Guide to Buying an Executive Condo (EC) Unit in Singapore

by Laura Lim

If you are considering buying an Executive Condominium (EC) and wondering how to go about doing so, this is the perfect article for you!

For buyers who are looking for the perfect balance between an affordable HDB BTO and super expensive private condominiums – ECs are the perfect answer! So how do you go about buying one from HDB?

Step 1: Check for Eligibility (Not everyone can buy an EC)

Since ECs are public housing projects, there are some eligibility requirements:

  • You must be a Singaporean Citizen and at least 1 other applicant must be SC or PR
  • At least 21 years old or 35 years old (if applying under Joint Singles scheme)
  • You must be under any of these schemes:
    • Public Scheme
    • Fiancé/ Fiancée Scheme
    • Orphans Scheme
    • Joint Singles Scheme
  • Household income must not exceed $16,000 income ceiling
  • Do not own properties overseas or locally – or disposed of it within 30 months of application

If you check all the boxes, head on to the next step!

Step 2: Financing Options

Good news you do not have to debate between HDB and the banks. HDB housing loan are not available for EC purchases. So do make sure you are eligible for a housing loan from a bank.

Step 3: Figure out which EC You Want

Head over to HDB’s website to see which are available for sale and which are upcoming ones. More details can also be found on developer’s website – such as designs, and number of units offered.

Step 4: Start Your Application Process

Register your interest online for free via an electronic application (e-Apps) to obtain a ballot queue number for later use. Doing so will give you priority to view and book a flat and obtain the price list prior to Booking day.

Make sure you have the following documents for registration:

  • Proof of Marital Status (if relevant)
  • Birth Certificates (if applying with parents and siblings)
  • Proof of income – 3 -6 months of pay slips
  • Notice of Assessment from IRAS

However, do check on the specific requirements for each developer as it may differ from

The time window for this step usually lasts a week or so, so do make sure you do not miss it.

Step 4: Result of Application

Typically for ECs, the outcome of the ballot will be announced depending on how quickly each developer processes all the registration applications.  

The Ballot results can be checked via a customized HDB portal link for the project.

Once the ballot results are available, they will also release the price list at the same time. If successful, you will be given a date and time slot to select a flat in your and make the purchase.

Step 5: Booking Day (Select & Purchase Your Dream Home)

Head over to the show flat on the appointed date and time and make your choice of unit to purchase.

Should you decide not to proceed, for any reason (e.g. your ideal south-facing unit is no longer available), you can still just walk away without any charges or penalty.

However, if you are happy with a particular unit, and would like to confirm your selection, you will need to fork over some money first.  

Not the full amount, fortunately. Just 5% of the selling price (in cash, cheque, or cashier’s order) which will be the booking or option fee – sort of like a way to chope your flat.

With that you will be provided a set of Property Details Information (PDI) – with all the relevant information about your unit of choice that you need to read and agree to.

And once that is done, you will be provided with an Option to Purchase (OTP) with the developer. This is an agreement that the developer will sell you (and no one else) that unit you chose at the price listed within a specific time period.

Your application will then be submitted to HDB for approval which takes around 3 to 4 weeks.

But your work is not done yet!

Step 6: Finalize Loan with The Bank

You need to settle your loan. Which means you need to work with your bank to finalize the details.

This is the step where you need to sign many documents. Worried? There is no need to be. Normally your bank or property agent will help to assist with this.

Once you receive your OTP, reach out to your bank to finalize the terms of your loan and request a Letter of Offer (LO) from them. Hold on to that until your application has been approved by HDB.

Step 7: Seal the Deal with Sales and Purchase Agreement and Down payment

If for some reason or other your application has been rejected by HDB, your option Fee will be refunded. Do not feel too dejected! Try and try again!

If you got HDB’s approval, congrats, you are one step closer to owning your dream home.

You should receive your Sales and Purchase (S&P) Agreement upon approval. That will seal the deal! So, take note of some of the important points here:

  • You have 3 weeks to choose if you want to proceed with the S&P
  • To proceed, you will need to pay 15% of the remaining down payment (remember you already paid 5% previously?)
  • You will also need to pay legal and stamp duty fees on the S&P

All the payment must be completed within 9 weeks from the date of OTP or upon signing of the Sale and Purchase Agreement.

Step 8: The Waiting Game

Once all the documents are signed and dotted, all you have to do is wait for your EC to be built.

In the meantime, depending on which Payment Scheme you had selected, you might be expected to start making mortgage repayments:

  • Normal Progressive Payment Scheme: You need to start making repayments of the remaining 80%, as the developer hits previously agreed milestones in construction progress.
  • Deferred Payment Scheme: No payments required while building. Mortgage repayments of the remaining 80% only to commence after completion of project.

Step 9: Collect Your Keys!

Your developer would keep you periodically updated on the date for the Temporary Occupation Permit (TOP). On that date, you will get to collect your keys and start making all the arrangements to move in!

Congratulations you are a proud homeowner now!

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