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Difference in new BTO Classification: Standard, Plus and Prime

February 05, 20242 min read

If you're a single individual with aspirations of owning your own home, the recent announcement made by the Prime Minister during the 2023 National Day Rally could bring rays of optimism to your dream of obtaining a perfect abode.

Starting from the latter half of 2024, unattached individuals looking to purchase Build to Order (BTO) flats will no longer be confined by the stringent HDB regulations that restricted them to acquiring only two-room BTO flexi flats in less developed areas. These novel regulations usher in a more lenient approach, offering a multitude of previously inaccessible alternatives.

It's important to note that certain prerequisites remain unchanged: prospective BTO flat buyers in Singapore must still be at least 35 years old and first-time home purchasers. However, the innovative alteration lies in the fact that under the revised guidelines, which will take effect next year, single individuals will have the opportunity to apply for two-room BTO Flexi flats irrespective of their chosen location.

It's imperative to grasp the fact that HDB flats are no longer classified based on the maturity of the estate. Instead, they are now categorized as Standard, Plus, or Prime flats. Here's a concise overview of these distinct categories:

Standard

  • Regular BTO flats

  • Available in numerous locations

  • Standard subsidies

  • Requires a 5-year Minimum Occupancy Period (MOP)

  • Entire flat can be rented out

  • No income ceiling for resale buyers

Plus

  • To be introduced in the latter half of 2024

  • Situated in more convenient areas compared to Standard flats within the same vicinity (e.g., close to MRT stations and amenities)

  • Offers more subsidies than Standard flats

  • Requires a 10-year MOP

  • No entire flat rental after MOP

  • Subsidy recovery upon flat sale (lower than Prime)

  • Can only be sold to Singaporean resale buyers who fulfill BTO eligibility conditions, including an income ceiling of S$14,000

Prime

  • Introduced in 2022

  • Located in prime, central areas and city centers

  • Offers the highest subsidies compared to Standard and Plus categories

  • Requires a 10-year MOP

  • No entire flat rental after MOP

  • Subsidy recovery upon flat sale (higher than Plus)

  • Can only be sold to Singaporean resale buyers who fulfill BTO eligibility conditions, with an income ceiling of S$14,000 for couples or families and S$7,000 for singles

Before you embark on your BTO flat application journey, it's crucial to determine the category into which your desired flat falls. This determination can impact the cost after subsidies (CPF grant), as well as your future prospects concerning renting and selling. The 'Plus' category is a recent addition, analogous to the 'Prime' category, housing units situated in highly sought-after areas. Consequently, 'Plus' flats adhere to more stringent resale, rental, and MOP conditions.

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Andik Imran

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