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Saru

5 Room Anchorvale Isles Renovation Journey

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Key collection for our BTO 5 Room on coming Monday.

It has been a long and frustrating journey as I have been waiting for a chance to qualify for HDB - funny how a Singaporean citizen cannot buy HDB BTO if he marries a foreign wife and has to wait some time for PR status. I almost bought a resale HDB in the same area (and was introduced to the world of property agent rip-off culture) until I hit the jackpot with Sale of Balance Flats Nov 2013, for Anchorvale Isles.

And now the renovation journey begins.......

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Due to frequent travel for work and much time to care for our baby princess, I did not shop around for too many IDs. All the research was done on renotalk :P based on what everyone says here.

Actually I have never seen so much bull on a quotation till I got mine from the ID firm. But knowing the nature of the renovation business and the fees to expect, I was lazy to go into the details line by line and simply demanded they match my budget with a big "goodwill" discount. And hope i can squeeze for more freebies along the way (wishful thinking though)?

Unfortunately the pricing for this ID is significantly higher so now I have to save on some big ticket things not on the quotation:

1) Electrical works

2) Plumber works

3) System 4 Aircon and installation

4) Fridge

5) Hob and Oven

6) Washing Machine

As I am low on cash, I think it may be hard to take advantage of the aircon deals suggested here though. perhaps the greatest advantage of going to those Best Denki, Courts or Audio House is the ability to do credit card interest free instalments??

More updates next week.

 

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Collected my keys today and was pleasantly surprised at how efficient it was.

Keys and documents came in a nice pouch and file respectively but we'd rather have the money though - like how one rejects the "free" wet tissue in a restaurant to save the extra $2 plus service charge and GST.

Excited on entering our new house but just as challenging as we thought - Beams/Pipes/Troublesome bomb shelter.....etc etc..

It is simply not easy as we thought to manoeuvre around the HDB restrictions without paying a bomb. So now back to the drawing board for many areas and it looks like we may need to shell out more money to tweak the design.....it can be so hard to visualise without the 3D design though.

Learnt a lot today - my guess perhaps why "industrial style" is popular is because it allows everything to hang out raw in style without "boxing up" , "partitions", "false ceilings" ! And I have to modify our design to be "scant - die - na- bo - bian" (scantdienabobian) - small space and not enough budget to buy a lot of good furniture pieces outside Ikea!

Defects - As expected, there are some we need to investigate, especially 2 long crackin streaks across the ceiling and the holes around the windows - 5 years later our home may be "ponded".

Strange to have our Sengkang home belonging to AMK Town Council though but well, as long as the work gets done - seems like a bustling new town to settle in.

Excited!!

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Felt cheated of 3sqm at the access balcony with 4 pipes blocking everything...... I was of the thought only one side would have 2 pipes. Now we have to change our design for this part now and could only fit in a smaller sized washing machine. But that's HDB I guess - can't complain since it is still much cheaper than private housing.

Long list of grouching goes on, but let's focus on the positive and what we can do to change the world for the better tomorrow!

 

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3D drawings are out!

Not exactly what we wanted and ID apologised for some obvious errors.

Finally something visual for us to zero down on what we want! 3D drawings does look deceptively spacious though.

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Wonder if the quote included changes made to the 3D renderings before work commences? or whether work commences after I tell them what's in and what's out from the drawings? I will find out on Sunday.
Tile picking this Sunday as well.
Looking for affordable Toto toilet bowl, and a value-for-money bathtub, a duravit sink for MBR bathroom and normal sink for common bathroom. Any recommendations on where to go?
Just bought Electrolux Hob and Hood at the Electrolux sale last week - almost missed my flight but saved a whopping $1000 turning up at 9am with my luggage!! I need more warehouse sales like these!
 

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Most of the 3D pictures are more spacious looking & with nice some decos which you will not put/use.

Anyway it act as a rough gauge of how it will look like

 

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LHWH & Minty Vintage>> The 3D makes the toilet looks bigger than it is actually. We did took off the WC Toilet Bowl in the MBR toilet to give more space to vanity top and bathtub though. Went down to Hafary today and yes eventually chose the "wooden plank" tiles for the bathroom as the English/Victorian mosaic patterns we wanted were just impossible to get here.

Songz>> Some of the decor were items we bought/or intend to buy as we wanted a more realistic depiction. No problem with looking spacious but the proportion etc was wrong. I saw 3D drawings from ID firms like F**E concepts and they seem more realistic - down to earth though.

Well the good news is the renderings will be further revised to what we want! Great service, especially since my wife and I are such visual creatures that need actual renderings in front of us before we can decide.

The bad news is we actually bought an 3-zone induction hob from Electrolux warehouse sales and realised the ampere problem. New HDB is max. 40amp and 13amp sockets. Heard we can still use it by installing 15amp sockets and plug but cannot use all 3 zone at the same time on high power. And best to make sure all air-con units are not switched on at full blast -- else power may trip. Using the eubiq socket system in kitchen no thanks to the bomb shelter behind impeding electrical works. We will need to call up to ask whether the premium socket option can be 15/16amp - that will make the high price we need to pay for this much more worth it!

Picked out tiles, bathtub, kitchen sink, 1 x wc, taps/mixers/shower rail sets and 2 x basins today. Think the price could be lower 10-20% still but simply wanted to get things over and done with at one stop. Moreover we had no time to make multiple trips or do self-collection with baby on tow yet without a car! For those that drive and can spare the time, I highly recommend you take down the model numbers you see and search online for a better price before committing!

Edited by Saru
 

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Work has been busy and a lot of travelling coming up. Thinking now it was a good decision to get an ID rather than going direct to a contractor as my mind can be at ease knowing that I do not have to worry too much about the details and bad workmanship. And it is quite hard for my wife to run errands around town and Jurong-->Sengkang with our baby princess

That being said, I do feel a little bit lost on the step by step to get to renovation START. Spent an hour last night and finally by lunch time today got to:

1) Sign HDB reno authorisation form, scanned and sent to ID as we cannot apply renovation permit ourselves (need ID /Contractor to submit online)

2) Applied for Water and Electricity to be switched on 21st July, again signed, scanned and sent over to ID

3) Called up HDB for cement screening, downloaded the form, signed and will make a personal trip to HDB branch to submit form and hand over keys

Good thing is ID person will be down for me at my new place on 21st July for the utilities activation appointment.

Now time to find out more about City Gas. Got recommended a good package from my childhood primary school mate and looking forward to read up and find out more on this forum.

Still waiting for takers for my 3-zone Induction Hob......

 

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Work has been busy and a lot of travelling coming up. Thinking now it was a good decision to get an ID rather than going direct to a contractor as my mind can be at ease knowing that I do not have to worry too much about the details and bad workmanship. And it is quite hard for my wife to run errands around town and Jurong-->Sengkang with our baby princess

That being said, I do feel a little bit lost on the step by step to get to renovation START. Spent an hour last night and finally by lunch time today got to:

1) Sign HDB reno authorisation form, scanned and sent to ID as we cannot apply renovation permit ourselves (need ID /Contractor to submit online)

2) Applied for Water and Electricity to be switched on 21st July, again signed, scanned and sent over to ID

3) Called up HDB for cement screening, downloaded the form, signed and will make a personal trip to HDB branch to submit form and hand over keys

Good thing is ID person will be down for me at my new place on 21st July for the utilities activation appointment.

Now time to find out more about City Gas. Got recommended a good package from my childhood primary school mate and looking forward to read up and find out more on this forum.

Still waiting for takers for my 3-zone Induction Hob......

Although you will be throwing all the stuff to your ID, it will still require you to follow up at times just in case.

There are cases where ID make decisions and I see people not happy with the outcome.

Best is to at least go through how Aircon trunking & piping are to be run and the electrical points where it should be.

Just my 2 cents worth.

 

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Although you will be throwing all the stuff to your ID, it will still require you to follow up at times just in case.

There are cases where ID make decisions and I see people not happy with the outcome.

Best is to at least go through how Aircon trunking & piping are to be run and the electrical points where it should be.

Just my 2 cents worth.

Totally agree! Yes went with ID and met Aircon guy and Electrician at the unit to discuss.

Even went to other people houses to research how they do the trunking!

Do feel any place the ID bring you to buy stuff is not the cheapest place in town for sure though - but the coordination part is all taken care of. Still feels fine but I think for lighting and furniture definitely have to be patient and source regionally in Asia or via TB since I travel extensively across Asia.

 

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Applied for cement screening with HDB and hooked up ID with the contractor assigned.

Thought all was fine until ID told me the contractor wanted extra money??!!

Find it funny my ID not aware of such a practice and I had to tell her it is because main contractor did not build the place properly with the right depth, so cement screed contractor cannot fill up probably with the standard amount of pre-mix. There will be a need to complain to main con and HDB to fix it before cement screed contractor can fill up to 40mm properly without charging extra. This will take many weeks though and delay renovation. Seems like a common problem nowadays for new BTO - don't fix now 5 years later good luck to your vinyl or laminate flooring! Should I pay "Ang Pao" to expedite?

Fed back and hope ID can help look into and fix this.

Anchorvale Isle under AMK GRC - that's LHL and team looking after our welfare. Hope they look into this "Ang Pao" issue needed for a free HDB service.

 

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Brought my parents to visit the new house and took the chance to call the metal shelving guy to come.

Speedy service - 2 NS-looking boys wearing battalion singlet came by and fixed everything in 15minutes

$320 for white all metal metal L-shaped shelving - pretty satisfied. 120cm x 45cm x 180 cm for one and the other was slightly longer to do the L, felt just right. There is some space left at the corner to fit chairs, golf clubs, wine fridge (pleasantly surprised to find power point inside) or long poles.

I was comparing prices but do not see much of a difference - this was from one of the flyers put in my letter box/unit

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