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RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY | Staff Reporter, Hong Kong
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Housing Society unveils policy evicting wealthier tenants to accommodate the needy

The new policy aims to ensure a more effective allocation of subsidised housing resources.

Hong Kong Housing Society, the region’s second largest housing provider, is planning to introduce the Well-off Tenants Policy (WTP) to ensure a more effective allocation of subsidised housing resources, according to a press release.

Households will be required to vacate their rental flats if the family income exceeds five times the waiting list income limit or the total family net asset exceeds 100 times the waiting list income limit.

The Housing Society also reserves the right to evict tenants if any of their family member is discovered to have domestic property ownership in Hong Kong. 

“For those who do not have domestic property ownership in Hong Kong but with the household income exceeding 2 times and not more than 3 times of the waiting list income limit, they will be required to pay 1.5 times rent. If the household income exceeds 3 times and not more than 5 times of the waiting list income limit, the tenants will be required to pay double rent,” the press release added. 

The WTP, which takes effect on September 1, is only applicable to new tenants of HKHS rental estates and in cases of transferring tenancy to a family member other than the spouse.
Households are required to declare family income and assets after ten years residency and on a biennial basis afterward. 

The Housing Society adds that some tenants will be exempt from the WTP including households with all family members aged 60 or above or if all family members are receiving the Social Welfare Department’s Disability Allowance. 

“The Housing Society has been looking into the feasibility of introducing WTP for years. We have also been listening to views of different stakeholders. In view of the mounting demand for public housing, it is necessary to ensure effective allocation of subsidised housing resources in order to help those in dire need,” said HKHS CEO Wong Kit-loong.

The organisation will also launch its Rent Assistance Scheme which acts as relief measure to help tenants with financial difficulties as the Housing Society moves to increase the rent by 8% for 32,000 residential units effective on April 1 to cover rising operating costs.

Photo from WiNG - Own work, CC BY 3.0

 

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