If you are planning to live in Singapore, you will be faced with a range of housing options. This guide aims to summarise the different types of housing available in the city-state. Singapore is known for its exceptional infrastructure and high standard of living, and as a result, there is a wide variety of housing options available, from traditional landed homes to modern high-rise apartments:

1. Public Housing (referred to as HDB Flats)

These flats are owned and managed by the government Housing and Development Board (HDB) and are the most affordable housing option in Singapore. The majority of Singaporeans live in public housing. HDB flats come in a range of sizes, from one-room studio apartments to five-room flats suitable for families. They are often located in well-planned, self-contained neighbourhoods with easy access to amenities such as schools, shops, and parks. Unlike public housing in other parts of the world, most HDB flats are owned rather than subsidised rental, and this is one reason why public housing in Singapore is well-maintained, as each resident has a long-term interest in keeping the surrounding of the properties in good condition. Singaporeans enjoy purchase subsidies when they first buy a HDB flat and can make a healthy profit when they resell it.

Foreigners are allowed to rent HDB flats. However, they are more challenging to get around than a condo, as they do not offer facilities and the population is predominantly local. Having said that, foreigners who have stayed in Singapore for a long time find great pleasure in living in those flats.

2. Private Condominiums (referred to as Condos)

Condominiums are another popular housing option in Singapore. They offer facilities such as swimming pools, gyms, and security services. They are popular with expats and young professionals who prefer the convenience and security of a modern apartment complex. This is an easier entry into Singapore as the population is more diverse, making it a great way to meet people from all parts of the world. The price of a condo is determined by its location, age of the building, and facilities, which can vary significantly even within the same area.

For instance, two condos located on Lincoln Road in Newton, The Linc and Park Infinia, can be compared based on their rental transaction history in 2022. A 3-bedroom unit in The Linc rents for an average of $5,000, while a similar unit in Park Infinia is $8,000 – a 38% increase. However, the primary factor that affects rental prices is the facilities provided.

Park Infinia offers an array of amenities including a swimming pool, gym, tennis courts, playground, function room, BBQ, 24-hour security, and outstanding interior and exterior designs. In contrast, The Linc is a smaller condo with limited facilities, which accounts for the rental price difference.


 The LincPark Infinia
Year completed20062008
Bedrooms #33
Bathrooms #23
Size1,281 sqft1,300 sqft
Average rent in 2022$5,000$8,000


3. Landed Properties

These include terraced houses, semi-detached houses, detached houses, bungalows and Good-Class bungalows. Landed properties tend to be larger and more luxurious, with more space and privacy. They are usually located in suburban or landed housing estates and are popular with families who want more space and a backyard for their children to play in. The advantages of landed properties are space and privacy, but they often will be located further away from transport and amenities. Prices again can vary tremendously across the various types of land and the location.

These landed homes are typically located in prime locations, such as the exclusive Bukit Timah and Sentosa Cove areas, and often come with high-end finishes and fittings. Landed properties in Singapore are known for their exclusivity and prestige, making them a great investment for those seeking a luxurious lifestyle.

4. Cluster Houses

These are a unique housing option that combines the privacy of a landed property with the amenities of a condominium. These luxurious homes often come with facilities like swimming pools and gardens, and are popular among families and expats looking for a spacious and exclusive living experience. This property type is normally built with a two- to three-storey height and can come in the form of terrace houses, semi-detached houses and bungalows.

5. Executive Condominiums (referred to as ECs)

ECs are a hybrid of public and private housing, providing a more affordable option for middle-income families. They are developed and sold by private developers but are subject to eligibility conditions set by the government. Similar to private condominiums, they offer facilities such as swimming pools, gyms, and security services. After the minimum occupancy period, owners are able to rent their units to foreigners.

6. Shophouses

These are unique to Singapore and Malaysia. They were originally designed as mixed-use buildings with shops on the ground floor and living spaces above. Nowadays, many have been converted into restaurants, cafes, and bars, though some remain as residential areas such as Blair Road and Emerald Hill. As they are limited in numbers, shophouses have become expensive assets with prices skyrocketing over the past few years. Renting a shophouse can offer a unique experience of the old way of living, but there are potential inconveniences such as darker units and the need to navigate many stairs.

7. Serviced Apartments

These are fully furnished apartments that come with housekeeping and concierge services. Serviced apartments are ideal for short-term stays or for those who want a hassle-free living experience. They are often located in the city centre or close to business districts.

8. Co-living Spaces

It is a type of community living where residents share living spaces such as kitchens, living rooms, and bathrooms while having their own private bedrooms. Co-living spaces offer an affordable and social living option for young professionals and students. They are often managed by operators that offer various services and amenities, such as housekeeping, maintenance, and social events.

In conclusion, there is a wide variety of housing options available in Singapore to suit different budgets and lifestyles. Whether you prefer a traditional landed property, a modern high-rise apartment, or a shared co-living space, there is something for everyone in this dynamic city-state.

It’s important to research and consider your options carefully before making a decision on where to live. We understand it all when it comes to moving to a new country. Whether you are moving alone or as a family, Vesper Homes offers a personalized approach to help you find your dream home. Feel free to send us a message today!