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Comprehensive Guide to Buying an Executive Condo in Singapore: Eligibility Conditions and Procedures

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Executive Condominiums (ECs) are a popular choice among young couples and families who wants to upgrade from a Housing and Development Board (HDB) flat to a private property without breaking the bank. ECs are typically priced lower than a private condominium, why is that so?


ECs were first launched by the Singapore Government as a way to assist the middle income families, who are looking to shift from a HDB to a Condominium, but are having issues as the price gap between both markets was too wide for them. As such, the government started to sell plots of land that are zoned for ECs at a cheaper price to developers, enabling them to sell the units cheaper as well. Due to this fact, ECs have many additional restrictions and conditions to be met before one can buy a unit.


Unsure of the Eligibility Conditions and Procedures needed?


Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to purchase an EC in Singapore.

 

FOR NEW LAUNCH EC



1. Check your eligibility


Before you even start your search, make sure you are eligible to purchase an EC. There are quite many conditions to meet, and they differ if you are going for a resale unit or new launch unit as well. But not to worry, we will go through the conditions required with you!


Family Nucleus

To be eligible, you have to first qualify for any of the 4 Eligibility schemes:

Nucleus

Citizenship

Public Scheme

You and your spouse, and children (if any). An occupier who is married must also include his or her spouse. You (single) and both your parents, and siblings (if any). You (widowed or divorced) and children under your legal custody, care and control.

At least 1 Singaporean. Other applicant can be Singaporean/ PR.

Fiancé/Fiancée Scheme

You and your partner will be able to apply for a unit as your matrimonial home before you register your marriage.

At least 1 Singaporean. Other applicant can be Singaporean/ PR.

Orphans Scheme

You and your siblings are orphans and single.

You and other single unrelated orphan.

All single siblings must be in the application

At least 1 deceased Parent that was a Singapore Citizen or Singapore PR.

Joint Singles Scheme

You and co-applicants(all single) must at least be 35 years old and a Singapore Citizen

ALL applicants must be Singaporeans.

Have you found out which scheme you are eligible to apply for? If yes, that's great! Now, there is just a few more conditions to qualify before you are deemed eligible. If not, dont worry!

Click here to submit some basic questions to us and we will assess your eligibility for you!



If you fufill the rest of these conditions, you will be eligible for to get an EC unit!

Age

At least 21 and above, 35 if applying under Joint Singles Scheme.

Monthly Household Income

Not exceeding $16,000.

(Here's a little hack, if your income only exceeds by a small margin, let your agent know! There's usually a small wiggle room to appeal if the difference is small.)

Ownership of any other properties

​All applicants AND occupiers listed

  • Must not have any interest/ownership of any local or private properties.

  • Must not have sold off any private properties in the last 30months before the application to buy the EC.

Times purchased DIrect HDB/EC unit/Resale HDB with subsidy

Less than 2. If you have purchased a direct HDB flat(e.g. BTO, SBF), EC or a subsidised resale HDB 2 times, you will not be able to go for a new EC unit anymore, you would have to look into the resale market!

Undischarged Bankrupt

If applicant is an undischarged bankrupt, prior consent from Official Assignee(OA) or private trustee must be obtained before applying.

If occupier is an undischarged bankrupt, no prior consent needed at all.

Still unsure if you are eligible or not? Click here for us to assess your eligibility for you!


Otherwise, once you are certain that you are eligible, let us move on to the next step!


2. Do your research


Now that you know you are eligible, what's next? Its time to start researching the available or upcoming ECs! As compared to private condo launches, ECs do not have new launches that frequently. In 2022, there were only 3 new EC launches and as of now in 2023, only 1 EC will be launching for the entire year.


A good place to start would be to browse property website portals such as propertyguru, or if you don't have the few spare hours to research, simply ask any property agent that you know of! Or you could simply contact us and we would be able to provide you with the available upcoming EC projects!



3. Submit your application


After you have chosen the EC you would like to purchase, you will need to submit an application to the developer. At this point, it would be best to get an agent to assist you in the paperwork for your application. Not to worry, as you are buying a new launch unit directly from the developer, you do not have to pay any agent's commission at all. If you are unable to find an agent to help, drop us an enquiry here and we would be glad to be able to assist you!


Once your application is approved, your agent would inform you of the balloting date. From this point onwards, it all comes down to the luck of the draw and hope that you are able to get a good queue number! Usually at this point, it is good to standby a list of units that you are fine with getting. Trust us, you would definitely need it on the balloting day.


Just to add a short explaination of the balloting system, for ECs, usually during the first round of balloting, they go by a 30/70 percentage system. What this means is that they will only accept the maximum of 30% second time purchasers, once that quota is hit, they will no longer accept any more bookings from second timers, even if it reaches their queue number. A second time puchaser basically means that you have already bought an direct BTO, EC or subsidised resale HDB flat. After the balloting process, the remaining units will be available for any first time purchasers to book immediately!


If you fail to get a unit on the first round of balloting as a 2nd timer, not to worry as usually after about a month, if there is still a good amount of units left, the developer will hold another round of balloting again for you to try your luck!


4. Book your unit


When your queue number is called upon and there is still units you shortlisted available, it is time to book them! If there is no units that you want left, you can choose not to proceed with the purchase, there will not be any penalties at all. If there is, you would have to immediately place your booking fee of 5% of the purchase price to the developer to confirm your booking. So make sure you have prepared this sum of money beforehand as it has to be cash!


Once the booking fee is paid along with other additional paperwork that is required to be submitted, you will be provided with the Option to Purchase(OTP). Afterwards, appoint a conveyancing lawyer of your choice and they will receive the Sales & Purchase Agreement(S&P) on your behalf, and will go through the terms and conditions with you before you sign it. At this point, you should have secured your bank loan and have your Letter of Offer(LO) ready.



5. Downpayment


After signing your S&P, your lawyer should advise you on the exact date where you would have to make the remaining 15% of your downpayment, as well as your stamp duty fees! Depending on your finances, this amount would be paid either with your CPF or Cash. Of course, your agent should have went through with you the payment break downs way before hand so you would understand how much cash or CPF you are able to use at each stage.


Once again, you can always reach out to us as we will be able to break down the entire payment even way before you decide to choose a unit.


6. Wait for Completion


Now comes the waiting game, where you wait for the construction to be completed. Depending on the payment scheme you opted for, you would be required to pay either progressively, or all at once when the construction is completed.


Here's a rough breakdown of the 2 different payment scheme you are able to opt for:


Progressive Payment Scheme

Stage

Payment %

Est. No. of Months

Foundation

10%

6 Months

Framework

10%

6 Months

Walls

5%

3 Months

Ceiling

5%

3 Months

Window, Doors, Plumbing & Wiring

5%

3 Months

Carpark

5%

3 Months

Temporary Occupation Permit(Can collect keys & move in)

25%

12 Months

Certificate of Statutory Completion

15%

12 Months

Total Amount

80%

~4 Years


Deferred Payment Scheme


For this payment scheme, you are only required to pay 20% Downpayment initially, and then 65% upon Temporary Occupation Permit(TOP) usually 2.5 to 3 years later, and the remaining 15% upon Certificate of Statutory Completion. The drawback for this is that the purchase price is usually a few percent higher than the progressive option.


7. Move In!


Once the construction is completed, you will be able to collect your keys and start moving in! Do take note that the most important thing to do after collecting your keys is to check your unit thoroughly for any defects, as the developer is subjected to 12 months of Defect Liaibility Period. Any defects you find and highlight during this period, the developer will have to rectify it for you for free!


 

In short, buying an EC is always viewed as a no brainer option for investments or own stay purposes as they are the same product as a Condominium but bought at a cheaper price tag However, we feel that this statement is not always true, as it really depends on your individual situation and affordability.


Keep in mind, if you want to sell and encash your profits from an EC, you would have to not only wait for ~2 to 3 years construction time, but the 5 year Minimum Occupation Period imposed as well. That can add up to about a 7 to 8 years holding period. So, depending on your objectives and situation, this might not always be the most ideal option for your purchase.


Once again, if you are considering getting a new launch EC as everyone around you seem to sing high praises about the EC potential, but you individually are unsure if it is really the right move for you, you are more than welcome to reach out to us to assess your situation and advise you if ECs are truly suitable for your needs


 

FOR RESALE EC


1. Eligibility Conditions


For resale EC's the eligibility conditions are more straightforward as compared to a new launch. For ECs, after 5 years from TOP, they are treated similarly to a typical private condo unit. The only difference is that foreigners are still not able to buy the a unit at the develepment. At this point pure PR families will be allowed to buy, as compared to the initial launch, there must at least be 1 Singaporean in the application in order to buy.


The development will only be considered Fully Privatised after 10 years from TOP, where there are no longer any restrictions to foreigners to buy a unit.


Here's a short break down of the eligibility timeline:

Stage

Who can buy?

Years Passed since TOP

Initial Launch

Follow New Launch eligibility conditions

-

Upon MOP

All Singaporeans and/or PR

5 years

Fully Privatised

All Singaporeans, PRs and Foreigners

10 years

After determining your eligibility, feel free to source for any units in the resale market and arrange for viewings, with or even without an agent.


Of course, if you are require help in that aspect, as the resale market is huge and it is easy to get overwhelmed, feel free to contact us directly for advice and assistance!

Are you exploring options for Executive Condominiums? We understand that choosing the right property can be complex, and there's no one-size-fits-all solution. Our team specializes in providing personalized recommendations, backed by comprehensive data and real-world analysis. Whether you're seeking the perfect location, upgrading your portfolio with the lowest possible additional cash outlay, or an opportunistic investment opportunity, we offer tailored insights to help you make informed decisions. .NO OBLIGATIONS, FREE ADVICE & ANALYSIS

Chat with us directly for a genuine customized evaluation of available projects to determine which ones align with your unique needs and circumstances. Let us guide you toward the property that suits your lifestyle and financial goals!


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