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A Simple Summary of Eligibility Schemes for Buying HDB BTO or Resale | Ohmyhome

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The Housing Development Board (HDB) has different sets of eligibility criteria to inform buyers who can and cannot buy a Built-to-Order (BTO) or resale flat. As they have to abide by government guidelines, some eligibility schemes are stricter than others. 

So before you check out HDB flat prices and floor plans, you should  first get up to speed on the various HDB eligibility schemes

Depending on your personal circumstances, you might be eligible for many schemes at once, or just one. Ultimately, you’ll need to qualify for at least one scheme before you can buy an HDB flat. 

Here’s a breakdown of HDB’s eligibility schemes for BTO/resale flats, and their most common requirements: 

Built-to Order (BTO) FlatsResale Flats
Public schemePublic scheme
Fiance/Fiancee schemeFiance/Fiancee scheme
Single Singapore Citizen schemeSingle Singapore Citizen scheme
Joint Singles schemeJoint Singles scheme
Non-Citizen Spouse schemeNon-Citizen Spouse scheme
Orphans schemeNon Citizen Family scheme
Orphans scheme
Conversion scheme

Eligibility schemes and conditions for buying HDB BTO flats

As BTO flats are price-subsidised, they have stricter basic eligibility criteria. First, there is a monthly household income cap of $14,000 for couples ($7,000 for singles). 

Artist’s impression of new BTO flats. Source: HDB

Second, ownership of other properties is a limiting factor. Applicants must have sold off any other property at least 2 and a half years before applying for a BTO flat. The Minimum Occupation Period will have to be fulfilled before owners can buy another property. 

Public scheme

Suitable for: family nucleus that includes 1 Singapore Citizen, and at least 1 other Citizen or Permanent Resident.

Special conditions:

  • Applicant’s parents/children can be considered as part of the family nucleus.  

Fiance/Fiancee scheme

Suitable for: couples who haven’t officially tied the knot

Special conditions: 

  • Submit certificate of marriage within 3 months after resale completion date.

Single Singapore Citizen scheme

Suitable for: unmarried or divorced singles aged 35 and above, and are Singapore Citizens. 

Special conditions: 

  • For BTO exercises, only 2-room Flexi units are open for singles.
  • Monthly income ceiling of $7,000. 

Joint Singles scheme

Suitable for: group of 2-4 singles who wish to live together. 

Special conditions: 

  • All co-applicants must be Singapore Citizens. 
  • Average monthly income ceiling of $7,000.

Non-Citizen Spouse scheme

Suitable for: couples where one is a Singapore Citizen and the other is neither a Citizen or Permanent Resident. 

Special conditions: 

  • The non-resident spouse needs a valid Long Term Visit Pass or Work Pass
  • Eligible to apply for 2-room Flexi units. 
  • Must be a first-timer applicant. 

Orphans scheme

Suitable for: orphan siblings who want to buy a BTO flat together

Special conditions:

  • At least one deceased parent must have been a Singapore Citizen or Permanent Resident
  • All siblings have to be single 

Eligibility schemes and conditions for buying HDB resale flats

The eligibility schemes for resale flats are very similar to those for BTO, with some additional options for special scenarios. One key difference is that there is no income ceiling when purchasing a resale flat (except for future Prime Location Public Housing units). 

There is no income ceiling for buying a resale flat. However, just like getting a BTO flat, any pre-owned HDB or private property will have to be disposed of within 6 months of the new flat purchase.  

Public scheme

Suitable for: family nucleus that are either Singapore Citizens, Permanent Residents or a mix.

Special conditions:

  • Applicant’s parents/children can be considered as part of the family nucleus.  

Fiance/Fiancee scheme

Suitable for: couples who haven’t officially tied the knot

Special conditions: 

  • Submit certificate of marriage within 3 months after resale completion date. 

Single Singapore Citizen scheme

Suitable for: unmarried or divorced singles aged 35 and above, and are Singapore Citizens. 

Special conditions: 

  • Orphans can apply once they reach 21 years old. 

Joint Singles scheme

Suitable for: group of 2-4 singles who wish to live together. 

Special conditions: 

  • All co-applicants must be Singapore Citizens. 

Non-Citizen Spouse scheme

Suitable for: couples where one is a Singapore Citizen and the other is not

Special conditions: 

  • If the citizen is between 21-34 years old, the non-citizen spouse must have a valid Long Term Visit Pass or Work Pass.
  • If the citizen is 35 years or older, the non-citizen spouse must have a valid Visit Pass or Work Pass. 
  • If the couple has a child who is Singapore Citizen, they are eligible for the Public scheme. 

Non-Citizen Family scheme

Suitable for: families with at least 1 Singapore Citizen and non-citizen parent or child

Special conditions:  

  • At least one parent/child must have a valid Long Term Visit Pass or Work Pass

Orphans scheme

Suitable for: orphans who want to buy with another single person

Special conditions:

  • At least one deceased parent must have been a Singapore Citizen or Permanent Resident 

Conversion scheme

Suitable for: families who want to combine the purchased flat to an adjoining flat

Special conditions:

  • Each unit must be 3-room or smaller
  • Must form family nucleus that consists of either applicants’ parents or children

While it can be a real maze navigating the HDB application process, it doesn’t have to be so hard. If you’re buying a HDB resale flat, do reach out to us at 6886 9009 and let our Super Agent guide you. You can also message us on Intercom, which can be found at the bottom, right-hand corner of the screen, or WhatsApp us at +65 9727 5270!


While the Information is considered to be true and correct at the date of publication, changes in circumstances after the time of publication may impact on the accuracy of the Information. The Information may change without notice and Ohmyhome is not in any way liable for the accuracy of any information printed and stored or in any way interpreted and used by a user.

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Buying HDB Resale?

Our Super Agents can help find you search for flats based on your preferences and budget. And we can advise on eligibility too!

Buying HDB Resale?

Our Super Agents can help find you search for flats based on your preferences and budget. And we can advise on eligibility too!

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