Renting out EC – Everything you need to know

Renting out EC - Everything you need to know

Table of Contents

Introduction

The fact that you landed on this article, you would most probably be in one of the following two situations.

You could currently be owning a EC and you are interested in making plans to rent it out, either to fund your rent for a property in another location or to generate some passive rental income.

Or you could be planning to purchase an EC and have got plans on renting it out in the future.

Either way, we got you covered.

Focus of this article

In this article, we will touch specifically on the details of renting out EC. We will cover details on EC rental restrictions, the proper procedure to inform HDB of your rental to the cost involved in renting out an EC.

A little bit about ourselves

A primer on why you will not be wasting the next 5 mins reading this article, let us first introduce ourselves.

We are a team of real estate investors turned full time realtors. We write from our personal experience of purchasing and making profit of our own EC and properties, coupled with experience from helping over 86 clients profit from their EC purchase.

If reading is not your thing, drop us a call. We will answer all your questions in a no obligation consultation.

Can you rent out your EC ?

Let’s address the question top of mind, can you actually rent out your EC ?

The quick answer is both yes and no. EC being a hybrid between a private condo and a subsidised HDB flat, is an asset class that brings about restrictions along with the benefits of subsidised pricing.

You are not allowed to rent out EC during MOP

Assuming you were to purchase a brand new EC, directly from the developers. You will not be permitted to rent the entire unit out when you are still serving your 5 year minimum occupation period.

The 5 year occupation period starts from the day your EC achieves its temporary occupation permit (TOP) status to the day of your current occupancy.

You will be allowed to rent out rooms within the EC, during MOP

While renting out the entire unit is not allowed, you will be permitted to rent out rooms within the EC, to individual tenants.

To rent out rooms, you would have to retain at least one bedroom for your own occupancy and register the subletting of each bedroom with HDB.

Register subletting of EC bedrooms with HDB

You can proceed to MY HDB Page to make the application, it will require you to key in some details with regards to your property and tenant information on the page

Refer to the image below for a walk through of the process.

In addition to that, any renewal or termination of subletting arrangement will have to be updated via the same process highlighted above.

No restriction to rent out the entire EC unit any time for resale EC

If you have purchased or is planning to purchase a resale EC, there will be no restriction on renting out the entire unit.

The resale EC, after it is being sold to a PR or Singapore Citizen is to be deemed as a private property.

Tenancy contract for EC room rentals and renting out of the entire EC

The standard tenancy agreement for renting out the entire property will be applicable to room rental as well. Assuming you are working with a realtor to help you with the search for tenants, he or she will be able to provide you with a tenancy agreement template.

Things you should be looking out for in the tenancy agreement as a landlord

Diplomatic clause

Especially if your tenant is an expat, a diplomatic clause allows him or her to break the tenancy contract under conditions that he is posted to another country for work. It will be important as a landlord to review the details of the diplomatic clause.

The standard diplomatic clause for a two year lease will entail a 12 months minimum rental and after the 12 months minimum lease, the tenant can exercise the diplomatic clause and give at least a two month rent or pay two months rent instead of giving 2 months notice.

There should also be a reimbursement clause that is tagged to the diplomatic clause. This ensures the tenant refunds you the agent commission paid in a prorated manner based on lease term yet to be fulfilled.

Security Deposit

As a landlord it will be important to safeguard yourself against damage to the property that falls outside of the expected wear and tear, eg. damaging an expensive ceiling fan. The security deposit will also be used as compensation for premature termination of lease.

The usual security deposit comprises 1 month worth of rental, it should be returned to tenant interest free upon 14 days of lease expiry.

Maintenance and repair

This will state the minimum repair cost that will be shouldered by the tenant for minor repairs. The usual repair cost ranges from $150 to $300. In the event of a repair that exceeds minimum repair amount, the clause as also stipulates the amount to be paid by tenant and the excess amount to be paid by landlord

EC rental rates and rental yield

For reference, we have tabulated the latest rental rates and rental yield for EC that have attained its minimum occupation status in 2023.

ECLocationTOP DateMOP DateAvg Rent (S$ psf pm)Rental VolRental Yield (%)
The CriterionYishun Street 5126-Feb-1826-Feb-234.54114.4
WandervaleChoa Chu Kang Avenue 314-Mar-1814-Mar-234.494.1
Parc LifeSembawang Crescent29-Mar-1829-Mar-234.31143.9
The VisionaireSembawang Road/ Canberra Link14-Jun-1814-Jun-234.3153.8
Treasure CrestAnchorvale Crescent14-Sep-1814-Sep-233.7523.2

Cost involved in renting out EC

As a EC landlord, here are some of the cost you should be expecting, irregardless of whether you are renting out a room or the entire unit.

Condo maintenance fee

You will still be paying for the monthly condo maintenance fee and should be factoring in this $250 to $350 per month as an operating cost.

Miscellaneous repair cost

Falling back to the tenancy agreement, all minor repairs that fall under the $150 to $300 threshold should be taken care of by your tenant. This miscellaneous repair cost should cater for major repairs that exceed the stipulated amount that you and your tenant agreed on in the tenancy agreement.

Depending on the age of your EC development, you should be factoring in some cost for major repair of aircons, toilet sinks and etc.

Rental income tax

Unfortunately, a new stream of rental income comes with new rental income tax obligations.

As a rule of thumb, the gross rental income tax less any expense incurred in renting the property will be added to your annual income and tax in accordance to its income bracket

Property Tax

When you rent out the entire EC unit, you would expect some increase in property tax. When you are living in the EC, you will be taxed based on a owner occupied tax rate. As you transit towards becoming a landlord, you will incur a higher non owner occupied tax rate.

Annual Value ($)Effective 1 Jan 2024Property Tax Payable
First 30,00012%$3,600
Next $15,00020%$3,000
Next $15,00028%$4,200
Above $60,00036%-
Annual Value ($)Effective 1 Jan 2024Property Tax Payable
First $8,0000%$0
Next $22,0004%$880
Next $10,0006%$600
Next $15,00010%$1,500
Next $15,00014%$2,100
Next $15,00020%$3,000
Next $15,00026%$3,900
Above $100,00032%-

Agent commission

Agent commission is another cost that you would need to cater for. Typically you will pay a half month rental for every year of lease signed.

For a 3 bedroom EC, with a monthly rental of $4.5k on a 2 year lease. You will be looking at incurring a agent commission of $4.5k.

Final words

This concludes our article on everything you needed to know for renting out an EC.  If you are interested in finding out more about EC grantdecoupling EC and if you are single and is looking to purchase a EC check out the following article.

More reads, more gains ?

Kudos on making it this far. The fact that you have invested the last 5 mins reading this article. We believe you are a like minded real estate investor looking to beat the rat race by getting more out of your real estate investment.

If so, do check out the following articles.

Guide to purchasing 2nd property in Singapore
How to avoid ABSD in Singapore
Decoupling Property Singapore
Sell one buy two strategy

Author

  • Jue Wen

    Jue Wen is the content marketing lead. This means he spend his waking hours researching and writing all things real estate. He believes life is a hustle and there is no joy in grinding away daily in our little rat races. He believes making wise moves in real estate investment can be a game changer. Aside from writing all things real estate, you can find him in your nearest bouldering gym.

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Jue Wen

Author

Jue Wen is the property analyst and content marketing lead at decoupling expertise.
He specialises in helping clients overcome the complexities involved in owning their second private property in Singapore.
He had over 10 years of experience in real estate investing and have written over 40 detail guides on decoupling and minimising ABSD. He is a licensed real estate consultant and holds a Bachelor degree in Business Management from the Nanyang Technological University.

Kenji

Co-Author

Kenji is the Group Division Director of ERA Realty Network.
He have got over 20 years of experience in real estate and have successfully helped over 50 couples purchased their second property. He specialises in helping client achieve the best approach towards acquiring their ideal investment properties while minimising ABSD.