Property & Home Loans

Buying A BTO Flat In 2021? Here's A Complete Cost Breakdown

If you're planning to buy an HDB BTO flat in Singapore, you'll need to budget for a downpayment, home insurance, renovation loan, and more. Keep reading for our ultimate cost breakdown.

There is a lot to consider when buying a Build-to-Order (BTO) flat. Eligibility and locations are some of the key factors to consider but the biggest worry has to be the cost and how much buyers must set aside before they can rightfully own a BTO that they can call home. If you are a first-time homebuyer hoping to land a BTO flat, read on to find out all the costs that you need to consider before sending in your application to the Housing Development Board (HDB).

Estimated Cost To Buy A BTO Flat In Singapore 2021

In case you are wondering what the prices for BTO flats in Singapore are, here are some indicative prices that are based on BTO launches in February and May of 2021.

How Much Does It Cost To Buy A BTO?

BTO Flat SizeMature Estate Price RangeNon-Mature Estate Price Estate
Two-room flatS$117,000 to S$180,000S$98,000 to S$113,000
Three-room flatS$312,000 to S$419,000S$175,000 to S$209,000
Four-room flatS$464,000 to S$602,000S$260,000 to S$299,000
Five-room flatFrom $611,000S$372,000 to S$404,000
Cost includes floor finishes, internal doors, and sanitary fittings.
To apply for a BTO flat, you do it online on HDB InfoWEB whenever there is a launch. Because there is always an overwhelming response, if you want a higher chance of getting a BTO flat, try applying for flats with lower application rates. The number of applications for each type of flat will be updated regularly on the HDB InfoWEB to ensure you’re aware of how many people you are competing with.

Check If You Are Eligible For CPF Grants

Buying a new flat can be a heavy financial commitment, which is why you should try to reduce the cost with CPF Grants as much as you can. The current grant schemes offer up to S$80,000 to eligible buyers who submitted their BTO applications after September 2019. This not only helps with buyers’ cash flow, it also reduces cash outlay. If you are applying for a flat as a first-time household, you may be eligible for the following depending on household income:

  • Enhanced CPF Housing Grant (EHG) up to S$80,000 for household income not exceeding S$9,000 per month.
  • For applications made before September 2019, buyers are eligible for the following grants instead of the Enhanced CPF Grant:
  • Additional CPF Housing Grant (AHG) up to $40,000 for those with household income not exceeding S$5,000 per month and are buying two-room flexi or larger flats.
  • Special CPF Housing Grant (SHG) up to $40,000 for those with household income not exceeding S$8,000 per month and are buying four-room or smaller BTO flats in a non-mature estate.

Full Cost Of Buying A BTO Flat

There are seven key cost areas to consider when buying a BTO flat in Singapore. Remember to include the following as you create a budget:

BTO Cost Breakdown

Types of CostDescriptionEstimated Amount
Application feeUpfront fee for applying for a BTO flat.S$10
Option feeAn option fee must be paid to confirm the purchase; this is part of the downpayment.
  • S$2,000 for four-room and bigger
  • S$1,000 for three-room
  • S$500 for two-room
DownpaymentThe amount payable will depend on whether you are:
  • Taking an HDB housing loan
  • Not taking any housing loan
  • Taking a housing loan from a bank
  • 10% of the home price. Pay with CPF and/ or cash.
  • 20% of the home price for loan ceiling of 75% (5% minimum cash payment and remaining 15% using CPF and/or cash)
  • 20% of the home price for loan ceiling of 55% (10% minimum cash payment and remaining 10% using CPF and/or cash)
Legal feeLegal fees include processing your paperwork for property ownership include:
  • Stamp duty for Agreement for Lease
  • Conveyancing fees
  • Caveat registration fees
Use the HDB legal fee calculator for a quick tabulation of your legal fees.
Stamp duty is calculated as:
  • First $180,000: 1%
  • Next $180,000: 2%
  • Next $640,000: 3%
  • Remaining amount: 4%

You can also use the Stamp Duty Calculator from the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS).

Conveyancing fees are calculated as:

  • First $30,000 at $0.90 per $1,000
  • Next $30,000 at $0.72 per $1,000
  • Remaining amount at $0.60 per $1,000

The minimum conveyancing fee chargeable is $20 and it is subjected to GST.

S$64.45 to be paid to the Singapore Land Authority.

Home InsuranceFlat owners with outstanding HDB loans must buy and renew the HDB fire insurance.Five-year premiums (including 7% GST) range from S$2.71 for 2-room flats to S$8.10 for Executive flats

Mortgage Repayments

When you take up a HDB housing loan, you will be granted a concessionary interest rate pegged at 0.1% above the prevailing CPF Ordinary Account (OA) interest rate and this will come up to 2.6% per annum. Note that the rate may be adjusted in January, April, July, and October, in line with CPF interest rate revisions. However, to qualify for a HDB loan, you and the co-owners of the household must meet a list of eligibility criteria based on areas such as nationality, household status, income ceiling. As such, even though HDB loans may offer better rates, some may turn to bank loans since there are fewer restrictions. To find the best home loans from banks, you’ll need to compare the best home loans in Singapore. You may even want to use our home loan calculator to help you estimate interest costs and monthly payments.

Renovation and Furnishing Costs

Since BTO flats are new and require renovation, you can save on your renovation costs. However, if you need a general renovation budget guide, consider setting aside the following for your BTO flat:

  • S$38,850 to S$44,000 for a three-room flat
  • S$43,000 to S$45,000 for a four-room flat
  • S$45,000 to S$52,000 for a five-room flat
These are just estimates and the complete cost of your BTO flat will vary based on your financial budget, lifestyle, and the needs of your family.

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Pooja Khandelwal

Pooja is a Content Marketing Lead at ValueChampion Singapore. She is responsible for planning and executing sponsored content projects and building relationships with media partners. In addition, she evaluates financial products for consumers based on quantitative and qualitative analysis. Pooja holds degrees in Economics and Psychology from Rutgers University. Her prior work experience includes founding and leading a content marketing consultancy and working at eCommerce, AI, and B2B SaaS startups in Singapore. Pooja has contributed insights to Tech in Asia, Yahoo!, and many other publications. Connect with her on LinkedIn to collaborate on content.

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