We thank Mr Tan Soon Hock for his letter (Clarify issues about BTO balloting and process; Aug 10).
Just as our public housing policies have evolved over the years to cater to different groups of buyers, HDB's balloting process has also changed to keep pace while ensuring that it remains fair to all applicants.
Today, balloting for Build-To-Order (BTO) flats takes into account many factors, such as the applicants' household status (whether they are first-timer or second-timer applicants, elderly or single), the flat type they are buying, and the priority schemes they have applied for.
In addition, the available ethnic quota by estate and flat type, as well as the applicants' past unsuccessful BTO attempts in non-mature estates are considered in determining their queue positions.
The balloting process is audited to ensure fairness.
Prior to the ballot, HDB will conduct checks on the applicants' eligibility. In some cases, we ask applicants to furnish documents to confirm their eligibility.
Meanwhile, applicants will be informed at each BTO exercise of the tentative release date of the ballot results and the commencement of the selection exercise.
They will also be informed of the ballot results of their flat application before the next sales exercise.
All these steps take time, but are necessary to ensure fairness to all applicants. Our processes are constantly reviewed and fine-tuned when necessary.
Loh Swee Heng
Housing & Development Board