How To Check For BTO Defects?

Buying a new (or maybe old) BTO is an inspiring and exciting experience that would make you feel good. In fact, it can be so exciting that you actually oversight various important aspects like examining defects. Both new and old BTO's have a few defects that you will never know unless you carefully and patiently examine every area in details. Checking for BTO defects may seem like a simple process since most of the process involves using your eyes. However, it requires exceptional detail and keenness. It is advisable to choose professional assistance unless you have the patience and details to it on your own. Even then, you probably lack the experience of how realtors disguise defects. So how do you check for defects before spending money on your new BTO? Here are a few insights to help you out:


Determine the key areas to check for defects

While it may seem necessary to carefully go through the whole property looking for defects, it simply does not make sense to do so and it would take all the time to achieve such a feat. Fortunately, there are some key areas prone to damages and these are the parts to carefully examine when checking for defects. Some of the parts you must check before purchasing a BTO include the following;

• Floors –

Floors are made of different materials which present varying challenges. Nonetheless, regardless of the material used, make sure there are no scratches or stains on the floors finishing. The color tone must remain consistent and no hollow sound should be produced when you tap on the floor using a heavy object. For ceramic, marble and granite floors should not have unevenness 3mm over 1.2. For wooden floors, ensure there are no cracks and war-page.

• Interval walls –

Check for rough patches, stains, marks and cracks; there should be none. Generally, the squareness of interval walls should not be more than 4mm over 300mm. for walls with tiled finish, ensure the joints are consistent and paints should be opaque enough without any patchiness.

• Ceiling –

Just like you do with the walls, ensure the ceiling has no stains, cracks, patchy surfaces or leaks/leak marks. Marks left by water spilling should be a sign of leakage.


• Windows –

Ensure the window opens and closes effortlessly without much push. It should not produce any squeaky sound and there should be no sign of rain water spills. For the alignment, check for the right angle on the leaf and frame. The gap between these two must not exceed 5mm. other things to check out include paint stains, poor painting plaster.

• Doors –

The important parts to check include neat joints which are consistent, and correct alignment. The gap between wall and frame should not exceed 5mm and there should be no warps, sags or marks on the door leaf. Nail holes should be filled and the paint should be consistent both at the top and bottom.

• Components –

BTO's have both internal and external components to inspect for defects before you buy them. Internal components include mirror, cabinets, wardrobe, bathtub, closets, vanity tops, shower screens and basins. External components include lift fillings, railings, emergency lighting and letter box among others. Simply check for cracks, marks and damages on components. Pay keen attention when examining the bathroom and look for consistent tile joints and spaces between the glass doors.

• Mechanical and electrical fittings –

These include installations that enhance the safety and security of the house. The fittings must be correctly placed without gaps and spaces. All drawings must be correctly placed and there should be no damages on such components. It is advisable to try a couple of fittings to ensure they are working.

BTO Defects

• Roofing –

Checking for defects in the roof can be very difficult and requires professional assistance as it involves the use of ladders. Fortunately, roofing defects will show up on the ceiling as water spills and marks. Going through these key areas is very important since they are most prone to damages and can easily contain concealed defects. When examining walls and components, feel the surfaces to ensure the paint finish does not hide flaws and defects.

Take sufficient time checking for defects

Most people are usually anxious about getting to settle in their new BTO and inviting friends and family over. However, this desire can come at the expense of serious defects that you may end up paying a lot in repair costs. Checking for defects in BTO is not a simple process that can be completed within a few minutes. It requires patience and vividness besides time. The best recommendation is to call professionals who have experience in the field.

Dealing with HDB

When you have your new/old BTO keys, the next logical step is to check for defects and then contact HDB to come rectify them. It is often recommendable to carry a camera along and take pictures of the flawed areas you want to be rectified. You will generally be advised to tape such areas before calling HDB. What they do simply involves assessing the tapped areas to identify defects and then correct them. Less often will they rectify all defects you identified and they will only effectively handle about 40% of the task required. Even then, this should not irritate you into starting a feud as they can make the process quite long and painful. Simply call them back to rectify the remaining areas. In order to get the most of their services, you should have a complete list of all the defects. This is why hiring a professional property inspector is important as they have the experience and tools to comprehensively inspect all areas of the house. Once you have the list of all defects noted on your BTO, call HBD to handle them.


Checking for defects in your BTO is very important regardless of whether it is new or old. Without this process, you risk landing poor quality property that is not worth your money. To avoid such misfortunes, you would rather employ the services of professional inspectors to list all existing defects. Even if HBD does not resolve all of them, you will have your bargaining chip and get the house for much less. You will also elude liability for damages that were already present when you moved in.


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