A warm welcome!
Hi there, stranger on the internet! Thank you for stopping by btofloorplans.
What is btofloorplans?
This is a website dedicated to collecting and analysing the layouts of Built-to-order (BTO) flats, which is the scheme through which Singapore’s Housing Development Board (HDB) has introduced new flats since 2001. I've focused mainly on newer flats from 2010 onwards. There are many things about these flats which are fairly standard, which is to be expected in public housing - and is why variations on the theme are so exciting!
The challenge of purchasing a BTO lies in having to make the purchase without setting foot into the flat. I started collecting these floorplans when I was preparing to apply for a BTO flat myself, and realised that while there were many websites giving advice on the best locations for flats and even how to pick a good unit within a chosen project, there were few specifically discussing the internal layouts of the flats. It’s true that a good view and location command the biggest premium on the property market. But the layout can have a tremendous effect on how enjoyable it is to actually live there.
We may go into a BTO purchase with ideas for how to use the space, but perhaps without realising that certain features in our preferred flat (like the arrangement of non-hackable structural walls, or the size of windows) may be less than ideal for our intentions. Taking a long hard look at the options for the floor plan often just isn’t as much of a priority as choosing a great location with the best view.
This project hopes to change that!
How could this website be useful to me?
This website is most useful if you are looking for but have not already selected your BTO flat. This is not an interior design blog, so I will not be discussing things like storage solutions or working within the constraints of the floor plan. Instead I am focusing on the bones of the flat and things I find interesting or unexpected. If you have already chosen your flat, then this content is probably not helpful to you!
There are three main sections on here. The first is layouts, where I post a new floor plan analysis every week. I do my best to highlight features about the floor plan that I like or don't like, or perhaps would or wouldn't work for certain buyers. I also enjoy analysing projects from a floor plan perspective, trying to guess at the choices HDB made to balance out the desirability of a flat (like compensating for a poorer view with a more spacious layout).
The sections on windows and balconies are a collection of everything I could find about these two important but under-discussed elements of a BTO flat. I felt I couldn't do them justice in piecemeal posts, and they are well-suited topics for a separate in-depth analysis.
How can I contribute?
This project was started to help BTO hunters on their journey. So if you've found the information here helpful, please share it with your BTO-hunting family and friends! And if you stay in a BTO flat with an offbeat layout and would love to contribute a photo or floor plan to this collection, I'd be over the moon.
Enjoy your visit, and happy BTO hunting!
A special thank you
I would like to pay my respects to Teoalida, who has an incredible page on the evolution of HDB floorplans and mapped out all the floor plans of every HDB block in the country. He has archived all past BTO brochures for easy access, without which this project, and my own hunt for a flat, would not have been possible. Thank you Teoalida!
A beautiful colourful HDB block (not a BTO) with a boring block reflected in the bus window.