Complete Property Market Updates of Singapore

April 27, 2008

HDB gets 1,752 applications for 490 flats

Filed under: General — Propertymarketupdates @ 2:24 am

Board will restructure, re-time sale launches

THE Housing and Development Board (HDB) launched 490 flats for sale in the North and West Zones through the bi-monthly sales exercise yesterday, receiving 1,752 applications on the same day.

HDB has also reviewed the bi-monthly and monthly sales exercises and said that the supply of unsold four-room and bigger flats, currently grouped under three sections, will be consolidated under a single launch.

The launches will also be restructured and re-timed to once every three months for the sale of three-room and smaller unsold flats, and once every six months for the sale of three-room premium, four-room and bigger flats.

On the first day of the February bi-monthly sales exercise, almost 10,000 people applied for just 278 flats in sought-after mature estates such as Toa Payoh, Tampines and Bedok.

Of the 490 flats offered for sale yesterday in the North and West Zones through the bi-monthly sales exercise, 1,752 applications were received on the same day.

Compared with February’s bi-monthly sales exercise, yesterday’s response – the first day of April’s bi-monthly sales exercise – was somewhat lukewarm. This could be because 377 units out of the 490 units offered are in Jurong West, an area that is not considered popular.

Of the flats in Jurong West, 333 units are five-room flats. A check with HDB’s website revealed that a 110 square metre unit on the second floor of Block 676B, Jurong West Street 64, costs $248,800 while a similar unit on the 16th floor of the same block costs $280,000.

PropNex CEO Mohamed Ismail said that he expects the current bi-monthly sales exercise to see at least a fivefold over-subscription eventually. ‘Especially because of the recent announcement of rejuvenating the area,’ he added.

For more demanding buyers, HDB had this to say: ‘Flat buyers who prefer to live in mature estates are also advised to consider resale flats. They should not rely on HDB’s sale exercises as there is limited land to build new HDB flats in these locations.’

From April to September, HDB will be offering 5,000 new Build-To-Order (BTO) flats in towns such as Punggol, Sengkang, Woodlands and Bukit Panjang. This will bring the total planned BTO supply for January-September to 6,100 units, updated from the earlier H1′08 estimate of 4,500 units.

However, HDB said: ‘To avoid over-building new HDB flats, the construction of BTO projects will only commence when a majority of the units have been booked.’

HDB also advised those who need flats urgently to consider resale flats on the open market.

Said ERA Singapore assistant vice-president Eugene Lim: ‘The resale market is still very active.’ This is despite the HDB resale price index rising 3.4 per cent in Q1′08 over Q4′07.

Mr Lim added: “HDB has indicated that most of the new flats will not be in mature estates due to limited land available. So those who want to live in mature estates will have to look at the resale market.”

Source : Business Times – 11 Apr 2008


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