DBS/POSB Renovation Loan Review: How Competitive are the Banks' Rates?

DBS/POSB Renovation Loan Review: How Competitive are the Banks' Rates?

DBS and POSB offer the cheapest small, short-term home renovation loans.

Good for

  • Borrowers seeking 1 to 3 year renovation loans of less than S$10,000
  • Current DBS and POSB home loan customers

Bad for

  • Individuals seeking renovation loans of at least S$10,000
  • Homeowners seeking renovation loans of more than 3 years

Editor's Rating

4.0/5.0

DBS and POSB offer the most competitive interest rates for 1 to 3 year renovation loans of less than S$10,000. However, they charge higher fees than other banks and their interest rates are are less competitive for larger amounts and longer tenures.

Summary of DBS/POSB's Renovation Loans
Rest rates: 4.88% (new customers) & 4.38% (existing home loan customers)
Higher fees than competitors: 1% processing fee + 1% insurance premium
Low minimum income requirement: S$24,000
Low minimum loan requirement: S$5,000

Table of Contents

What Makes DBS/POSB's Renovation Loans Stand Out to Borrowers

DBS and POSB's renovation loans' rest rates of 4.88% are the lowest interest rates among renovation lenders for 1 to 3 year loans of less than S$10,000. The banks also offer renovation loans to individuals with incomes as low as S$24,000, which is a lower requirement than many other banks. Finally, DBS and POSB offer insurance coverage to borrowers in the case of death or permanent disability and a relatively inexpensive cashier fees of S$5.

However, DBS and POSB's renovation loans are less competitive for other durations and loan amounts. For example, CIMB offers cheaper rates of 2.98% to 4.18% for loans of at least S$10,000 with tenures of 1 to 3 years. Similarly, Maybank offers lower rates of 4.33% for long-term renovation loans. Given that the average cost of home renovations is approximately S$55,000, these alternatives might be more suitable for most homeowners looking for a renovation loan. Additionally, DBS and POSB charge an insurance fee and a processing fee, making their mandatory fees twice as expensive as other renovation lenders. Therefore, for many renovation loans, DBS and POSB's offerings are better viewed as backup options to these banks.

Summary of DBS/POSB's Renovation Loan

MaturityFeesInterest Rate (Rest Rate)Monthly InstalmentTotal Cost
12.0%4.88%S$1,283S$699
2S$657S$1,074
3S$449S$1,455
4S$345S$1,842
5S$282S$2,235
*Assuming loan of S$15,000, total cost includes impact of promotions and fees

DBS and POSB also offer preferential interest rates for renovation loans to their current home loan customers. These rates make the banks a good option for homeowners that already have a home loan with either bank, especially those that seek smaller renovation loans.

Summary of DBS/POSB's Renovation Loan for Existing Home Loan Customers

MaturityFeesInterest Rate (Rest Rate)Monthly InstalmentTotal Cost
12.0%4.38%S$1,280S$658
2S$654S$994
3S$445S$1,334
4S$341S$1,680
5S$279S$2,030
*Assuming loan of S$15,000, total cost includes impact of promotions and fees

Who Can Apply: Eligibility Criteria

Consider this if you are interested in a small, short-term renovation loan

Maximum Principal 6x Monthly Income or S$30,000
Rest Rate 4.88%
Cashier Fee Free 1st, S$5 fee after, max 4

To be eligible for DBS or POSB's renovation loans, individuals must be Singaporean Citizens or Permanent Residents of 21 to 65 years old. Successful applicants must earn at least S$24,000 in annual income. Loan amounts vary from S$5,000 to S$30,000 or 6 times monthly salary, whichever is lower.

Other Charges and Fees

DBS and POSB's fees are more expensive than those of other renovation lenders. The banks charge a 1% processing fee and a mandatory insurance premium of 1, while other banks tend to only charge a 1% fee. However, the insurance program can be beneficial as it covers outstanding loan balances for borrowers in the case of death or total permanent disability. DBS and POSB also charge several standard fees for cashier orders, loan cancellation, early full repayment and late payments.

FeeAmount
Processing Fee1%
Insurance Premium1%
Cashier OrderS$5, first is free
Cancellation Fee1%
Pre-payment Fee1%
Late Payment FeeS$35

How to Apply: Application Process

In order to apply for DBS or POSB's renovation loans, applicants must submit documentation detailing of the renovation, proving homeownership, income and relationship to primary applicant in the case of a joint application. To prove their annual income, salaried employees need to submit their latest computerised payslip, salary crediting into a DBS/PSB bank account or their latest 6 months' CPF Contribution History. Self-employed individuals must submit their latest 2 years' Income Tax Notice of Assessment and variable income commission-based employees must submit their latest 12 months' CPF contribution history and their latest 2 years' Income Tax Notice of Assessment.

Other Required Documents:

  • NRIC photocopy (front & back)
  • Original invoice or quote from contractor, signed by applicants and contractor
  • Property tax bill
  • CPF Housing Withdrawal Statement
  • HDB Letter of Approval
  • Sales and Purchase Agreement
  • Renovation Permit
  • Birth Certificate
  • Marriage Certificate

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