Selling Condo and HDB Timelines: Here's What the Property Sale Process in Singapore Is Like (2024)

Selling Condo and HDB Timelines: Here's What the Property Sale Process in Singapore Is Like (2024)
Selling Condo and HDB Timelines: Here's What the Property Sale Process in Singapore Is Like (2024)

When selling an HDB flat, condo, or any other type of property, the sales transaction timeline is one of the most important details to note.

Perhaps you need funds and want to convert your assets (in this case, your investment property) into a more liquid form for immediate use. Or maybe you want to upgrade from an HDB flat to a condo and are planning for the transition.

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Whichever the case and whatever your reason to sell, the rest of your plans will likely be built around this timeline, specifically the date you receive your sales proceeds.

So how fast can you expect to convert your property into cash? We’ll take a look at a typical timeline for selling an HDB flat and a condo/private property, and at several factors within your control that can delay or accelerate the process for you.

Selling Condo Timeline

Doing the necessary paperwork and putting up your home for sale via agent or DIY

One to three weeks

Viewings and negotiations

One day to six months

Granting of Option to Purchase (OTP)

One day

Both sides engage solicitors, buyer exercises OTP and signs the Sales and Purchase agreement

One day to two weeks after granting OTP

Buyer pays Buyer’s Stamp Duty and ABSD as applicable

One day to two weeks after exercising OTP

Completion of Sales and Purchase, full payment made

Eight to ten weeks after exercising OTP

While two months is the minimum period to sell a condo, a more realistic condo selling timeline is about five months.

HDB Sale Process

Doing the necessary paperwork and putting up your home for sale via agent or DIY

One to three weeks

Viewings and negotiations

One day to four months

Granting of Option to Purchase (OTP)

One day (minimum seven days after completing the resale checklist)

Buyer exercises OTP

One day to two weeks

Buyer and seller both submit resale applications online

One to seven days

Attend 1st HDB appointment

One week to one month

Attend 2nd HDB appointment

Six to eight weeks

Likewise, the average HDB selling timeline is about nine months.

Speed Up the Condo Selling Timeline and HDB Sale Process

1. Find a Good Property Agent

While some homeowners prefer to DIY, the truth is that an experienced and competent property agent will be able to help you significantly in the selling process. Selling a property is not something anyone does often unless you do it for a living.

Hence, it is only expected that while you may take weeks and days to do research and settle the paperwork, a property agent will be able to do it in half the time or less. Any errors or issues concerning the paperwork will also slow down the process.

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2. Tidy Up

First impressions matter. A buyer has only 10 to 15 minutes of his/her viewing to form an opinion on your house and part of that opinion is decided by the feeling it gives him/her. Just like a man wouldn’t go for a job interview with stubble on his chin and his shirt untucked, if your place is cluttered and messy, it’s hardly going to leave a good impression. 

By crowding the space in your house, your mess also makes your house look smaller than it is, and hence less comfortable and less value for money. 

Cleaning up makes a big difference to the spaciousness of your house, and the general good vibes it gives a buyer who wants to envision themselves living in it. 

3. Brighten Up

Brighter flats have been found to make viewers think and feel more positively about the property, and hence more likely to form a good opinion of its value and also more likely to pay your asking price, or make an offer faster for fear of losing out on this great experience. 

Try to ensure your viewings occur at times that showcase the brightness of your flat best if it’s naturally bright and airy, try to schedule daylight viewings. If your flat is dark in the daytime due to the sun’s direction, try to schedule evening or night viewings bright lighting in your house is a bonus during these times, so turn them all on! 

4. Invest in Light Renovation

If your flat has accumulated some wear and tear over the years, it makes sense to rectify that to ensure your home is on its best behaviour when potential buyers come to visit. Strike a balance between how much needs rectifying, and how much you’re willing to spend after all, money spent on renovation doesn’t necessarily lead to a proportionate increase in flat value. 

At the very least, patch up holes and cracks where possible, and give your house a new, bright coat of paint.

5. Take Good Photographs

The first impression someone would have of your house would probably be online (e.g. via PropertyGuru listings). Before they even pick up the phone to schedule a meeting with you, they will need to be sufficiently intrigued by what they see specifically, the photographs you post. 

Put in the effort to take good photos that showcase the space and best features of your house with the right lighting and rearrangement of furniture if necessary it’ll pay off. If you’re no Instagrammer yourself, then put in a bit of investment and get a professional to come do it for you.

6. Offer a Good and Realistic Price

To ensure minimal resistance to the price you are asking, you have to ask for a realistic price in the first place. Doing your homework about the prices obtained in the area in recent times is important, either in consultation with your agent or by yourself if you’re going solo. Yes, perhaps you require money, but there’s a limit to how much you can realistically get, and shooting for the stars will only harm you as you scare away buyer after buyer, delaying your sale timeline. 

You may also check the expected property valuation of your property and price it accordingly. If you price too high, the buyer may incur cash over valuation (COV) and have to pay extra cash, increasing the chances of them backing out of the deal.

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Condo and HDB Sales Transaction: When Can I Receive My Sales Proceeds?

Whether for HDB or private property, you will generally receive your sale proceeds from the sale through a cashier’s order on the completion date (i.e. either your second HDB appointment or the date of completion of the Sales and Purchase Agreement), if your sales proceeds are in cash. This cashier’s order can be banked in and the funds utilised as soon as the bank processes it.

However, if CPF is involved, you would have to wait two to three weeks for the money to return to your CPF account before it can be utilised again to complete the purchase of a subsequent property.

Need a Mortgage For Your Next Home?

If you’re planning to sell your home to upgrade or rightsize, you’ll probably want to settle the logistics of your next living situation concurrently. This is because you typically must move out of your home within six months of exchanging hands on the property.

Besides finding the right place to live next, you’ll also likely need a mortgage to help finance the home. Need help navigating the current interest rate environment to find the best mortgage package for you? Reach out to our team of friendly PropertyGuru Finance Mortgage Experts for top home loan advice all at no cost!

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