How Will the New HDB Resale Portal Benefit Singaporeans?
Dying to move out of your parents’ home into a cosy HDB flat of your own? Then 2018 might be the year it happens. That’s because the new HDB Resale Portal has gone live as of 1st January.
To be fair, Singaporeans have already gotten used to using the Internet to source for and sell property.
But the new HDB Resale Portal brings with it certain benefits you won’t get from using a regular property search site, such as the following:
Much faster transactions
The new portal has the potential to make resale transactions move twice as fast. That means you might buy be able to a new HDB flat in just 8 weeks.
HDB transactions typically take about 16 weeks.
Once you’ve secured your Option to Purchase (OTP), you’ll first need to fill up HDB’s resale checklist online, apply for a valuation report with the HDB, and apply for an HDB or bank loan before you are able to exercise the OTP.
After the OTP has been exercised, you and the seller need to book an HDB appointment. At the HDB appointment, you’ll have to furnish the documents necessary to process your grants.
The Resale Portal shortens this process considerably, to about 8 weeks.
For instance, the system automatically prompts you to apply for a valuation report if necessary, which you can then do in about 10 minutes on the portal. You can also submit your resale application on the portal by filling out a form in about 30 minutes.
Less administrative work and fewer appointments
Previously, buying a resale flat was a hair-pulingly frustrating experience.
First, the parties had to submit a resale checklist using the HDB website’s “Resale checklist for sellers/buyers’ e-Service”. Then those who were taking loans would have to apply for a flat valuation using the HDB website’s catchily-named “e-Resale Online Submission or Resale Application and Request for Value”. Those applying for an HDB loan would have to apply for an HDB Loan Eligibility Letter using the HDB website’s Application on the HDB Loan Eligibility (HLE) Letter page.
And that was even before exercising the OTP. After exercising the OTP, if nobody had died of frustration yet, the parties or their agent would have to submit a resale application on yet another of HDB’s many pages, “e-Resale Online Submission of Resale Application and Request for Value”.
The HDB Resale Portal now enables you to do all of the above on one single portal.
Best of all, instead of attending two HDB appointments, you only need to attend one, since much of the administrative work that took place at appointments will now be done online.
Considering many people are forced to take leave from work to attend their appointments, that means one more day for your overseas holidays (or whatever you choose to do with that time which, for most Singaporeans, means work).
Less reliance on property agents
The proportion of buyers/sellers using property agents has been steadily falling over the years. The HDB Resale Portal will reduce reliance on property agents even more, which is great news for, um, anybody who isn’t an agent.
Previously, agents did more than just link up buyers and sellers. They also helped to direct the transactions by basically telling their clients what to do and when. They also helped their clients submit their resale application online.
Now, most of the administrative steps can be completed on one portal which can only be accessed with the buyer and sellers’ SingPass. What’s more, the portal makes it a lot easier for the parties to see what needs to be done and when.
This reduces the agents’ role to helping buyers and sellers find properties/customers. But due to the proliferation of online property listing sites like PropertyGuru, 99.co and STProperty, even that role is fast becoming obsolete.
Agents typically charge fees amounting to roughly 1% of the property price for resale flat purchases and 2% for sales. The HDB Resale Portal could save many people thousands of dollars by making DIYing resale transactions much easier.
Have you used the HDB Resale Portal? Share your experiences in the comments!