SINGAPORE: With applications due to close in less than four days, demand for new Housing and Development Board (HDB) flats at the upcoming Bidadari estate has continued to pick up.
Over the weekend, there was a jump in applications, especially among second-time applicants. Analysts have said this could be due to the relatively higher price of the Bidadari flats, which may have priced some younger couples out.
As of 5pm on Monday (Nov 23), there were more than 2,400 applications for the 151 five-room flats on sale, meaning that they were oversubscribed by more than 15 times. Meanwhile, the four-room flats were about four times oversubscribed.
"I do think that the pricing is a bit high, so for young graduates or young families, they probably have to work three to five years to accumulate enough CPF to afford those five-room flats,” said Dr Lee Nai Jia, head of research (Singapore) at DTZ. “So being priced out, they may prefer to go to Bukit Batok or Hougang area where the amenities are pretty good also except that they don't have that luxury of a mature estate.”
A new three-room Build-To-Order (BTO) flat in Bidadari starts at S$297,000 excluding grants, while a five-room unit starts at S$544,000.
Even before the first transaction has been made, Bidadari is already being compared with other mature estates such as Clementi, which saw an overall application rate of about 10.8 for new flats in the estate, in a recent sale exercise in June.
"HDB has done a very good job in marketing Bidadari, bearing in mind that not too long ago it was a cemetery," said Mr Nicholas Mak, executive director of research and consultancy at SLP International. “(With) the location of Bidadari and also the fact that it is not too far from two operational MRT lines, I think ... at the close of the exercise, the application rate can be as close to that of some of the other mature estates such as Clementi."
Other sites in the current BTO exercise include the likes of Punggol, Bukit Batok, Hougang and Sengkang. Applications will close at 11.59pm on Thursday.