Many people think that only the rich and well-to-do can afford private condominiums in Singapore because these properties are commonly priced twice or thrice as much as HDB flats. While it is true private condominium units are more expensive than public housing, the reality is that they might also be more affordable than you think.
In this guide, we analyse how much the more affordable condos in Singapore cost, and work backwards to calculate just how much you should be earning to comfortably take up a home loan for a private condo.
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Buying A Condo in Singapore
First, here are some basic things you need to know about financing and paying for a private condo in Singapore.
Financing and Grants: Bank Loan Only, No Housing Grants Whatsoever
You can only finance a private condo through a bank loan. Private property is not eligible either for HDB loans, or any housing grants and subsidies from the Government.
Debt Servicing Ratios: TDSR Applies
Getting a bank loan approved for a condo is relatively straightforward, as it mainly takes into account your credit rating and Total Debt Servicing Ratio (TDSR), in other words, how much of your income goes to repaying debts each month.
As long as your TDSR does not exceed 60% of your monthly gross income, and you can pay for the minimum downpayment of 25% (at least 5% must be paid in cash and the remaining 20% can be paid using your CPF or cash), the rest of the requirements could be pretty straightforward for you.
There is no limit to how much of your TDSR you can devote to paying for your mortgage instalment—so if you have no other debts, you could use the full 60% of your income for monthly payments if you want, with a shorter loan tenure and less interest costs, although this would mean you would not be able to borrow any more money for any purpose (e.g. a car or personal loan) until the mortgage is repaid.
Likewise, if you already use 40% of your TDSR on other debts and credit, you will only be able to pay for a maximum monthly instalment equivalent to 20% of your income, with a corresponding loan tenure.
Fewer Restrictions on Purchasing Eligibility, Income Cap and Property Ownership
Unlike HDB properties, anyone can buy a private condo unit, even foreigners. Also, it is easier to purchase a private condo because there is no income ceiling (unlike new executive condos and HDB flats). Additionally, there are no restrictions on ownership of other properties as well, so you can be an existing owner of a HDB flat and still buy a private condo. You will need to pay Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) for owning multiple properties though.
Now that we have a rough sense of our eligibility and what to expect when buying a condo, let’s analyse their prices and calculate how much we need to earn to afford one.
How Much Does a Private Condo Cost?
Condo prices in Singapore vary widely, depending on factors like the size of the unit, the location of the development and more. For this guide, we’ll use 3-bedroom units as the case study—these are a good size for owner-occupiers, such as young couples and families who are upgrading to private property.
Generally, in the suburban districts in the Outside Central Region (OCR), you can find very affordable three-bedders at around $900 to $1.5 million. For example, 3-bedroom unit at Treasure at Tampines (which is known as one of most affordable new launch condos at the moment) is only $870,000.
As we get closer to the city, prices increase. In the city fringe (Rest of Central Region, or RCR), 3-bedroom condos cost around $1.5 million to $3 million. Take the popular Normanton Park which was launched in January 2021—the 3-bedders start at around $1 million, and the more spacious units cost upwards of $1.6 million.
Of course, the city (Core Central Region, or CCR) is where most of the premium and luxury projects are located. While you may be able to find small 3-bedroom units slightly under $2.5 million, most of them cost way more—the sky’s the limit!
Average Cost of 3-bedroom Private Condo Units in Singapore
Core Central Region (CCR)
$2.5 million and up
Rest of Central Region (RCR)
$1.5 million to $3 million
Outside Central Region (OCR)
$900,000 to $1.5 million
How Much Do You Need to Earn to Afford a Private Condo Unit?
As mentioned above, homebuyers can only take a bank loan and—at maximum, assuming no other debts—devote 60% of their monthly gross income to mortgage repayments (ie. the TDSR rule).
There are two main elements to think about:
The upfront minimum downpayment of 25% (of which at least 5% must be in cash)
The long-term and recurring monthly mortgage repayments
These are the steps you need to work backwards to your desired income:
Disclaimer: In this example, we can only work backwards based on the rules and regulations. However, when we assess affordability, you should consider not just your debt servicing limits, but also your cash flow situation. After all, it won’t make sense even if you pass the legal hurdles but fail to consider your daily living expenses.
1. Work Out the Downpayment and Loan Quantum
First, decide how much you want to loan and ‘split’ the condo’s price accordingly. For example, if you are eligible and want to take the maximum 75% loan, then work out the sums for your 25% downpayment and the 75% loan quantum.
$250,000 downpayment, $750,000 loan
$375,000 downpayment, $1,125,000 loan
$500,000 downpayment, $1,500,000 loan
2. Calculate the Monthly Mortgage Repayments
Based on the loan amount, interest rate, and your preferred or maximum eligible loan tenure, calculate how much you would need to pay per month to fully repay the debt. For convenience, use our mortgage calculator to compute the estimated monthly repayments you would need to make.
Let’s say you are looking at 25 years tenure and an interest rate of 1.6% p.a..
Monthly mortgage repayments (1.6% p.a., 25 years)
$1,000,000 (i.e. $750k loan)
$3,035 per month
$1,500,000 (i.e. $1.125 mil loan)
$4,552 per month
$2,000,000 (i.e. $1.5 mil loan)
$6,070 per month
3. Work Out Your TDSR
Decide how much of your monthly income you intend to spend on paying the mortgage instalments. This will decide your preferred TDSR ‘limit’ and you can then work out the ‘full’ income you need to earn to afford it (i.e. 100%).
If you are trying to find out the minimum income you need to earn, then legally you can use up to 60% of your income on the mortgage (assuming you have no other debts). If you want a buffer and don’t want to ‘spend’ your entire TDSR quota on the home loan, you can adjust downwards.
Minimum income needed (based on 60% TDSR)
$5,058 per month
$7,586 per month
$10,117 per month
Median Salary in Singapore: How Many of Us Can Afford Condos in Singapore?
According to the Manpower Research and Statistics Department of Singapore, the median gross monthly income from work (including employer CPF contributions) of full-time employed residents in 2020 is $4,534.
Based on this figure and the table above, it would seem that an entry-level condo in the RCR and OCR is affordable for many Singaporeans. This is especially if you consider the minimum income derived above as that of a working couple, who are joint-borrowing to finance a home together, instead of an individual's income.
For many, it is not the monthly salary and mortgage repayments that is the issue—it is the hefty downpayment. So, while it may be a stretch to buy a private condo as your first home, once you have worked for a few years and managed to save up enough for the downpayment, you can consider buying a condo if you want.
Are You Planning to Buy a Private Condo?
The best place to begin your condo buying journey is on PropertyGuru! You can start by browsing condos (and other properties) for sale on our portal, sussing out the best deals and comparing prices of the many listings in the market. At the same time, if you’re shopping for a home loan or need advice on how to finance this property, you can reach out to our home loan advisors (PropertyGuru Finance). They can offer expert advice tailored to your unique situation—all for free!
Disclaimer: Information provided on this website is general in nature and does not constitute financial advice.
PropertyGuru will endeavour to update the website as needed. However, information can change without notice and we do not guarantee the accuracy of information on the website, including information provided by third parties, at any particular time.Whilst every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided is accurate, individuals must not rely on this information to make a financial or investment decision. Before making any decision, we recommend you consult a financial planner or your bank to take into account your particular financial situation and individual needs.PropertyGuru does not give any warranty as to the accuracy, reliability or completeness of information which is contained in this website. Except insofar as any liability under statute cannot be excluded, PropertyGuru, its employees do not accept any liability for any error or omission on this web site or for any resulting loss or damage suffered by the recipient or any other person.
More FAQs on Condo Affordability in Singapore
How Much Do I Need to Earn to Afford a Condo in Singapore?
This depends on the price of the property as well as your personal financial situation. If you need guidance, it's best you check with a home loan advisor for more tailored guidance.
How Do You Know If You Can Afford A Condo?
One way is to work backwards from the price of the condo, taking into consideration your current cash flow, the mandatory debt servicing ratios, and your monthly income. If you find that too tedious, you may ask a home loan advisor to work it out for you.
Why is it a Bad Idea to Buy A Condo?
Whoever said it was? Everyone has a different 'dream' home and for many, it is to live in a condo. To understand your finances better to help you work towards your desired property, speak with a home loan advisor.
How Much Money Should I Have to Buy a Condo?
When it comes to assessing affordability, you should consider both the upfront payment required, as well as the long-term recurring costs (the monthly mortgage repayments). How much these are and how much you can afford depends on the price of the condo and your income, among other things.
What is the minimum downpayment to buy a condo in Singapore? ›
|Singaporeans||Permanent Residents (PRs)|
|Minimum Cash Downpayment (5%)||$50,000||$50,000|
|Total Condo Downpayment (CPF + cash)||$274,600||$324,600|
|Cash on Hand||$74,600||$124,600|
The only aspect that differs is the income ceiling which currently stands at S$16,000 and below. This means that if you and your co-applicant have a combined income of more than S$16,000, you won't be allowed to apply for an EC.Does it make sense to buy condo in Singapore? ›
There's nothing worse than having to extend your mortgage lease or making a loss by selling when you don't have a choice, so only invest in a condo if you're confident of holding onto it without financial difficulties. All that being said, Singapore is actually a pretty good place to invest in a condo.How much do you need to earn to live comfortably in Singapore? ›
You should budget at least $700 to $3,500 a month if you're renting, and $1,500 to $6,000 a month if you're a Singaporean/PR buying a home and eligible to purchase a flat.Is it worth buying property in Singapore? ›
Singapore's property market is considered a good investment sector, attracting investors and speculators looking to profit from the nation's vibrant conditions. There is no shortage of information available to beginning investors who want to make money in Singapore real estate.How long can you own a condo in Singapore? ›
This prohibits the sale or lease of a unit within the initial five years following purchase. Only after this period can it be sold to Permanent Residents and Singapore Citizens. Only after ten years may it be sold to a foreigners because an EC becomes a private condominium after ten years.Can foreigner buy condo in Singapore? ›
Can a foreigner buy a condo in Singapore? Under the Residential Property Act (Chapter 274) of the Singapore Law, foreigners are eligible to buy a condo in Singapore.How much money should you have to buy a $1 million house? ›
To afford a $1 million home you need a minimum annual income of $200,000 to $225,000. You'll also need to have enough money saved for the down payment and closing costs, which can add up to over 20% of the purchase price. There are a variety of reasons someone might want a million-dollar home in the first place.How do people afford executive condos in Singapore? ›
- EC Buyers Not Eligible for HDB Loans (Only Bank Loans) ...
- Debt Servicing Ratios: Both TDSR and MSR Apply for EC. ...
- CPF Housing Grants for Executive Condos in Singapore. ...
- Work Out Your EC's Monthly Mortgage Instalments. ...
- Factor in the Mortgage Servicing Ratio for Financing Your EC.
For HDB households with a monthly gross household income ≤ $1,900 or per capita income ≤ $650, and has at least one family member who is Singaporean.
What is high income Singapore? ›
The median household income from work per household member rose from $3,027 in 2021 to $3,287 in 2022. This refers to a growth of 2.6 per cent after adjusting for inflation. Hence, if your household income per member in the household is above $3,287, you are better off than 50% of the households in Singapore.Is it financially smart to buy a condo? ›
While renting can be an affordable option for those who aren't ready to invest in real estate, buying a condo can be a practical and lucrative move that sets you up for future financial success. This is because purchasing a condo allows you to build equity in the home that you wouldn't with renting.Why are condos so expensive in Singapore? ›
Aside from demand and supply, there are also external factors such as the rising cost of building materials and manpower costs. Coupled with already sky-high inflation, these factors have exacerbated housing costs throughout the public and private housing markets and will continue to do so for the next few years.What is a good expat salary in Singapore? ›
Expats with a few years' experience in a professional occupation can expect to earn a good wage in Singapore. The average expat salary for a middle manager working in Singapore was SGD 119,927(£63,574 GBP/$88,045 USD) in 2020, according to a study by ECA International.What is average salary in Singapore in US dollars? ›
Average income around the world.
|Avg. income per year||64,010 $|
|Avg. income per month||5,334 $|
The average monthly household income in Singapore is US$5,000, which is more than enough to meet the basic needs of a single person.Can US citizens buy property in Singapore? ›
Foreigners can only buy landed property in Singapore with approval from the Land Dealings Approval Unit (LDAU). Landed properties in Sentosa Cove are an exception to the rule and are available for sale to foreigners.What are the disadvantages of living in Singapore? ›
Cons: Cost of living
Singapore is the most expensive city in the world. According to a new survey by the British magazine 'The Economist', the cost of living is higher than anywhere else. Above all, renting an apartment and going out at night are extremely expensive in an international comparison.
The property tax for owner-occupied residential properties was raised to 5 per cent to 23 per cent from 2023, and 6 per cent to 32 per cent from 2024, for the portion of the property's annual value in excess of $30,000.What happens to condo after 50 years in Singapore? ›
So for example, if there's 50 years left on the land, owners can top up another 49 years so that the lease reverts back to 99 years. This premium is assessed by the SLA's Chief Valuer on a case-by-case basis, taking into account factors such as the number of years remaining in the leasehold.
Can I sell my condo after 1 year Singapore? ›
The three-year, minimum holding period requires you to hold on to your property for three years before selling it.What happens to 99-year lease condo in Singapore? ›
As a general policy, leasehold land will be returned to the State upon lease expiry, to allow it to be rejuvenated for the new social and economic needs of Singaporeans. Thus, a 99-year lease means that the flat can be handed down one or two generations before it is returned for redevelopment.Can Americans buy a condo in Singapore? ›
Foreigners can own private apartment or condominium units as much as they can afford. There is no limit in the quantity of private apartments and condominiums that a foreigner can buy.How much is property tax for foreigners in Singapore? ›
They went into effect for transactions on or after Dec. 16, 2021. Overseas buyers are now charged a 30% stamp duty on a residential purchase, up from 20%, according to the Monetary Authority of Singapore.How much does a condo cost in Singapore? ›
|Housing Type||Average Price||Average Size (sqft)|
|Condo Cost Overall||S$1,780,051||1,053|
What income is needed for a 800k mortgage? For homes in the $800,000 range, which is in the medium-high range for most housing markets, DollarTimes's calculator recommends buyers bring in $119,371 before tax, assuming a 30-year loan with a 3.25% interest rate. The monthly mortgage payment is estimated at $2,785.How much house can I afford on a 200K salary? ›
There are a ton of variables, and these are just loose guidelines. That said, if you make $200,000 a year, it means you can likely afford a home between $400,000 and $500,000.How much do you have to make a year to afford a $500000 house? ›
Generally speaking, mortgage lenders say that you can afford to buy a house that's 2.5 to 3 times greater than your annual salary. So in order to buy a $500,000 house, you would need to make at least $167,000 to meet the 2.5x income requirement.Can anyone buy a condo in Singapore? ›
3. Are foreigners allowed to acquire a condo in Singapore? Yes, foreigners can purchase a condominium unit without approval under the Residential Property Act. It is also worth taking note that this approval does not exclude them from the ABSD.Is condo or HDB a better investment? ›
Affordability: HDB flats are more affordable, and offer a better value for money. Community: HDB flats offer a sense of community and a strong social network, which can be lacking in a condo.
How many Singaporeans stay in a condo? ›
According to the survey, while 80 per cent of Singaporean households still live in Housing Board (HDB) flats, 13.9 per cent of households now live in condominiums and other apartments, up from 11.5 per cent in 2010.What is the top 1% income in Singapore? ›
To be the top 1% income earners in Singapore, you need an eye- poping $627,111 pa income. We are even ahead of many European countries and US. We are just behind UAE where oil flows from the kitchen tap.What is Singapore average rent? ›
Cost of Living in Singapore.
|Rent Per Month||Edit|
|Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Centre||4,661.11S$|
|Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Centre||3,212.50S$|
|Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Centre||8,774.81S$|
For people moving into Singapore, paying the rent or purchasing a decent living space will be the biggest expense. Individuals should expect around 942 SGD – 4709 SGD per month to pay for rent and 2018 SGD – 8072 SGD per month if someone is eligible to buy a property in Singapore.Is $10,000 a month a good salary Singapore? ›
Many people in Singapore would consider S$10K a good monthly income. It also depends on how big your family is and what your monthly expenses are. In 2021 the average income in Singapore was S$4,680 a month, according to SmartWealth.What is a top 5% earner in Singapore? ›
If you aspire to be in the top 5%, your annual income has to be $278k. It was $241k previously! As usual, please note that residents earning $20k and below do not pay income tax.How much wealth is considered rich in Singapore? ›
Singapore has an adult population of 4,932,000, and there are 298,650 millionaires (US$1 million or more). The report categorises those who have a net worth between US$1 million and US$50 million as high-net-worth (HNW) individuals, and those who have more than US$50 million as ultra-high-net-worth (UHNW) individuals.Is it worth to buy 99 year condo? ›
Consider buying 99-year leasehold property when …
Because of a lower outlay leading to a higher rental yield, leasehold properties also sit well with buyers who see the property as investment, and are intending to lease it out for rental income, or sell whenever the market appreciates.
- Flexible Living. ...
- More Affordable Than Single-Family Houses. ...
- Cheaper Insurance. ...
- Great Sense of Community. ...
- Proximity to Entertainment & Business Districts. ...
- Top-Notch Amenities. ...
- Appliances Included. ...
- Covered Maintenance.
Getting a mortgage for a condo is generally harder than getting a mortgage for a house. A condo unit is part of a multi-unit development, so the borrower's finances are intertwined with others — and lenders see this type of home as a riskier investment.
Does it make sense to buy a condo for 3 years? ›
When you add up the cost to buy and the cost to sell, “The property will have had to appreciate about 10 percent for you to break even,” explains Ailion. That's why buying a condo is only recommended if you plan to live in it for at least 3-5 years. Otherwise, you could actually lose money when you sell.Do condos hold their value? ›
Even though condos generally appreciate at a slower rate than single-family homes, they're still likely to increase in value over time. Some of the factors that can impact appreciation include: Location. Walkability.What is the best location of a condo? ›
Be sure to look for new condominiums for sale in an area near main routes with easy access to public transportation and roads and more than one point of entry. Ensure it has a low crime rate and includes essential amenities such as schools, hospitals, grocery stores, shops, and more.Can I buy property in Singapore as a foreigner? ›
Foreigners are allowed to own properties under the Residential Property Act; however, there remain limits to the types of properties foreigners may own in Singapore.Who is eligible to buy a house in Singapore? ›
At least 21 years old, if you're purchasing with your family members, are widowed, or orphaned. At least 35 years old, if you're single (unmarried) or divorced (no kids) At least 21 years old.What are the requirements to buy a house in Singapore? ›
If you are purchasing a resale HDB flat as a single person (unmarried or divorced), the minimum legal age is 35 years old. If you are widowed or orphaned, the minimum legal age is 21 years old. To purchase private property, the minimum legal age is 21 years old.Is it easy to buy property in Singapore? ›
Yes, foreigners can buy property in Singapore, but with certain restrictions. Only Singapore nationals and permanent residents can avail of the subsidized housing by the Housing & Development Board (HBD).Can an American buy a home in Singapore? ›
The answer is yes. However, upon every additional property a foreigner acquires, the payment of 20% ABSD tax will still be compulsory. However, Sentosa Cove is a special case as foreigners will only be able to purchase one property in the enclave at a time.Can Singaporeans buy property in USA? ›
Anyone can buy property in the US, regardless of their citizenship. However, you'll need to be aware of your US tax obligations.Can I get PR in Singapore if I buy a house? ›
|Purchase Price or Market Value||BSD|
Can I get a mortgage without a job Singapore? ›
Applying for a mortgage when you are unemployed is quite a difficult thing. An employed person can ask for a mortgage with the aid of displaying his or her income as proof to exhibit the ability to repay. Many banks can also reject your mortgage software when they see that you are unemployed.How long does it take to own a house in Singapore? ›
Stamp duty is payable within 14 days from the exercise of option. The balance payment can be paid 1-2 weeks before completion. Conveyancing takes 10-12 weeks to be completed. However, if you need the place early, the process can be accelerated if the seller is comfortable with the timeline.How much do I need for a downpayment on a house in Singapore? ›
Downpayment is 25% of the purchase price, of which up to 20% may be paid with CPF OA savings, and the remaining 5% in cash. Private property buyers taking a bank loan: Downpayment is 25% of the purchase price, of which up to 20% may be paid with CPF OA savings, and the remaining 5% in cash.What is the downpayment for a house in Singapore? ›
a minimum cash downpayment of at least 5% of the lower of the purchase price or the valuation price of the property at the time of purchase; and. the portion of the purchase price that is above the market value of the property; and.Why is home ownership so high in Singapore? ›
Home ownership is seen as key to nation-building in Singapore, and thus makes up the core of its public housing policy. The Home Ownership Scheme, introduced in 1964, provides grants and subsidies to Singaporean citizens planning to purchase a housing unit under the management of the Housing Development Board (HDB).How much cash do I need to buy a second property in Singapore? ›
• Minimum cash down payment
Your first home purchase requires only up to 5% cash down payment if you took up a bank loan, but your second property requires a 25% cash down payment of the property's valuation limit. Given a property that's valued at S$1 million, you'd need $250,000 cash for down payment.