Connect with us


Buying A HDB Flat With Someone Else Who Is Not Your Spouse: Here’s What You Should Consider

Same same but different.

There are many reasons why you might buy a property with someone other than your spouse. You and your sibling might both be singles, and you both would like to move out of your parents’ home. Or perhaps you are single, and your parent would like to support you in getting a house of your own.

Let’s explore the options that are available to you and what you should take note of when buying a HDB flat with someone other than a spouse.

Public Scheme

The intent of this scheme is for family members who form a family to purchase a new or resale HDB flat.


– Buyer and at least one listed occupier must be Singapore Citizens or Singapore Permanent Residents for at least 3 years

– Listed occupier must form a family nucleus with the buyer, in other words be a parent, sibling. Children who are at least 21 years old under legal custody, care, and control (for widowed/ divorced persons) also qualify.

Orphans Scheme

This scheme is for siblings whose parents have passed on to jointly purchase a new or resale HDB flat.


– Buyer must be an unmarried Singapore Citizen.

– Sibling who is the co-applicant or listed occupier must be an unmarried Singapore Citizen or Singapore Permanent Resident who is at least 21 years old.

– Both parents must be deceased, at least 1 of whom must have been an Singapore Citizen or Singapore Permanent Resident.

– If the buyer is below 35 years old, the sibling co-applicant who is below 35 years old must not have owned another flat under the Orphans Scheme, Single Singapore Citizen Scheme or Joint Singles Scheme.

Joint Singles Scheme

This scheme allows 2 to 4 singles can jointly purchase a resale HDB flat.


– Buyer and all the co-applicants must be Singapore Citizens

– If buyer/co-applicants are unmarried or divorced, they must be 35 years old or above. If they are widowed or orphaned, they need to be 21 years old or above.

Other Conditions

The usual conditions of buying a new HDB flat or resale flat still apply. These include rules regarding income ceiling, property ownership as well as the Ethnic Integration Policy (EIP) and SPR quota.

Ready to buy? You can refer to this comprehensive step-by-guide below.

Read Also: Step-by-Step Guide To Buying Your First BTO Flat

Type of Co-Ownership Is Important

For purchase of HDB between people who are not spouses, the type of co-ownership becomes even more important. This is because if the co-owners are spouses, the rules on intestacy protects the surviving spouse’s ownership of the HDB flat. However, with siblings, parents or joint singles, things are not so simple.

Briefly, the flat can be purchased under Joint Tenancy or Tenancy-In-Common forms of co-ownership.

For Joint Tenancy, co-owners are both entitled to the whole property, as if they were a single owner. It has an implicit right to survivorship, so when one party dies, their share of the property is automatically passed on to the surviving parties, irrespective of the existence of any will or “default” rules on intestacy.

Tenancy-In-Common contains no right of survivorship, so each co-owner has a separate share in the property. Thus, it is important to have a will to indicate how one’s share of the property should be distributed.

Read Also: What Happens To Your HDB Flat After You Pass On Without Leaving A Will?

Regardless of which scheme you will be utilising to buy a HDB flat with your relatives or friends, its important to thoroughly the legal and financial arrangements so that there will be no nasty spats years down the road. aims to provide interesting, bite-sized and relevant financial articles.

Learn together with like-minded Singaporeans at the Personal Finance Discussion SG Facebook Group by discussing a range of personal finance topics.

If you have not done so, subscribe to our free e-newsletter to receive exclusive content not available anywhere else.