Friday, December 1, 2023
HomeCase StudiesFrom HDB to their Dream Home

From HDB to their Dream Home

Sometimes, not knowing that you have the ability to upgrade to a private condo can be quite a painful lesson. I came across this couple who were following me on the blog. Yvonne and Steven has been staying in their resale maisonette in Bishan for about 12-15 years. They have always wondered on whether upgrading from a HDB to a private condo was a possibility for them. They have a strong desire of wanting to move into a condominium. If they would have delayed a few more years, the upgrading would not be possible in view of the accrued interest situation. This is their situation and their process.  

Current Situation Yvonne Steven
Nationality Singaporean Singaporean
Employment Status Employed Employed
Monthly Income $3,500 $6,200
Assets – Cash on Hand $120,000 $0
CPF-OA $178,000 $78,500
Total of Cash + CPF-OA $298,000 $78,500
Property Details
Type HDB
Outstanding Loan $0
Amount Withdrawn from CPF-OA $132,000 $173,000
CPF-OA Accrued Interest $27,000 $41,000
CPF-OA + Accrued Interest $159,000 $214,000

HDB Maisonette in Bishan

Based on their finances, the situation does not permit them to sell and purchase 2 condominium units but it is possible for them to leverage on their profits that they have gained to upgrade to a private condominium unit. The original thought that this couple had was to consider getting 2 units of condo, one for their own stay and another for investment purposes. As mentioned earlier, this will put them in a bad financial situation and as professionals, that is something which we do not endorse or support. Buying a home is a beautiful process and it should be stress free and the family should be happy about it. The recommendation was made to them to drop the idea of having 2 units. 

In the beginning, there were some concerns with regards to the sale of their HDB flat in Bishan. There was the ethnic quota limitations on who the sellers can sell to. This was resolved with proper strategies and marketing plans. The unit was off the shelf in about 2 months. Not exactly the fastest sale but in reasonable time.

Estimated Sales Proceeds
Estimated Selling Price $780,000
CPF + Accrued Interest $373,000
Fees and miscellaneous costs $16,000
Outstanding Loan $120,000
Cash Proceeds $271,000

Estimated Sales Proceeds

From the sale of their existing HDB flat, they were able to collect a cash sales proceeds of approximately $268,000. The CPF and accrued interest amounted to be a total of $373,000. Based on the above, their finances are as follows:

Cash:       $391,000

CPFOA:   $632,500

After much consideration, the new property was decided on on a new condominium unit located in the north of Singapore. The purchase price was at $1,214,000. They were contemplating between a 75% loan of 18 years or 55% loan for 28 years. The tables are as follows:

75% Loan
Estimated Purchase Price $1,214,000
5% Downpayment (Cash) $60,700

20% Balance ( Cash/ CPF)

Available CPF $633,000
Cash Portion for 15% $0

Stamp Duty (Cash + CPF)


Legal Fees


Loan Amount

Interest Rate (estimated) 2%
Years 18

Monthly Repayment

55% Loan
Estimated Purchase Price $1,214,000
10% Downpayment (Cash) $121,400
35% Balance ( Cash/ CPF) $424,900
Available CPF $633,000
Cash Portion for 35% $0

Stamp Duty (Cash + CPF)


Legal Fees


Loan Amount


Interest Rate (estimated)



Monthly Repayment $2,596.89

They decided on the 55% loan, and this their finances after the purchase

Finances after making the purchase with a 28 years loan of 55% loan
Balance CPF-OA $177,980
Cash Balances $146,100
Estimated number of months of reserve based on housing loan repayments 126
Number of years 10

As this is a building under construction project, the loan repayment is shown as the amount from the date the condo receives it Certificate of Statutory Completion. This is based on an assumption that the loan interest is at 2%. This would give them a reserve of approximately 10 years. This is assumed that in the event that both will not be earning an income. They still have cash for rainy days as shown in Table above. The CPF balances in their accounts will be able to last them for the mortgage payment without touching the cash for approximately 6-7 years. This is based on the assumption that both will stop contributing to their CPF as of now. In reality, they are still working and contributing to their CPF. 

Based on the above case study, it is possible for HDB dwellers to upgrade to private condominiums. As per what was mentioned earlier, not all are eligible. Proper calculations and planning must be done to ensure that clients do know what they are getting themselves into.

Please take note that the above are calculations based on the following assumptions accurate at the point when this article was written. Mortgage interest is estimated at 2% and this may differ with the actual mortgage interest rates. The names of the clients has been changed in view of metacondo’s privacy policy. Any similarities is purely coincidental. The numbers as shown are estimated based on what was provided at the point of calculation. 

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Jarrey Ng
Jarrey Ng
With more than 20 years of experience in wealth management, Jarrey is a realtor by profession and spends his free time educating the general public on real estate and his passion for this topic. Half the time is spent on his passion for scootering around for beautiful property photos.


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