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Retirees Forced to Leave “Worthless” Childhood Homes Once Government Reclaims Land

70-year-old Mdm Xu has been living in her 2-storey terrace house at Geylang Lorong 3 since she was 13 years old.

In 3 years time, it will reach the end of its 60-year lease and will be returned to the government

Now she faces a situation where she will be homeless come 2020

“My house is still in good condition. You mean to say it has no value?”

The answer at this time is “Yes aunty, it’s worthless once the lease expires”.

The reason is according to regulations the land will return to the Singapore Land Authority once it reaches its maturity date.

An estimated 30 other households are in the same boat as Mdm Xu.

Another resident, 68-year-old retiree Mr Lim, said most of the residents have already moved elsewhere – even the previous chairman of the Resident’s Association left 8 years ago.

He said those who remain living there are retirees who have no source of income.

He said that he bought his 2-storey terrace house for S$35,000 in 1987 and got an offer to sell the house for S$20,000 ten years ago but didn’t take it.

“I’ve lived here in this area for so many years. I met my wife here. I can’t bear to leave.”

A portion of the land where the houses now stand has been acquired by a temple.

Those houses, which hold the memories of the retired residents which bind them to heir neighbourhood, will be turned into workers’ dormitories.

It is unclear what the rest of the land will be converted into.



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