A Guide to BTO (Build to Order) and Resale HDB Grants

Do you find yourself in this scenario: You and your significant other are looking to purchase an HDB, either a BTO or a resale and you realise that you could possibly be eligible for a grant. If this is you, read on.

First, we answer what is a CPF (or HDB) housing grant and why you should be interested in applying for them.

Grants are given to lower to middle-income families to help make home purchases more affordable. This grant will not be given in form of cash but will be credited into the applicant’s CPF Ordinary Account to lower the amount of home loan required to own your home.

HDB blocks
Image by Paul Brennan from Pixabay

Before we look at the grants you could be eligible for, remember that more grants are offered for buyers of HDB resale flats than BTO. Why? Well, BTO units are sold directly from HDB at a subsidised rate. Although smaller, they are more affordable. As for resale HDB, they are generally bigger but more expensive.

If you are comparing BTO and resale, BTO wins in terms of cost, even after the grant.

But if you are looking at having a bigger space or if you (and your partner) are not Singaporean citizens, by all means, get a resale.

Let’s look at your eligibility.

Both of you are first time home buyers:

  1. Total household income is less than $9,000 a month, you get to apply for Enhanced Housing Grant (EHG) for either your BTO or resale unit.
  2. Total household within $9,000 and $14,000 a month and looking to buy a resale unit within 4KMs of your parents/children, you get to apply for Proximity Housing Grant (PHG).
  3. Total household income is more than $14,000 a month and looking to buy a resale unit within 4KMs of your parents/children, you get to apply for Proximity Housing Grant (PHG).

Average monthly income and EHG amount table

If only one of you is a first time home buyer:

  1. Household income per person is below $4,500 a month and looking to buy a BTO unit, you can apply for Enhanced Housing Grant (EHG) singles.
  2. Total household income is between $9,000 to $14,000 and looking to buy a resale unit, you get to apply for a Half-Housing Grant or Top-Up Grant. On top of that, if that resale unit is within 4KMs of your parents/children, you get to apply for Proximity Housing Grant (PHG).
  3. Total household income is more than $14,000 a month and looking to buy a resale unit within 4KMs of your parents/children, you get to apply for Proximity Housing Grant (PHG).

Half of average monthly income and EHG(singles) amount table
Source HDB

If both are second time home buyers:

  1. Total household income is less than $7,000 a month and currently living in a rented flat or a 2-room subsidised flat in a non-mature estate, you get to apply for Step-Up Grant.

Let’s break down the terms of first time or second time buyers.

You are considered a first time buyer if:

  1. You have never owned a flat bought from HDB
  2. You have never sold a flat bought from HDB
  3. You have never bought any other type of housing unit in Singapore or taken ownership of one
  4. You have never transferred ownership of any type of housing unit in Singapore
  5. You have never taken any forms of housing subsidy

If you have done any of those, you would be considered a second time buyer.

Sketching house
Image by Tumisu from Pixabay

Now we take a closer look at the types of grants mentioned above.

Enhanced Housing Grant (EHG)

For first timers, you can get a grant of up to $80,000 depending on your income. To be entitled, your total household income per month has to be $9,000 or below for the 12 months before your application date.

If one of you is a second time buyer, you will have to look at EHG (Singles). You can get a grant of up to $45,000. To be entitled, half of your total household income per month has to be $4,500 or below. At least one of the applicants must have worked continuously for 12-month before the application. The applicant also has to be working during the application.

Proximity Housing Grant (PHG)

As the name suggests, this grant is to encourage you to live closer to your family. However PHG is only applicable for resale units. If you apply you can get a grant of up to $30,000, depending on your income.

Half Housing Grant

You can get a grant of up to $30,000 depending on your income. To be entitled, your total household income per month has to be $14,000 or below for the 12 months before your application date. You can get a grant of $25,000 for a two to four-room flat or $20,000 for a five-room or bigger flat.

Top-Up Grant

For those who have received the singles grant, you can apply for a Top-Up Grant. To be entitled, your total household income per month has to be $14,000 or below. Suited for those who are looking to get married or are already married, the grant amount depends on how much you received previously. If one or both of you are a Singapore Permanent Resident who are obtaining Singapore Citizenship,, you are eligible for a Citizen Top-Up Grant of $10,000 with no maximum household income restrictions. You can check out the terms here.

Step-Up Grant

For second-timer buyers (couples) who wish to apply for a new 2-room Flexi^ or 3-room flat in non-mature estates, you can apply for Step-Up Grant amounting to $15,000. At least one of the applicants must have worked continuously for 12 months prior to flat application. The applicant also has to be working during the application.

Before you get the keys to your new home, remember to check out our list of tips and tricks to renovate, decorate, or clean your home. We also have a list of expertise ranging from interior designers to cleaners that will help your moving-house a pleasant one.


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