Archive for the ‘Book Reviews’ Category

Borrow e-books and audiobooks online from the National Library!

Monday, July 20th, 2009

I recently learnt that National Library has a “Digital Media Collection“, where you can borrow e-books and audio books online! You have to download Adobe Digital Edition to read the E-books though, but for some E-books, you can print the whole thing to a pdf file! (on a Mac, it’s as simple as Print>print to pdf)

It’s collection is pretty vast. You’ll send quite some time just getting past the numerals before you hit books that start with ‘A’! As with normal library books, books will expire after a certain time period.

The Almost Complete Goondu’s Guide to Buying a HDB Flat in Singapore

Saturday, April 4th, 2009

If you are a first-time buyer looking for a flat, it can be a pretty mind-boggling experience. Where do you start, what should you know, and what on earth does 5 I, Std, A, Imp, EA, EM, Jumbo mean?

Here’s where “The Almost Complete Goondu’s Guide to owning a HDB Flat” comes in handy. In the days and weeks to come, the following topics below will be covered. Hopefully, this will help make the whole home ownership experience less confusing and more enjoyable!

If you have tips or things to share with other readers, do leave them in the comments!

Chapter 1: The Consideration Phase

    1) Who is eligible to buy a resale HDB flat?
    2) How much should your house cost?
    3) How does location affect cost?
    4) When is the right time to buy a flat, and how soon can I get the keys?
    5) How big a flat should I get?
    6) HDB Flat Types and Models

Chapter 2: The Search

    1) Should I use a real estate agent? What does an agent do?
    2) How do I “Do it Yourself” (DIY) and is it difficult?
    3) Things you need to know?
    4) What do I need to research before viewing?
    4) What do I need to look out for?

Chapter 3: Securing the loan and other costs

    1) Who is eligible for a HDB loan?
    2) Housing Subsidies
    3) How do I create an “emergency fund” if I do take a HDB loan?
    4) How do I find a suitable Bank loan?
    5) How much cash must I set aside to complete the sale?
    6) What’s the difference between Joint Tenancy and Tenancy-in-Common?

Chapter 4: Renovating my Flat

    1) Should I use an Interior Designer?
    2) How do I find a contractor?
    3) Where can I find out more about the companies I’ve short-listed?
    4) How to enjoy 36% discounts off big ticket household items
    5) Another chance to save 36% off your household appliances!

Chapter 5: On a budget – The Cheapest resale HDB Flats

    1) November 2008
    2) December 2008
    3) January 2009
    4) February 2009
    5) March 2009

Chapter 5: Questions People Ask

    FAQ #1: Private property owners and HDB
    FAQ #2: Selling your Property
    FAQ #3
    FAQ #4

Chapter 6: Miscellaneous

    Now that I’m married, can we get a top-up grant and refinance to HDB loan?
    Dream Big, Start Small
    Ever wonder why HDB prices keep going up?

    Chapter 6: Related Housing Articles

    Recovery Expected Only After Mid-2010
    Cash-over-valuation for your HDB Flat? Think again (02Apr09)
    Are Housing Prices still too high?
    (24Feb09)
    Property prices, how much lower can it get? (24Feb09)
    HDB Defaults – Good or bad News?(23Dec09)
    Alt-A and Option ARM – the 2nd wave after Subprime? (17Dec08)