There were almost four times the numbers of applicants for the 1,200 flats released in HDB’s Build-To-Order (BTO) flats in Sengkang and Jurong West.
However, one industry player sees this demand for BTO flats as the norm and not as a result of the recent high prices in the HDB resale market.
Mohammed Ismail, CEO of Propnex, said: “BTO are generally in greater demand and the usual number of subscription actually depends on the location. If the BTO appears in a mature estate, we could see a very high number, (one which could) well exceed five times (the number of available flats).”
Prices for resale flats are expected to remain high over the next few quarters because of the demand from those who do not qualify for the BTO or Design, Build and Sell Scheme (DBSS) projects.
Eugene Lim, ERA’s Asia-Pacific’s associate director, commented that new BTO flats will do little to dampen resale prices.
He said: “Currently, the take-up in the resale market is pretty strong, so we do not foresee that resale prices will come down. They may continue to trickle upwards.
“The number of new flats released by HDB caters predominantly for first-time home owners as most of the flats are prioritized for them.
“Those that do not qualify or cannot wait for three years will go to the resale market. So in that sense, only a small portion of the resale market has been affected.”
HDB will release 13,500 flats by the end of this year, with another 4,000 slated to be released in November and December in Punggol, Bukit Panjang, Sembawang and Dawson.
Source: Channel News Asia, 30 Oct 2009