A Guideline for Subletting your HDB Flat

by Amanda Chiu

As a flat owner, you’re allowed to sublet your flat to tenants who pay you a rental fee in turn. Of course, that’s if you meet the requirements and get approval from the HDB. If you intend to do so, read on to find out the different rules you and your subtenant must follow.

Subletting Regulations and Approval

  • Landlord’s Responsibilities
    As a landlord, you have your own part to play. Stifle your yawn and read through them because you’re going to thank yourself for doing so.

    – You can only rent your flat out to eligible tenants
    – You have the responsibility to ensure your tenants are lawfully residing in Singapore
    – Ensure your tenants cannot further sublet the flat out to others
    – Your tenants must comply with the conditions stated in the lease and the Housing and Development Act’s provisions. Only you will be held liable for any infringements by your tenants
    – If any, let HDB know of changes in the tenancy
    – Make sure your tenants leave the property when the contract ends, when you are no longer eligible to sublet, or if your flat is repossessed
    – If you are only renting out your bedrooms, the flat owners and occupiers must stay in the flat during the subletting period. Otherwise, your registration will be removed and further action will be taken against the flat owners

  • Subletting Period
    – The minimum period you can sublet is 6 months per application. Short-term subletting is disallowed because of the potential disruptions and security concerns posed to other residents living in the same area
    – This period should be included in the approval letter. The maximum subletting period is 3 years for Singaporeans and Malaysians, and 1.5 years for non-Malaysians, Singapore Permanent Residents and foreigners

  • Maximum Tenants
    – The number of tenants you can sublet out to depends on the size of your flat. You cannot squeeze in 50 people for a 1-room flat, can you? To prevent overcrowding, take a look at the number of tenants allowed in the table below:
Flat Type Total Occupant Number
1-room 4
2-room 4
3-room 6
4-room 9
5-room 9
Executive 9


  • Unauthorised Subletting
    – Be warned – HDB is strict towards unauthorised subletting and you can expect to pay the consequences if you break the rules. They can fine you or even repossess your flat. To prevent that, make sure you conduct routine checks to make sure the rules and regulations are fulfilled.

  • Approval
    Only if you’re renting out your entire flat do you need to seek approval from HDB. If you’re only renting out your bedrooms, you can forgo the trouble.

Check Your Tenant’s Eligibility

Not all tenants are eligible to be a subtenant. For Singapore citizens and Singapore permanent residents, there are no additional clauses. For non-citizens with passes, however, the process isn’t as simple. Passes accepted include:

  1. S pass
  2. Employment pass
  3. Work permits
  4. Dependant pass
  5. Student pass
  6. Long-term social visit pass

For foreigners, you need to run a check using ICA’s iEnquiry system, or check their pass’ validity through MOM’s website.

Related Posts