers. 

With this model, noted Minister Lee, individuals can enjoy more privacy within a limited space. In addition, communal areas can enable social interaction and reduce the risk of social isolation. 

So while public rental flats are a social safety net to support Singaporeans who do not have other housing options, there is no reason why we cannot make them better. 

“If this pilot is successful, it will expand the range of public rental housing options available for lower-income individuals,” added Minister Lee. 

Building inclusive and liveable homes

May be an image of 13 people, people standing and indoor

As Minister Lee has acknowledged, the housing policy in Singapore is far from perfect. In fact, one of the bugbears from the past is how few options there are for singles. 

However, that narrative is already changing in our quest to renew our social compact. 

Over the years, the PAP has actively listened and gathered views from the ground. And the results have been a revision of housing policies to make them more inclusive for vulnerable Singaporeans. 

With the introduction of this new housing model that merges individual privacy with community living, it is only apt that we support low-income singles in a way so they can live their best possible life. 


Photo Sources: Desmond Lee/Faishal Ibrahim via Facebook