HDB Steps Up Enforcement Against Illegal Subletting & Revises PR Subletting Rules

HDB Steps up against illegal subletting by enforcing more checks and placed the heartlanders’ concerns with regards to Permanent Residents monetizing public housing.

HDB flats are primarily meant for owner occupation. Those who wish to sublet their flats must meet the Minimum Occupation Period (MOP) and obtain HDB’s approval before they can do so. This rule applies to both Singapore Citizens (SCs) and Singapore Permanent Residents (SPRs).

Enforcement Actions Taken Against Unauthorised Subletting

2In 2011, HDB carried out 7,000 flat inspections and took action against 56 flat owners for unauthorised subletting. Of these, HDB has initiated compulsory acquisition action against 18 flat owners for blatantly infringing subletting rules. (See Annex A (PDF 22KB) for details of 3 cases where HDB has initiated compulsory acquisition actions as the flat owners have blatantly abused the public housing system and flouted HDB rules.)

Revised Subletting Rules for Singapore Permanent Residents (SPRs)

HDB reviews policies and rules regularly to keep them relevant. As part of ongoing reviews, the rules for subletting by flat owners who are SPRs will be revised with effect from 11 Jul 2012.

[block type=”alert”]Read the full Official Press Release from HDB[/block]

It just shows how flexible can they be when it comes to tweaking the rulings to curb with certain issues. These are measures definitely to appease the citizens to prevent possible abuse of monetizing public housing for rental income.

But of course, people who are illegally subletting their flats now should be wary.

HDB Issues Reminder to Register Room Sublets

HDB has issued a reminder today to room rental Landlords to register their sublets with the them. The deadline is 31st of July 2010.

HDB Info-web

Date issued : 15 Jul 2010

Flat owners who sublet their rooms are required to register with HDB. HDB would like to remind flat owners with ongoing subletting tenancies commencing before 1 Feb 2010 that the deadline to register the subletting with HDB is in two weeks’ time, on 31 July 2010.


On 12 Jan 2010, HDB announced that with effect from 1 Feb 2010, flat owners who sublet rooms in their HDB flats will have to register with HDB within 7 days of doing so. They are also required to notify HDB when they renew or terminate their subletting contracts, and when there are changes to their subtenants’ particulars. There is no need to seek prior approval for subletting of rooms.

This requirement supports Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA)’s ongoing efforts to eradicate loansharking activities, and to better protect HDB residents. Currently, some people use their old addresses to borrow from loansharks while they rent a room in another HDB flat. As they have moved their place of residence without updating their addresses in their NRICs, innocent new flat occupants ended up being harassed by the loansharks while the borrowers are untraceable.

The new rule will allow HDB to capture particulars of those who rent rooms in the HDB flats. With information on the addresses of owners and subtenants, MHA will be able to trace the movement of borrowers.

The new rule applies to all new and existing cases of rooms sublets:

o For new cases of subletting from 1 Feb 2010, owners are required to register with HDB within 7 days from the start date of the subletting; and

o For subletting tenancies that commenced before 1 Feb 2010, owners are given a 6-month grace period from 1 Feb 2010 to register their subletting of rooms with HDB. The 6-month grace period will expire on 31 July 2010.

As at 30 June 2010, about 32,000 flat owners have registered their subletting of rooms with HDB. This includes those with tenancies commencing before and after 1 Feb 2010.

Register by 31 July 2010

Flat owners who sublet their rooms before 1 Feb 2010 are reminded that they have about 2 weeks to register their subletting. They are advised to register early to avoid a last minute rush. Registration can be done online at www.hdb.gov.sg or at the HDB Branch Offices, where HDB staff will be on hand to guide residents on the process.

Penalty For Non-compliance

HDB may impose a penalty on those who flout the rule. The penalty may involve a fine of up to $3,000 or for recalcitrant cases, compulsory acquisition of their flats.

HDB extends Second Concessionary Loan

HDB is also extending its hands for people with its second concessionary loan by allowing buyers who is downgrading, upgrading or buying flat of the same type to borrow.

Previously, only buyers who are upgrading their flats are allowed to borrow the second time directly from HDB. This might have unintentionally caused families who are not ready to upgrade their flats to do so.

Right Sizing the Quantum for the Second Concessionary Loan

HDB will reduce the quantum of the secondary concessionary loan by the full CPF proceeds and part of the cash proceeds from the sale of the existing or immediate past HDB.

Flat buyers can keep the greater of $25,000 or half of the cash proceed (including cash deposit received) and determine the quantum of the second loan to be granted.

50% of the cash proceeds (including deposit and cash over valuation) from the sale of the immediate past HDB flat and all of the CPF balance to finance the purchase of the next flat.

HDB will also be helping home owners who will be buying their next flat before selling their existing one by allowing them to apply for the second concessionary loan by granting them a bigger laon at commercial interest rates. The commercial interest rates are pegged to the 3-month average non-promotional interest rate for HDB flats offered by the 3 local banks.

They will redeem this loan with the full CPF refund from the sale of existing flat and part of the cash proceeds and will be reverted back to a concessionary rate loan.

HDB New Minimum Occupancy Period

The Government has released a series of anti-speculation measures to keep up with the private sales measure as to curb the rising cash-over-valuation (COV) syndrome that is making homes more unaffordable in the resale market.

Read the official release from HDB here

Raising the Minimum Occupancy Period (MOP) for the resale of non-subsidised HDB flats from 1 and 2.5 years to 3 years

The objective is to reinforce owner-occupancy.

Currently, lessees of subsidized HDB flats are subject to an MOP of 5 years and will still remain the same. On the other hand, lessees of non-subsidised HDB flats i.e. resale flats bought without CPF Housing Grant are subjected to the old MOP of

  1. Those who takes an HDB concessionary loan – 2.5 years
  2. Those who takes a bank loan or do not take a loan – 1 year

The newly revised MOP for resale of non-subsidised flats will be increased to 3 years, regardless of whether the buyer takes an HDB loan, a bank loan or no loan at all.

This new policy will apply to resale transactions where applications are received by HDB from 5th March 2010 (immediate) onwards.

HDB Annual Value Raised

IRAS will raise the annual value of HDB flats with effect from 1st January 2010.

AV increase for HDB flats

IRAS reviews the AVs of all properties, including HDB flats, annually to ensure that they reflect prevailing market rental values for the purpose of determining property tax.

The last AV revision for HDB flats was however done two years ago on 1 January 2008, based on rental values in 2007. AVs for HDB flats were not revised on 1 January 2009, notwithstanding that HDB rentals had increased significantly (by between 31% and 37%) in 2008 relative to 2007. The adjustment in AVs was deferred in view of the uncertainty in market rental trends in the midst of the economic recession. There was evidence of declines in rental values from late 2008, with the risk of further significant declines in 2009 given the negative economic outlook at the time.

HDB rentals have stabilised after a moderate decline from late 2008 to the middle of 2009, and have since begun to rise. As a result, current values of HDB rentals, as well as HDB resale prices, are still significantly higher than levels observed in 2007. The AVs of HDB flats will therefore have to be adjusted, beyond the last revision in January 2008. IRAS will therefore revise the AVs of all HDB flat types with effect from 1 January 2010.

You can read more from IRAS’s official release here.

Singapore Estate Law – Can You Will Your HDB to Siblings?

Here’s another interesting snippet from Sunday Times. Agent friends should flip up Sunday Times and look out for the Invest Section – Your Personal Adviser: Finance



I would like to know if I can make a will and name my siblings as beneficiaries so they can inherit my HDB flat when I die. I am single and registered as the sole owner of the flat. Two of my siblings already have their own HDB flats, while another has a private property.

If it is not possible to will the flat to them, what will happen to the property after my death? Would HDB buy back the flat and then distribute the funds to my estate, and would it pay the original price or the market rate?

Continue reading “Singapore Estate Law – Can You Will Your HDB to Siblings?”

HDB Additional Housing Grant (AHG) Increase Firmed Up

The Additional Housing Grant (AHG) enhancement has been firmed up in Parliament by Minister of National Development Mr. Mah Bow Tan in his speech. The new AHG is as of the following new structure:-

The New HDB AHG for 6th February 2009 after Budget Day
The New HDB AHG for 6th February 2009 after Budget Day

As mentioned in my previous Singapore Budget blog entry, each level notch gets the upgrade of the old AHG with the correct estimation. The goodies are:-

  • Income ceiling has increased from $4,000 to $5,000, meaning more people will be eligible for AHG.
  • Maximum grant quantum has been increased from $30,000 to $40,000.
  • More people will benefit from a reduction of 2 years continuous employment to 1 year.

AHG can be used for sale of new flat/ DBSS as well as resale flats as of last time with no changes on this aspect.

Fancy Winning $100 From HDB For Submitting Ideas?

This reminds me alot about SAF when they reward serviceman who submits good WITS idea and more if the idea is implemented.. in cash.

Shaping My Punggol - an Intiative by HDB

The Housing Development Board (HDB) is calling out for Singapore Polytechnic students to contribute ideas to Punggol’s remake over (dubbed as the Waterfront Town of the 21st Century). Architecture poly students and even public can contribute ideas by heading to HDB’s Call for Ideas page. Deadline for submission is on the 30th of June.

– Top 10 submissions will be given $1,000 cash each.
– Good and feasible ideas will be translated into actual design.
– Publication of selected entries.
– Selected ideas will be posted online in the Ideas Gallery.

On also another serious side, HDB has also opened another competition for Urban Planners, Architects and Landscape Architects to come out with designs that can suit the waterway theme. They’ll have to buy a Design Competition Package from HDB, more details can be found here.

Letting the public who’s living in Punggol to shape the landscape, smart!

Well Maintained Yishun HDB For Rental

A beautifully maintained, fully furnished, 4 room HDB apartment in Yishun is available for rental. The owner did a great job maintaining this cosy place.

The Living Room, Well-lit and Cosy
A very clean and well maintained flat

I have posted this out for rental at Myoochi, PropertyGuru, Singapore Property Exchange, ST701 (That’s a number of sites we’re going to review soon!)

The Living Room, Well-lit and Cosy
The Living Room, cosy and definitely well lit. Furnishing with a 32″ Samsung LCD TV, Surround Sound.

Well Maintained Kitchen, Clean and Spacious
Well Maintained and Very Spacious Kitchen

One of the Common Room
One of the Common Room

Another Common Room
Another Common Room

Interested parties can give my mobile a call at 91253045, or even drop me an email at benson.koh@kf.com.sg for a no obligation discussion and viewing too. Cheers!