Written by: Benjienen Toledo
Buying your HDB is surely an exciting venture, particularly if you are a first-time HDB buyer. Just by looking at HDB resale and rental listings is enough to get you started imagining your new life in your new home. Admittedly, getting into the details of buying an HDB, such as your financial capabilities, can be quite daunting, particularly for the first-timers.
The Central Provident Fund (CPF) housing grants make the entire process easier and manageable. Here are some things you should know about if you are applying for housing grants as a first-time HDB buyer.
Kinds of CPF Housing Grants
If you are buying an HDB flat as a first-timer household, you may be eligible for either one of the following CPF Housing Grants:
- Additional CPF Housing Grant (AHG) – Housing grant for a 2-room Flexi or larger flat
- Special CPF Housing Grant (SHG) – Housing grant for 2-room Flexi, 3-room, or 4-room flat in a non-mature estate
Since these grants are for the first-timer applicants, you and all other co-applicants and essential occupiers should all be first-timers.
Housing Grants Requirements
Here are the requirements to qualify for these grants:
- You and/or your spouse/fianc√©(e) are employed at the time you submitted the flat application, and have been continuously employed for the 12 months prior to the flat application
- The HDB flat that you plan to buy has at least 30 years of remaining lease
- And you must not own any property whether locally or overseas, or have disposed of any property in the 30 months before your new flat application
Both AHG and SHG have a grant amount of up to $40,000, depending on household income.
Eligibility for a First-timer CPF Housing Grant Applicant
You must not:
- Be the owner of a flat bought from HDB
- Have sold a flat bought from HDB
- Have bought an Executive Condominium (EC), Design, Build and Sell Scheme (DBSS) flat or an HDB resale flat with CPF Housing Grant, or taken over ownership of such flat or EC
- Have transferred the ownership of a flat bought from HDB, or an HDB resale flat bought with a CPF Housing Grant
- Have ever taken other forms of housing subsidy, such as Selective En bloc Redevelopment Scheme benefits or privatisation of HUDC estate
Housing Grant Application Process and Usage
When it comes to any housing grants, it’s always important to know the CPF grant application procedures, let alone be deemed eligible enough for it. If you wish to apply for any of the two mentioned grants, then the process of it is as simple as it goes.
You must take note that CPF Housing Grants can be used to:
- Offset the purchase price of the flat
- Reduce the mortgage loan for the flat purchase
The grant cannot be used for the minimum cash down payment (if any) and monthly mortgage instalment payments. If you are buying the flat with a bank loan, the grant will also be included in the computation of your CPF withdrawal limit.
With the assistance of these housing grants provided, buying a home of your own doesn’t have to be as stressful and difficult as it is. Given that the necessary preparations are in store and in check, the CPF housing grants will help you own your dream home.
Source: HDB (2017)
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