Parliamentary Question by Mr Lim Biow Chuan:
To ask the Minister for Finance whether the Additional Buyer Stamp Duty remission can be extended to singles who have bought a second property and subsequently sold the first property within six months from their purchase of the second property.
Parliamentary Response by Minister for Finance Mr Heng Swee Keat:
The policy intent for ABSD is to moderate demand among homebuyers, and to ensure a stable and sustainable property market. This in turn will help both existing and aspiring homeowners, by keeping price increases in line with economic fundamentals.
ABSD is applicable on the second and subsequent residential property purchases of all Singaporeans. This applies regardless of whether they dispose of their first property subsequently. This is because even if the first property is eventually disposed of, the purchase of the second property adds to the demand for residential properties.
We have made one exception, namely for Singaporean married couples. A Singaporean married couple may need to change home due to changing family needs, such as when they have more children or when their children are growing up. It is in this context that we have an ABSD concession for Singaporean married couples buying a second property. Under the concession, we allow Singapore married couples to claim a refund of the ABSD paid on their second property, provided they sell their first property within 6 months after the purchase of a completed property, or the TOP date of an uncompleted property.
This ABSD concession is not available to other groups of property buyers, as our overall key objective remains to moderate the demand for residential properties including that for second residential property of Singaporeans. Buyers who do not wish to incur the higher ABSD on second residential properties may wish to consider selling their first property before purchasing their replacement property.