A Singaporean's Step-By-Step Guide: Open Booking of Flats
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A Singaporean's Step-By-Step Guide: Open Booking of Flats

Kenneth Fong
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We’ve talked a lot about how to apply for an HDB BTO flat.

But what if you didn’t get your BTO of choice because it was oversubscribed?

And you couldn’t get what you wanted during the HDB Sale of Balance Flat exercise?

Are you resigned to an HDB Resale flat or an executive condominium (EC)?

Sad SpongeBob Sitting In A Diner
Source: SpongeBob SquarePants | Giphy

What if I told you that you still have another shot at picking up a flat in that BTO project which you REALLY wanted?

That’s right.

You can do so through the Open Booking of Flat exercise.

Best of all?

These balance flats are available all year round, so there’s no need for you to ‘wait for the next launch’.


TL;DR: Open Booking of Flats Units Available and Price Range

For this round of Open Booking flats released there are no 2-Room Flexi flats available for sale to singles below 55 years old.

The Ethnic Quota quoted is based on the balance Ethnic Quota from previous exercises (read: some of these flats cannot be sold to buyers of certain ethnic groups)

Remember, the flats available are on a first-come, first-served basis!

FYI: Online application will open on 25 Mar 2020 (Wednesday) at 12am.

Flats in Non-Mature Towns or Estates Available for Open Booking

Town or EstateFlat TypeFlat(s) AvailablePrice Range
Bukit Panjang3Gen3$328,000 – $325,000
Punggol3-Room

Note: income ceiling $14,000
1$196,000
Sengkang4-Room46$280,000 – $305,000
5-Room33$361,000 – $433,000
Woodlands3Gen1$335,000
Yishun4-Room60$263,000 – $288,000
5-Room50$343,000 – $394,000
3-Gen30

Flats in Mature Towns or Estates Available for Open Booking

Town or EstateFlat TypeFlat(s) AvailablePrice Range
Bukit Panjang3Gen3$328,000 – $325,000
Punggol3-Room

Note: income ceiling $14,000
1$196,000
Sengkang4-Room46$280,000 – $305,000
5-Room33$361,000 – $433,000
Woodlands3Gen1$335,000
Yishun4-Room60$263,000 – $288,000
5-Room50$343,000 – $394,000
3-Gen30
Ang Mo Kio4-Room1$324,000
5-Room4$455,000 – $558,000
Bishan4-Room1$301,000
5-Room2$531,000 – $548,000
Executive1$726,000
Bukit Merah2-Room Flexi
(40-Year Lease)
1$153,000
2-Room Flexi
(99-year/ remaining lease)
3$185,000 – $265,000
5-Room6$541,000 – $684,000
Bukit Timah2-Room Flexi
(40-Year Lease)
1$119,000
Clementi2-Room Flexi
(99-year/ remaining lease)
1$170,000
3-Room29$315,000 – $340,000
4-Room17$465,000 – $490,000
5-Room12$577,000 – $694,000
3Gen49
Central2-Room Flexi
(99-year/ remaining lease)
1$195,000
3-Room2$360,000 – $389,000
Geylang2-Room Flexi
(40-Year Lease)
18$100,000 – $157,000
2-Room Flexi
(99-year/ remaining lease)
18$175,000 – $272,000
3-Room16$375,000 – $387,000
4-Room4$518,000 – $538,000
Queenstown3-Room2$265,000 – $320,000
Executive1$778,000
Serangoon3-Room1$265,000
5-Room1$554,000
Tampines4-Room108$300,000 – $346,000
5-Room173$420,000 – $475,000
3Gen20
Toa Payoh2-Room Flexi
(40-Year Lease)
18$110,000 – $142,000
2-Room Flexi
(99-year/ remaining lease)
18$191,000 – $248,000
3-Room41$325,000 – $377,000
4-Room14$469,000 – $529,000
5-Room1$407,000 – $656,000
3Gen3

Note: the flats listed here are correct as of the time of writing. For the latest info — once application commences — please check HDB’s Open Booking listings!


What Is Open Booking of Flats?

You know the expression, “Third time’s the charm”?

That’s what Open Booking of Flats is.

First Try

You apply for a particular BTO project.

Unfortunately, it was oversubscribed and you didn’t get it.

Second Try

A couple of months later during the Sale of Balance Flats (SBF) exercise.

FYI: it happens twice in a year. Once in May and another time in November.

You realise that there are flats within the same BTO project which are up for sale again.

You won’t have the whole range to choose from but you’ve got a pretty good pick.

You apply for the same flats within the same BTO project.

Sadly, you didn’t get balloted.

Third Try

HDB rounds up all of the remaining flats after the SBF exercise and puts them up all for sale via the Open Booking of Flats.

Some of these

Should I Apply For an Open Booking Flat?

If you’re really picky about the floor and unit, then Open Booking is not for you.

But if you’re only concerned about getting a flat ASAP, then the Open Booking of Flats is perfect for you.

Also, the best thing about getting an Open Booking Flat is that unlike BTO launches (which only happen four times a year), you can apply anytime you want.

However, you’ll probably have lesser choices since it’s whatever that’s left after the BTO launch and SBF exercise.

You might also be limited by the ethnic quota restrictions, especially for Chinese Seedly readers.

So… Since They Are “Left Over”, Are Open Booking Flats Cheaper?

ERM… NO.

You wish sia

Unlike your supermarket sushi which is reduced to half-price (or more) close to closing time.

Open Booking Flats aren’t priced that way.

Step-by-Step Guide: How to Apply for Open Booking of Flats?

The HDB Open Booking process is really short and simple.

After all, it’s meant to help you get an HDB flat asap!

1) Check Your Eligibility

You wouldn’t order chicken rice from the Chicken Rice Uncle before checking if you’ve got enough money on you, right?

The same applies for an HDB flat.

If you’re already familiar with our Seedly BTO Guide, then you’ll be glad to know that the:

  • Eligibility criteria
  • Income ceilings
  • Housing schemes

which apply to BTOs also apply to flats available for Open Booking.

2) Figure Out How You Want To Finance Your Flat Purchase

Since HDB Open Booking is a really quick process.

You should obtain an HDB Loan Eligibility (HLE) letter or an Approval in Principle (AIP) of loan letter from your bank in advance as you’ll need it for Registration and Selection.

So if you have a hard time deciding between using a bank loan or an HDB loan to pay for your new HDB flat…

You’ll want to figure that out NOW.

Before the online application opens.

Alternatively, you could ask the friendly Seedly Community for help!

3) Submit Your Application Online

Instead of going down personally to HDB Hub, you can apply online using your:

  • Mobile phone
  • Tablet
  • Computer

After submitting your application, you will receive:

  • Queue number
  • Selection appointment date and time to book a flat

Note: this is given out on a first-come, first-served basis

Depending on when you submit your online application, this is when you can expect to book your flat:

If You Applied OnlineEarliest Time You Can Book A Flat...
After midnight and before noon
(Mon – Fri)
In the afternoon of the same day
After noon and before midnight
(Mon – Thu)
In the morning of the following day
After noon and before midnight
(Fri)
In the morning of the following Mon
Sat and SunIn the afternoon of the following Mon

You’ll notice that your booking appointment can be as early as the same day of your application.

For example, if you applied for an Open Booking flat on Wednesday morning at 10am, your booking appointment might be as early as the same Wednesday at 1pm.

Word of advice?

Make sure you apply leave (whispers: or geng MC) on application day!

4) Registration and Selection (aka Booking Your Flat)

There are a couple of things which you’ll need to bring along during this appointment:

  • Identity cards (if you’re in the SAF, SCDF or SPF, you’ll need to provide a certified true copy of your NRIC from your Personnel Department)
  • Passport for non-citizens
  • Doctor’s certification of pregnancy or birth certificates of your children (if you apply under Parenthood Priority Scheme)
  • Your birth certificate and your parents’ marriage certificate (if you’re buying the flat under the Multi Generation Priority Scheme or Married Child Priority Scheme)
  • Marriage certificate (if you’re married)
  • Divorce certificate (if you’re divorced)
  • Death certificate of your spouse (if your spouse is deceased)
  • Student Pass or Letter from School or College or Institute of Learning for persons who are >18 years
  • Income documents for assessment of income ceiling to buy or take CPF housing grant(s)

If you’re opting for an HDB loan, you’ll also need to submit your HLE letter at this point.

(See? That’s why you need to have it ready.)

Oh, to book your flat, you’ll need to pay the option fee.

Flat TypeOption Fee Payable
2-room Flexi Flat$500
3-room Flat$1,000
4/ 5-room and Executive Flat$2,000

Which you can pay through:

  • Cash
  • Cashier’s order, or
  • Cheque

5) Sign the Agreement for Lease

The next HDB Appointment is when you’ll sign the Agreement for Lease.

You’ll need to bring the original copy of the following:

  • Identity cards
  • Receipt of booking fee
  • Bank passbook and photocopy of the page stating your name and bank account number
  • Approval in Principle of loan letter from bank or financial institution
  • Power of Attorney (if unable to attend the appointment personally)
  • Latest CPF statements

You’ll also need to make a downpayment for your flat:

  • 10% of your flat if you’re taking an HDB loan
  • 20% of your flat if you’re paying via a bank loan

as well as any other legal fees and stamp duties.

If you intend to use your CPF to pay for your flat, you’ll need to set-up the 2-Factor Authentication for your SingPass.

FYI: this registration takes up to 10 working days to be activated.

#dontsayneversay

6) Collect Your Keys

If the flat you booked is already completed, you can collect your keys on the same day you sign the Agreement of Lease!

(Toldja it would be fast.)

If it’s not ready yet, you’ll just need to wait till it’s done.

To collect your keys, you’ll need the original copy of the following:

  • Identity cards
  • Certificate of Fire Insurance (different from Home Insurance)
  • Power of Attorney (if unable to attend the appointment personally)
  • Latest CPF statements
  • Completed GIRO form (if you’re paying monthly loan instalments partially or fully by cash)

REITs Tool

About Kenneth Fong
Editor of Seedly's blog. Owner of a 4-room HDB BTO and married to a financial clutz. Probably the closest to an adult you can find on the Seedly team.
You can contribute your thoughts like Kenneth Fong here.

Still have more questions after reading the article? Fret not, ask our community here!

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