If you are eager to get a BTO flat in 2018, you can rest easy knowing that around 17,000 flats will be launched this year. This is comparable to the number of BTO flats that were launched in 2017, despite the seemingly downward trend over the past few years. Whether you are a first or second-time applicant, it is crucial that you are familiar with the new launches for better planning and quick decision-making during the busy bidding periods. Here are some things you need to know before bidding for a BTO flat this year.
- New BTO flats will be spread around mature and non-mature towns
As with previous years, the new BTO flats will be launched in both mature and non-mature towns. This includes the flat launches in Geylang, Tampines, Choa Chu Kang and Woodlands in February, as well as Sembawang, Yishun and Sengkang in the second half of the year. New flats will also be launched in the upcoming Tengah Town. The new 700-hectare town is perfect for nature lovers as it promotes sustainable living with its lush greenery and Singapore’s very first car-free town centre.
- Shorter waiting time for new flats
To help keen young couples get their new homes earlier, HDB will be offering BTO flats with shorter waiting times in Sembawang, Yishun and Sengkang, in the later part of the year. HDB has commenced construction of the flats late last year, prior to the upcoming sales launches, so that buyers can get their new BTO flats within 2.5 years rather than the having to wait the typical three to four years. So keep an eye on these launches if you are planning on getting a BTO flat soon.
- First-timer family benefits
First-timer families will enjoy higher priority when applying for the Sembawang, Yishun and Sengkang flats as at least 95% of the 4-room and larger flats have been specially set aside for them. This is a great leap from the current 85% quota for non-mature estates.
- Estimated pricing
Recent estimates put 3- and 4-room flats in Geylang at a cost of $355,000 to $400,000 and $510,000 to $590,000 respectively*, 3- and 4-room flats in Choa Chu Kang at a cost of $150,000 to $180,000 and $250,000 to $300,000 respectively*, 4- and 5-room flats in Tampines at $320,000 to $380,000 and $435,000 to $515,000 respectively*, and 4- and 5-room flats in Woodlands at $230,000 to $315,000 and $310,000 to $400,000 respectively*.
- Schemes for couples
Besides launching flats with shorter waiting times, new schemes are available for eager young couples to have more access to affordable housing options. Now, on top of the Sales of Balance (SBF) exercise, couples with more urgent housing needs or who are less particular about the location of their homes can get a flat under the Re-offer of Balance Flats (ROF) exercise.