SINGAPORE - A total of 4,989 Build-To-Order (BTO) flats across seven housing projects in five estates were launched for sale by the Housing Board (HDB) on Wednesday (Aug 11).
This was the third sales exercise for the year, with a median waiting time of just over four years for flats to be completed.
A highly anticipated BTO project is Queen's Arc in Queenstown - one of the most sought-after mature housing estates in Singapore's oldest town - where 610 three-room and four-room flats are on offer across two blocks.
The site is next to Alexandra Hospital and is bounded by Queen's Crescent and Queensway Drive.
This is the first time in nine years new flats are being launched in Queenstown.
The last BTO project launched there was the 1,179-unit Ghim Moh Edge project in November 2012, which sits next to the future housing land parcel that will be carved out from Dover Forest.
The prices then started from $310,000, without grants, for a three-room flat and $450,000 for a four-room flat.
According to official HDB data, there have been at least seven units in Ghim Moh Edge that have changed hands for at least $1 million. The most recent inked deal was $1.07 million for a five-room unit in April this year.
In Queen's Arc, prices start from $382,000, without grants, for a three-room flat and $540,000 for a four-room flat, making them the most expensive units in a mature estate in this launch.
Buyers will also have to wait more than five years for these flats - the longest wait in this launch - as the project is estimated to be completed in the third quarter of 2027.
HDB said the long waiting time is mainly due to additional preparation works required for the site as well as the design of the project.
"One of the residential blocks in the project, at 39 storeys high, is taller than most of the other BTO projects. Hence, a longer construction time is required," said HDB.
Before the Covid-19 pandemic, the waiting time for a standard BTO flat was about three to four years.
For the first time in 10 years, the non-mature estate of Jurong East will get its first new flats.
A total of 569 two-room flexi, three-room and four-room flats are on offer at Toh Guan Grove, which sits near the upcoming Toh Guan MRT station on the Jurong Region Line.
Prices start from $237,000 for a three-room flat and $347,000 for a four-room flat.
The estimated completion date is in the first quarter of 2026, so buyers have to wait about four years for their homes.
The last BTO launch for Jurong East was Teban View in September 2011, where some 518 three- and four-room flats were released for sale.
Prices then started from $158,000 for a three-room flat and $271,000 for a four-room flat.
In the current August launch, there are two BTO projects in the mature estate of Tampines.
The bigger project is Tampines GreenQuartz, where 1,613 two-room flexi, three-room, four-room and five-room units are on offer on a site close to Tampines West MRT station on the Downtown Line.
Prices start from $244,000 for a three-room unit, $352,000 for a four-room unit and $485,000 for a five-room flat.
These flats are estimated to be ready in more than four years, in the second quarter of 2026.
The smaller project is Tampines GreenJade, where 546 four- and five-room units are on offer, on a land parcel next to Bedok canal that overlooks Bedok Reservoir.
Prices start from $342,000 for a four-room flat and $475,000 for a five-room unit.
The waiting time is about 3.5 years, as these flats are slated for completion in the third quarter of 2025.
The smallest BTO project in this launch is Towner Residences in the mature estate of Kallang/Whampoa.
A total of 316 three- and four-room flats are on offer on a site along Towner Road, next to the Central Expressway.
The project includes a block of rental flats.
Prices start from $336,000 for a three-room flat and $500,000 for a four-room flat.
These flats are slated for completion in just under four years in the fourth quarter of 2026.
There are two BTO projects available in the non-mature estate of Hougang.
The smaller project is Kovan Wellspring with 586 two-room flexi, three-room and four-room units on offer. It will be integrated with the new Paya Lebar Kovan Community Club.
It is located on a site next to Heartland Mall and Kovan MRT station on the North-East Line.
Prices start from $289,000 for a three-room flat and $413,000 for a four-room flat.
Buyers have to wait about 4.5 years for these flats, which are estimated to be completed in the third quarter of 2026.
The bigger project is Hougang Citrine, with 749 two-room flexi, three-room, four-room and five-room units along Hougang Avenue 3.
Prices start from $199,000 for a three-room flat, $324,000 for a four-room flat and $392,000 for a five-room unit, making them the most affordable in this sales exercise.
Buyers will also have the shortest wait for these flats - around three years - as the project is slated for completion in the first quarter of 2025.
Applications for the flats close next Tuesday (Aug 17) at 11.59pm on the HDB flat portal. The flats will be allocated through balloting.
On Wednesday, National Development Minister Desmond Lee said in a Facebook post that many BTO projects have been delayed beyond their original estimated completion dates, as the construction sector has been hit hard by Covid-19 .
However, he assured home buyers that HDB is working with contractors and other agencies to reduce construction delays and will keep buyers updated on the completion date of their new flat as construction progresses.
In November, 4,400 flats will be offered in towns such as Choa Chu Kang, Hougang, Jurong West, Kallang/Whampoa and Tengah.
Another 2,000 to 3,000 flats will be offered in towns such as Geylang, Tengah and Yishun in February next year.
The exact location of these projects and the number of flats at each site will be released only three months ahead of the launch.