What Properties Can Foreigners Buy In Singapore
A foreign person who wishes to purchase a landed residential property is required to seek Government approval. The ownership restrictions are provided in the Residential Property Act.
More details on foreign ownership restrictions here.
If approval is granted, the foreigner undertakes to the government to use the property solely for the purpose of residence and not for investment or other income-generating purposes.
Foreign ownership of landed properties is restricted to:
- permanent residents of Singapore
- foreigners who are of adequate economic value to Singapore.
Foreigners are excluded from buying landed residential properties in the mainland. Only permanent residents who have fulfilled the 5 year Minimum Occupation Period are allowed to buy landed residential homes excluding Good Class Bungalows in mainland Singapore.
Exception: PRs and foreigners with Land Dealing Unit (LDU)'s approval are allowed to buy landed residential homes in Sentosa Cove without having to fulfil any Minimum Occupation Period.
A foreign person means any person who is not a:
• Singapore citizen;
• Singapore company;
• Singapore limited liability partnership; or
• Singapore society.
What types of property must a foreign person seek approval to purchase?
• Vacant residential land;
• Terrace house;
• Semi-detached house;
• Bungalow/detached house;
• Strata landed house which is not within an approved condominium development under the Planning Act (eg. townhouse or cluster house);
• Shophouse (for non-commercial use);
• Association premises;
• Place of worship; and
• Worker’s dormitory/service apartments/boarding house (not registered under the provisions of the Hotels Act).
This restriction applies also to ownership by inheritance, succession, gift or bequest. The foreign beneficiary is required by law to dispose of the inheritance, if approval for ownership from the relevant authority is not obtained within the ten year stipulated period from the previous owner’s demise.
To safeguard and protect the interest of the foreign buyer, the below mentioned clause should be incorporated into the S&P or Option as follow:
"This sale and purchase is subject to the Purchaser obtaining the approval from the Land Dealings (Approval) Unit before completion. In the event that such approval is not granted, the sale and purchase herein shall be annulled and all monies paid shall be immediately refunded free of interest and neither party shall have any claim against the other thereafter."
What types of property can a foreign person purchase without approval?
• Condominium unit;
• Flat unit;
• Strata landed house in an approved condominium development;
• A leasehold estate in a landed residential property for a term not exceeding 7 years, including any further term which may be granted by way of an option for renewal;
• Shophouse (for commercial use);
• Industrial and commercial properties;
• Hotel (registered under the provisions of the Hotels Act); and
• Executive condominium unit, HDB flat and HDB shophouse.
E-Applications (Phase 1) will be available from 3 August 2015:
The application process should take 3 months approximately. The application fee is $900 payable to Singapore Land Authority. If approved, the in-principle approval granted will be good for 6 months from the approval date.
You can apply online at www.sla.gov.sg/ldau
Land Dealings Approval Unit
Singapore Land Authority
55 Newton Road, #12-01 Revenue House, Singapore 307987