Cynicism aside, we are truly, madly and deeply exhilarated to have signed the Lease of Agreement (LOA) for our Costa Ris unit on the 11th of March, Sunday.
Maybe it was the excitement, but the boyfriend was all hyper and annoying the moment I met him that day. I can’t say that it lasted, because the moment we arrived at HDB, he had simmered down. A little too much in fact, that I knew something was wrong.
Something endearing about him (to me, at least) that you have to know is that when he’s paranoid about something, or worried, or nervous, he will turn quiet. And he will start sweating. Well, he was sweating the first time he met me! Ahh, that fateful day on the 26th of October 2003. Another story for another day, perhaps. ;)
What was quite hilarious was that he was so nervous that he even attempted to sign the LOA with the other side of the pen! I wanted to laugh out loud there and then! But not wanting to go against the serious theme of things (and make a fool out of myself), I had to suck it in.
Just like our previous HDB appointment to select our unit, this one was also an information overload. After 5 minutes or so, I just zoned out. I hope at least one of us was paying attention.
Costa Ris will be ready somewhere in Q3 of 2014. If that goes as planned, I’ll have to stay with the parents for about only a year or so. We’re actually thinking of staying apart for this duration, but we can’t say for sure if we will stick to the plan…because obviously once we’re married it’s going to be a whole new ballgame.
I know people will query our decision and say it’s not good. Well, we have our reasons for doing this:
- He can’t move in to my place because with my brother coming back from studying overseas, it’ll be full.
- Even as we speak my parents are thinking of downgrading to a smaller flat, so things are a little uncertain now.
- It’s always harder for the girl to move in with the guy’s family. (Especially when his bedroom doesn’t have an attached bathroom! The horror!)
Of course we won’t be living completely apart. The plan is for us to spend regular nights at either of our places, maybe on the weekends or on random days, just because. If anything, I think this arrangement is superb because it’ll help us ease into each other’s families instead of having to experience a sudden 360-degree change in our lives. Of course we will still carry out our responsibilities toward each other the best we can, given the circumstances.
Thanks to Zila who commented on this blog post, we got to know about a Facebook group set up for future Costa Ris home owners to share thoughts, ideas and site progress updates…with pictures! They’ve even set up a document in which they’ve listed all the blocks, and you can add your name under your respective block. In essence, you’ll get to be the nosey neighbour way in advance and find out who your neighbours are and what they do….even before moving in! If you’ve signed up for a BTO project, do a search on Facebook to see if a group for that project exists. It’ll be useful!
We’ve been counting down to the 17th of August for two unbearable months, and I cannot tell you how excited we are…
…to have selected our unit in Costa Ris!
Nevermind that we were the 515th in queue and that most of the blocks nearer to the train station had been snapped up. All was still good — we checked out the site once and in truth, even the block farthest from the train station wasn’t that far at all.
So over the past few days we’ve been shortlisting our preferred units. Our unit should preferably be:
- no lower than the 7th floor
- facing out instead of facing in towards other blocks
- not on a block with a childcare centre
- not on a block nearby any multi-purpose area
- in a corner, not along a corridor
- not too far away from the refuse area, yet not too close
- of an address fairly easy to remember
I’m quite curious how other people go about choosing their units. Do most people go through a thorough analytical elimination process following a ton of research, or do they just follow their intuition?
For us, I’d say we did a fair bit of research but in the end we just followed the voice inside our heads. We chanced upon a property blogger’s website, where he did an analysis of Costa Ris, and came up with unit recommendations based on factors like whether the unit would be facing the sun and which units have, to a certain extent, “unblocked” views. In the end, we only took some of his points into consideration, choosing the unit we felt most comfortable with based on our likes and dislikes.
I suppose there’s no way of knowing if you’ve made the right choice of unit until you’re actually staying in it. Come to think of it, it’s actually quite ridiculous to be buying possibly the most expensive thing you’ll ever buy in your damned Singaporean life without even seeing it. Feeling it. Experiencing it. If you want those options, well, you’ll just have to be prepared to pay more. But that’s just how it is.
Even after we paid the 2k option fee, I started to ask myself the ‘what if’s. What if there were other factors we failed to consider? What if it turned out to be a horrible choice? What if this? What if that? But as usual, my mother never fails to put all these worries to rest, saying “everything that happens, happens for a reason“. Every single decision we make in our life is predestined, all part of God’s plan.
We’re really, really excited. We’ve been together for almost 8 years now, and we’ve been so carefree and having such a good time that we’ve never felt the stretch. But now that we’ve set something in sight and knowing it’ll take us 2 years to get there….well, it’s starting to feel a bit long.
I’ll let the pictures do the talking for now.
My future neighbourhood, insyaAllah.
Excitedly snapping photos of the 3D models to remind ourselves we have this reward to look forward to after having to be excruciatingly frugal these couple of years.
One of these flats here is ours!
View of the long stretch road just after the TPE Avenue 5 exit.
View of the other end of Costa Ris.
Doors to possibly the most expensive purchase in our lives ever.
These were the tiles provided by HDB for the living room, kitchen and bathroom. As clearly represented here, they’re nothing much to rave about.
A close-up of the bathroom tiles.
We saw the doors HDB provided as well. All very…meh. Having said that, we didn’t opt-in the Optional Component Scheme (OCS). It may have been cheaper, I suppose, but I want a house I’ll LOVE coming home to. The boyfriend is already worried the renovation is gonna cost us a bomb.
2014/2015, I’m anxiously waiting for you!
It finally went down last Wednesday on the 11th of May 2011.
He fetched me from work and we headed to Earle Swensen’s Changi Airport, Terminal 3 where it was the….
….MEET THE PARENTS SESSION!
Or the Ask-for-your-daughter’s-hand-in-marriage session, if you will.
We’d made an appointment with my parents earlier, but our plans were thwarted by the boyfriend coming down with a case shingles on the very same day! What are the odds, right? It had probably developed days before but he only discovered a patch on his back a mere one hour before he was to meet my parents.
I was pretty bummed that we had to reschedule it, and not to mention the fact that I couldn’t see him for two whole weeks!
He was so paranoid that my parents would think he had cold feet that he sent me a picture of his shingles to show them. Ugh, not a pretty sight I tell you.
Anyway it wasn’t the first time he met my parents, but it wasn’t the millionth time either. Although we’ve been together for almost 8 years, I can probably count their meetings with one hand — and that was how we intended it.
He asked for my parents’ blessings on the journey that we were going to embark on, and showed them the engagement ring he bought me. We also shared with them the plans we’ve carved out for ourselves and our visions for the future.
All in all, it went fantastic. Both my mom and dad were nice to him, and he, handled everything pretty smoothly for someone who was nervous. I know I could never handle it as well as he did if I were in his position, given the ginormous bundle of nerves that I am. My dad did catch him off-guard with a few questions like “So what do you like about my daughter? List ten reasons” and “What do you see in marriage?“, but he somehow managed it. My parents did well too, first-timers in this business of meeting future sons- and daughters-in-law.
Besides the “interview”, my parents mostly gave us advice on marriage and bringing up a family — issues that we’re bound to come across in the near- and long-term.
After everything was over (or rather, had just begun ;p), I asked my parents what they think of my choice of a husband-to-be. They said they trusted him to be the one to take care of me because of the level of responsibility and dedication he has toward his own family. Him being a nurse was also a plus point because it showed my parents he was someone with a compassionate nature.
My dad even remarked that “it would be good to have him as a son”, to which I almost teared. I feel so blessed that they approve of him.
Dear God, please smoothen our journey from here on out.