HDB changes housing grant disbursements, increases income assessment period

/ EdgeProp Singapore |
HDB has announced changes to its processes for assessing flat buyers’ incomes and eligibility for housing subsidies, effective May 9 (Picture: Samuel Isaac Chua/The Edge Singapore)
Join our  Telegram  channel and follow our  Facebook  for the latest update.
SINGAPORE (EDGEPROP) - HDB has announced changes to its processes for assessing flat buyers’ incomes and eligibility for housing subsidies, effective May 9.
The changes come in tandem with the introduction of a new HDB flat eligibility (HFE) letter to replace the existing HDB loan eligibility letter. The HFE letter informs flat buyers upfront about their eligibility for a new or resale flat purchase, as well as the amount of HDB housing loan and CPF housing grants they can obtain.
Eligible housing grants will now be shared among applicants and occupiers in a core nucleus or household, regardless of whether they are Singaporean citizens or permanent residents (PR). This means that in a core nucleus comprising a Singaporean citizen and a PR, each applicant will get half the grant amount. Before this, the full grant amount was disbursed only to the flat applicant, a Singaporean citizen.
The updated disbursement guideline also applies to households where the core nucleus comprises an applicant and a core occupier who are both Singaporean citizens. Housing grants will now be disbursed equally to both, compared to previously, where it was fully disbursed just to the applicant.
The income assessment period for flat buyers has been increased to 12 months instead of the previous three or six months. The move allows for a more consistent and clearer assessment of applicants’ income levels, HDB says.
Lee Sze Teck, senior director of research at Huttons Asia, highlights that for households comprising an applicant and a core occupier, only the portion of the grant disbursed to the applicant can be used to offset the purchase price of the flat, while the core occupier’s portion will be retained in their CPF account.
For example, for a household that receives a grant totalling $50,000, the main applicant can use $25,000 to offset the purchase price of a resale flat, and the essential occupier will have $25,000 added to their ordinary account. “While there was a doubling in housing grant announced in February 2023, the full grant can be used to purchase a resale flat only if both parties in the core nucleus are listed as the applicants,” Lee adds.
He anticipates that the change in disbursement guidelines could create some uncertainty in the HDB resale market, as not every household can utilise the full grant amount towards their purchase. “It may cool down the exuberance created by the doubling in housing grants,” he says. (Find HDB flats for rent or sale with our Singapore HDB directory)
On the extended income assessment period, Lee believes the move will benefit commission-based workers, whose income fluctuates monthly.

Follow Us
Follow our channels to receive property news updates 24/7 round the clock.
EdgeProp Telegram
EdgeProp Facebook
Subscribe to our newsletter

Our Site

Edgeprop.sg (previously known as The Edge Property Singapore) is the best property portal for real estate agents, investors, home-seekers and sellers alike in Singapore. On EdgeProp, you will be able to find the latest and hottest property news, property listings, and access tools for your research and analysis.

Whether you are looking to buy, sell or rent apartments, condominiums, executive condos, HDBs, landed houses, commercial properties or industrial properties, we bring you Singapore’s most comprehensive and up-to-date property news and thousands of listings to facilitate your property decisions. Click into any listing to check out the new AI Redesign tool to envision your property based on your preferred style, be it Scandinavian, Minimalist or many others.

View More