During this circuit breaker period, a majority of us will be staying home (unless you’re an essential worker).
This means that you will probably spend more time cleaning your homes.
Perhaps you’ve noticed that your house needs a fresh coat of paint. Or maybe you need a new look in your kitchen.
Thinking of renovating after circuit breaker ends, because your house might be your new office? Not so soon, my friend.
Homeowners Whose Renovations are Disrupted by Circuit Breaker Given Priority To Restart
Minister for National Development Lawrence Wong told Parliament on Tuesday (26 May) that homeowners whose renovations are disrupted will be given priority to restart in Phase 1 of the post-circuit breaker period.
This is good news for homeowners out there who have halted their renovations due to circuit breaker.
In addition, the government would consider allowing new home renovation projects to proceed earlier if contractors can ensure appropriate measures are in place.
This is in response to Worker’s Party MP Sylvia Lim’s question about homeowners who had bought homes before the circuit breaker period, where they were unable to move in due to disrupted renovation works.
Ms Lim pointed out that Building and Construction Authority (BCA) guidelines have placed works by individual households in a category that would resume in later phases of Singapore’s reopening.
However, Mr Wong clarified that home renovations will resume in two steps, where priority goes to projects that are already under way.
This means that if you are embarking on new renovation projects for your home after circuit breaker, it will be pushed back later.
Affected Homebuyers Can Live Somewhere Temporarily First
As some home buyers whose moving and renovation plans had been affected, authorities had put in place measures to help cope with it.
For example, at the start of the circuit breaker, some exemptions were made to complete minor works so that people can move in quickly to their homes.
What about those who were supposed to move in, but couldn’t and have nowhere to go?
Well, for those who could not complete renovation works, the Government had plans for them.
Transaction timelines could be pushed back, and impacted homeowners could move in with relatives and friends – even during this Circuit Breaker / Phase One period.
In addition, subsidised rates for interim rental flats were also given to those who needed temporary accommodation.
On normal days when the coronavirus isn’t wreaking havoc on society, there are rules to rental periods: the minimum stay is six months for HDB flats, and three months for private residential properties.
That’s, but the way, also the rules that render Airbnb illegal in Singapore.
However, in view of the COVID-19 situation, Mr Wong stated that HDB and the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) will be assessing a case-by-case basis for households who are in need of a temporary accommodation.
So if you are really struggling to get a place to stay, you’ll be able to appeal and get a temporary accommodation for the time being.
As most construction work had been suspended after circuit breaker commenced on 7 April, only 5% of the construction workforce continued to work.
However, given the Phase 1 of reopening Singapore, building contractors will gradually resume operations from 2 June, starting with important projects.
This means that the number of construction workforce is expected to double from 5% to 10% in June.
So if you’re thinking of doing some renovations for your house after the reopening, you might want to hold it off until things are looking better.