Thursday, March 3, 2016

Random thoughts: My wife and My brief experience in property hunting

I am equity centric when investment is concerned. This is not a property investment post but a random family post.

My wife suddenly told me 2 weeks ago that there is an EC launch for 3 Gen living near our place. We will hit the ceiling sometime in April and this could well be our very last chance (without financial engineering) to get an EC. 

Her reasons are simple, bigger space as our son grows up, her parents who took Care of us can then rent out their unit and enjoy their golden years. 

As a investment, I would say no no, but for reasons like this, I said I will find out more. For clueless people like me, this is what I found out:

1) once I make a booking in March, it does not matter if our income ceiling is broken in April. TOP date is no longer important and there is no need for appeal.

We went to the showflat. The location is rather ulu. Again I told my wife and MIL that if we do buy this unit, it is for our living, as an investment, it sucks. But it is not really possible to get a 4-room private property at below 1 mio unless property goes into a depression.

A banker showed us the maximum loan we can take. I begin to understand why people rush to flip properties:

1) As the loans disperse towards the TOP date, interest and repayment for the initial 3-4 years are insignificant. If u are confident of selling it at a higher price within 3 years, there is no risk of monetary pain because principal amount is not high before TOP. 

2) I can Loan beyond 55. OcBC offered 29 years loan. I would be 66 then. Ouch.

We decided to finally give this a miss and go for her friend's recommendation of BTO 3- gen flat which is also nearby. This one I liked very much and total family is still within ceiling of 18k.

But income ceiling of group A (me and my wife) must be below 12 K. Good bye to HDB BTO.

A few reflections:

1) property buying is a very emotive issue. My wife is visibly upset when I throw spanner at her and when she realized we cannot go for BTO anymore.

2) I asked her if she really want to have a loan till the 60s?

3) She still harbor the thought of leaving behind a private property for our son. Most probably because her sister live in a private place and is leaving the 999 leasehold unit for her daughter. 

4) I actually find the concept very unsound. Her sister took a 800K loan. Paying cash after clearing their CPF. They have some buffer because they have sold unit profitably twice. 

I ask my MiL and wife, if my CPF is Zero, and I worked till 60 plus, depleting also my cash savings, can I retired well? Can I really not encash that property and leave it for the children? Wouldn't I be more of a burden? 

It is possible to keep flipping the property for higher value and win.

Property prices could also escalate so high that u are laughing to the bank. 

But I risk averse. I say either we buy resale HDB or we wait for property market to get worse. Or she quit her job for 3 years.

She gave me the stare. 

I actually enjoyed continuing milking my HDB and buy a small property with Rent and the final sale and then flip that property away for a final "property"

I think too much right? LOL


  1. Sillyinvestor,

    Like you've said, its an emotive subject.

    It has nothing to do retirement, investment, or leaving something for your son.

    You wife comes from private property background. Her sis is staying in private property.

    There's a hole in her heart.

    This time you are not thinking too much.

    You are listening to your inner voice.

    We want to make others happy; but let's not forget our own happiness ;)

    1. SMol,

      If there is a hole, I think it's not big. Otherwise she would not suggest we go for HDB BTO.

      I think I am her biggest hole ... muahahahah

  2. many say that property investment is safer and profitable than share investment. u agree?
    anyway i do not have kids, so i am happy with my current HDB unit.

    1. Yeh,

      I dun know, I always believe risk can be measure in 3 domains.
      1) knowledge
      2) volaity
      3) level of castrophne

      But given so many get rich by property, I guess ... I should be open minded

  3. Hi SI,

    One signature and you might have to "worry" until 66. However, as you have explained why, I am quite sure many can't resist the bait.

    If part of the rental from your in-laws' place will be used to help with the mortgage, can consider. Otherwise, it could be back-breaking.

    1. 15 HWw,

      Well, she didn't offer, and I du want to take others in "consideration"

      So ya, back breaking ... I told my wife. Now y feel like quitting your job, you just quit ... With the purchase, it is no longer an option

  4. Hi SI,

    Not giving any advice, but just some sharing.

    Buy a house u like and feels good for staying with ur family. Ur wife or whoever stay with u must like it! of course financially must still be ok!

    Investments purpose and stingy on extra 10-20k are really secondary, if u amortize over long term.

    Good feel also must be sellable one day.

    My style is to already know what I want to do way in advance say and have a brief practical financial calculation and occasionally start looking at online.

    Then when time is riped few months before, I start to read books and go down for physical appts in areas/types i shortlisted. I do not prefer to see too early. N I so far always make decision within my stipulated timeframe. quick n so far even within 1 day after viewing.

    Happy hunting, take some time to research and look for awhile. But before u do that, make sure u can convince urself first! Then ur family members!

    1. I think the hunting has stopped. Which is good lol rolf

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