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    Jan 23, 2014

    3,139 flats in 1st BTO launch of 2014

    THE supply of public housing looks like it is beginning to slow down.

    The Housing Board launched 3,139 new flats yesterday in the first Build-To-Order (BTO) exercise of the year, down from an average of 4,190 in last year's launches, according to The Straits Times.

    The flats would be offered in four non-mature towns - Bukit Batok, Jurong West, Punggol and Woodlands - and the mature town of Serangoon, which will have only studio apartments.

    This is the first tranche of the 24,300 BTO flats planned for the year, an overall drop of 3 per cent from last year's supply.

    But property experts point to a larger supply of two-room flats - 5,000 this year, almost double last year's figure - in tandem with HDB's planned shrinking of its supply of larger flats.

    But property experts said that the effect on prices would become clearer only after the performance of the resale market in the first quarter of this year is known.

    "The key is the first quarter. If there is a dip, this would signal that there really has been a downturn in prices," said real-estate firm DWG executive director Andy Choa.