Do you know?

The Singapore black and white houses were originally built by British colonial families between 1898 and 1941 to house high military officers and civil servants.

Originally, they were used as housing for people working in the same department by the British government. Everyone from the same occupation would live in the same area, while others would live in another neighborhood.

So how does it get its name?

The name comes from the black wooden beams and whitewashed walls used in the construction of these houses.

Why would you want to stay in a black-and-white house? 

  • The perk of living in a black and white house is that it is spacious, which is suitable for big families to stay in.
  • They have lush gardens for children and fur kids to roam freely.
  • It provides peace and privacy in a luxurious setting.
  • Suitable for people with an interest in buildings with historical backgrounds.

In case you missed it

Black and white houses are currently government owned so a number of these homes have been carefully restored and preserved, conserving Singapore’s rich architectural heritage.

Examples are Dempsey road, Adams park, Seletar Camp, and Sembawang. Such rare opportunities don’t come by often, be sure to grab it!

Benefits of Living in a black and white house 

The majority of these black and white houses have two stories, large windows, big verandas, and very spacious gardens. 

The houses are very beautifully constructed and makes a nice backdrop for photos.

The drawbacks of living in a black and white house. 

These houses are often spacious and have large gardens, which can be a challenge to maintain. 

However, for those who enjoy the historical significance and unique architecture of these houses, the effort may be worth it.

You may want to take note 

Public transportation may not be readily available near these houses.

As it is rich in history, there is a chance that the buildings may be haunted.

In addition, if you have an elderly family member, dual-story homes may not have bathroom facilities that are convenient and may not be handicap-accessible.

There are also quite limited in terms of food choices in the area, and some rentals do not provide wifi or air conditioning, so think twice before renting one!


You might still choose to experience this once in a lifetime. Rentals are available for some of these properties that you might consider!

Prices are based on the type of house and location. Check out the different properties from the SLA website which are available for rent! 

These houses range from S$2,000 to S$35,000/ per month

Alternatives and tips! 

Renting these black and white houses may get pricey.

  • You can always rent or buy a condo with a similar vibe that is styled in a way that resembles a colonial bungalow like the Verandah Residences at Pasir Panjang.
  • There are 170 units within this freehold low-rise development, all of which feature an attached balcony. The development is decorated in a classic black-and-white style. 

At a glance