Architecture Magazine

Selecting an Apartment, a HDB Flat Or a Condominium in Singapore (PART 1)

By Asianurbanist @AsianUrbanist

Selecting an apartment, a HDB flat or a condominium in Singapore (PART 1)

Prioritising your family needs

Whether you are purchasing an apartment, a condominium or selecting an HDB flat, the prospect is exciting and can be daunting, especially as a first time home owner. It is a long journey, where you will learn new jargon but most of all meet various people, from property agents, designers and contractors. They will each have their own ideals, goals and agendas. Often, after speaking to them, you will find yourself espousing their ideals of how you should live. Marketing works.

Thus, prior to starting on the process of purchasing a house, it is important to spend a few hours to identify and prioritise your needs.

Why do you need to prioritise your family needs?

Purchasing a house is a substantial long-term commitment. It is probably going to be one of the biggest expenses in your lifetime. When my wife and I were due to purchase our home, we spent countless nights researching and processing tons of information. The shear amount of considerations made it very hard to make decisions in the beginning.

Spending a few hours identifying and prioritising your needs can help you avoid expensive remedial actions in the future...

One thing that helped us is that we took the time to sit down and discuss our future together. This started out in the form of informal conversations that helped to identify our needs and thus prioritise our considerations when selecting the location, the development and finally our unit.

Spending a few hours identifying and prioritising your needs can help you avoid expensive remedial actions in the future, both in terms of cost and time. A seemingly far-fetched example would be, falling in love and buying a home in the west on impulse while your job is in the city, your partner works in the south, and your parents live in the north.

The first few months would feel great, but as the excitement of a new home wanes off, you would probably be looking at years of commuting at least 2hrs per day, i.e. if you have a car. And, we have not yet factored shuttling kids to and fro, to child-care or to the grandparents' place. Commuting reduces the time available for leisure, and long commutes have been shown to affect job satisfaction.

Now, most of us probably live like this. It is fine, especially if you are in this situation as a result of a conscious decision and you have redeeming factors in return. For example, it could be that that particular home located in the west meets all your other requirements and you make a conscious decision to live with the additional commuting time.

Thus, the objective of this exercise is to help you to identify a list of considerations that are valuable to you. This will become the basis for making informed and value-effective decisions along your journey to your new home.

Next in the Series: Identifying your family priorities

At asianurbanist, during our first free consultancy, we work together with you to understand what is it that you and your family value the most so that we can help you to make informed and cost-effective decisions that work towards achieving your dreams.

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