20-24% of first-time BTO applicants in mature estates successful on first try: Desmond Lee

Of all first-time applicants who managed to get a BTO flat in a mature estate from 2019 to 2021, less than 2 per cent took more than five tries. ST PHOTO: BENJAMIN SEETOR

SINGAPORE – Between 20 per cent and 24 per cent of first-time applicants managed to get a Build-To-Order (BTO) flat in a mature estate on their first try in the past three years, said National Development Minister Desmond Lee.

Of all first-time applicants who managed to get a BTO flat in a mature estate from 2019 to 2021, less than 2 per cent took more than five tries, he noted in a written reply to Workers’ Party MP He Ting Ru (Sengkang GRC) on Wednesday.

In the same period, the median number of attempts by all first-time families before they were successful in their BTO application in mature estates was one, added Mr Lee.

Ms He also asked for the maximum number of failed attempts that an applicant put in for a BTO flat in a mature estate before the person succeeded, to which Mr Lee said the figure would not be representative.

“This is because there are some applicants who may not have an urgent need for a BTO flat and may be applying exclusively to mature estate BTO projects or more attractive BTO projects only,” he added.

“Generally, we see high demand for BTO flats in the mature estates. Given the strong demand and limited flat supply, not all flat applicants applying for BTO flats in mature estates can secure one,” said Mr Lee.

He reiterated that applicants who wish to improve their chances of securing a BTO flat are encouraged to apply for units in non-mature estates.

Virtually all families who were first-time applicants and applied for a BTO flat in non-mature estates were given a chance to select a unit within their first three tries, he noted.

The Housing Board has ramped up the supply of new flats to meet strong demand, with more than 23,000 BTO flats launched in 2022, up from 17,000 in 2021.

More than 9,600 BTO flats are up for sale across 10 projects in five estates in the November BTO sales exercise, which ends at 11.59pm on Dec 1.

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