URA working on new rules here

Straits Times: Wed, Nov 30

THE Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) is also working on a raft of new rules here to give buyers more confidence about the home they are buying while ensuring that developers are more transparent.

The proposed changes tackle areas from showflat dimensions to the problems of pressure selling and misleading advertisements.

They aim to protect buyers by making information about units more accessible, while removing the distraction of misleading marketing gimmicks. Showflats, for example, will need to accurately depict the actual unit by having the same floor area and floor-to-ceiling height and signs to mark positions of removed walls, partitions or doors.

In the past, developers have been known to take artistic licence by removing structural walls and raising ceilings to make a unit look bigger.

The floor area of rooms in a new unit, from balconies to bedrooms and the dining area, will also have to be accurately outlined so buyers can be confident that they will get what they have paid for.

In addition, developers will have to provide the price list for units to be launched at least two days before the first option to purchase is issued.

Other proposed changes include ensuring that website ads do not contain false or misleading information, and developers having to provide their track record.

The URA plans to name developers that have violated these and other regulations. This list will be posted on the URA website. Developers which consistently flout the rules might also receive the maximum penalty of having their licence suspended.

The implementation date will be announced later as URA needs more time to refine the details of some of the proposals in consultation with the industry, it had said earlier.

ESTHER TEO

Source: The Straits Times © Singapore Press Holdings Ltd

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