The government announced Tuesday that the income caps for applicants for home-ownership scheme (HOS) flats will be increased by up to 8.5 percent, taking effect today.
According to a notice published in the Official Gazette (BO), for an individual HOS applicant, the required minimum income will be raised from 7,820 patacas a month to 8,490 patacas a month, an increase of 8.56 percent.
For a one-person household the maximum income allowed will be increased from 29,700 patacas a month to 31,750 patacas a month, an increase of 6.9 percent.
Those who earn less or more than the official minimum and maximum income ceilings will not be able to apply for HOS flats.
HOS flats are subsidised by the government, making them much cheaper than those in the private market.
For applicants with one family member or more, the required minimum income will be increased from 12,210 patacas a month to 13,210 patacas a month, up 8.19 percent, while the maximum income ceiling will be increased from 59,300 patacas a month to 63,500 patacas a month, an increase of 7.08 percent.
According to the statement, the net asset limit for individual HOS applicants will be increased from 896,200 patacas to 959,600 patacas, an increase of 7.07 percent, while the limit for applicants with one family member or more will be raised from 1,792,400 patacas to 1,919,100 patacas, up 7.06 percent.
The government had adjusted the minimum and maximum income limits for HOS applicants in December last year. However, lawmakers, civic leaders and residents have been urging the government to re-adjust the limits so as to allow more residents to apply for HOS flats.
The government’s public housing programme comprises HOS flats and low-rental social housing flats.
During the latest HOS application period which ended in March, the Housing Bureau (IH) said that it had received about 42,000 applications for just 1,900 HOS units
, an oversubscription of 22 times the number on offer.(macaunews/macaupost)