Not many people in Singapore talk about buying a flat through HDB’s Balance Flats (HDB SBF) or the new open booking system. Twice a year, HDB SBF launches, usually take place in May and November. The units of the preceding BTO launchings are here. Any unsold flats after SBF will then be available via HDB Open Booking. These units are available throughout the year. In this blog, we tell you about HDB balance flat sales in Singapore.
What is a Balance Flat?
The principal advantage of buying a balance falt is that you can get through the BTO queue. The standard HDB BTO route has its limitations after all. They are as follows:
- Fewer options – HDB BTOs are only launched a few times a year and may not be in the property you want.
- Scarcity – Even if HDB has released the appropriate location, there is no guarantee that you will get a flat because everyone must go through the dreaded voting process.
- Scarcity – It’s absolutely similar to a flat in a “hot” BTO development such as Kallang/Whampoa.
- Long waiting time – after finally securing a BTO flat, the majority of BTOs still have a long-lasting wait of at least three to four years.
HDB Balance Flat Sales in Singapore:
However, there are many advantages to HDB Balance Flats:
- Additional places of choice – The current BTO launch does not limit to three or four areas
- Shorter wait – Because the apartment has already been built (in some cases, you will get ready to move-in apartments)
- Easier to evaluate your scope – You can see how many homes are available for you.
Let’s take a look at some of the disadvantages of HDB Balance Flats:
- Lower odds: Due to a much smaller supply than HDB BTOs, there are fewer chances of a successful application.
- Underwritten: Do you want a corner high floor? BTO buyers could have taken these up.
- Restrictions on the ethnic quota: Some flats, especially for the Chinese, may not be available.
- No savings on costs: Sadly, for their unsold flats HDB does not have a clear “reduced” policy. Balance flats may cost a little more, actually.
How to Apply for HDB Balance Flats Sales (SBF)?
Read the below steps carefully to know how you can apply for HDB balance flats and buy a property here in Singapore.
Check if You are Eligible
For the sale of balance flats, keep in mind the eligibility criteria, the income required, and housing schemes.
Apply for the Apartment
Hopefully, you’ve reviewed all of the information on HDB’s SBF page and made your decision. If this is the case, you can fill out a simple online application on the sales launch page and pay a $10 admin fee. This must be completed within the one-week window that HDB typically provides for BTO/SBF launches.
Wait for the Results
After the application is closed, prepare for the next few weeks as HDB carries out the voting process. This is basically a lottery, but HDB has created it to make it easier for you to apply for the first time. You can apply as a couple or as a family. You can improve your chances when you are eligible for one of the priority HDB schemes. For example, to live close to your parents.
Get a Home Loan
In the meantime, since you will need one to secure your apartment, it is better to prepare for a home loan. You must request a letter from HLE (HDB Loan Eligibility) if you plan to receive an HDB loan. Also, you must request a letter from the bank to obtain an AIP for a bank loan (Approval in Principle).
Know the Results
You will receive a letter with your voting queue number from HDB at the end of around 3 weeks. Keep an eye for a small figure number and if you are lucky to see it, that means you have an appointment with the HDB for your new home!
Reserve your Apartment
You will see what’s available at HDB Hub and if you like what you see, you can book the apartment at HDB Hub. And for that, you will have to pay an amount of $500, $1,000, or $2,000 option fee, depending on the size of the flat. You can revert to the official lease and make the 10% (HDB loan) or 20% (bank loan) down payment of the flat’s price once your finance is in order.
Collect Your Keys
The next time you hear HDB is when your key is ready, assuming everything is going well. Hurray! The key collection date can be within 3 months (if the building is already complete) to more than two years if the collection date is previously unsold BTO). Everything depends on how long the flat is in the construction process. And finally, you have the code to crack HDB balance flat sales in Singapore.