SINGAPORE - A total of 3,740 Build-To-Order (BTO) flats, including Singapore's first assisted living public housing project for seniors, were launched for sale by the Housing Board on Thursday (Feb 4) in the first sales exercise for the year.
The flats are spread across seven housing projects in the mature towns of Kallang/Whampoa and Toa Payoh (Bidadari), and the non-mature towns of Bukit Batok and Tengah.
Those aged 65 and above can apply for a home at Harmony Village @ Bukit Batok, where 169 Community Care Apartments in a 15-storey residential block is on offer. The new housing concept comes with a mandatory service package to support seniors who wish to live on their own and yet enjoy some care, support and communal activities.
These flats are expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2024 and will come with senior-friendly fittings such as grab bars and a wheelchair-accessible bathroom.
Prices range from $52,000 to $60,000 for a 32 sq m unit and are sold on short leases between 15 and 35 years. These units cannot be resold or rented out.
In Bidadari, which is part of Toa Payoh town, two out of the three projects have four-room and five-room flats.
ParkEdge @ Bidadari, the biggest project among the three, has 476 four-room and five-room flats on offer on a site opposite the future Mount Vernon funeral parlour complex that is slated to be completed in 2025. The flats are estimated to be completed in the first quarter of the same year.
The second project, Alkaff Breeze, has 353 four-room and five-room flats and is located near Cedar Primary School and the upcoming Alkaff Lake.
These flats are estimated to be completed in the second quarter of 2024, the fastest to be ready in this launch alongside the Community Care Apartments in Bukit Batok.
The last BTO project in Bidadari, Bartley GreenRise, located on a site next to Maris Stella High School and within walking distance from Bartley MRT station, offers 387 three-room and four-room flats.
Prices start from $312,000, without grants, for a three-room flat and $464,000 for a four-room flat. A five-room flat starts from $611,000, making them the most expensive units in this launch.
Since 2015, the HDB has not launched five-room BTO flats in a centrally located mature estate outside of the Bidadari estate.
In Kallang/Whampoa, 626 two-room flexi, three-room and four-room flats are on offer at McNair Heights, on a site next to Kwong Wai Shiu Hospital and within walking distance of Boon Keng MRT station.
Prices start from $359,000 for a three-room flat and $532,000 for a four-room flat.
The estimated completion date is in the second quarter of 2026, making it one of two projects with the longest wait time in this launch.
A BTO project in Woodlands launched last August and another in Bishan last November had similarly long waiting periods, with completion dates estimated to be in the second quarter of 2026.
The biggest project for this launch is at West Hill @ Bukit Batok, where 962 two-room flexi, three-room, four-room and five-room flats are on offer located on a site bounded by Bukit Batok West Avenue 8 and Bukit Batok West Avenue 5.
Prices start from $175,000 for a three-room flat and $384,000 for a five-room flat, making these flats the most affordable in this launch.
But home owners will have to wait the longest for these flats, as the estimated completion date is in the second quarter of 2026.
In the new "forest town" of Tengah, a total of 767 two-room flexi, three-room and four-room flats are on offer at Parc Woods @ Tengah.
Prices start from $209,000 for a three-room flat and $$298,000 for a four-room flat. These flats will be completed in the first quarter of 2025.
Applications for the flats close next Wednesday (Feb 10) on the HDB flat portal. The flats will be allocated through balloting.
In May, the HDB will launch some 3,800 flats in Bukit Merah, Geylang, Tengah and Woodlands.
Another 4,930 flats will be offered in Queenstown, Kallang/Whampoa, Tampines, Jurong East and Hougang in August.
Minister for National Development Desmond Lee had previously said that the HDB will launch about 17,000 flats this year, keeping the supply of new flats in line with the number launched last year.
Analysts said the projects in Kallang/Whampoa and Bidadari are likely to be the most popular ones in the current launch, going by previous application trends.
PropNex chief executive Ismail Gafoor said McNair Heights in Kallang/Whampoa would appeal to families who wish to live in a central location. He noted that the previous project in the area was heavily oversubscribed by 5.4 times for three-room flats and 15.6 times for four-room flats.
ERA Realty head of research and consultancy Nicholas Mak said seniors may find the Community Care Apartments in Bukit Batok attractive as these flats are more affordable compared to two-room flexi flats in the area.
Software engineer Chee Rui Yi, 24, has plans to apply for a flat in Bidadari with her partner, although they are unsure about the four-year wait for two of the projects.
“We’re just going to apply and see what ballot number we get. We’re actually already considering resale flat but I just want to try my luck in this BTO lottery,” she said.