In a media release to address the slew of complains by new BTO owners, the Housing Development Board (HDB) said that while the completed product may not meet expectations, most of the complaints are not defects because they do not affect the structural integrity of the building.

“…the bulk of feedback received pertained to “surface imperfections” such as hairline cracks, scratches on timber flooring or uneven tile joints. These can be rectified easily and quickly, and do not affect the structural integrity of the building”

The deputy director of HDB, Loo Yow Koon, then blamed the construction workers for their inconsistencies of workmanship and the timber material for the “minor variations”.

“Real defects that we talk about are things like defective lock sets, hollow tiles or damages to the window panels – those are the common things we receive.”

The HDB also called these complaints “imperfections” minor, and blamed residents for having expectations beyond industry standards.

“…it is not industry practice to scrutinise certain elements such as parquet flooring and floor tiles for scratch marks and inconsistent tile joints, although its contractors have rectified such imperfections out of goodwill”

The HDB then concluded the media release with the government’s survey (Construction Quality Assessment System) stating that Singaporeans are very satisfied with the quality of BTO buildings, at a rating of 88.6 in 2014, higher than the national average of 88.2.