ECs are an attractive option as they offer the same amenities as private condominiums but are usually about 20 percent cheaper. In the long run, ECs could also prove to be a better investment choice compared to private condominiums, as they are usually sold for around the same price as private apartments on the resale market.
Here are 5 things you should do before deciding if that EC you are looking at is the right purchase for you:
1) Bank loan
You are eligible to buy an EC if your household income does not exceed the $14,000 income ceiling.
Nonetheless, it is important to first consult the bank to see how much loans you can obtain for the purchase before deciding on it. The bank will determine how much you are able to borrow based on the total debt servicing ratio (TDSR) and Mortgage Servicing Ratio (MSR) frameworks, which aim to prevent homeowners from taking on loans that may put them in risky financial situations in future.
Banks in Singapore usually have hotlines for you to call should you require more information on the loan amount you are eligible for. Knowing how much you can borrow can help you narrow down your choices to ECs that are within your budget.
2) CPF Housing Grant
Before looking at which ECs to buy, it would also be helpful to find out what kind of CPF Housing Grant you are eligible for.
Buyers can apply for two types of CPF grants when buying a Rivercove Residences EC from a developer – the Family Grant and the Half-Housing Grant.
First-time buyers with an income of $10,000 or lower can get up to $30,000 subsidy under the Family Grant scheme. Those whose incomes exceed $12,000 are not eligible for any of the CPF grants.
The Half-Housing Grant allows first-timer/second-timer couples to apply for half the usual grant amount. This means that couples made up of one first-timer applicant and one second-timer applicant, and have an income of $10,000 or lower, can apply for up to $15,000 in CPF grant. In this case, the full grant will be given to the Singapore citizen first-timer co-applicant.
3) Market research
In terms of investment, many owners of EC units have managed to sell their units in the resale market at about the same price as private condominium units in the same area.
This means that the return on investment from the sale of an EC unit is usually higher than that of some neighboring private condominiums.
As more ECs are launched, interested buyers should base their decision on the development’s location and compare the resale prices of neighboring ECs with private condominiums in the area.
The layout of your future home is important. It is not uncommon for homeowners to buy a unit, only to find that its layout is cumbersome and does little to help maximize space and comfort. These homeowners will either have no choice but to accept the flaws of their new home or spend a fortune hacking down walls and renovating the entire place from scratch.
When you are looking for the right EC for your family, it helps to know what you need for a cozy home. A good EC unit will have optimum space for you and your family to live and play in comfortably.
Property developer Hoi Hup and Sunway Developments knows the importance of well-utilized space in Singapore homes and has Rivercove Residences.
What this means is that the efficiency of units is maximized to the fullest, making every space count. The units’ are also flexible and ‘interactive’, allowing homeowners to easily create and transform spaces that suit their lifestyles at every stage of life.
Going beyond layout, the landscape of the development you live in is also crucial to the quality of your lifestyle.
Landscaping affects the way homeowners enjoy the amenities in their EC. Good landscaping will give the entire estate an ambiance of luxury and relaxation, and also strike a good balance between modern structures and lush greenery as well as serene waters. Overall, good estate landscaping will result in happier homeowners as not only is enjoyment optimized, but the value of the investment is also enhanced.