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Thread: Plot ratio?

  1. #1
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    Default Plot ratio?

    If plot ratio is 1.4, does this mean the landed property can build to a maximum height of 3 storeys?
    Last edited by new2mondrian; 20-08-09 at 18:02.

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    Quote Originally Posted by new2mondrian
    If plot ratio is 1.4, does this mean the landed property can build to a maximum height of 3 storeys?
    No. You are mixing the development area with height restriction. You can build to any height so long the total GFA is within the allowable and below height restriction.

    1. Height restriction is the primary criteria for all GFA to follow.

    2. Land Size X Plot Ratio = Gross Floor Area (GFA).
    The GFA include any basement, common area, public utility (3phase cable, etc) garden and of course, residential area. The higher you go, the more ground area you have but total build-up area must not exceed the allowable GFA.

    3. There are of course, other rules on carparking area, distance for fire excape from FSB, orientation of facing, etc.

  3. #3
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    GFA includes garden ??

    If so, say the plot ratio is 1.4, the land itself will take up the 1.0, leaving only 40% of the land area for any build-up or basement ? Cannot be, right ?


    Quote Originally Posted by apple3
    No. You are mixing the development area with height restriction. You can build to any height so long the total GFA is within the allowable and below height restriction.

    1. Height restriction is the primary criteria for all GFA to follow.

    2. Land Size X Plot Ratio = Gross Floor Area (GFA).
    The GFA include any basement, common area, public utility (3phase cable, etc) garden and of course, residential area. The higher you go, the more ground area you have but total build-up area must not exceed the allowable GFA.

    3. There are of course, other rules on carparking area, distance for fire excape from FSB, orientation of facing, etc.

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    Hi apple3,

    Thanks for the very helpful explanation. Do you know where I can find information on height restriction? Based on URA 2008 Masterplan, the Siglap area is stated as "2-storey mixed landed residential", with plot ratio of 1.4. Does this mean that all properties have a height restriction of 2 storeys?

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    Quote Originally Posted by SL
    GFA includes garden ??

    If so, say the plot ratio is 1.4, the land itself will take up the 1.0, leaving only 40% of the land area for any build-up or basement ? Cannot be, right ?
    Your illustration is wrong. Formula is wrong. You totally misundertood the term plot ratio. You dont segregate land size by plot ratio.

    Example;

    new2mondrian landed property has
    Land size of 3000sqft.
    Plot ratio is 1.4
    Total GFA = 1.4 x 3000sqf = 4200sqf.

    He decided to erect a building that has a
    LIVE-ABLE area of 3200sqf on portion of land size 2000sqft.
    This 3200sqf should be 2-3 storeys. (aka Build up area)

    The remaining land size will be 3000(Land Size) - 2000(Structure) = 1000sqft.
    Not erecting anything, mondrian decided to have parking and small garden for this remaining 1000sqft.

    IN SUMMARY;

    Land Size: 3000sqft
    Plot Ratio: 1.4
    Total GFA: 4200sqft
    Height restriction: 3storey (Example)

    Build up Area: 3200sqft
    Carpark/Garden: 1000sqft
    PS: 3200 + 1000 must be within allowable GFA 4200.

    So if you want residing area percentage, it will be 3200/4200 that is 76.19%.
    Last edited by apple3; 23-08-09 at 18:06.

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    Quote Originally Posted by new2mondrian
    Hi apple3,

    Thanks for the very helpful explanation. Do you know where I can find information on height restriction? Based on URA 2008 Masterplan, the Siglap area is stated as "2-storey mixed landed residential", with plot ratio of 1.4. Does this mean that all properties have a height restriction of 2 storeys?
    URA & BCA.

    Yes, all zone that fall under will have height restriction of 2 storeys. Depending on plot ratio, you may go down basement.

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    Hi Apple3,

    Thanks very much for the detailed advice. It is really helpful indeed.

    I never realised that there are so many things to look out for when buying a landed property till I actually bought one. I didd't even know that the term "estate in fee simple" equates freehold. I will start doing my homework this week.

    Have a great week ahead!

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    Quote Originally Posted by apple3
    Your illustration is wrong. Formula is wrong. You totally misundertood the term plot ratio. You dont segregate land size by plot ratio.

    Example;

    new2mondrian landed property has
    Land size of 3000sqft.
    Plot ratio is 1.4
    Total GFA = 1.4 x 3000sqf = 4200sqf.

    He decided to erect a building that has a
    LIVE-ABLE area of 3200sqf on portion of land size 2000sqft.
    This 3200sqf should be 2-3 storeys. (aka Build up area)

    The remaining land size will be 3000(Land Size) - 2000(Structure) = 1000sqft.
    Not erecting anything, mondrian decided to have parking and small garden for this remaining 1000sqft.

    IN SUMMARY;

    Land Size: 3000sqft
    Plot Ratio: 1.4
    Total GFA: 4200sqft
    Height restriction: 3storey (Example)

    Build up Area: 3200sqft
    Carpark/Garden: 1000sqft
    PS: 3200 + 1000 must be within allowable GFA 4200.

    So if you want residing area percentage, it will be 3200/4200 that is 76.19%.
    it sounds to me same as what SL said. only 40% of Land Size 3000sqft = 1200sqft can build 2nd level or so. ground floor no matter garden or house count 100% of 3000sqft already. In this sense, building it taller (even if allowed) doesn't make any difference on usable area. should leave as little garden as possible to max use of GFA. Is this correct?

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    Eh.. strange...

    so how do you explain those 4200sqft plots that got subdivided into two 2100sqft land plots.. but the new houses are actually having built-up of 4000sqft each?

    Or those cluster housing.. on 10,000sqft land can squeeze 6-8 4000sqft terraces and all 3 storey

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    Quote Originally Posted by focus
    Eh.. strange...

    so how do you explain those 4200sqft plots that got subdivided into two 2100sqft land plots.. but the new houses are actually having built-up of 4000sqft each?

    Or those cluster housing.. on 10,000sqft land can squeeze 6-8 4000sqft terraces and all 3 storey

    ........means they've got a higher plot ratio?

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    Quote Originally Posted by focus
    Eh.. strange...

    so how do you explain those 4200sqft plots that got subdivided into two 2100sqft land plots.. but the new houses are actually having built-up of 4000sqft each?

    Or those cluster housing.. on 10,000sqft land can squeeze 6-8 4000sqft terraces and all 3 storey
    I think what apple3 mentioned was in relation to a plot ratio of 1.4. Should the plot ratio be 2.8, then should be able to build much higher, subject to the height restriction.

    But I am pretty confused myself after reading all the URA/BCA guidelines on redevelopment. There are various types of terraces, and there are additional rules on minimum setback from the road of 2meters which all need to be considered.

    Any landed property owners here? I am thinking of doing the minimum, ie no major A&A involved. Just need to check on the following:

    1) Do you normally get a surveyor to check that the previous owner did not perform any unauthorised/unlicensed A&A or enlargement of gross floor area before completion of sale? If yes, do you have any contacts?

    2) Do you get the pest control company to do a one-time pest control (eg to look for any traces of termites activity)? If yes, also any contacts will be appreciated.

    3) Do you perform a soil evaluation? Basically for the Siglap area, the entire Opera Estate slopes downwards as one travels nearer the sea. I heard from friends that certain areas of Siglap suffers from soft soil and water seepage issues. Any landed owner actually does a structural and soil assessment before?

    As I am totally green to landed properties here, will appreciate any inputs and contacts. Thanks a million!

  12. #12
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    I also thought my understanding is exactly the same as what was described.
    Basically, the the ratio is 1.4, you have 40% more than your land area to build whatever you want to build upwards.. if the area allow you to build 10 story, then you can build very small area per storey. If you are only allowed 2 storey, then the 2nd storey must be 40% of the land area.

    Quote Originally Posted by housewife
    it sounds to me same as what SL said. only 40% of Land Size 3000sqft = 1200sqft can build 2nd level or so. ground floor no matter garden or house count 100% of 3000sqft already. In this sense, building it taller (even if allowed) doesn't make any difference on usable area. should leave as little garden as possible to max use of GFA. Is this correct?

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    Quote Originally Posted by new2mondrian
    Hi Apple3,

    Thanks very much for the detailed advice. It is really helpful indeed.

    I never realised that there are so many things to look out for when buying a landed property till I actually bought one. I didd't even know that the term "estate in fee simple" equates freehold. I will start doing my homework this week.

    Have a great week ahead!
    Happy Learning!

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    Quote Originally Posted by housewife
    it sounds to me same as what SL said. only 40% of Land Size 3000sqft = 1200sqft can build 2nd level or so. ground floor no matter garden or house count 100% of 3000sqft already. In this sense, building it taller (even if allowed) doesn't make any difference on usable area. should leave as little garden as possible to max use of GFA. Is this correct?
    Goodness. Remember your STDP on Clementiwoods? Was it Plot 1.4 or 1.6? So if what SL said 1.4 mean 40% of land size can be use for build up, did you see 60% of land with no structure in Clementiwoods?

    OR rather, CW land size is 317528sqf, I give you 1.6plot which will be 190517sqf base on 60%. CW has 240 units which will average to 794sqf. How you get the common 1389sqf units? And what about the 293 carpark lots?

    AND what about those with plot ratio 3.0!!! 300% of land space? Hahahha... you will see a big square block of condo!

    Lastly, to answer your question. NO.

    1. Going higher to the sky or lower down the earth still calculate into the GFA. The rule Plot Ratio x Land = Gross Floor Area or Plot Ratio = GFA/Land follow throughout.

    2. You must have space that are free from structure. Government is not going to let you park your car at common area and enjoy your GFA to the fullest.

    3. Developer must maintain lesiure/common/facility area free from structure before their condo classification been downgrade to apartment status. Eg; Foliage vs Spectrum.

    4. So in this landed case, the development potential is fully utilise. Unless only 2700sqf of buildup is erected which then you could then build a 500sft dog kernel on the 1000sqf empty land. (But must pay DC, Development Charge)

    5. Please take note of Point 4 for application to condo enbloc potential. Said if a plot ratio 2.8 on a 200000sqft land with a full GFA of 560000sqf development, the development will have zero expansion GFA, even if you willing to pay DC. Only a URA masterplan revising plot ratio can help. So the enbloc-er will have to pay 560000sqf worth to all owners and only to redevelop back the same GFA. Thus, one less important carrot for enbloc. Some condos do carry great potential, eg; Parc Oasis, the allowable GFA is not fully utilise by Marco Polo and it sitting on a big plot of land.

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    Quote Originally Posted by focus
    Eh.. strange...

    so how do you explain those 4200sqft plots that got subdivided into two 2100sqft land plots.. but the new houses are actually having built-up of 4000sqft each?

    Or those cluster housing.. on 10,000sqft land can squeeze 6-8 4000sqft terraces and all 3 storey
    Why not? It is very common in area like lavender, joo chiat where inherited land are divided among beneficial into smaller parcels or either way, merge up by 2 owners and develop boutique hotel.

    In the earlier case, if the plot ratio is 2.0, the new house could actually have 200sqft more of GFA which could expand a room in the house or leave a small lawn on the grass untouch.

    And for your cluster housing, it is no longer land title deed, it work like condo on strata title. Which mean all owners collectively on the land and all strata rules follow. And consider your illustration, the plot ratio is in the range of 2.4 to 3.2 which is quite high but still possible. Again, cluster housing is strata which usually bigger plot of land which include carpark and facilities, these must be taken into the Plot Ratio = GFA/Land formula.

    For standard GPR (Gross Plot Ratio) on residential area;
    Mix Land / Semi-D area = 1.4
    Bungalow area = 1.2
    GCB area = 1

    Reference: Appendix 4 from attachment
    Attached Files Attached Files

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    Quote Originally Posted by new2mondrian
    I think what apple3 mentioned was in relation to a plot ratio of 1.4. Should the plot ratio be 2.8, then should be able to build much higher, subject to the height restriction.

    But I am pretty confused myself after reading all the URA/BCA guidelines on redevelopment. There are various types of terraces, and there are additional rules on minimum setback from the road of 2meters which all need to be considered.

    Any landed property owners here? I am thinking of doing the minimum, ie no major A&A involved. Just need to check on the following:

    1) Do you normally get a surveyor to check that the previous owner did not perform any unauthorised/unlicensed A&A or enlargement of gross floor area before completion of sale? If yes, do you have any contacts?

    2) Do you get the pest control company to do a one-time pest control (eg to look for any traces of termites activity)? If yes, also any contacts will be appreciated.

    3) Do you perform a soil evaluation? Basically for the Siglap area, the entire Opera Estate slopes downwards as one travels nearer the sea. I heard from friends that certain areas of Siglap suffers from soft soil and water seepage issues. Any landed owner actually does a structural and soil assessment before?

    As I am totally green to landed properties here, will appreciate any inputs and contacts. Thanks a million!
    You are right. But with GFA increase by the 2.8, it is not necessary must be building higher. You could have a half basement at rear of house, something like a W shape with small staircases linkage with 2 storey in front and 2 storey + a basement at rear (Dont know you know what I'm talking about), or a half slope carpark lot, etc. Or you could develop additional structure on your untouch land as well.

    Surveyor is going to cost you a bomb. I suggest getting your convancying lawyer to seek expert opinion at arm length for basic concerns like enroachment. Don't bother much on AA. And also, what do you intend to if the soil have evident of errosion? Anyway, have you already bought the asset or liability?

    Appended below is the hyperlink to BCA for the latest COP (Building Code of Practice) for your reading pleasure. As for the pest control, either you get a dog or cat or just flip a yellow page or something.

    http://www.bca.gov.sg/BuildableDesig...copbdsep05.pdf

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    Quote Originally Posted by SL
    I also thought my understanding is exactly the same as what was described.
    Basically, the the ratio is 1.4, you have 40% more than your land area to build whatever you want to build upwards.. if the area allow you to build 10 story, then you can build very small area per storey. If you are only allowed 2 storey, then the 2nd storey must be 40% of the land area.
    You are quite right to say 40% more of buildup because the plot ratio happen to be 1.4 (Percentage 1 whole number) and this is a smaller development. Things will get messy once it go more than 2. And you are not quite right to say the 2nd storey must be 40% of land area if height restriction is 2 storey.

    What happen if you have 2.2 plot ratio? Ask the govenment to give you discount for 20% of unuse/unable to use GFA? Example; Linear apartments face Mindef which slap a 6 Storey restriction and the land do not warrant a north-south orientation which could go high to twenties over storey like Hazel Park or Mayspring behind. As a result, no outdoor garden or BBQ pit and the development was downgraded to a apartment classification rather than condo.

    Anyway, I manage to locate the handbook for calculating GFA from URA.
    As appended;

    http://www.ura.gov.sg/circulars/text/dcdgfahb_d0e30.htm

    Do read No.3 & No.4 and perhaps you will change your mind on your calculation of plot ratio.
    Last edited by apple3; 25-08-09 at 07:47.

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    Hi Apple3,

    Thanks for all the detailed explanations and the links to GFA guidelines. Very helpful indeed. And yes, I have paid the option money, but not yet exercised the option.

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    Quote Originally Posted by apple3
    Goodness. Remember your STDP on Clementiwoods? Was it Plot 1.4 or 1.6? So if what SL said 1.4 mean 40% of land size can be use for build up, did you see 60% of land with no structure in Clementiwoods?

    OR rather, CW land size is 317528sqf, I give you 1.6plot which will be 190517sqf base on 60%. CW has 240 units which will average to 794sqf. How you get the common 1389sqf units? And what about the 293 carpark lots?

    AND what about those with plot ratio 3.0!!! 300% of land space? Hahahha... you will see a big square block of condo!

    Lastly, to answer your question. NO.

    1. Going higher to the sky or lower down the earth still calculate into the GFA. The rule Plot Ratio x Land = Gross Floor Area or Plot Ratio = GFA/Land follow throughout.

    2. You must have space that are free from structure. Government is not going to let you park your car at common area and enjoy your GFA to the fullest.

    3. Developer must maintain lesiure/common/facility area free from structure before their condo classification been downgrade to apartment status. Eg; Foliage vs Spectrum.

    4. So in this landed case, the development potential is fully utilise. Unless only 2700sqf of buildup is erected which then you could then build a 500sft dog kernel on the 1000sqf empty land. (But must pay DC, Development Charge)

    5. Please take note of Point 4 for application to condo enbloc potential. Said if a plot ratio 2.8 on a 200000sqft land with a full GFA of 560000sqf development, the development will have zero expansion GFA, even if you willing to pay DC. Only a URA masterplan revising plot ratio can help. So the enbloc-er will have to pay 560000sqf worth to all owners and only to redevelop back the same GFA. Thus, one less important carrot for enbloc. Some condos do carry great potential, eg; Parc Oasis, the allowable GFA is not fully utilise by Marco Polo and it sitting on a big plot of land.
    i understand that what SL means by "built up" is building 2nd floor or up (ground floor=1st floor). 100% on ground floor can be partly ground floor units which counts in GFA. I just feel suspicious that all 2-5floor units of Clementiwoods if flatten to 2nd floor, would fill only 40% of the landsize? (btw what does it have to do with STDP? is that plot part of CW?)

    how about GCB with plot ratio of 1, i.e. GFA = landsize, so GCB can only have ground floor structure, cannot build 2nd level? or any difference btw plot ratio and gross plot ratio? or landed calculation different from condo?

    from URA
    3 Definition of Gross Floor Area
    3.1 All covered floor areas of a building, except otherwise exempted, and uncovered areas for commercial uses are deemed the gross floor area of the building for purposes of plot ratio control and development charge. The gross floor area is the total area of the covered floor space measured between the centre line of party walls, including the thickness of external walls but excluding voids. Accessibility and usability are not criteria for exclusion from GFA.

    Literally, it does not mention open garden. Wonder what's defined as "uncovered areas for commercial use".
    Last edited by housewife; 25-08-09 at 12:25.

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    If you plot ratio is 1, and land size is 10,000sqft, and height limit of 3, you can build a 3 storey house of built up area of 10,000sqft (less other stuff like cement driveway, gazebo etc).

    Very simply, anything you pour concrete over is built-up area

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    Quote Originally Posted by gfoo
    If you plot ratio is 1, and land size is 10,000sqft, and height limit of 3, you can build a 3 storey house of built up area of 10,000sqft (less other stuff like cement driveway, gazebo etc).

    Very simply, anything you pour concrete over is built-up area
    wah, like this I pour concrete over the garden area also counts towards the built up area is it?

    actually i still am confused over height restriction. although the entire Opera Estate area has height limit of 2 storeys, I see quite a number of people building an attic upwards. One even has a mezzanine such that it is clearly 3 storeys plus an attic! how did that happen? unauthorised building is it? Is mezzanine level counted as a separate floor? confused....

    but with a very limited budget, I am not doing A&A. Just for future info.... hopefully I can save up enough, and 15 years later I can rebuild the place.

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    Quote Originally Posted by new2mondrian
    wah, like this I pour concrete over the garden area also counts towards the built up area is it?

    actually i still am confused over height restriction. although the entire Opera Estate area has height limit of 2 storeys, I see quite a number of people building an attic upwards. One even has a mezzanine such that it is clearly 3 storeys plus an attic! how did that happen? unauthorised building is it? Is mezzanine level counted as a separate floor? confused....

    but with a very limited budget, I am not doing A&A. Just for future info.... hopefully I can save up enough, and 15 years later I can rebuild the place.
    Actually, yes if SLA/BCA is picky. coz they can argue you are using the concrete garden area is a car lot or something.

    no unauthorized. Attics are typically not considered as another 'storey', but a skyroof/architectural feature. Height restriction still 3. They build maybe because of plot ratio changes etc. A loophole many people incl developers are taking advantage of.

    Opera estate quite power, but prone to flooding coz of the weird gradients. Must do your waterproofing/drainage swee swee hor.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gfoo
    Actually, yes if SLA/BCA is picky. coz they can argue you are using the concrete garden area is a car lot or something.

    no unauthorized. Attics are typically not considered as another 'storey', but a skyroof/architectural feature. Height restriction still 3. They build maybe because of plot ratio changes etc. A loophole many people incl developers are taking advantage of.

    Opera estate quite power, but prone to flooding coz of the weird gradients. Must do your waterproofing/drainage swee swee hor.
    actually I heard about the flooding problem from my contractor doing up my Holland Village flat a couple of days back. He did tonnes of landed projects, so he was just sharing that those nearer the sea (ard Fidelo and Aida) all have water seepage problems due to flooding earlier. And one even has termite infestation problems.

    Anyway, by the time I got this info, I already put up the option monies and signed the contract. So hopefully the property I bought is fine. Mine close to Maria Ave, so it's on higher ground (due to much further from sea). But one never knows.... can only hope for the best.

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    Quote Originally Posted by new2mondrian
    Hi Apple3,

    Thanks for all the detailed explanations and the links to GFA guidelines. Very helpful indeed. And yes, I have paid the option money, but not yet exercised the option.
    Paying OTP money is equal to exercising. Guess you are on S&P issue now. Don't think too much. Enjoy life and congratulation on your new purchase.

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    Quote Originally Posted by housewife
    i understand that what SL means by "built up" is building 2nd floor or up (ground floor=1st floor). 100% on ground floor can be partly ground floor units which counts in GFA. I just feel suspicious that all 2-5floor units of Clementiwoods if flatten to 2nd floor, would fill only 40% of the landsize? (btw what does it have to do with STDP? is that plot part of CW?)

    how about GCB with plot ratio of 1, i.e. GFA = landsize, so GCB can only have ground floor structure, cannot build 2nd level? or any difference btw plot ratio and gross plot ratio? or landed calculation different from condo?

    from URA
    3 Definition of Gross Floor Area
    3.1 All covered floor areas of a building, except otherwise exempted, and uncovered areas for commercial uses are deemed the gross floor area of the building for purposes of plot ratio control and development charge. The gross floor area is the total area of the covered floor space measured between the centre line of party walls, including the thickness of external walls but excluding voids. Accessibility and usability are not criteria for exclusion from GFA.

    Literally, it does not mention open garden. Wonder what's defined as "uncovered areas for commercial use".
    No No No.. SL has got everyone heading the wrong direction.

    Don't bother about the build-up, 40%, etc. If your foot can stand on, it is the GFA within boundary, regardless of basement carpark, swimming pool, garden or units. Only area that are vested to state like road widening or drainage purposes are exempted from allowable GFA.

    I am referring to your post on STDP where masterplan is illustrated with plot ratio indicated. If CW unit are all flatten to 2 storey, FCL will be shortchanging themselves for not exercising to the fullest GFA, that is 317528sqf x plot ratio 1.4 = 444539sqf. This 444539sqf cover anywhere you could set foot on.

    GCB is calculated the same way as condo and elsewhere. The main difference is the limitation or restriction on land usage. You can build anything you want on Condo compound but not on GCB site where mandatory, A MINIMUM LAND SITE IN PERCENTAGE MUST BE LANDSCAPING COMPOUND. Even adjacent land parcel has restriction. AND thus, as SLA is limiting your usage of land for structure, it allow the appropriate size to be deduct from allowable GFA accordingly.

    The GFA handbook is cater to developer and owner-developer. The commercial area is referring to saleable area. If you build a condo, you are buying shares of all common areas under strata title act and accordingly to your allocation. This is commercial area. And GFA is use to computate the amount of DC and TAX liability of developer.

    GFA handbook 4.2.3, Computation of plot ratio

    Plot ratio = Gross Floor Area / Site Area
    Gross Floor Area = Plot ratio X Site Area

    If SL illustration of 1.4 mean 40% of area, then reverse calculation will lead to 40%GFA divided by 100%Site which will be Plot Ratio 0.4 which is not telly with 1.4

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    Quote Originally Posted by apple3
    Paying OTP money is equal to exercising. Guess you are on S&P issue now. Don't think too much. Enjoy life and congratulation on your new purchase.
    Yup I agree. But as a matter of caution, we engaged an architect who does home inspection from Meridian Homes this morning to help us do a 30mins review for $350. Pretty good actually. He will use infrared beams on the roofing beams to detect signs of decay, assess for structural damage, look for evidence of termites infestation, water seepage if any, and assess the roofing tiles for possible leakages. And he also provided inputs on areas of A&A done by previous owner that could potentially cause problems down the line (eg a kerb was not constructed when a kitchen extension was built, could potentially cause water seepage problems years down the line). At least we did an assessment prior to completion of sale to ensure we are not buying into a whole pile of heartache and a money sucking pit years down the line.

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    Replies: 1
    -: 18-01-07, 13:58

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