As announced in the Singapore Budget 2021, a total of $900 million has been set aside for Singaporean households under the Household Support Package. While much lesser in quantum compared to Budget 2020’s Care and Support Package of $4.6 billion, the Household Support Package aims to continue to provide additional support to families, particularly for middle to lower income, even as the economy shows signs of recovery.
In general, Singaporean households can expect to receive 1. GST Vouchers-Cash, 2. GST Vouchers U-Save, 3. Service and Conservancy Charges (S&CC) rebates, 4. top-ups to children’s education accounts, and 5. Community Development Council (CDC) vouchers.
A Typical Singaporean Household Will Receive Most (But Not All) Of The Household Support Package
For illustration, a Singaporean household, consisting of a couple and child, living in a 4-room flat with median household income of $8,827 can expect to receive about $635 from the Household Support Package.
|Example: Support Received From Household Support Package|
|GST Cash Voucher||Not Applicable|
|GST U-Save Voucher||$160|
|S&CC Rebates||~$175 (approximate)|
|Child Development Account Top Up||$200|
As the support is tiered and targeted at lower to middle income household, the amount of support you will receive from the Household Support Package will depend on whether your household meets the criteria of the different components.
#1 $200 GST Vouchers Cash Special Payment Are Only For Eligible Lower Income Singaporeans
GST vouchers were first introduced in Budget 2012 as a permanent scheme to help lower income Singaporeans. On average, the GST vouchers, payable every August, offsets half of the GST paid by lower income households. This special payment will benefit an estimated 1.4 million Singaporeans.
For Budget 2021, Singaporeans citizens can expect to receive an additional $200 in June, on top of the $150 or $300 due in August. To qualify, you need to be a Singapore citizen, above the age of 21, who meets the following criteria:
- FY2020 Assessable Income does not exceed $28,000
- Annual Value (AV) of residence (as reflected on NRIC) as of 31 December 2020 is less than $21,000
- Own only one property
Homeowners can check the AV of their property at no cost using the View Property Portfolio e-Service on IRAS’ website. In general, those residing on private property would not qualify for this scheme as the median AV of private property is $24,000. Depending on the residence, eligible Singaporeans can expect to receive $350 to $500 in total.
#2 HDB Households Will Benefit From U-Save Special Payment
An extension of GST vouchers, U-Save is a quarterly rebate on household utilities cost. This scheme will benefit about 950,000 Singaporean households. To receive U-Save, qualifying HDB households have to fulfil the following conditions:
- At least one Singapore citizen owner or occupier in the flat regardless of if it’s owned or partially rented out
- For rented flats, there must be at least one Singapore citizen tenant
- Immediate family members living in the same flat must not own or have any interest in more than one property
The additional 50% rebate will be directly credited to the utilities account, alongside with the regular payments in April and June. In total, each household can expect to receive an additional $120 to $200 depending on the type of HDB flat they live in.
In the event of unused U-Save, the amount cannot be enchased and can only be rolled over for future months.
#3 Service And Conservancy Charges (S&CC) Rebates To Be Extended For Another Year
Singaporeans can expect the same S&CC rebates they received in 2020 to continue for this year. Like last year, households with members owning private property in any capacity or has income from renting a whole flat, would not be eligible for the S&CC rebate. This scheme will stand to benefit about 950,000 Singaporean household, with similar outreach as U-Save.
In total, households can expect to receive 1.5 months to 3.5 months depending on the type of HDB owned. Based on current S&CC rates, the rebates given would roughly range from $70 to $160 in total.
#4 Citizens Below The Age Of 21 Gets $200 Top-Up For Their Education Accounts
Children with Singapore citizenship below the age of 21 can expect a $200 top up in their education account based on their academic level. This is on top of February’s annual top up of $230 for primary and $290 for secondary students. Singaporean children in post-secondary and pre-primary education who do not enjoy the same annual top up as primary and secondary students will still receive their $200 in their respective education accounts. From this scheme, 780,000 children with Singapore citizenship will benefit from this scheme. For students in Government-funded special education (SPED), the top up will be given to their respective education accounts regardless of age.
These funds can then be used to pay for approved education fees, charges, education loans and enrichment programmes (which includes overseas immersion programmes). While the funds cannot be withdrawn, any leftover amount in education accounts will receive a 2.5% per annum rate and be eventually transferred over to Central Provident Fund Ordinary Account once the child reach the age of 30 years old.
#5 Each Household Will Receive $100 Community Development Council (CDC) Vouchers Scheme
Launched in June 2020, CDC is a joint initiative by the five Community Development Council to assist low-income families while supporting local businesses. In Budget 2021, the scheme is expanded to every Singaporean household which will receive $100 worth of CDC vouchers. This scheme is expected to benefit about 1.3 million households.
The details for Budget 2021’s CDC vouchers will only be released on a later date. However, we can expect the participating vendors to be similar to those on the existing CDC scheme. Currently, there are more than 2,700 vendors participating island wide, located in the heartlands of the 31 constituencies. The stores are varied to cover most of the essential household expenses, ranging from wet market stalls, hawkers, pharmacies, mobile shops and laundromats.
When Will You Receive The Household Support Package?
To provide a final round-up for the Budget 2021 Household Support Package, the timeline for each scheme’s payout, except for CDC vouchers, is as summarised below:
|April 2021||– U-save utility rebates
– S&CC rebates
|May 2021||– Edusave or PSEA $200 top up|
|June 2021||– $200 GST Voucher-Cash|
|July 2021||– U-save utility rebates
– S&CC rebates
|September 2021||– CDA $200 top up|
|October 2021||– S&CC rebates|
|January 2022||– S&CC rebates|
Cover image credit: Raymond Quek
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