Temperatures rise when en bloc fever strikes
A fever has caught on at Braddell View, where I live. En bloc fever. And no one has been spared.
The estate is planning to launch its bid to go en bloc after being privatised in March, a journey that took 18 years.
The Straits Times reported last month that the largest of 18 former Housing and Urban Development Company estates might be targeting a $2 billion price tag for the 918-unit development.
That would mean each owner might get about $2 million. But only if the collective sale happens.
Last Tuesday, an extraordinary general meeting was held at the estate's two tennis courts for residents to vote on whether to form a collective sales committee to kick-start the process.
My wife and I attended, and it was only then we realised what a long journey we might be in for.
More than 1,000 people attended, and the queue to get in snaked around one of the two multi-storey carparks. Even the organisers admitted they did not expect so many to turn up.
The residents' decision during the 2½-hour meeting was clear. Of the 521 homeowners who voted, 493 - or 94 per cent - supported the forming of the committee.
The feeling was that being sold en bloc is the way to go for this spacious estate with an elite school - Raffles Girls' School - opening next door by end 2019.
As expected, some long-time residents questioned whether going en bloc would be the right move.
They were open-minded about it but wanted assurances that it was good for everyone.
One elderly man seemed against it and asked where else would we be able to find units this big and affordable. He was swiftly silenced by a chorus of boos and shouts of "go home".
He got the message.
Like my neighbours, I am all for a collective sale if the price is right, as it would offer us some form of financial security.
But if it does not happen, we will just continue living in a peaceful and quiet estate located away from the main road; has condominium facilities such as a swimming pool, aerobics studio and gym; and has ample space for people to walk their dogs and jog.
Plus, it is a place where our children feel safe. And that cannot be a bad thing, either.