Need A New HDB Flat Fast? You Can Now Book Unsold Balance Flats Any Time!
Need a new HDB flat fast? You can now book one the next day with the enhanced Re-Offer of Balance Flats (ROF) scheme, which makes unsold flats from previous sale exercises available for booking any time.
Previously, these unsold Build-to-Order (BTO) HDB flats were only available during semi-annual sales exercises.
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Starting 11 June 2019, home buyers looking to purchase an unsold flat from the Housing and Development Board (HDB) can view online listings of such flats at any time of the year and book a unit the day after they make an application.
This open booking option of unselected flats from the Re-Offer of Balance Flats (ROF) pool “enables more flat buyers to move into their homes earlier”, said HDB.
It noted that a total of 123 flats will be made available for application from 18 June 2019 at 12am, comprising 105 flats in mature towns such as Bukit Merah, Ang Mo Kio and Toa Payoh as well as 18 flats in non-mature towns such as Jurong West and Bukit Batok.
Editor’s note: Some of these flats have ethnic restrictions as well.
Chinese are eligible to apply for only 26 of the flats, Malays can do so for 115, while Indians and other races have access to the remaining 119.
The size of the flats available is also something to take note of.
57 of the flats are 3-room, which come with an income ceiling of $6,000 to $12,000 depending on the project.
While 17 are 3-Gen flats which come with the Multi-Generation Family Structure requirement that parents must live with their married children under one roof.
A quick check with our Seedly community revealed that most first-time home buyers would be looking at 4-room flats, of which there are only 23 4-room HDB flats are available for booking under this exercise.
So act fast if you see a flat that matches your budget and criteria!
“The one-week period gives interested applicants time to gather information on the flats offered, before submitting their application,” explained HDB.
“Applicants will be able to select and book a flat on a first-come-first-served basis. During the flat selection appointment, applicants will be assessed for eligibility before they book a flat.”
HDB revealed that a fresh supply of ROF flats will be offered for open booking twice a year – in February and August. To give home buyers time to prepare, online applications will be suspended for around two weeks before each injection of new flats.
“During each suspension, HDB will publish the dates for the next inject and when it will start accepting online applications so that homebuyers can plan ahead for their purchase,” it added.
Introduced in 2017 to help young couples secure their first home sooner, the ROF exercises have become popular with buyers.
In fact, HDB has offered close to 3,400 units via the ROF exercises since August 2017, with around 3,000 households booking a flat. Of these, 62 per cent or 1,850 households have already collected the keys to their units.
“The new open booking of ROF flats, together with the existing sales modes, will provide more options for home buyers to find a flat that meets their budget and needs. HDB will continue to monitor the response and make refinements to our sales processes where necessary,” said HDB.
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