Renting in Singapore Guide (This will make your renting journey a lot easier)

“Singapore voted the best city to live in for Expats”

“Singapore is the world’s most expensive city to live in for the fifth year in a row”

With Singapore achieving both accolades in 2018, perhaps it is fitting that the most expensive city to stay in for expats is voted the best as well. Over the past few years, Singapore has been consistently known as “clean” and “organised”, perhaps its time to start adding “expensive” to that list as well! Jokes aside, if you are planning to call Singapore home for the next few years, here is our renting in Singapore guide where we detail out everything that you would possibly need to know.

renting in singapore guide
Quick breakdown of the associated costs with renting in Singapore

Renting in Singapore Guide – Types of Housing

So to kick off our renting in Singapore guide, here is a little trivia for you: Singapore’s home ownership rates are currently at 90.7%! With such high home ownership rates you can understand why a renting culture is not popular among locals and usually limited to expats and foreigners. The type of housing you choose can mean a huge difference in the amount of rent and experience you will receive so when house hunting be prepared to look out for some of these terms. Bear in mind, this renting in Singapore guide is all about entire units. If you are looking for room rentals you can always refer to our ultimate room rental guide!


renting in singapore guide

This is the most common form of housing in Singapore, with over 80% of the population living in HDB (Housing Development Board) flats. Singapore has done a great job in urban planning so you will find that each HDB estate will have great transport links and amenities nearby. If you are looking to get right in to experience how most Singaporeans live, there is no better way then to live in an HDB estate.

Unlike private apartments and condominiums, there are no facilities and each unit can be accessed by a common corridor. If you are used to a lot of privacy, this can take some getting used to as essentially anyone can walk past your door. This means additional noise and concerns of safety. So if you are considering the HDB option, a tip would be to pop down during different times of the day to see if the noise levels would be bothersome. With regards to the safety issue, Singapore is a very safe place so there is nothing to worry about in that respect.

Condominiums and apartments

renting in singapore guide

Condominiums are very much sought after in Singapore. These are private homes that usually comes with 24 hour security and many facilities and amenities. Most condominiums would have at least a swimming pool and gym, and quite a fair few even come with tennis courts, which is very generous when it comes to land starved Singapore. No doubt these places will come with a higher price tag, but many expats are willing to pay the premium for more luxury and comfort.

There are still many private apartments as well, although these are getting increasingly rare. Although they do not usually offer much in terms of facilities, they often come in more spacious sizes. Do be warned that some of them do not come with lifts so if you do not mind some exercise in getting to your home this can be a good option.

Landed homes

renting in singapore guide

Source: Home & Decor

If you come from countries like the US or the UK, this type of housing would probably be the most familiar to you. However, in Singapore landed homes are reserved for only a privileged few as only the upper echelons of society would be able to afford these homes. These spaces tend to be more popular with expat families as they would want to maintain a similar lifestyle to what they lead back home.

If you are on the lookout for more space and privacy, a landed home may be a good choice for you. In some cases, you might actually pay less for more space as the demand for landed homes are less than condominiums due to the lack of facilities and the slightly more inconvenient locations. Bear in mind if you are looking at landed homes you would probably need to buy a car, and cars in Singapore are the most expensive in the world.

Renting in Singapore Guide – Neighbourhoods

renting in singapore guide districts

Despite Singapore’s small size, it comes with a diverse amount of cultures and people all mixed together. Singapore’s population consists of mainly Chinese, Malay, Indians and Eurasians. So of course there would be areas in Singapore that are more dedicated to the respective races, but there would be a good mix everywhere you go.

This can only really happen in Singapore.

Singapore – A melting pot where different faiths can co-exist peacefully side by side. from r/singapore


Sean has a writing experience of 3 years and is currently with Stacked Homes focused on general property research, helping to pen articles focused on condos. In his free time, he enjoys photography and coffee tasting.

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