Minimum Occupation Period exemptions given to 4,500 households in last 3 years

HDB resale market

The Minimum Occupation Period is calculated from the date you collect the keys to your flat

minimum occupation period

Before you sell your HDB flat in the open market, you must fulfil a set of eligibility conditions before you can sell it. Among the conditions are Minimum Occupation Period (MOP), Ethnic Integration Policy (EIP), and Singapore Permanent Resident (SPR) quota for your block/ neighbourhood. Besides the MOP, EIP and SPR, there are also additional requirements that may have to be met in the event of bankruptcy or divorce.

The Minimum Occupation Period is the period of time that you are required to physically occupy your flat before you can sell it on the open market.

is calculated from the date you collect the keys to your flat. It excludes any period where you do not occupy the flat, such as when the whole flat is rented out or when there has been an infringement of the flat lease.

The MOP duration depends on the purchase mode, flat type, and date of flat application:

Purchase ModeMinimum Occupation Perio
Flats purchased from HDB5 years
Design, Build and Sell Scheme (DBSS) flat bought from a developer5 years
Flat bought under the Selective En bloc Redevelopment Scheme (SERS) with portable SERS rehousing benefits5 years
Flat bought under the Selective En bloc Redevelopment Scheme (SERS)Either7 years from the date of selection of the replacement flat; or5 years from the date of occupationwhichever is earlier
Resale flat bought from the open market with the CPF Housing Grant5 years
source: HDB
Resale flat bought from the open market without the CPF Housing Grant1-room flat No MOP
2-room flat or biggerApplication date on or after 30 August 20105 years 
Application date between 5 March to 29 August 20103 years
Before 5 March 20102.5 years with an HDB loan and 1 year with bank loan/without any loan
Flats bought under the Fresh  Start Housing Scheme20 years
source: HDB

If you want to find out if you have met the Minimum Occupation Period to sell your HDB flat, you can login to My HDBPage with your Singpass and check.

Answering a parliamentary question on the number of applications received by HDB for reducing the Minimum Occupation Period, the National Development Minister said that HDB does not actively track the number of unique appeals from flat owners who wish to sell their flat before fulfilling their minimum occupation period, or MOP, as the data may include duplicate and repeated requests.

He was answering a question directed at the Ministry asking “in each year of the past three years, how many applications for reducing the Minimum Occupation Period (MOP) has been received by HDB; what are the usual grounds relied on by the applicants; what is the average percentage of applications that are allowed by HDB in the past three years; and what are the circumstances under which HDB may be persuaded to reduce the flat owner’s MOP.”

In the Minister’s answer, he added:

“In the last three years, HDB has given approval to about 4,500 households to sell their flat on the open market before meeting their MOP. The reasons for such exceptions include financial hardship, divorce, or the demise of the flat owner. For comparison, over the same period, there were about 71,600 resale transactions.

“The MOP remains important to ensure that flat owners purchase HDB flats with the intent of living in the flats themselves, instead of quickly reselling the flats for profit. This safeguards HDB flats for households with genuine housing needs. It also deters the speculative purchase of HDB flats, and thus helps to keep HDB flats affordable. HDB assesses all appeals for a waiver of the MOP on a case-by-case basis, taking into account the specific circumstances of the flat owners and their families.”

Mr Paul Ho, chief officer at iCompareLoan, said: “If you own a HDB flat, a DBSS flat or an Executive Condominium, you have to fulfil the minimum occupation period set by HDB before your private residential property purchase.”

“If you engage a property agent to represent you, you should check that property agency and agent are licensed and registered with the Council for Estate Agencies. You must also note that property agents are not allowed to offer you any benefit, in cash or kind, to induce you to engage their services,” Mr Ho added.

Written by Ravi Chandran

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