Friday, April 8, 2016

10 Things To Consider When Choosing A HDB Unit

The following considerations do not factor in future financial gain as part of the investment made, although it most likely do contribute to a rise in the value of the units chosen.

1. Choose the town and constituency

Base your choice on what it practical as you will have stay put for a minimum of 5 years, unless you plan to invest.

One practical choice is to stay near your parents. If you are in good terms with them, it will come in handy when you start your own family as you sure do need all the help you can get.

Towns will have different constituencies so choose one that you fancy. Some may choose to stay where there are wet markets while others prefer a shopping center etc.

2. Near a train station

The reason is obvious - convenience, because not only it will be easier to commute daily to work, most amenities like supermarkets and eateries will usually be built around a train station too. It will also make it easier for others to visit, especially if you have a close knit family or friends.

It does not have to exactly in front of the train station. Anything within 500 m radius is good enough. In fact being too near an above ground train station, especially near the tracks, just mean more noise. Train service end near midnight, so do take note. 

3. Near a bus top

If the unit is no where near a train station, then choose a unit that is maximum two blocks away from the nearest bus stop. After having to make transfers from trains, the last thing you want to do is to have to walk a distance especially after a long day. This is also important if you have old folks with walking difficulties and young kids heading home on their own.

Covered walkways from the block to the bus stop will be a plus. However, try finding a unit not facing the bus stop or the road to avoid noise.

4. Near a car park

For those who drive, this is a must. After being stuck in jams, the last thing you want to do is to walk a distance from the car park to the block. Imagine when it rains and there are no covered walkways and you realise you forgot your house key in the car!

Even if you do not drive, visitors will thank you and will not grumble behind your back. However, do not choose a unit where most bedrooms are facing the car park as the noise from the vehicles in the car park, especially MSCP, can be unbearable at night.

5. Near the expressways

For drivers, being near the expressway means shorter time needed to get home and avoid all those annoying traffic lights.

Even if you do not drive, you may take cab rides or a lift from a colleague. With your block far away from the expressways, especially with many traffic lights in between simply means longer cab ride and not to mention higher fares too!

Again, do not choose a unit where the bedrooms are facing the expressways for a good night sleep.

6. Not facing an empty plot of land with unknown plan

Getting a unit facing an empty plot of land may sound like a good idea with unblocks views as one of the advantages but it is also risky unless you are sure of what the future of the empty plot will be.

You can check what is in plan for that empty plot of land at URA website. Just zoom in to the block you fancy and see the plan for that empty plot of land. If it is coloured green, it means a future park so you are safe. If it shows a figure like '3.0' etc, it means there will be high rise residential so have to decide if that will be OK or not.

7. Not facing afternoon sun

The reason is simple. You are most probably home only at night. With the afternoon sun hitting your bedroom walls, it will take some time before the heat within the rooms dissipates. It may mean more use of the air conditioners that will end up with higher bills.

The morning sun however is not so bad. At least it has about 5-6 hours in the afternoon to cool down.

8. Near the lift

You may find this strange but being near the lift means convenience even though there may be more human traffic. With a unit far away from the lift, having to go through numerous neighbours' doors can end up with disagreement etc, especially if you have a neighbour from hell! Not to mention if you have kids with strollers being blocked by your neighbours who treat the common corridor as an extension of their storage space.

Being near the lift will not cause you to dread having to go in and out of the house in case you forgot something in the car or forgotten to buy something from the shop.

9. Some outdoor space

Having some outdoor space instead of none will mean a lot, especially if the entrance to the unit is along the common corridor. You will need some space to place your footwear etc especially when you have a gathering.

10. Internal Layout

Layout matters. It has to be functional for you. For example, some prefer a bomb shelter in the kitchen which they can transform into a pantry while others prefer it to be near the entrance to serve as a store room.

Analyse your daily movement in your current house and see if there are any part of it that requires change but unable to be done due to the layout. For example, you may have old folks who now have to travel far to reach the bathroom in the kitchen. Take this opportunity to correct them with the new unit by choosing a unit with bathrooms near the rooms to make it easier for them.

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