An online petition has gained over 110 signatures from residents of the Fernvale Dew HDB Build-To-Order (BTO) estate, alleging poor workmanship and delayed rectification works.
The petition, titled “Feedback on Shoddy Workmanship Fernvale Dew,” was started by resident Kelvin Leong on Change.org two weeks ago.
The petition claimed that keys were issued to homeowners despite ongoing construction works in the estate and cited multiple defects, including hollow and chipped tiles, scratches on doors, slanted skirtings, and unfinished facilities such as carpark.
In response, HDB stated that the feedback largely pertains to “minor defects” that do not affect the structural integrity of the building or compromise the functionality or liveability of the flats. HDB also claimed that the majority of reported issues have been resolved within two weeks.
In the petition, Mr Leong criticised that the keys were given out to owners, despite the incompleteness of the project and questioned whether this was to avoid breaching the contractual deadline.
“Most of the owners, especially those batches whom have collected keys in early Feb 2023 identified multiple defects with shoddy workmanship, ranging from hollow & chipped tiles, scratches on main door, scratches on bedroom doors and frames, slanted skirtings & DB Box cabinets & many more. ”
“The estate is not 100% completed as the workers are still in the midst of doing up the carpark and many other facilities, ” the petition noted.
The petition also called the planning on the allocation of key collection was “horrendous”.
“For instance, the keys for blocks that were completed in 2022 are not given out yet. While the keys for blocks that were completed in early 2023 were given first.”
Furthermore, the carpark near the blocks where the keys were given has not been completed as of 25 March, causing significant inconvenience to the homeowners and contractors.
While the dissatisfied residents acknowledged that HDB might be under pressure as the number of homeowners demanding for faster collection of keys due to individuals’ circumstances as well as the challenges faced due to COVID, however, this inappropriate decision has caused much distress and further delays to a vast majority of the homeowners here.
The petition alleged that contractors simply disguise or conceal the identified defects instead of carrying out proper rectification works, which it described as “unprofessional and lacking in integrity”.
Ponding issue; water pouring down from the upper floor like a waterfall
Another complainant expressed her frustration on the petition, stating that in addition to the massive defects in all the units, she has a serious issue of ponding outside her unit during rains.
“The whole place seems to be flooded with the flooring not sloping the correct way & drainage not done properly causing tons of water flowing from the sky terrace to my unit, ” the homeowner named Cynthia Tan complained.
The homeowner took to Facebook to share a video reel showcasing the extent of the defects and serious ponding issue outside her unit.
In the clip, water can be seen pouring down from the upper floor like a waterfall, highlighting the severity of the issue.
HDB says majority of feedback from flat owners “pertains to minor defects”
According to The Straits Times, HDB said the majority of feedback from flat owners at Fernvale Dew pertains to minor defects on surfaces, fixtures, and fittings, such as uneven wall surfaces, painting, scratches on doors or window frames, and skirting joints.
HDB claimed that these defects do not affect the structural integrity of the building nor compromise the functionality or livability of the flats, and can be rectified easily and quickly.
HDB added that as of last Friday (31 Mar), seven out of the 10 residential blocks have been completed, with the remaining blocks scheduled for completion by mid-April. So far, 513 households have collected their keys in the 1,188-unit development.
According to info available on HDB website, the BTO development is located at Fernvale Lane in District 28. It is within walking distance of MRT stations such as Fernvale LRT and Thanggam LRT.
The estate comprises ten residential blocks ranging from 12 to 25 storeys in height and offers units of 2-room Flexi, 3-, 4- and 5-room flats.
HDB admitted that construction works for areas such as the sky terrace, landscape deck, and other precinct areas are still ongoing, even as the keys are being progressively handed out to new owners.
The housing board mentioned that all newly completed HDB flats are covered by a one-year defects liability period, which starts from the date of key collection.
“In a minority of cases where more time is required either because of nature of defects or the high volume of reports arising from periods of peak key issuance, the BSC will inform the residents accordingly, if more time is required,” HDB said.
“In the case of Fernvale Dew, the vast majority of issues reported by residents have been resolved within two weeks.”
HDB addressed the water ponding issue
Regarding the water ponding issue, HDB said this occurred along the common corridor of the ninth storey of Block 400B, which was due to partially blocked water discharge points from ongoing works at the sky terrace.
HDB claimed that the issue has been resolved after clearing the debris and extending the scupper drain along the common corridor to improve drainage.
HDB also mentioned that water splashing onto the linkway at the second storey of the landscape deck near Block 401F was due to a gap in the canopy roof, which has since been sealed, and a drainpipe has been installed to drain rainwater away.