We bought our first property, our current HDB 5 rm flat in Dec 2004. It was the second unit I viewed and I fell in love because it had 2 balconies. I have always been a balcony person. We fulfilled the MOP in 2009 and I have been on a lookout for a second property when I was a real estate agent in 2011.
2 years ago, we almost bought a unit at Citylife EC. Our ballot number then was 100+, really good for a HDB second timer. I was only eyeing only 1 choice unit and it was still available when it was our turn. It was a 4 bedroom and we could give each kid their own room plus a study for hb to store his books/toys. The space was so tempting.
But the deal breaker was being an EC, we MUST sell our HDB unit within 6 months after we collect the keys for the EC in 2016. By 2016, RA is only in P2 and RL is only in P1. Citylife EC is 2-3 bus stops away. If I sell away our HDB flat, the gals will have to take the school bus or I have to take the bus with them early in the morning everyday to get to and from school. They will be only in P2 and P1 so I rather they get more sleep everyday. Also, at my current HDB, I am within walking distance to my mum and my ILs. It was so convenient, how could I bear to sell my HDB? So, I hesitated at the booking counter, and within 10 mins, that choice unit was sold. Pity the property agent who served me then.
RA has been asking us why we don't have a swimming pool at our house downstairs because some of her classmates stay in condos. I always told her must save up if want to buy a condo because it's a lot of money. Ironically, it was only after I left the property business, that we finally saved up to buy a small condo unit without having to selling our HDB.
Not a mean feat considering that I was not working full time for 4 years in the last 10 years. Kudos to hubby who has always been the more thrifty one between the two of us and for clearing off our HDB loan 2 years ago single-handedly so that we qualify for the 80% property loan despite the government's cooling measures.
It is a small unit, only 84 sqm, 3 br on the 8th floor. But the quantum was right for us, less than $1million, it was an area I had been eyeing, and it was a short 5 mins walk to MRT.
The biggest sacrifice I would say is space as my current unit is 119sqm. But by the time it TOP, it will be 2019, the gals will be in P5 and P4 so I am not sure if we will stay there in the end as PSLE is a critical year. But if we do stay there, I know the gals will love the swimming pool and other facilities. So despite having a housing debt all over again, hope this is the right move to grow our assets for our gals.