House Bites: Key Collection!!

So H and I finally collected our keys on Tuesday, alhamdulillah! This is probably the longest BTO ever – 5 years!! Yes, it was launched in 2012. But we applied under SBF last year, so we waited for 1.5 years only. We were considered very lucky for getting a super good ballot number and even got a top floor unit, ala ala penthouse yaw!

The key collection process was very smooth because I did my research and settled the fire insurance and SP account opening all online beforehand. The only thing left to do was to sign a bunch of documents, paid our conservancy charges and collect the keys! And the process was over in less than 30 mins.

Then off we go to our house! Continue reading “House Bites: Key Collection!!”

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When in-laws come over unexpectedly

So yesterday, H had to pass something urgently to his dad. But instead of just a short meet up, my FIL ended up fetching H, me and my MIL from all our workplace, went for dinner and all 4 of us dropped by our place in Boon Lay for solat Maghrib and Isyak.

Obviously it was all impromptu, so I was panicking silently in my mind the whole time we were on the way to our place, while making faces at H to show my panic cos the house is not in its neatest and cleanest condition at that moment.

Sesungguhnya my MIL has high standards when it comes to cleanliness and keeping the house tidy. But my bags were all over the carpet. Ntuc plastic bags were not cleared away properly. The dining and coffee tables were cluttered with flyers and letters. And did I mention bags? Plastic bags, paper bags everywhere omg. When my MIL rushed for the toilet first thing when she entered, I terus zoom zoom zoom and went through all those clutter like lightning and shoved them into any hidden spots I can find, while she was still in the toilet.

To be honest, it was quite embarrassing but they were polite and didn’t say anything lol. H was initially more nonchalant than me, but after awhile, I spotted him cleaning up some mess when his parents were not looking. Lol tau takpe. Other than the random cluttered items all over the living room, I am so glad the sink was clear of dirty dishes. To be honest, even our bed is not always 100% made up most of the time, but thankfully, H decided to help make the bed and fold the blankets that morning. PHEW.

Sigh, it’s going to take me awhile to get over this trauma. But it’s our first experience, so let this be a strong lesson for us to always keep the house neat and tidy in case of random or sudden and unexpected visitors, no matter how busy or lazy we can be.

Wife’s Bites: Why We Moved Out

I thought I would write about one of the most common questions we got during raya this year. I moved out of my in-laws’ in May, specifically over the labour day long weekend, after 3 months of marriage. We got a rental flat under HDB’s PPHS scheme. Apparently, this move was quite shocking to most of our closed ones.

Well, I can imagine the kind of things they were thinking. What’s with the sudden decision? Why? Where? Did something happen? It’s so sudden, so something must have happened? For how long? Were they chased out? Are they running as far away from their family as possible? Continue reading “Wife’s Bites: Why We Moved Out”

House Bites #4: The Chosen One

H and I actually met up with 5 different IDs. I didn’t mention the 5th one in the last #HouseBites post, but we were not very impressed with him so whatever. We shortlisted 3 main IDs, which were MA Concept, Urban Design and Bestform. I was really leaning towards MA and Bestform. But we eventually decided on Urban Design mainly because they offered the lowest quotation. Adding on to the fact that they are reputable and have a Case Trust award thingy, we figured they are trustworthy.

Even though I didn’t have the best or most fantastic first impression of T, he’s actually not that bad afterall. H likes that T is not pushy at all, so we decided to sign when we looked at the quotation for the second time, after the first revision. On that same day, T asked us to select materials for the carpentry works (kitchen cabinet, built-in wardrobe and vanity counter in the master bedroom) for the first draft of the 3D drawing. This is meant to be a rough selection only, and not the actual material selection because 3D drawing will definitely need a few revisions. So far, it looks not bad. There were a few mistakes or details left out. We just made an appointment with T again to make some changes to our design.

Since our flat is from SBF exercise, we were given an open-concept kitchen with no partition wall cos we didn’t have a choice. So one of the things we decided to do was a kitchen counter top or bar top thingy to separate the kitchen from the living/dining room. After looking at the first 3D drawing, somehow the design looks a bit funny so we might change it slightly.

The works we are doing is quite minimal. Basically kitchen cabinet, built-in wardrobe in the master bedroom, shower screen in the common toilet, bathtub in the master toilet and vanity counter in the master toilet. Yes, I know you all are thinking “bathtub?! can fit in BTO toilet meh??”. Well somehow our toilet has an elongated dimension which may fit a bathtub. I am small and short also anyway, so we don’t need a huge or spacious tub. And H is quite alright with it as long as I am happy hehe. BUT, when we collect the keys later on and see the actual size of the toilet/tub and if it turns out that we might not be able to fit the tub, I am still open to trashing that idea. (Mentally preparing myself so that I don’t have a meltdown when the actual disappointment comes) We are leaving the rest of the house untouched for now. Not even false ceiling or feature wall or TV console because we discovered that it’s not really necessary. Last time, false ceiling/cornice are used to hide ugly wires in old flats. Apparently nowadays BTO can conceal wires inside the wall/ceiling with cement. So actually false ceiling for BTO is just for design purpose and to make it look nice, especially if you decide to install cove lights. And it doesn’t come cheap at all, so we decided not to go with it. For a feature wall, though, I think one useful purpose of it is that you can mount your TV and hide the TV wires in the feature wall. H and me intend to buy a TV console instead of making a built-in one and we were initially ok with just putting the TV on that console instead of mounting it on the wall. But recently, we were discussing the possibility of having cats in the future and we may need to mount the TV after all, just in case the cat(s) might topple our TV or something. Even if the TV is heavy, some cats can be very strong lol. Our built-in wardrobe will be L-shaped because the space given is quite small, for someone who has a lot of clothes and shawls like me hehe.

All that for around $21K for now. There will definitely be adjustments, but hopefully we can keep it below $25K.

House Bites #3: ID Hunting

From the date of our flat selection in October 2016, HDB is supposed to call us to sign lease of agreement within 4 months, so by right it should be February. Somehow, they missed us out until we had to call and chase them multiple times after coming back from our honeymoon. So we finally went to sign the lease of agreement last April.

Our key collection is expected to be Q4 this year. But the flat looks almost ready, so during the signing of lease agreement, we tried to ask the officer to see if there is any chance that we could get the keys earlier. True enough, he said that HDB will ask to reapply our HLE around June-July. And usually from the time that happens, you can expect to collect your keys within 2-3 months. So the earliest we could collect our keys is probably around August-October. Apa lagi, kelam-kabut lah carik ID!

We just met up with 4 IDs within one week. So here’s a review of all the meetups. Continue reading “House Bites #3: ID Hunting”