Your home deserves the best because it’s your sanctuary.

So, when it’s time to do some renovations, make sure you’re choosing the suitable options. This means that you need the right interior designer, right contractor and the right loan provider.

Read this article to learn more about expected prices, what you can use a renovation loan for, and what you can’t do in your HDB apartment. We’ll also discuss eligibility criteria, maximum sums, paperwork and more.

Home Renovation Costs In Singapore

The cost for your home renovation depends on several factors, such as:

  • Where you live: in an HDB apartment, house, or condo
  • Pre-existing fittings that you’re keeping
  • Resale vs. BTO
  • You need extensive renovations/just a few touch-ups
  • Materials’ quality
  • Contractors’ prices:
    • A contractor is the cheapest option, but you’ll get no design work, no conceptualising, and no project management
    • A Design & build company may take care of these components to some limit, although not all of them
    • An interior designer is the most expensive, but it will manage your home renovations top-to-bottom

For example, the cost of renovation will be larger for resale flats as compared to BTOs. There might be more remodelling and more structures to replace.

Likewise, a large landed house that’s old and requires top-to-bottom renovations will cost more, especially if you’re going for materials like marble and wood.

Conversely, a 4-room HDB apartment’s renovation can cost as little as $5,000. At the other end of the spectrum, you can expect to fork out $100,000.  These figures lead us to a $44,000 average, though resale flats’ renovation averages $48,500.

Use a renovation calculator to get a better picture of what you can expect based on your needs. Here’s what Qanvast estimates for a resale HDB flat with two bedrooms, one bathroom totalling 70 m2 and complete renovations:

Living/ Dining Room:

Renovation componentLightModerateExtensive
Hacking$100 to $200$200 to $300$300 to $3,300
Masonry$100 to $700$700 to $2,400$2,400 to $21,500
Carpentry$100 to $2,900$2,900 to $5,700$5,700 to $23,100
Ceiling & partition$100 to $200$200 to $700$700 to $2,700

Bedroom (one):

Renovation componentLightModerateExtensive
Hacking$100 to $200$200 to $300$300 to $4,300
Masonry$100 to $300$300 to $1,800$1,800 to $7,900
Carpentry$100 to $3,500$3,500 to $6,600$6,600 to $32,800
Ceiling & partition$100 to $200$200 to $300$300 to $4,100

Kitchen:

Renovation componentLightModerateExtensive
Hacking$100 to $200$200 to $400$400 to $2,600
Masonry$100 to $800$800 to $3,300$3,300 to $10,700
Carpentry$100 to $3,800$3,800 to $6,400$6,400 to $17,400
Plumbing$100 to $200$200 to $300$300 to $1,200

Bathroom:

Renovation componentLightModerateExtensive
Hacking$100 to $200$200 to $300$300 to $5,400
Masonry$100 to $200$200 to $4,300$4,300 to $16,100
Carpentry$100 to $200$200 to $700$700 to $7,600
Plumbing$100 to $200$200 to $300$300 to 2,500

Other works:

Renovation componentLightModerateExtensive
Electrical wiring$100 to $1,400$1,400 to $2,600$2,600 to $15,500
Painting$100 to $1,000$1,000 to $1,300$1,300 to $7,500
Glass and aluminum$100 to $1,700$1,700 to $4,200$4,200 to $15,300
Cleaning and polishing$100 to $600$600 to $1,300$1,300 to $13,400

Quick glossary:

  • Hacking: removing anything built-in, such as floors, tiles, or furniture
  • Masonry: cement works that you may need for tiling or shower kerbs
  • Carpentry: woodwork for any bed platforms or personalised kitchen cabinets

So if you need more hacking, more masonry, and more unique works in your home, you’ll need more money.

With all these figures, it can get pretty daunting. How can you pay for your renovation costs?

Instead of digging into your savings, you can consider getting an affordable renovation loan with a financial institution to lessen the burden.

HDB Home Renovation Guide: What Can You Do?

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HDB home renovation has some rules established by the public housing administration, which means you can’t do whatever you please even though you technically bought the place. For example:

  • You can’t tear down or change load-bearing walls, beams, columns, etc.
  • You can’t use anything other than pre-packed cement screed on dry areas, like the floors and walls in your dining room and bedroom.
  • You need to keep the floor and walls in your bathroom as they are for at least three years because you’d otherwise ruin their waterproof coating. However, you can add some tiles to your bathroom floors.
  • You can’t permanently conceal exposed pipes in your home because they have to be easy to access if they clog.
  • You can’t mess with the household shelter.
  • You can only purchase fire-rated front doors.
  • You can’t mess with any safety railings and grilles.
  • You can’t use full-height, 3/4 height and bay windows.
  • All windows must open indoors.
  • You can only do these renovations from 9 am to 5 pm Monday to Saturday. You can’t work on Sundays, public holidays, or for over three months at a time.
  • For large-scale home renovations, you need to apply for a renovation permit with HDB. You can apply for renovation approval here.

What Is A Renovation Loan?

If you add the prices for everything we listed above, your three-room HDB home renovation will cost $2,200 to $85,640. If you don’t have that much money lying around, you’ll probably need a renovation loan.

But what is a renovation loan, and why would it help?

Renovation loans work pretty much like personal loans. So:

  • You’ll research several moneylenders to assess their offers before choosing one.
  • The agency will lend you the agreed sum, which is called the principal amount.
  • Next, you’ll have to reimburse this money according to a schedule. The total duration of your loan repayment is called tenure or tenure.
  • Each monthly payment is called an installment. These instalments contain interest, which is calculated according to a rate that can be fixed or variable.

Renovation Loans Vs. Personal Loans

Should I take a personal loan to pay for the renovation? What is the difference between a personal loan and a renovation loan?

Personal loans have some advantages because:

  • You can obtain up to $250,000, whereas a renovation loan is capped at $30,000
  • The cash is wired directly to you, whereas the money goes to your contractor if you get a renovation loan
  • You can use the money for anything you want without giving any explanations. Conversely, you can’t use your renovation loan for accessories or decorations like:
    • Curtains
    • Fittings
    • Furniture
    • Hangings
    • Microwave, fridge, air conditioning, etc.
    • Paintings

A renovation loan can seem too restrictive at this point, right? Why should you choose this option instead of personal loans?

Renovation loans are practical choices because:

  • They have more affordable interest rates, which means you’ll pay less in interest by the end of your term.
  • You have more chances of securing such a loan because the bank or moneylender will see what you’re using that money for.
  • Renovation loans depend less on your credit rating.
  • You can take two or more renovation loans successively to cover for all your needs.

Didn’t have your question answered? Read our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to find out if you qualify for a loan, who can borrow, how much can you borrow and the interest rates.

How To Get The Best Renovation Loan?

If you want to get the best renovation loan:

  • Establish the budget you need and what you’re going to use that money for
  • Research several banks and financial institutions
  • Shortlist a few of the best options that can lend you the required sum
  • Compare loan providers’ interest rates, tenures, and other conditions. For example, if you already have a pre-existing loan with one of these banks, you can obtain a significant discount for your renovation loan
  • Choose the proper outlet according to these needs

Pro tip: Licensed moneylenders and banks have different advantages. While banks are cheaper, they take longer to process your loan and might not approve your request. Conversely, licensed moneylenders are more flexible and can give you your loan in hours!

For U Credit’s renovation loan, click here.

What Can You Use A Renovation Loan For?

You can’t use a renovation loan for accessories and decorations. You can only use this money for:

  • Carpentry
  • Electrical Works
  • Fittings
  • Flooring
  • Paining
  • Renovating external parts of your home, such as your roof, gutters, or fence
  • Structural Alterations
  • Tiling
  • Wall Papering
  • Wiring

What Paperwork Do I Need To Apply For A Loan?

Renovation loans are easy to apply for. Most banks and licensed moneylenders in Singapore have streamlined their application processes, so now you can expect the entire thing to last just a few minutes.

Besides, you can also apply online or by a phone call; you don’t have to go in person to your bank.

However, you’ll need the following documents:

  • Proof of ID: NRIC; most banks don’t allow renovation loans to foreigners living in Singapore, and you also have to be at least 21 years old.
  • Proof of income: usually computerised payslips for the last three months, but you can also bring CPF statements or tax statements if you’re a freelancer or own your company.
  • Proof of ownership: sales order or proof of inheritance. You can’t take a renovation loan for a home that you’re just renting. However, you can take a renovation loan for a relative’s home (e.g., parents, spouse), but you’ll need to bring proof of relationship and their signed agreement to the renovations.
  • Proof of relationship if you’re applying together with someone else, such as your spouse, sibling, or parent.
  • Official contractor’s quote: you have to prove that the money you’re borrowing will be used for the right things.

5 Minutes Is All It Takes To Apply For A Renovation Loan

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Renovation loans are practical packages that help you cover the cost of your home’s makeover.

However, you have to choose the right licensed moneylender for the job.

To make the best choice, start by writing down the modifications you want to be done and your estimated budget. Next, choose a reliable loan provider that can help you with quick cash and customised solutions. If you pick the right provider, you’ll be able to repay the debt comfortably and make sure your home looks the way you want it to.

U Credit is one of the most established licensed moneylenders in Singapore and we are very experienced with renovation loans.

What makes us different is that we can integrate our customers’ renovation budget and customize a unique loan plan for each. Our loans are quickly approved and many received their cash in hours.

We also have bad credit loans for those with poor credit scores.

We have received more than 270 five-star Google Reviews thus far, and we are sure to gather even more!

Find out more about our renovation loan here.