Wednesday, April 23, 2014

WELS Water Rating Label on a locally unavailable product

I am currently looking to buy a washing machine and the water saving feature is high on the requirement list. So naturally I head to the related agencies website, PUB specifically, for such information.

A list of registered products was made available and one of them caught my attention.

However, I was not able to find this particular model locally, not even with the help of the mighty Google. The manufacturer local website contain no information either. So I emailed the manufacturer and they too confirmed this.

Subject: RE: BD-W85SV
Date: Wed, 23 Apr 2014 07:59:10 +0000

Dear Azhar,

Thanks for your email.

Unfortunately we do not sell this model BD-W85SV locally.
Please contact us if you need further assistances.


Question now is

- why is this included in PUB list when it is not available locally?
- how did this model obtained a WELS rating by PUB?

PUB requirements states that

"To qualify for a WELS Water Rating Label, the product must meet the relevant test standards and requirements, and water efficiency requirements stipulated by PUB. 
A water fitting or appliance is deemed to comply with the stipulated standards if it is certified or tested by a conformity assessment body (product certification body/testing laboratory) accredited by the Singapore Accreditation Council (SAC) (opens in new window) or its Mutual Recognition Arrangement (MRA) partners."

Which means that SAC could not have tested this product, therefore it must have been included in the list through tests done by MRA partners. However, the link provided above is broken

With the help of mighty Google, I found this link instead which explains that accreditation done by other bodies can also be relied on.

That's fair. Nothing wrong with that.

So I am not contesting the accuracy of the test. I just feel that PUB should not copy and paste blindly and instead should have sieve through the list and only include products that can be purchased locally.

I emailed PUB earlier on the 16th of April 2014 with a feedback not related to this product specifically. I don't think emailing them again with another feedback will receive any attention.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Stage 4 - Found the new place

Right after our apartment was sold, we resumed our new apartment hunting which was put on hold as we see no point of continuing then with the current apartment not sold.

Our criteria remained the same as it was then, which is contained in my earlier blog.

After about a week of viewing (wife did most of it while I was at work), we decided on an apartment which we fell in love with the moment we stepped in. After the viewing, it did not take us long to decide that this is the apartment for us.

Ironically, the apartment do not meet two of our major criteria. The layout is not one of those we actually wanted and the location of the apartment within the block have always been considered a deal breaker. It just so happened that we were unaware of those information until we reach the door step. I guess we can count that as a blessing as we would have skipped the viewing totally should we have known beforehand.

The reason why we decided on this apartment is because the interior design matched our taste (which is more towards minimalist) and the owners maintained the apartment very well. Although certain things did not fulfill our criteria (apart from the two mentioned above), we were able to overlook them when we consider the apartment as a whole.

Another reason why we choose this apartment is because there is practically nothing much that needs to be done, unlike all the other apartments we have been to. 

Below are list all the things that steer us towards the apartment.

- there is no need to repaint and we like the colour scheme.
- the common bathroom opens towards the walkway and a glass divider for the bath area is already built up.
- bathroom tiles and sanitary appliances all looked new.
- hot/cold double piping already done up for bathrooms.
- a built-in long bath in the main bedroom. I actually prefer a free standing bathtub but I can settle for this.
- a walk in wardrobe in the main bedroom (which the wife hopes to have and now she got it)
- the kitchen cabinet are new and matched our taste.
- fans in all rooms
- laminate flooring in all rooms
- store room knocked down and replaced with full height storage cabinets instead.

All the above also means that we save a lot on renovation cost as compared to all the other apartments we viewed which requires a major overhaul which can cost 30-40k easily.

There are a few things which we wished were there like the balcony, which the owner has already leveled up. The partition between the service yard and kitchen have also been removed (which we will reinstate). Of course we still need to do some minor repairs and renovation works.

I guess what many people have said is true. When you buy a new house, it is all about the technicality. When you buy a resale, it is all about how you feel for it.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Stage 3 - Finally sold the house

It has been a while since I last posted that I had put up my flat for sale. Yes, it took THAT long to actually get a buyer that can offer a reasonable price for my flat.

To put it shortly, from 27 August 2013, SPR household (i.e. a household with no SC owner) will have to wait 3 years from the date of obtaining SPR status before they can buy a resale flat. This ruling really affected the market as demand side plunges while the supply was still abundant.

On the good side, this should have happened long ago before the prices spiral to the state a year back where the COV is crazy.

The market now is really good for buyers, especially those who are just buying. For those like me, selling and buying again, it does not really make much difference as I sell low and buy low too. Those who are just selling are the ones who are affected the most especially those who never saw this coming and made plans based on forecast that prices will keep increasing.

Anyway, I am just glad that I finally can now choose a new unit even though those that I like back then are all gone.