Sunday, May 13, 2012

Average HDB Rental Prices in Singapore

If you are looking for an affordable flat to rent in Singapore, you should eye on HDB flats. Although these flats are public flats meant for accommodation of Singaporeans, they can be rented out with an approval from Housing Development Board (HDB) to Singaporeans, Singapore PRs and foreigners with valid work visas. They are relatively affordable compared to private properties which are currently ridiculously expensive to rent.

When we say relatively affordable, we mean really relatively because HDB flats are also far from being really affordable to rent. Renting an HDB flat became increasingly expensive by every passing year since 2007 to a level where an HDB in relatively good shape is 2,000++ SGD per month to rent .

Just 4 years ago in the first three months of 2008, renting a 3 room HDB flat would cost the tenant around 1,300 SGD per month. As of the first three months of 2012, it costs 38 % more: 1840 SGD per month. As you can see from the graph below, the situation is also same for a 4 room (3+1) HDB flat rental. In 4 years, the median rental increased from 1,663 SGD per month to 2238 SGD per month, a 34 % increase.

4 room HDB rental prices between 2007 - 2012
The good news is that, as you can see from the graph, the non-stop increase in rental prices since the second quarter of 2009 has stopped in the last quarter of 2011 and first quarter of 2012 and median rentals have not increased first time in the last 2 years. In fact, in 3 room flat types, the average rental prices has marginally fell from 1888 SGD per month to 1841 per month quarter on quarter in Q1 2012. All towns except Marine Parade, Serangoon and Woodlands recorded a decrease in median rental for 3 room flats.

3 room HDB rent per town Q1 2012

If you want to pay the lowest rent possible, the cheapest places to rent HDB flats were Bukit Panjang ($1,600) followed by Woodlands ($1,650), Yishun ($1,700), Jurong East ($1,700) and Jurong West ($1,700) for 3 room (2+1) flats. For larger 4 room flats (3+1) the cheapest places in terms of rent were Yishun, Woodlands, Bukit Panjang and Jurong West with median rental of $2,000 per month. The good news is that the median rent in these towns for 4 room HDB flat fell from $2,100 in last quarter of 2011.

Q 2012 Top 10 Cheapest Places To Rent a 3 Room HDB Flat
S/N HDB Town Median Rent
2 WOODLANDS $1,650
3 YISHUN $1,700
4 JURONG EAST $1,700
5 JURONG WEST $1,700
6 BISHAN $1,750
7 BUKIT BATOK $1,750
8 BEDOK $1,780
10 ANG MO KIO $1,800

Marine Parade, Bukit Merah, Clementi, Central area and Queenstown are the most expensive places to rent an HDB flat with median prices to rent a 4 room HDB flat hovers above 2,400 SGD per month.

Q1 2012 - Top 10 most expensive towns to rent 3
Room HDB Flat
Town Median(Rental)
$1 CENTRAL $2,200
$3 BUKIT MERAH $2,000
$4 CLEMENTI $2,000
$5 QUEENSTOWN $1,930
$6 GEYLANG $1,900
$7 TAMPINES $1,900
$8 TOA PAYOH $1,900
$9 SERANGOON $1,850


  1. It always seems like the figures published by government is a bit lower than what we see from the market. Actually despite the trend of rising price stopped on the carts, it sort of continues from what I see on PropertyGuru. Well, at least for the asking prices.
    How much percentage wise can renters normally squeeze out of the Guide Proce? Is there a hidden rule?


  2. Hi Cleve,

    I have just rented a 4 room HDB in Bedok for 2500 SGD per month. The asking price was 2900 SGD per month. You can always negotiate down 10-15% of the asking price.

    Government figures are low because they cover all HDB's. There are really in bad shape ones which goes significantly lower than property guru asking prices.

    And property guru is one of the worst places to look for an HDB for rent! Newbies to Singapore flow to that site so prices asked there are higher than usual because they can find some people paying those prices anyway. Always check the newspapers first.

    Check this article out:
    How to find a good property agent

  3. Hah Thanks a lot milleplateaux. Always good to know where to start:)