How much must I earn to buy a house in Singapore
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How much must I earn to buy a house in Singapore?

Since Singapore is a small country, land is one of the resources that they don’t have an abundance of. As a result, it can be quite expensive to purchase property here. 

In fact, if you’re planning to buy a house in Singapore, you must earn at least 2,615 SGD per month. This salary allows you to live comfortably while still being able to set aside money for the downpayment on your future home.

That said, this salary of 2,615 SGD will only let you save for the cheapest properties in Singapore, which are HDB flats. 

If you want to purchase another kind of property, you’ll have to earn even more.

To give you an idea of how much salary you should have to purchase certain properties in Singapore, refer to this table:

Housing TypeMedian Resale Housing Price (in SGD)Minimum Downpayment (in SGD)Estimated Average Salary Per Person in a Household (in SGD)
3-Room HDB360,00054,0002,615
4-Room HDB554,00083,1003,560
5-Room HDB652,00097,8004,190
HDB Executive695,000104,2504,467
Executive Condominiums (ECs)1,055,000263,7502,915
Condominiums (Outside City Center)1,130,000282,5003,118
Condominiums (Rest of Central Region)1,470,000367,5004,056
Condominiums (Core Central Region)2,350,000587,5006,484
Terrace House3,150,000787,5008,691
Semi-Detached House4,600,0001,150,00012,691
Good Class Bungalow30,303,0007,575,75083,606

Continue reading this article for a more detailed discussion about buying property in Singapore.  

What are the types of properties that you can buy in Singapore?

What are the types of properties that you can buy in Singapore

There are three main types of properties that you can buy in Singapore: HDB flats, private properties, executive condominiums (ECs), and private properties. 

HDB flats and properties can be broken into several more subtypes, which you can see in the following table:

CategoryPublic or PrivateHousing Type
HDB flatsPublic housing, managed by the Housing and Development Board• Community Care Apartment

• 2-room/3-room/4-room/5-room apartment

• 3Gen flat

• Executive flat

• Design, Build, and Sell Scheme (DBSS) flat

• Executive maisonette

• Jumbo Flat

• HDB terrace house

Executive CondominiumsPublic-Private Hybrid
Private propertiesPrivate• Condominium

• Apartment

• Terraced house

• Semi-detached house

• Cluster house

• Townhouse

• Shop house

• Bungalow

• Good Class Bungalow (GCB)

• Housing and Urban Development Company (HUDC) flat

HDB Flats

HDB Flats

Essentially, an HDB flat is the name given to a property that’s developed and managed by the government’s Housing and Development Board. It can be sold as new Built-to-Order (BTO) units, but it can also be available for resale. 

An HDB flat is under public housing, which is why it’s the most popular housing option in Singapore. In fact, more than 80% of Singaporeans reside in an HDB property. 

HDB flats come in a wide variety of housing types. Here are some of the most common:

Housing TypeDescriptionFeatures
Community Care ApartmentIntegrates senior-friendly housing with care services• 1 bedroom

• 1 bathroom

• Living/dining/kitchen

2-roomSmall flat type intended for single-person households or couples• 36–45 square meters

• 1 bedroom

• 1 bathroom

• Living/dining

• Kitchen

• Household shelter

3-roomPerfect for young couples or small-size families• 60–65 square meters

• 2 bedrooms (1 of which is a master bedroom with an ensuite bathroom)

• Common bathroom

• Living/dining

• Kitchen/utility

• Household shelter

4-room• 90–93 square meters

• 3 bedrooms (1 of which is a master bedroom with an ensuite bathroom)

• Common bathroom

• Living/dining

• Kitchen

• Service yard

• Household shelter

5-roomPerfect for larger households• 110–112 square meters

• 3 bedrooms (1 of which is a master bedroom with an ensuite bathroom)

• Common bathroom

• Living/dining

• Kitchen

• Service yard

• Household shelter

• Suggested study

3GenBest suited for people living with their extended families• Up to 115 square meters

• 4 bedrooms (2 of which have ensuite bathrooms)

• Common bathroom

• Living/dining

• Kitchen

• Service yard

• Household shelter

ExecutiveIdeal for people who want a separate office space/study• Up to 130 square meters

• 1 master bedroom with an ensuite bathroom

• 2 additional bedrooms (can be converted into an office or another type of room)

• Common bathroom

• Living/dining

• Kitchen

• Balcony (only some executive HDB flats have this)

Why is HDB housing worth considering?

Why is HDB housing worth considering

The main reason why HDB housing is worth considering is simply that it’s affordable. HDB flats are heavily subsidized, and when you add even more grants and priority schemes, you’ll get an even bigger discount on the price. 

Long story short, HDB flats are more accessible to most Singaporeans, hence why they’re such a popular choice.

What’s the main disadvantage of HDB housing?

What’s the main disadvantage of HDB housing

Even though HDB housing is great for its affordability, it has one main disadvantage, and that is the fact that it has more rules and restrictions to keep in mind.

For starters, you need to be a Singaporean citizen or permanent resident—or if not you, then someone else in your family. Your household also needs an average monthly income of 7,000 to 14,000 SGD.

If you’re the buyer, you’ll need to comply with a Minimum Occupation Period (MOP) of five years. This means you can’t sell or rent out your HDB flat in that specified amount of time. 

Executive Condominiums (ECs)

Executive Condominiums (ECs)

Can’t buy an HDB flat because you’re not eligible (your salary exceeds the limit), yet you also can’t afford a private property? There’s no need to worry because there’s one housing type intended for you: the executive condominium. 

Sandwiched between public and private housing, the executive condominium is for households with a monthly income of 16,000 SGD. You’re also allowed to use CPF grants to help cut down the price of the property.

One of the main advantages of ECs is that they come with amenities just like private condo units. Examples include gated security, a swimming pool, a recreation area, and a fitness center.

Private Properties

Private Properties

Private properties are the complete opposite of HDB flats in that they’re a lot more expensive and don’t have a lot of restrictions. 

For example, only Singaporean citizens and PRs are eligible to purchase an HDB flat; private properties don’t have this restriction. Because of this, private housing is popular among expats and foreigners. 

You can also rent out your property for at least three months. This is something you can’t do with HDB flats since you’ll be required to have a minimum rental period of six months. 

Private properties are divided into two categories: non-landed property and landed property.

Non-Landed Property

Non-Landed Property

Generally speaking, non-landed private properties come in the form of condominiums and apartments

Private condominiums are just like executive condominiums. The only difference is that you privately own them from the very start. 

With a private condo, you’ll be able to stay in a complex with several on-site amenities, such as gated security, swimming pools, and sports facilities. As for tenure, it’s either a freehold or a 99-year leasehold.

If you can’t afford a condo, then you might want to consider apartments.

Apartments share some similarities with private condo units, but they’re usually part of smaller residential projects. As a result, you won’t get to enjoy the on-site amenities that you’ll get in a condominium building. 

Apartments are generally cheaper than private condos, but they’re definitely pricier than HDB flats. That said, both apartments and private condos are less expensive than landed houses. 

Landed Property

Landed Property

Landed property refers to owning not just the house but also the land that the house stands on. Considering that land in Singapore is scarce, landed property is the ultimate status symbol reserved for the elite few. 

As expected, prices for this type of property in Singapore are incredibly high. But to those who can afford them, buying a landed house is worth it because of the many perks it offers—from sweeping grounds to exclusivity and privacy.

There are several kinds of landed property in Singapore. Here are a few of them.

Housing TypeDescription
Semi-Detached• A single-family residence sharing a common wall with another house
Terraced House• Also known as a row house

• Very much like semi-detached houses, but instead of two houses sharing a wall, it’s a row of houses that share walls

Cluster Houses• Landed residences grouped or clustered together so that the households can share several amenities, such as swimming pools
Townhouse• A mix of a landed home and private condominium

• It has features of a terraced home, but at the same time, it has communal facilities like a condo unit

Shophouse• Property with historical importance

• Incredibly rare, which is why it’s usually priced in the millions

Housing and Urban Development Company (HUDC) Flat• Features a spacious interior (around 139–158 square meters)

• Intended for people who can’t afford most private properties but still want something better than an HDB flat

Bungalow• Land area ranging from 400–1,400 square meters

• A one- or two-story house that doesn’t share a wall without another house

Good Class Bungalow (GCB)• Property of choice for the richest people in Singapore

• Land area of over 1,400 square meters

• Features a luxurious mansion with sweeping gardens, swimming pools, and other high-end amenities

Monthly Income and the Cost of Property in Singapore

Monthly Income and the Cost of Property in Singapore

Once you’ve done your research on the different types of property to buy in Singapore, the next thing you need to consider is the finances. 

To be more specific, there are two kinds of finances you need to take into account before buying a house: your monthly income and the price of the property. 

What’s the median monthly income in Singapore?

According to the Comprehensive Labor Force Survey, the median monthly income in Singapore as of 2022 is 5,070 SGD for a full-time job and 1,287 SGD for a part-time job

This estimation is said to continue to rise in 2023, according to a study done by British American multinational company Aon. 

If you’re curious to see how the median monthly income has changed throughout the years, take a look at the table below.

YearMedian Monthly Income in SGD (Including Employer CPF)Real Basic Wage Change

How much do properties in Singapore cost?

How much do properties in Singapore cost

The price of a property in Singapore varies, depending on what type it is, how big, and whether it’s public or private. Here’s a table that shows how much properties in Singapore typically cost, depending on the housing type.

Housing TypeAverage Price (in SGD)Median Price (in SGD)Average Size (in square meters)
HDB Property532,768495,00099.13
Private Condo1,780,0511,467,77897.83
Landed Property5,063,5073,850,000394.28

Cost of HDB Flats in Singapore

Cost of HDB Flats in Singapore

As mentioned earlier, HDB flats are the most affordable housing option in Singapore, simply because they’re subsidized by the government. 

The average cost of an HDB flat is around 532,768 SGD, but if you choose a smaller flat, the price might fall somewhere between 300,000 and 450,000 SGD. Likewise, if you go for a bigger HDB flat, you’ll undoubtedly be looking at a pricier tag.

Type of HDB FlatAverage Cost (in SGD)

Cost of Private Condominiums in Singapore

Cost of Private Condominiums in Singapore

To get an idea of how much a condo costs depending on where it’s located in Singapore, take a look at this table.

LocationNew or Resale?Average Price (in SGD)
Core Central RegionNew3.225 million
Resale3.989 million
Rest of Central RegionNew2.605 million
Resale1.972 million
Outside Central RegionNew1.743 million
Resale1.288 million

Unlike HDB flats, private condominiums in SGD aren’t subsidized, hence why their prices tend to be much higher than the former. In addition to this, prices fluctuate depending on which market segment the condo is located in. 

There are three market segments in Singapore, and they are as follows:

Core Central Region (CCR)Rest of Central Region (RCR)Outside Central Region (OCR)
• Orchard, Somerset, River Valley

• Tanglin, Bukit Timah, Holland Village

• Newton, Novena, Bunearn, Watten

• Boat Quay, Raffles Place, Marina Downtown, Suntec City

• Shenton Way, Tanjong Pagar

• Sentosa

• City Hall

• Bugis

• Marina South

• Chinatown

• Queenstown, Alexandra, Tiong Bahru

• Harborfront, Keppel, Telok Blangah

• Buona Vista, Dover, Pasir Panjang

• Fort Canning

• Rochor

• Little India, Farrer Park

• Balestier, Whampoa, Toa Payoh, Boon Keng, Bendemeer, Kampong Bugis

• Potong Pasir, Bidadari, MacPherson, Upper Aljunied

• Geylang, Dakota, Paya Lebar Central Eunos, Ubi

• Tanjong Rhu, Amber, Meyer, Katong Dunman, Joo Chiat, Marine Parade

• Bishan, Thompson

• Clementi, West Coast

• Kembangan, Kaki Bukit

• Telok Kurau, Siglap, Frankel

• Bedok, Upper East Coast, Bayshore, Tanah Merah, Upper Changi

• Flora Drive, Loyang, Changi

• Tampines, Pasir Ris

• Punggol, Sengkang, Hougang, Kovan, Serangoon, Lorong Ah Soo

• Ang Mo Kio

• Upper Bukit Timah, Ulu Pandan, Clementi Park

• Jurong East, Jurong West, Boon Lay

• Hillview, Bukit Panjang, Bukit Batok, Choa Chu Kuang

• Kranji, Lim Chu Kang, Sungei Gedong, Tengah

• Woodlands, Admiralty

• Lentor, Springleaf, Mandai

• Yishun, Sembawang

Cost of Landed Property in Singapore

Cost of Landed Property in Singapore

Buying landed property is the ultimate dream for most Singaporeans. But though there are countless advantages to having a landed house, the price is enough to turn some people away—unless you’re one of the country’s top 1%.

Here are the average prices of several landed properties in Singapore:

Housing TypeAverage Price (in SGD)
Terraced House3,168,077
Cluster House3,366,667
Corner Terrace4,488,000
Good Class Bungalow30,303,000

How much money should I save to buy property in Singapore?

How much money should I save to buy property in Singapore

Once you’ve made your decision to buy property in Singapore, you should make sure to save at least 60% of your house cost in cash and CPF OA combined. 

So if you’re eyeing an HDB flat that costs 500,000 SGD, you—and your partner if you’re planning to buy property together—should have at least 300,000 SGD in cash and CPF OA ready. 

With this strategy, you’ll still be able to live comfortably while still saving up for a house. You don’t have to worry about getting stuck in a financially stretched position trying to purchase property as soon as possible. 

How do I buy a house in Singapore?

How do I buy a house in Singapore

Are you now mentally ready to purchase property in Singapore? Then, you need to prepare to go through a rigorous process. 

Here are the steps in buying a house in Singapore:

  1. Determine if you’re eligible.
  2. Ask yourself what your needs and preferences are.
  3. Consider all the different factors.
  4. Set a budget.
  5. Start searching for your dream home.
  6. Apply for a housing loan or mortgage.
  7. Make an offer and negotiate.
  8. Buy home insurance.

1. Determine if you’re eligible

Determine if you’re eligible

One thing you need to know before choosing a house or condo in Singapore is if you’re eligible. And your eligibility to buy a property depends entirely on your status in the country.

In other words, are you a Singaporean citizen, permanent resident, or expat? After answering this question, take a look at this table to see what property types you’re allowed to buy.

What Singaporean Citizens and Permanent Residents Can BuyWhat Expats/Foreigners Can Buy
• HDB flats (with another citizen or permanent resident)

• Resale ECs

• Privatized ECs

• Private condos

• Landed properties in Sentosa Cove

• Landed properties on mainland Singapore, with special permission from Singapore Land Authority

• Private condos

• Privatized ECs

• Landed properties in Sentosa Cove

• Landed properties on mainland Singapore, with special permission from Singapore Land Authority

Furthermore, if you’re an expat or foreigner eyeing an executive condominium, your eligibility can be broken depending if you’re buying alone or not. 

If you’re an expat…You can only buy…
Buying aloneA privatized EC that’s more than 10 years old
Buying a house with a permanent residentA resale EC that’s more than 5 years old or a privatized EC that’s more than 10 years old
Buying a house with another expatA privatized EC that’s more than 10 years old

If you decide to go with a private property, you don’t have to worry about many restrictions. The only restriction you need to bear in mind is that you would need permission to buy landed property on the main island of Singapore.

If you really want a landed house, you’re free to purchase one in Sentosa Cove. 

2. Ask yourself what your needs and preferences are

Ask yourself what your needs and preferences are

After you’ve done your research on property types and eligibility, you need to start narrowing down your choices by asking yourself some hard questions. 

These questions will entirely depend on you, but here are a few that you can ask yourself to start the deliberation:

  • Do you prefer a quiet neighborhood or a bustling town center?
  • How important is proximity to you? Do you want to stay close to everything—work, transport stops, restaurants, etc.—or are you okay with a longer commute time?
  • Are your parents living in Singapore as well? Do you want to live near them or not?
  • Are you interested in renting the property out in the future? 

Feel free to add more questions to this list as you see fit.

3. Consider all the different factors

As you’ve seen in the numerous tables above, there are many different factors that affect a property’s price. To recap, these are the most common factors:

  • Location
  • New/resale
  • Property type
  • Future developments

So keep these factors in mind when you’re thinking about your dream house. It should also help you in managing your expectations and in setting up an achievable budget. 

4. Set a budget

Monthly Income and the Cost of Property in Singapore

By now, you should have an idea of what your dream house is. If that’s the case, then the next thing you need to do is set a budget plan. 

Here are some things to consider when creating a budget:

  • Your personal finances
    • Income
    • Necessary expenses
    • Debt obligations and existing loans
    • Available funds in your account
    • Subsidies and grants (if any)
    • Housing loan eligibility and tenure
  • Other costs to consider
    • Realtor/agency fees
    • Property taxes
    • Stamp duties
    • Maintenance fees
    • Home and fire insurance
    • Property valuation costs
    • Option to purchase (OTP) processing fees
    • Renovation costs
    • Mortgage or loan interest rate
    • Home inspection fees

5. Start searching for your dream home

Start searching for your dream home

Now, it’s time to look for your dream house. To do this, you have two options: doing it yourself or hiring an agent. 

Doing it yourself is the ideal route if you’re on a tight budget and you’d rather cut out fees that you consider unnecessary —in this case, the realtor/agency fees. 

While that’s a solid plan, you should still consider getting an agent. This is because an agent is incredibly knowledgeable about the market and is skilled at negotiating. 

As a result, there’s a strong likelihood that they’ll be able to find you a variety of properties to choose from and get you the best prices possible. 

6. Apply for a housing loan or mortgage

Apply for a housing loan or mortgage

Have you found your dream house? Before you make an offer, you might need to apply for a housing loan or mortgage. 

This rule only applies to people who need financing to purchase their new home. If you can pay for the house in cash, you don’t have to worry about taking out a loan or mortgage. 

You can avail of a housing loan through the banks in Singapore. You’ll have to exert extra effort for this step since you need to research how to apply for a loan and what the ideal interest rate is. 

Don’t skip this step. This will help you in the long run.

7. Make an offer and negotiate

Make an offer and negotiate

Has your loan been approved? Well, now it’s time to make an offer, and if you have an agent, let them negotiate with the property owner so that you’ll get the best price for the property. 

8. Buy home insurance

Good job! Now you have your dream house. By this point, you have so much to do to make this house your own—renovate, think about interior design, furnish, and so on.

But before you get to all of that, you should first prioritize purchasing home insurance. Home insurance plans are abundant in Singapore, so make sure to do your research first before settling on one for your property.

FAQs about Buying a House in Singapore