I picked this up from the YP forum and would like to highlight it to my readers. This is something that the Straits Times is unlikely to publish at this period of time.
"This problem might be faced by any low income Singaporeans staying in HDB rental flat.
I am staying in Jalan Besar GRC constituency for the past 2 years at Blk 5, Jalan Minyak,Singapore 161005.
I got this rental flat on 01/03/2004 for 24 months rental. I was asked to pay a rental of $150 per month since I was employed at that moment with a basic salary of $1200.
I lost my job in March 2004 and I am unemployed since then. My wife is also unemployed. We have tried in many ways to secure employment.
I am facing financial difficulties paying the rental.
I have informed many times to HDB Chin Swee Branch that I have lost my job and please review my rental. My neighbours are paying only $44 per month while I am paying $150 per month.
I have an outstanding arrears of $3008.50 which is calculated at $150 per month. Recently, I received a letter from Chin Swee HDB branch requesting me to pay $4790.60. There was an additional of $1539.10 for legal fees and $243.00 as Occupational charges. The legal fees and Occupational Charges are almost half of the arrears. It is like adding more fuel to my problems.
Moreover, the Chin Swee Branch has requested me to downgrade to one room flat or else physical eviction will be carried out.
I understand the policy where the rental was based on the monthly household income at the point of application. Please look into the factor that I lost my job in March 2004 and I am unemployed since then. I do definitely believe that there will be provisions to adjust the rental according to the household income when a person loses a job. I think it is not fair to stick a certain rulings when HDB rental flats are accommodated for lower income households.
1. I do not understand why there is no provisions to adjust the rent when there is problem in paying rental due to unemployment.
2.Furthermore, HDB wants me to downgrade to 1 room flat or physical eviction will be carried out. Presently my family consists of my wife, my 2 year old son and myself. My wife is pregnant and the due date is in the July. There will be another additional member in my family. I believe that 1-room flat will not be too cramped for us.There is not much of difference in rental between 1 room flat and 2 room flat. Why is HDB insisting me to downgrade to 1 room and do not allow me to stay in the same unit.
Singapore Government is coming up with good housing benefits for low income families. I don't understand why I am not given provisions to reduce the rental or stay in the same unit."
The author claims that he has already reflected the problem to his MP who has written to HDB on his behalf but HDB "did not even care".