BTO flats in Hougang prove popular

THE latest launch of new Housing Board flats includes two projects in the mature estate of Tampines, which experts expect to be popular.

Yet, the hottest project as of 5pm yesterday was Buangkok Woods in Hougang instead.

The lower prices in Hougang might be a factor, said experts, with National Development Minister Lawrence Wong also highlighting their affordability yesterday.

There are 4,841 flats up for sale in the August Build-to-Order (BTO) exercise which began yesterday, across five projects: three in the non-mature towns of Hougang, Sembawang and Yishun, and two in Tampines.

Property experts expect the two Tampines projects to be the most popular due to their location.

But ERA Realty key executive Eugene Lim added: "The other projects should also see healthy demand by applicants as they are very attractively priced."

Before grants, the starting price for a three-roomer is $202,000 in Tampines but just $156,000 in Yishun and $165,000 in Hougang.

Similarly, the five-roomer starting price is $398,000 in Tampines and $311,000 in Sembawang.

Aug 2016 BTO exercise: 4,841 flats launched in Hougang, Sembawang, Yishun and Tampines

  • On Wednesday (Aug 17), HDB launched a total of 4,841 flats for sale in the third BTO exercise this year. As of 5pm, the hottest project was Buangkok Woods in Hougang.
  • The lower prices in Hougang might be a factor, said experts.
  • East Delta @ Canberra in Sembawang has 570 units on offer, comprising 304 four-room and 266 five-room units.
  • The project will also have an eating house, minimart, shops, childcare centre, publicly-accessible roof garden.
  • The units on offer include 780 two-room flexi flats in Buangkok Woods and at Valley Spring @ Yishun. Such homes are often popular as they are the only available flat type for single buyers.
  • Valley Spring @ Yishun will also offer 100 three-room units and 308 four-room units, and its facilities include a roof garden, multi-storey car park, sky terraces.
  • The latest launch includes two projects in the mature estate of Tampines, which experts expect to be popular due to their location.
  • Tampines GreenView will have 112 three-room, 395 four-room and 207 five-room units.
  • Tampines GreenVerge will have 244 three-room, 1,106 four-room, 612 five-room and 60 Three-Generation units.
  • ERA Realty key executive Eugene Lim said: "The other projects should also see healthy demand by applicants as they are very attractively priced."

Affordability is one reason Safiah Mohamed, 50, is applying for a two-room flexi flat in Yishun. "It's also near my relatives' place and where my son is studying in ITE College Central," said the kitchen crew member who lives in a rental flat with her two children.

In a Facebook post yesterday, Mr Wong noted that a typical three- room flat in a non-mature estate like Hougang costs about $185,000.

At 5pm yesterday, there were six applicants for every 10 available units in Hougang's Buangkok Woods. In contrast, there were just two applicants for every 10 three-room flats in Tampines and three for every 10 of its larger flats.

The units on offer include 780 two-room flexi flats in Hougang and Yishun. Such homes are often popular as they are the only available flat type for single buyers. They are sold either on 99-year leases or shorter ones for elderly buyers.

With prices starting at $79,000 for a unit on a 99-year lease, buyers eligible for the maximum housing grants will have to pay only $4,000.

Short-lease units cost less.

Applications for this exercise close on Tuesday next week.

But buyers interested in mature estates might wait until November instead, said experts. There will be 5,090 BTO flats launched then - about 2,180 in Punggol and the rest in the popular estates of Bedok, Bidadari and Kallang/Whampoa.

Engineer Kee Soon Kiat, 31, and his wife are mulling over whether to apply for a Tampines flat now, or one in Bidadari in November.

The couple are considering a four- or five-room flat and prefer the convenient locations of those estates.

There will also be a Sale of Balance Flats exercise in November, with about 5,000 units including those in mature estates.

What type of property in Singapore should you buy

  • Buying property is a long term investment. When you're thinking of diving into real estate investment, it's better gather as much information on it as possible.
  • Just like in any part of the world, having a private property is a good decision as there are many benefits. For instance, the property cycle in Singapore over the last years indicates that there is a steady rise in real estate's value.
  • Alternatively, real estate investment can be a source of passive income. You can purchase a property and rent it out.
  • Hougang Capeview BTO flats

    BTO comes under the Housing and Development Board (HDB), Singapore. It's a responsive system, which allows Singaporean citizens to apply for flats at a location of their choice.

  • BTO flats at Sky Terrace@Dawson

    Once 65-70 per cent of the flats are booked, the construction work begins.

  • Tampines GreenLace BTO flats

    After the construction is completed, you will have to wait for some time before you can move in.

  • Pasir Ris One DBSS project

    Design, Build, and Sell Scheme (DBSS) is an incentive of the HDB system. DBSS is public housing scheme developed by private developers.

  • City View @ Boon Keng DBSS project

    The DBSS scheme offers more comfortable designs and better locations.

  • Executive Condominium

    Executive Condos (ECs) caters to young graduates and professionals who wants a property in between public and private housing.

  • Executive Condominium

    ECs are comparable in design and facilities to private condominiums as they are developed and sold by the private developers.

  • When it comes to investing in real estate, you should ask whether there is easy access to MRT stations, schools, and other essential facilities; the property can be easily resold; and affordability.
  • What are the costs involved in buying a property in Singapore? First, you have to check your stamp duty rate. Based on the market value of the property, you can compute for your Buyer's Stamp Duty (BSD).

janiceh@sph.com.sg

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