Bumper supply of new HDB flats benefits all, says Khaw

BOTH first and second timers are said to have enjoyed an improved chance of securing an HDB flat following the year's bumper supply of new units, according to National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan's latest blog entry yesterday. 

"The mega launch in March of a combined BTO (Build-To-Order) and SBF (Sale of Balance Flats) offering with 8,000 new flats, gave us an opportunity to test out the revised balloting rules, to favour second-timers in non-mature estates. The resultant application rates showing that second-timers significantly improved on their chances, while first-timers' rates remained satisfactory, were greatly reassuring," Mr Khaw posted in his blog. 

Notably, as at 5pm yesterday, the overall first-timer application rate stood at 1.6, much lower than the 2.2 recorded in March and similar to the 1.6 registered in January this year. 

Application rates were also lower in non-mature estates at 1.3 as compared to 1.9 in March for the group. 

The blog also noted that 11,410 applications have been received thus far for a total of 4,600 new flats, giving an overall application rate of 2.5, which was deemed to be "quite encouraging". 

Mr Khaw also highlighted that the new Ageing-in-Place Priority Scheme - which was announced during the Budget Debate - was a success in the studio apartment project as it managed to ensure that all the Toh Yi residents who applied (around 12 per cent of total applications), had an opportunity to select a unit, allowing them to "age in place". 

Source: Business Times – 6 June 2012