Singapore Budget 2024: Key Property-Related Announcements

Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Lawrence Wong unveiled the Singapore Budget 2024, under the theme “Building Our Shared Future Together.”

Among the array of measures outlined, significant updates pertaining to the real estate sector were disclosed, aimed at addressing various housing needs and enhancing flexibility for both homebuyers and developers.

Here’s a breakdown of the key announcements:

1. Parenthood Provisional Housing Scheme (PPHS) Voucher:

Eligible families awaiting their new BTO flats will now benefit from a one-year Parenthood Provisional Housing Scheme (PPHS) voucher. This initiative enables them to rent an HDB flat in the open market while awaiting the completion of their new homes.

2. Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) Refund for Single Seniors:

Single Singaporean seniors aged 55 and above will have the opportunity to claim a refund of the additional buyer’s stamp duty (ABSD) when they right-size their housing to a lower-value private property. This refund is contingent upon the sale of their existing property within six months of purchasing the replacement private property.

3. Flexibility for Developers under ABSD Regime:

Developers will enjoy increased flexibility under the ABSD regime, with adjustments aimed at encouraging timely sales of residential units. The ABSD clawback rate will be lowered for residential projects that successfully sell at least 90% of the units within the stipulated five-year timeline.

4. Revisions to Annual Value (AV) Bands for Residential Property Tax Rates:

Effective from 1 January 2025, revisions to annual value bands for owner-occupier residential property tax rates will come into effect. The lowest AV band threshold will be raised to $12,000 from $8,000, while the highest threshold will be increased to over $140,000 from over $100,000. Corresponding adjustments will be made to intermediate bands.

Here are some of our thoughts on these announcements:

These property-related announcements from the Singapore Budget 2024 couldn’t have come at a better time. They appear to be precisely targeted to address the current challenges and conditions prevalent in the property market.

Take, for example, the introduction of the one-year Parenthood Provisional Housing Scheme (PPHS) voucher. This initiative seems like a lifeline for many young families facing urgent housing needs. With the wait for Build-To-Order (BTO) flats being a common dilemma, this voucher offers a practical solution. While the exact monetary value of the voucher hasn’t been disclosed, it’s likely to provide significant relief for families seeking interim housing in the open market.

The timing of this voucher couldn’t be more crucial, especially considering the upward trend in HDB flat rentals over recent years. From 2021 to 2023, data shows a substantial increase in average monthly rents across all flat types. Given these rising costs, the PPHS voucher comes as a welcome aid, helping to alleviate the financial burden of renting while waiting for a permanent home.

Looking ahead, it’s imperative that the government considers extending the duration of the PPHS voucher beyond one year. Such an extension would offer ongoing support to eligible families, ensuring they’re not left in the lurch if their BTO flat completion extends beyond the initial timeframe. Continual assistance until the BTO flat is ready would minimize housing disruptions and provide much-needed stability during the interim period.

The recent announcement allowing single Singaporean seniors aged 55 and above to claim a refund of the additional buyer’s stamp duty (ABSD) when downsizing their housing is a strategic and targeted initiative. While it may not significantly impact sales volume, it addresses the specific needs of a deserving segment of the population. This measure provides an avenue for seniors to right-size their housing, potentially unlocking funds to bolster their retirement savings.

As for the adjustments to the ABSD clawback rate for housing developers, it offers a degree of flexibility but may not alleviate the pressure entirely. The reduction in the clawback rate, tiered based on units sold, appears to be somewhat nominal. Developers will still be under considerable pressure to sell all units within the stipulated timeframe to avoid substantial ABSD clawback liabilities.

Consider a hypothetical scenario where a developer purchased a site for $400 million and has a project comprising 500 units. Failing to sell the last 1% of units within the 5-year ABSD deadline would result in a significant ABSD remission clawback, even with the reduced rate. For instance, a 25% clawback on ABSD, compared to the previous 35%, still entails a substantial sum, placing a considerable burden on developers.


While these measures offer some degree of relief and flexibility, they also highlight the complexities and challenges inherent in the real estate landscape. It remains essential for policymakers to strike a balance between incentivizing development and ensuring financial prudence within the industry. Continued dialogue and collaboration between stakeholders will be crucial in refining policies to foster a resilient and sustainable property market.

Wondering if it’s the right time to buy, sell, or wait it out?

These decisions can be tough, and there isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer.

But don’t worry, that’s where we come in!

At Let’s Talk Property, we are here to provide clarity to you and guide you step-by-step in your real estate journey!

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So, if you’re looking to buy, sell, or just want to chat about your real estate options, we’re here for you!

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Dillon @ 9389 1992

P.S. HDB Owners, with so much UNCERTAINTY, Should you BUY, SELL or WAIT?
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