Young renters are now eyeing new long-stay serviced apartments, but it “all comes down to cost”

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SINGAPORE: Singapore is set to introduce long-stay serviced apartments, providing a housing option for individuals seeking accommodation for a minimum of three months. The Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) disclosed that the initial phase of the pilot project will include two locations on Upper Thomson Road and Zion Road, with an anticipated launch in early December.

Minister for National Development Desmond Lee outlined the initiative last week, addressing the demand for extended stay options beyond the typical seven-day minimum requirement of existing serviced apartments. This move aims to cater to Singaporeans and foreigners in transitional phases, offering convenient locations near MRT stations.

TODAY reported that new long-stay serviced apartments garner interest among young renters. Five individuals aged 24 to 28 shared their perspectives on this housing alternative. Their motivations for seeking accommodation ranged from desiring independence to coping with the challenges of delayed Build-to-Order (BTO) flat completion and home renovations. However, the deciding factor for many revolves around the affordability of the new serviced apartments.

In a press release, the URA indicated that the pilot phase would yield approximately 535 serviced apartments across the two locations. While homeownership remains a strong aspiration in Singapore, the agency acknowledged a segment of the population, particularly younger adults, opting for rental arrangements.

The central consideration for prospective tenants, as voiced by those interviewed, is the cost associated with these new accommodations. Mr Martin Layar, a 26-year-old management trainee, expressed hope for reasonable prices, emphasising the temporary nature of his potential stay during home renovations.

For some, like Ms Deena Anwar and her partner, rental costs and restrictions, such as those related to pets, played a crucial role in deciding against serviced apartments. Ms Deena stated, “It all comes down to rental price and restrictions around things like pets.” Their search for alternative accommodation led them to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

While shorter leases and prime locations attract certain renters, others, like 28-year-old product manager Travis Chan, prioritise stability and security, leaning towards longer-term rentals. He said, “Even though the allure of service apartments is that your lease can...

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