Even though Singaporeans are generally risk-averse, most of us don’t have a gigantic wad of extra cash lying around.
Particularly if you’ve got most of your money tied up in investments or your financial obligations, you don’t want to be caught unaware with a large bill.
So it helps to know the exact costs of selling property in Singapore – and when exactly you need to fork out that cash.
This way, you can plan when to liquidate those assets at rates that are favorable to you.
In this guide, we’ll detail all the costs of selling your HDB or private property. We’ll also give you a rough timeline of when you’ll be expected to settle those bills so you can make arrangements accordingly.
Here’s a quick overview of all the costs you’ll need to cover when you sell your property:
|Type of Expense||HDB||Private Property||When to Pay Up|
|Administrative Fees||$40 - 80||Upon submission of the Resale Application|
|Property valuation from licensed valuer||$200-$400 (but banks will also provide an indicative valuation)||When setting the price for your property|
|Miscellaneous marketing fees (e.g. newspaper ads)||Optional||Optional||When listing your property|
|Home staging||From $1,000 onwards depending on the size and type of property||From $1,000 onwards depending on the size and type of property||When listing your property / conducting home viewings|
|Professional photography||From $300 onwards depending on the size of your property||From $300 onwards depending on the size of your property||When listing your property|
|Legal fees (conveyancing, caveat, etc.)||$288 - $2,300 (Using HDB's solicitors is the cheapest route)||$2,500||
HDB: After HDB accepts your Resale Application
Private Property: Deducted from cash proceeds, or close to the sale completion date
|Agent commissions + GST||1 - 2% of purchase price + GST||2 - 5% of purchase price + GST||
Depends on your agent, but typically at the close of the sale
|Service & Conservancy Charges||Dependent on the flat type||
Before you attend the HDB Resale Completion Appointment
|Upgrading costs||If applicable||
HDB sends a yearly statement of account for upgrading costs around February. Outstanding upgrading costs will have to be cleared with cash proceeds or CPF.
|Resale levy||If applicable (click here to find out if you need to pay the resale levy)||
Deducted directly from sale proceeds, or paid upon purchasing your second flat
|Reimbursement to new owners for extension of stay||If applicable. Includes reimbursement to the new owner for Service & Conservancy Charges, property tax, and the $20 application fee.||
Upon submission of the Resale Application
|Bank loan penalty for early termination||If applicable||If applicable||
At the close of the sale
|Bank legal fees||If applicable||If applicable||
At the close of the sale
|Seller’s stamp duty (SSD)||If applicable (click here to find out if you need to pay SSD)||If applicable (click here to find out if you need to pay SSD)||
Within 14 days after the S&P agreement is signed
|Property tax until the end of the year||Prorated amount upon completion of sale||Prorated amount upon completion of sale||
Payable in January for the year in advance
|Moving / renovation costs||✔||✔||
Typically before the close of the sale so buyer can confirm vacant possession
* Note: These quoted figures are estimates, as the fees will depend on the specific firms, banks, or individuals you engage.
Obviously, some of these may not apply to you. If you’ve taken an HDB loan rather than a bank loan for instance, HDB doesn’t charge an early repayment fee.
If you’re selling a flat, it’s cheaper to go with HDB for most of the process. After all, their mission is to provide affordable housing for all Singaporeans, and they’ve gone to great lengths to keep their services inexpensive.
You’ll find, for example, that HDB’s solicitor fees are significantly lower than fees from an independent law firm elsewhere.
One final note here: If you’re looking to minimize some of these costs, Bluenest provides a full suite of services to help you sell your property faster. The industry standard for agent commissions is 2% -- Bluenest charges just 1%.
Was this article helpful? Good things must share!
Meiling is an American-born Chinese currently living in Singapore. As a property owner herself, she enjoys doing research into the local real estate market and making highly technical topics easy to understand for readers. When not writing for Bluenest, Meiling enjoys going for a long run or snuggling into her armchair with a good book.