Household must earn $4,700 monthly to buy 3-room HDB flat—report

SINGAPORE: According to a March 21 report, a family needs an average salary of $2,350 per spouse, or a $4,700 combined salary, in order to afford to buy a three-room HDB flat.  For a four-room flat, this rises to $3,500 per spouse or a $7,000 combined salary, and for a five-room flat it goes up to $4,200 per spouse or $8,400 combined.

High property prices in Singapore have been in the news since last year, and last month, a debate on affordable housing was held in Parliament.


Personal finance website Dollars and Sense posted a chart with various housing types along with the average price of each type, the minimum downpayment, monthly repayments, and lastly, the average salary each spouse needs to earn in order to buy one’s dream house, based on (Urban Redevelopment Authority) URA transactions recorded from Jan to Dec 22.

The site noted that “This year’s figures have jumped significantly from last year’s due to the higher purchase prices of residential property and higher interest rates which affected the estimated mortgage payments for ECs and private properties. HDB resale price index rose by 10.1 over the whole of 2022, reaching a record high of 171.9 for 4Q2022.

The article also noted that since buying a house is one of the costliest decisions a person must make in his or her life, as well as one that affects them for 20 to 30 years as the house is paid off, it’s good to be able to be sure that a person can, after all, afford to buy their dream house.

Dollars and Sense showed as well how the prices of HDB resale flats have risen, with three-room HDB flats rising by eight per cent, four-room units going up by four per cent, and five-room flats up by six per cent. The highest increase was seen in the price of HDB Executive flats, which are now higher by ten per cent.


“For HDB buyers, the salary needed to finance the mortgage payments of these flats (before any housing grants) has increased from $2,350 to $4,650 per spouse.

However, in order to obtain a HDB housing loan, you would need a higher salary as HDB uses the higher interest floor rate to determine the maximum loan you can borrow. This was introduced during the 2022 cooling measures. Thus, to get the loan, the salary needed per spouse ranges from $2,450 to $4,850, an increase of $100 to $200.

Thankfully, this remains within MOM’s median income of $5,070. Most households will also be eligible for housing grant support which will lower the financial burden,” the site noted.


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