Homeowners upset about DBSS delay

Owners of Centrale 8 – a Design, Build & Sell Scheme (DBSS) development in Tampines – are unhappy about the delay in getting the keys to their new flats, said media reports.

They received a letter from developer Sim Lian Group in February informing them the keys will be given to them in May or June.

June is now over and they have yet to receive their keys. Some are scrambling to find alternative housing arrangements after the leases of their rental homes ended last month.

However, they are actually getting their flats ahead of schedule, given that the expected Temporary Occupation Permit (TOP) for the development was initially set for October, but was brought forward to June.

Early last month, Sim Lian Group also informed the homeowners of the possible delay in receiving their keys due to the vesting process – which involves transferring the development site to the HDB for lease administration as well as to the Town Council for maintenance of the carparks and common areas.

“Buyers should note that the expected vacant possession date is an estimated one and actual delivery of vacant possession may occur before or after the vacant possession date,” said a spokesperson from Sim Lian Group.

Industry experts said developers are unlikely to issue such letters to buyers unless they are completely sure of the dates.

This is because “owners might commit to the date given and, if the deadline is not met, the reputation and credibility of the developer would be doubted,” according to ECG Group Chief Executive Eric Cheng.

However, the developer is not in the wrong as long as it has not violated the legal date of completion.

With this, he advised owners to be cautious and “not take these dates as foolproof.”

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