The Housing Board launched 9,655 Build-To-Order (BTO) flats for sale on Wednesday (Nov 23), in what was the biggest sales exercise since the BTO system was implemented in 2002.
The units are spread across 10 housing projects in five estates.
Three of these — two in Queenstown and one in Kallang/Whampoa — fall under the prime location public housing (PLH) model, which comes with a six per cent subsidy clawback upon their sale.
Another 1,071 flats are on offer in this year’s second and last Sale of Balance Flats (SBF) scheme, bringing the total number of new flats on sale in this launch to 10,726.
To allow buyers more time to select their units, the application period has been extended to nine days, up from the usual seven days, said HDB on Wednesday.
HDB launched 23,184 BTO flats in 2022, up from 17,000 flats in 2021, to meet strong demand for public housing.
In the current sales exercise, two projects in the mature estate of Queenstown under the PLH model come with stricter buying and selling conditions.
The bigger of the two is Ulu Pandan Banks, with 1,330 three-room and four-room flats on offer across seven blocks. It is situated in the eastern half of Dover Forest, within walking distance of Dover MRT station.
The four blocks facing Ulu Pandan Canal will be low-rise, while those closer to Commonwealth Avenue West will be high-rise.
Prices for this project range from $362,000 to $504,000 — without grants — for a three-room flat, and from $546,000 to $725,000 for a four-room flat.
Buyers will have to wait about 71 months — close to six years — for these flats, as the project is estimated to be completed in the third quarter of 2029 — making it the project with the longest waiting time in this launch.
The second Queenstown project under the PLH model is Ghim Moh Natura, where 991 two-room flexi, three-room and four-flats across four blocks are on offer on a site near Buona Vista MRT station.
Prices in this project range from $364,000 to $487,000 for a three-room flat, and from $516,000 to $696,000 for a four-room flat.
Buyers will have to wait about 53 months — 4.4 years — for these flats, as the project is estimated to be completed in the first quarter of 2028.
The smallest PLH project in this launch is Kallang Horizon in the mature estate of Kallang/Whampoa, where 477 three-room and four-room flats are spread across three blocks on a site next to Kallang MRT station.
Prices for this project range from $335,000 to $447,000 for a three-room flat, and from $509,000 to $690,000 for a four-room flat.
Buyers will also have to wait about 53 months — 4.4 years — for these flats, as the project is slated for completion in the first quarter of 2028.
Flat owners in the three PLH projects will have to pay six per cent of the resale price or valuation, whichever is higher, to HDB when they sell their home on the open market for the first time.
The subsidy clawback applies to the first resale transaction and not to subsequent sales, because of the higher amount of subsidies given to first-time owners of the flats.
Owners will also be bound to a 10-year minimum occupation period (MOP) before they can sell their flats on the open market. Standard BTO flats come with a five-year MOP and do not have a subsidy clawback clause.
Owners are also not allowed to rent out their whole unit, even after the MOP has transpired.
A third project in Queenstown, Queensway Canopy, does not fall under the PLH model. This is because the site — next to Alexandra Hospital — is located farther away from main transport nodes and major retail amenities, said HDB.
Besides three-room and four-room flats, Queensway Canopy offers 245 Community Care Apartments, which are assisted living flats for seniors aged 65 and above.
The assisted living public housing project is the second of its kind to be launched, following the pilot in Bukit Batok in February 2021, which saw its units oversubscribed.
There are six BTO projects in three non-mature estates in the current launch, where at least 95 per cent of the four-room and larger flats, and at least 85 per cent of three-room flats, are set aside for first-time applicant families.
All four-room flats offered in these non-mature estates are below $400,000, said HDB.
In Tengah, 2077 two-room flexi, three-room, four-room and five-room flats are on offer across 18 blocks in Garden Waterfront I and II @ Tengah. There will be rental flats in two of the blocks.
These units will be the first in Singapore with a beamless flat design, which gives residents greater flexibility to configure their flat layout.
Buyers will have to wait for only 3.3 years — or three years and four months — as HDB trials advanced construction technologies at the sites to increase productivity.
Prices range from $307,000 to $397,000 for a four-room, and from $428,000 to $536,000 for a five-room flat.
There are three BTO projects on offer in Yishun, with a mix of two-room flexi, three-room, four-room and five-room flats, some of which will overlook the Orchid Country Club golf course and Lower Seletar Reservoir.
Prices start from $248,000 for a four-room flat and from $366,000 for a five-room flat.
In Bukit Batok, 790 two-room flexi, three-room, four-room and five-room flats are on offer at West Glades @ Bukit Batok on a site at Bukit Batok West Avenue 5.
The 1,071 units offered under the SBF scheme are spread across mature and non-mature estates such as Bishan, Toa Payoh and Sengkang.
About 31 per cent of them are completed, while the rest are in various stages of construction.
Flat applications close on Dec 1 at 11.59pm on the HDB flat portal. The flats will be allocated through balloting.
In February 2023, about 4,400 BTO flats in towns such as Jurong West, Tengah, Kallang/Whampoa and Queenstown will be launched.
In May 2023, HDB will offer between 3,800 to 4,800 flats in towns such as Tengah, Bedok, Kallang/Whampoa, Serangoon and Queenstown.
HDB said it is continuing to monitor housing demand closely and is prepared to launch up to 100,000 flats in total from 2021 to 2025 if needed.
This article was first published in The Straits Times. Permission required for reproduction.