Totally Pimped Out 3-room HDB Smart Home [Overview]

Woohoo! My first, ever, commissioned Feng Shui Drawing – modelled after the one Li Ka Shing has in his office, albeit a little more cartoonish…

Finally, I got to put aside some time to write an overview of my full-blown smart home. By a full-blown Smart Home, I literally mean everything top-down.. even the toilet bowls! (.. and not just one room or merely an area or space in the apartment).

Also, this is probably, the only 3-room HDB apartment you’ll find that is totally pimped-out with smart home devices at this point. Everything was designed from scratch, down to the electrical cabling and wall-hacking placements.

I’m still adding in stuff at various parts of the apartment, but there’re simply way too many people are asking about various components and features – so I figured why not start with the overview of what I have now! 😊

Here’s what this series of posts will be broken into;

✓ Smart Stuff: Gadgets, Devices, Fixtures & Setup
✓ Carpentry: You don’t need an ID if you know what you want.
✓ Internet & Security: Planning connectivity for a huge number of smart devices
✓ Taobao: Yes! Everything from small things like decorative pieces, to a 3-seater sofa, to even flooring for the entire house (..and a $6000 washing machine!?)

Ok, let’s get started, then:

Our mini collection of [email protected] posing atop 2 Google Home Max devices. Because, the “Mini” doesn’t sound good enough.

Let me say this first:

I bet you’ve never seen these many smart devices installed in a single HDB apartment before.

1. For Voice Control, Multi-room Audio, and basically, Assistance

8 Google Home devices in total, consisting of:
3 x Google Home, 3 x Google Home Mini, 2 x Google Home Max

This basically means the entire apartment is blanketed with Google Home devices, even in each washroom!

I mean, there’s absolutely a need for you to control your home while you’re doing your…. you know… right?

2. Every Switch is a Smart Switch

At last count, there are about 16 Smart Power Switches which we painstakingly got the electrician to re-wire to introduce a neutral wire. This was done so that every switch in the house would be remotely controllable via Z-wave.

It’s a mix of both single and double switches, all with tactile feedback so that when you press the button, you actually know it is being pressed. The models we actually used eventually was TKBHome‘s TZ36S and TZ37.

I’ll go into a bit more detail about the selection criteria for this part in a later post, too.

3. Sensors Overkill

Well, this wasn’t as overkill as the rest of the stuff above, but there’s a total of 12 sensors installed.

4 x Z-wave Motion (+ Temperature/Light/Movement) Sensors
1 x Water Sensor
4 x Door Open/Close Sensors
2 x Human Arrival Sensor Tags
1 x Smoke Sensor

The sensors came from a variety of vendors as we wanted to test out the feedback and response time from each device to determine which to get more of, but it seems the choice turned out pretty clear cut after a while…

The hub I eventually used was the Samsung SmartThings Hub v2. This hub supports Z-wave and Zigbee, and has a wide variety of integration points as well. Oh, and remember to get the UK-version, not the US one.

4. (Almost) Everything is Controllable via Mobile Phone & Voice

Almost all plug sockets, TV’s, water dispenser, aircon, heater, washing machine, robot vacuum, blinds, etc – everything is essentially able to be controlled via my mobile phone, or by voice.

I’ve actually intentionally provisioned a separate system for the door locking system of the house, for security reasons, but let’s discuss that in a later post.

..and all these are squeezed into a

67 sqm, 3-room HDB apartment

with all walls (legally-possible) torn down.

Ok, let’s get to it then – pictures of the place, and then some of Yandao (the Spitz) and Lengzai (the Husky), and maybe some text below, to actually explain stuff.

Living Room

Because everyone needs a centre-piece handmade Bamboo Bicycle on their living room wall…

Our nicely hidden shoe cabinet and 1.8 meters long, 3-seater sofa from our favourite one-BIGGG-stop e-commerce Taobao. Because when we get stuff bought in China, we get to customize the fabric to the exact colour that we want at no extra cost.

Oh, and there’s also a < $100 robot vacuum cleaner which is able to mop the floor too.

Overpriced legit Italian designer chair atop China-imported laminate flooring, beside a 55-inch Xiaomi TV 4a hanging on a super rare “invisible” 90-degree mount.

If you thought that the (cheaply imported) 55-inch Xiaomi TV 4A is mounted to the wooden lamp stand, you’re wrong!

It’s actually mounted to the wall via an “invisible” mount so that we can rotate it 180-degrees to get the screen facing the dining area when we actually decide to sit at the table for food.

There’s also 1-of-2 HTC Vive position sensors on the wall above the TV which essentially designates the play area for all VR games in the Living Room!

The one and only walkway in our tiny apartment. Also happens to be a nice lounging spot for Yandao.

By the way, if you actually reach the point where you have these much devices in your place which requires internet access, you really need to plan quite a bit to ensure sufficient coverage.

We installed 2 pieces of the Ubiquiti UniFi AP AC Pro wifi access points. As you can tell from the walkway’s ceiling, this is 1 of the 2 internet hub we have to support the wifi flow. To be honest, it’s quite an overkill – each access point boasts around 150-clients on paper specifications.

Okay, for those of you who don’t know much about planning for wifi, here’s a crash course, but you should totally read up on how to get this done.

The basic premise is to know where most of the devices in the coverage area will be, and then test the proposed locations with a wifi heatmap, on both 2.4GHz and 5GHz networks. Generally, the 2.4GHz signal will be the ones which travel “further”, but carries lower speeds, and the 5GHz signal allows for higher bandwidth, but at shorter range. Thus, our heatmap looked something like this:

2.4GHz Heatmap – Notice the coverage area is pretty huge, but the performance degrades (red = strongest) across distances rather quickly…

Usually, the 2.4GHz devices will be the “older” or not so high performance requiring devices – such as say, our 阿里智能 Alicloud-enabled Washing Machine, Pressure Cooker and Robot Vacuum Cleaner, or our 米家 XiaoMi Water Dispenser.. or well, basically older devices.

5GHz Heatmap – supposedly blanketing everything with a super-strong performing signal… but we’ve yet to factor in material obstruction (i.e, walls, bomb shelter steel, doors, etc)

The 5GHz part is where it gets interesting. 5GHz, though high performing, sucks at penetrating various materials such as walls, doors, etc. It takes a huge hit for each material it passes through.

However, it’s crucial for stuff like streaming our videos at full 4K resolution to both TV’s at once, or blasting multi-room audio to ALL the Google Home speakers at the same time. You need a LOT of bandwidth to ensure everything runs smoothly, together with all your other devices such as your mobile phones and your laptops.

..and well, since the whole home can be controlled by the Samsung SmartThings hub via the Internet, you definitely don’t want a scenario where it’s faster to walk to the switch and turn it on manually when you can control it using your voice via the Google Home devices.

Can you tell where the dining table is? 😜

It’s actually in the picture, but you can’t see it yet… about now?

This is actually the Atim+39 Mensola T-able, which essentially allows you to hide a huge 1.35-meter table inside a cabinet which is just 39cm thick.

Oh, and fun fact:

This hidden table also actually sits 10 fully-grown adults.

Basically, Atim is an Italian brand known for its range of transformable furniture components and practical table tops that can be stowed away when not in use. (It also happens to be exceptionally practical for tiny HDB apartments, because even though the Gahmen says that HDB sizes are not shrinking, they actually are.)

In all honesty, having an omnipresent dinner table would simply be too space-consuming for our living room, and well, these days, people don’t always eat dinners everyday at a proper dinner table anyway – unless the dishes are potentially messy, or if there’re friends coming over!

Oh, and here’s the second wifi access point, hidden at an obscure corner out of view, but providing very needed coverage to our August Doorbell Camera outside the unit!

Also, our Dyson V8 Absolute finally got its own “resting” spot after over a year. It’s no longer lying around waiting to be charged…..

Did you also happen to notice this?

Because I love to bring in all kinds of gadgets from all over the world, they usually reach me with so many different types of plug heads. And because I’m too lazy to cut each and every plug head to switch them to the UK 3-pin plug, this universal wall socket makes everything simply plug-and-play!

Bedroom & Study Room

Okay, here’s where things really get pretty!

..and this is also why we knocked every single possible wall down, only to build them up in a slightly different configuration with Raumplus S1200 Sliding Doors!

The S1200 is by far the most beautiful sliding doors which I’ve ever set my eyes on. From the moment I saw the Dark Bronze version at the Ewins Showroom, I knew it was perfect. The extremely thin frame, coupled with full-height glass infills was simply so pretty!

Full-height Glass Sliding Doors

The S1200 supports panel widths up to 1.8 meters and heights up to 3.5 meters, which basically mean you could do like near 2-storey sliding doors if you had a high ceiling, too.

What you’re looking at is actually 4 sliding doors all at their “closed” state – forming a huge “L” separating the Bedroom from the Living Room. Each panel is also carefully guided into the desired position with the help of Raumplus’ soft-closing mechanism so that I don’t have to manually re-align each panel every time I slide them.

Basically, everything can be slid aside to open up the entire apartment into a huge space when needed, with absolutely no blockage of the view!

Pole System Wardrobe

Also, given the ridiculously small bedroom space, and the fact that we wanted a King-sized mattress, namely the TK Luxury Series from Tilamking, there was very little space left for the wardrobes. Hence, we decided to go for an open-concept wardrobe, which would make the room look much bigger.

This is where we were introduced to the Raumplus UNO Aluminium Pole System Wardrobe.

Wait, what – pole!?

A pole-system wardrobe is a basically a wardrobe that is made up of poles, shelves, and attachments – and thus allowing for highly flexible configurations. It’s (relatively) easy to set up and adaptable to any space, and can also be taken apart and reconfigured to suit my changing needs, like this:

Essentially, the height and position of every component can be shifted easily at any point in time. Components can be added or removed without leaving behind any “marks” to the pole itself, too!

I’ve actually seen a number of such systems being used in retail shops, but those were ugly with holes to “hang” the components on. Nothing really compares to the UNO system though, in terms of elegance… there’re no ugly holes, no limits to where each component can be placed, and it even comes with a 10-year warranty!

Platform Bed

Platform Bed with loads of bells and whistles on the sides and top!

For the bed itself, we designed our own platform bed which had almost every possible void space being used and accessible as storage. The whole area under the mattress could be accessed from the sides or the top of the platform, and this was where we could stash things that we don’t really use!

The top and side of the headboard were also customized to be significantly more functional – the top serving as 1.5-liter bottle holders and laptop charging cubicles with power sockets, and the sides serving as cubicles for storing of personal effects.

Electronic Blinds

For the electronic blinds which we bought, we, unfortunately, being complete newbies, made a wrong call to select the product based on pricing itself… from Taobao!

It was a huge nightmare to get it working properly and I’m still praying till this day that it wouldn’t fail again.

That said, I shall leave the full story to one of the detailed posts – it’s so bad that I wish I had paid more for a better product!

Vanity Corner

If it isn’t already obvious enough that I’m totally vain and require my own vanity corner….

And here’s my cosy vanity corner! The dressing table is actually a pretty pricey solid-wood piece from Taobao which was bought on impulse without properly measuring if it would fit.

It didn’t fit, but thank goodness my carpenter was talented enough to help with customizing it to fit the corner.

We also have a Boomchair with a DIY added massage seat, as you can spot from the reflection in the huge full-height mirror. The second 55-inch Xiaomi TV 4A in the house was mounted to the ceiling on a swivel mount which allows it to be rotated by 180°.

I can now swivel the TV to face the vanity corner so that I can watch YouTube while I get my contouring done.

Study Area

The Study Area – also doubling up as dogs’ man-caves

The study area is somewhat a study table with 2 dog-beds for the boys. We also call this space their “man-caves”, because the study table provides decent coverage from the outside world, and the boys love the cosy space inside!🐶


A Tiny Fridge

We insisted on building a bottle shelf on top of the cabinets and made do with only a small SMEG fridge because K said we need to have “fridge-discipline” – trying as far as possible not to keep too much food in the fridge. 🙄

P/s: Within the first few months of shifting-in, we ended up purchasing an additional bar freezer because our fridge is too small for storing the dogs’ raw diet! That said, we tastefully hid the bar freezer in the bomb shelter now…. 💁🏻‍♀️

Kompacplus Kitchen Surfaces

One of the best decisions we made was to have Kompacplus installed as our countertop and backsplash. 👏🏻

It looks amazingly like actual wood, but is super easy to clean, and can be cut perfectly to fit yur kitchen!

I couldn’t imagine if I had chosen to go for tiles or other materials that isn’t as easy to clean…. 😭

Electronic Clothes Hanger

Gone with the days where you could hang your clothes outside with far-reaching bamboo poles. Instead, newer HDB apartments actually come with a service yard which takes up quite a significant bit of space in the already-small kitchen for you to do your laundry.

Thanks, but no thanks!

We knocked the service yard down and also replaced the HDB-provided manual laundry system with the electronic one instead which comes all the latest gimmicks..

Sorry – I meant fanciful functions such as light, wind, hot air, UV light, UV fan, extendable poles, etc for less than $500 inclusive of shipping!! Of course, it can actually move up and down to allow ease while hanging the laundry. Of course, this was almost reach for actually being able to zero – but you already knew that didn’t you?

All thanks to Taobao again. 👏🏻


A huge black dog, or rather, a carpet steals the limelight of the jacuzzi tub.

Yeap – you’ve seen it correctly. That’s a 2-seater jacuzzi tub inside a 3-room HDB apartment! 🛁

Once again, it’s from Taobao… but this time upgraded with every single possible feature such as massage jets, LED lights, Bluetooth audio capabilities, water warmers to maintain the temperate in the tub, etc.

Thus far, however, the main users of the jacuzzi tub seem to be the two boys. 🐕🤷🏻‍♀️🐕

Wait. Some of you might be wondering at this point, “Wow! Transparent toilet doors!? 😏”

Yes, it’s transparent when the door is open, but it actually turns opaque when it’s fully closed, thanks to the help of PDLC-encased film within the glass infill!

It’s also more commonly known as “smart glass” – You know like the kind on our LRT trains which are activated when it passes by nearby residential areas and suddenly, all the windows turn opaque? Yes – it’s exactly like that! 🚈

After all, we still need to be considerate for guests that need to use our toilet, hor….🙊

Spot the Google Home Mini 🔘

The one thing we missed the most in Japan other than the food, was actually their toilet bowls…

Tadah! The recent cold weather further proved that our resolve in getting the smart Panasonic seat cover bidet was well paid-off. The “shiok-ness” when you sit on a warm toilet to relieve your worries and then washing and drying your intimates with just one touch!! 😌

Do take note that the voltage for Japan bidets is very different from those to be used in Singapore. You will need to get the sets meant for export or basically look for those made for China market.

..and here’s where all that water is coming from – an AO Smith 80-litre heat pump water heater!

It was supposed to be hidden, but that didn’t turn out so well because it was simply too big! It’s also supposed to be smart enough to know your usage patterns, and prepare sufficient heated water as and when you require.

How smart exactly is this heat pump water heater? Good question. Let me read up on each feature in detail first, then I will write it in my next post. It’s also kinda inevitable that we need to have such a big heater because we have a jacuzzi. 💦

And a normal water heater doesn’t make the cut of filling the tub up as it has no way to heat the water up within a short time with precise temperature-measured water.🛀🏻

Everything Else

Smart bowl by PetKit 🥣 Featuring Yandao, Lengzai & Willow.

There’s actually too many gadgets and details for me to squeeze into a single post so this post will serve as just a simple overview.

As you could probably tell by now, we didn’t want to go home to an extremely “modern-looking” apartment or one that screams of technology. We actually preferred a warmer and cosier feel hence we went heavy on the wood elements.

Even for our security lock!🔒

After comparing all the available smart locks which were highly recommended, we decided to go for the August Smart Lock Pro, even though it was extremely complicated to install because it was meant to serve as a drop-in replacement for the  American deadbolt lock but isn’t widely in use. However, after a while of actual usage, I’ve absolutely no regrets of going through the all the trouble for it.

Initially, we didn’t plan for much carpentry works to be built, but we later realised that we need them to create for space and storage. That’s why even for our kitchen, we knocked down the service yard and created 2-tiers of cabinets for both sides of the kitchen maximising every single space imaginable!

By now, if you’re still reading this, I’m sure you guys have many questions.

No worries, all will be answered shortly in the upcoming posts which I have mentioned about in the beginning.. but here’s a quick checklist thus far of everything I’ve written…

✓ Carpentry works done by CraftStyle Furnishing

✓ Open-concept wardrobe, full-height sliding glass doors and dining table from Ewins

✓ King-sized super bouncy mattress from Tilamking

✓ Huge 80-litres water heater from AO Smith

✓ Z-wave hub by Samsung SmartThings, sensors and switch mainly by TKBHome, Heiman, Aeotec, Fibaro and Samsung. Main voice control devices by Google (duh)

Oh yes! The answer to the most important question that many of you asked….

…who is your Interior Designer or Smart Home Planner?

.. oh well – it’s my husband!

..and no, he doesn’t even remotely work in these industries…

Read my related posts;

Installing the August Smart Lock Pro in Singapore Apartments [HDB or Condo]

Installing Colour-changing Smart Glass on Sliding Doors

Building a Smart Home from Scratch [Installing Smart Switches]


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  • Lim
    June 10, 2018

    Hi there!

    Could i check with you how much your Raumplus UNO Aluminium Pole System Wardrob costed!

    btw great write up on the august smart lock! thanks alot!

    • YingVannie
      June 21, 2018

      Hi Lim, actually the prices are based on the configuration you choose. For example, the way they counted my pricing was based on the parts used – for example, number of poles used, number and type of shelves, type of drawers and handles, and any of the “fancy stuff” like clothes lift.

      For my configuration, the retail price is around $3.6k, but I think it was totally worth it for the sleek poles. I’ve seen a few “copies” out there, but you gotta touch the wardrobe in person at the showroom, and then you’ll see the difference!

  • Mandy Tay
    June 17, 2018


    Can you share the link/brand of the electronic clothes hanger from taobao. Much appreciated.

    • YingVannie
      June 21, 2018

      Hi Mandy, the link for the one that I bought was no longer available. You can search on using the keyword “电动晾衣架” for many more different and newer options. Generally, the electronic clothes hanger from the top sellers should be able to fit locally but do check the measurements first.

  • Shirley
    September 20, 2018

    Hey babe, can share your electrician? Spoken to a few they don’t understand how to pull the neutral wire.

    • YingVannie
      September 25, 2018

      Hi Shirley,

      You can contact my electrician/plumber, Kwee Pheng, at 91441328. Just tell him Vanessa referred you, he will sort you out 🙂

  • Noel
    January 31, 2019

    Hi Vanessa,

    When you decided on TKB switches – did you compare with others, specifically SonOff?


    • YingVannie
      March 9, 2019

      Hi Noel, SonOff is a wifi based smart home system. For my comparison, I was specifically looking for Z-wave and Zigbee solutions. It really depends on what kind of platform you’re looking at.

  • Susi
    February 26, 2019

    OMG you’re amazing! This was very well-written and you really went all out with the connectivity haha. Very inspiring and it looks great after all of your, and your hubby’s, hard work.

  • Zi Rong Lim
    April 23, 2019

    Hi Vanessa,

    I am trying to install full height glass pieces as partition to a study room too, but lift height is an issue hence ID mentioned, cannot achieve full height. How did you go about doing it?

    • YingVannie
      April 24, 2019

      Hi Zi Rong! One of the ways is to ask them to deliver via stairs but you must make sure the width/height of your staircase have enough allowance for them to clear when doing turns. Another way, if you’re staying in a landed or apartment that is not that high, you can try asking your ID to arrange for something like a forklift or crane truck to pull the glass door from outside of your facade directly into your house.

      • Zi Rong
        April 24, 2019

        Thanks thanks! Unfortunately, i am staying on 19th floor of a HDB, staircase is also tricky

        • Zi Rong
          April 24, 2019

          For your full height glass sliding door, how did you move it up? My HDB lift only allows 7ft at max. So far, cant find a glass supplier willing to take stairs, even stairs, max height is 7.8ft 🙁

          • YingVannie
            April 24, 2019

            My glass doors were from Ewins. You might probably wanna check with them if it’s possible and safe to do so? To be honest, the labour cost to carry up 19 floors might be on a higher side even if it’s doable. Might be easier and more cost-effective for your ID to redesign the glass door. 😅

  • Paul
    July 1, 2019

    Thanks for the great write up. Appreciate your time spend on all these. Can I ask so far with tkhome switches. Any problem for u? And the wiring you pulled for neutral. How much did the electrician charge you. And I say your universal socket. Some days it get loosen after multiple uses. Any problem for yours? Are they smart sockets? Thanks!

    • YingVannie
      August 18, 2019

      Hi Paul,

      After prolonged usage of TKBHome’s Z-wave switches, I’ve had a few which died suddenly or simply refused to turn on/off. I sent a couple of units backed to the manufacturer and they told me that it was a problem with the relay module coupled with the sudden current surge of LED lighting versus normal lighting.

      After a few months, they finally fixed the problem with a different relay module designed for LED lighting. That said, remember to specify that you will be using the TKBHome switches for LED lighting so that they will provide you with the improved version.

      The neutral wire actually brings up your electrical wiring costs by about 30-40%. For the universal socket, initially, we had some jamming, but after tinkering around with the mechanism inside and aligning things properly, it seems to work. No, the sockets itself are not smart in my case.

  • edward
    July 19, 2019

    May I know where to get google home max?
    singapore is not selling. and what is the price?

    • YingVannie
      August 18, 2019

      Hi Edward,

      I got the Google Home Max from the official Google US store. I got it shipped to a freight forwarder – you can try HopShopGo, vPost, Borderlinx, etc – but shipping was a killer as the item is huge. If I remember correctly, the shipping had costed more than $60 for each set.

      Still, the sound quality is totally worth every cent. I think it’s on par with the much more higher-end speakers! The microphone is also super sensitive and able to catch whispers 😉

  • Lawrence lee
    November 4, 2019


    Love the way u make the home smart and space saving. I feel that doing a smart home doesnt need to spend alot as we can do the customizing ourselves. I am moving in to my place soon. Not much reno to be done other than toilets and fresh paint. I would like to do up smart lighting as well but was considering using yeelights instead and so do away with the smart switch but i think long term wise, smart switch will be cost effective (considering aqara). How much does it cost to pull 8 neutral wires from the lighting point? Based on your experience.

    • YingVannie
      July 18, 2021

      Hi Lawrence,

      I guess this reply came a little too late, but these days most switch manufacturers already add support to not needing a neutral wire. The option only costs a few bucks more 🙂

  • Roma
    November 12, 2019

    Hi there! Thank you for the insightful post!

    Need some help with regards to unifi pro. We have asked our contractors to supply 2 wireless AP supply along our corridor as well and plan to put the unifi there. But do we need an electrical power point there too or just we 2 AP points (cat 6 cable suffices)?

    And does the unifi system just come up with that disc like thing that you have mounted on the ceiling or there is also another device that needs to be plugged into our broadband modem?

    Will really appreciate your reply on this!

    Please advise.

    • YingVannie
      July 18, 2021

      Hi Roma,

      Sorry, this reply probably is a little too late. But putting there here anyway so others can take reference too.

      Most of the Ubiquiti access points run on PoE (Power-over-Ethernet), meaning the power is supplied via LAN cable. Power is then drawn from the network switch or injected with a PoE injector from the other end.

      Yes, the Unifi system comes with a disc-like thing. It’s the ceiling mounting plate.

  • Dave
    December 3, 2019

    Hi Vanessa

    Great blog entry! Very informative and inspiring 🙂 I am hoping to do some simple smart home stuff in my new house and this is very helpful. Wish to tap on your experience and seek your advice on a few things please:

    1) I am looking for a wifi smart switch solution that can be controlled directly by phone app and doesn’t require a hub or assistant. Compatibility with voice assistant is helpful but not critical for me. Do you have any other solutions you considered/tested besides TKBHome and Z-Wave?

    2) You mentioned testing several brands of sensors, and there was a clear winner, so which was it? (Was looking forward to the follow-up article)

    3) What is the brand/model of your <$100 Taobao robot vacuum that can mop and be smart controlled? (wow!)

    Thanks in advance!

    • YingVannie
      July 18, 2021

      Hi Dave,

      I know this reply comes a little late and you’ve probably solved it, but I’ll just write this here for whoever else comes looking.

      1) Try to have a central hub be it Zigbee or Z-wave or some other radio technology. I have got a friend who did direct wifi connection, but if your device malfunctions it can bring the whole home wifi network down too. Wifi wasn’t really designed for many tiny devices. You will face quite a bit of interference issues. It’s been a couple of years, and surprisingly, I found Zigbee more stable than Z-wave. Also, I wouldn’t endorse TKBHome – my switches/relays by them are mostly blown out by now.

      2) The “western” brands are expensive, but they are more reliable… so far none of my Aeotec’s are faulty yet. The China-made sensors are mostly malfunctioning by now.

      3) Roborock – a slightly older model. Now there are quite a bit of alternative brands out there.

  • Kas
    January 10, 2020

    Gosh, this is so detail and so helpful for my upcoming new home renovation. Are you able to share how much you spend in all with all those items in?! ☺️

    • YingVannie
      July 18, 2021

      Hi Kas,

      Actually, over the years the items we have might have grown quite a bit. I would estimate about 50-70k in totality for all the renovations, appliances, materials, etc. We cut a lot of costs by getting stuff from Taobao, but also went splurging on some things like the sliding doors, the Sonic Carrier, etc.

  • verycurious
    January 12, 2020


    do you mind sharing how much did it cost to do everything that you listed in this post?
    hardware, labour, etc.
    curious as i am keen to try this for my own home in the future.
    thank you

    • YingVannie
      July 18, 2021

      Hi verycurious,

      Actually, over the years the items we have might have grown quite a bit. I would estimate about 50-70k in totality for all the renovations, appliances, materials, etc. We cut a lot of costs by getting stuff from Taobao, but also went splurging on some things like the sliding doors, the Sonic Carrier, etc.

  • Vini
    March 7, 2020

    Love what you have done for your home.
    Would you mind sharing what it cost you for total renovation and what was the duration?

    Would you have like a breakdown of it?

    I am getting my first ever home – 4bhk.

    And have been looking at very similar ideas as what you have shared.


    • YingVannie
      July 18, 2021

      Hi Vini,

      Actually, over the years the items we have might have grown quite a bit. I would estimate about 50-70k in totality for all the renovations, appliances, materials, etc. We cut a lot of costs by getting stuff from Taobao, but also went splurging on some things like the sliding doors, the Sonic Carrier, etc.

      In terms of a breakdown, I would estimate about ~20-25k on carpentry, ~15k on door and shelves, ~20k on appliances, and the rest on all the bits and pieces. The trick is to see what you need to spend on and what can have some corners cut.

  • cy
    March 12, 2020

    just come across your post as I’m currently researching to reno my home. nice details! may I ask if your 2in1 toilet with basin is the one provided by hdb? cos it seems to be nicer than most ppl’s.

    hope to hear from you soon

    • YingVannie
      July 18, 2021

      Hi cy,

      Nope, this was bought from Taobao. There are a few versions of this, and you need to get the drainage and back measurements right for this. Ask your contractor to help you with the measurements and then you can find something similar 🙂

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