Buying My First Home - My Thought Process

Buying My First Home: My Thought Process

Let me share my property journey from the start. After I got married in late 2013, I begin the process of searching for my first home. At that time, we are adamant to buy a RESALE HDB flat. Our reasoning then was as such:

  • We can get our home faster (Indeed, we have a home of our own in 3 months)
  • We can enjoy bigger space as compared to BTO flats
  • We can choose which area to live (Of course near our parents)

With that, we engaged an agent and when house hunting. Before we when for house hunting, we have set a few criteria. Sort of like a checklist.

“List down 5 or more criteria for your dream house and highlight the 3 things that is a MUST-HAVEs.”

Pak Melepak (2020)

Our Checklist

  • 4 Room Flat
  • Near either parents
  • Max $500k price
  • Move in condition
  • Minimal renovation (Read my renovation post)
  • No Cash Over Valuation (COV)

House hunting was fun, tiring, interesting and exciting. We encounter many types of flats/homeowners but all that in another post. Within a month of house hunting, almost every night we when to look at houses, we shortlisted 1 that meets all our criteria except 1 (Owner asking for $15k COV).

Back then, as we just got married, we do not have cash to pay for COV. But, my wife, Kay, likes the place a lot especially since it is near her parent’s place. And it meets all our criteria except COV. We decided to go for second viewing during the day and declare our interest to the owner. We also explained our situation and asked if they would consider removing their COV asking.

The next day, we got a call from our agent that the seller agrees to reduce the COV to $1k. We were grateful and happy. We paid the COV and got the Option To Purchase (OTP) document. After that, it went smoothly and took us another 2 months to complete the deal.

So in 5th February 2014, we became home owners!

Facts & Figures

Here are some figures for our first property:

  • Type: 4 Room HDB Resale Flat
  • Size: 103 sqm (1108 sqf)
  • Lease: 99 years from 1988
  • Sale Price: $401,000
  • Gov Grant: $40,000 (Near Parents) + $20,000 (First Time Buyer)
  • CPF: $20,000 (Pak) + $20,000 (Kay)
  • HDB Loan: $300,000
  • Monthly Instalment: $1000 (Am’s CPF) + $300 (Kay’s CPF)

Ok so I will stop here for this post. I will write another post about what I learned from house hunting for my first home and what you need to look out for if you are in the process of finding a resale flat.

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