4 estates in Singapore where HDB prices are higher than condos

The Singapore dream used to be about the 5Cs. It consists of having a car, a country club membership, credit cards, cash and a condominium.

Given the fact that HDB resale prices in some housing estates in Singapore have increased significantly over the past few years, one can start considering adding the acquisition of a HDB resale flat in certain mature estate as part of the Singapore dream.

And why not? Especially since a HDB flat in these places may cost more than a condominium unit elsewhere.

1. Toa Payoh

By Toa Payoh, we don't mean the Bidadari estate some how termed as "Toa Payoh", but the actual Toa Payoh estate as how Singaporeans know it.

Based on HDB published information, the medium price of a 5-room flat in Toa Payoh is $770,000. On the higher end, a 5-room flat located at Block 154 was sold for $955,000 last year.

What you can buy instead - Kingsford Waterbay, Serangoon

It's not exactly Toa Payoh but Serangoon is fast in catching up as a nice centralised location. A brand new 3-bedroom condominium unit at Kingsford Waterbay cost around $870,000. It is of course much smaller, but newer as well - plus you don't have to spend another $60,000 on renovation compared to buying an old resale flat. 

2. Clementi

If you think expensive HDB flats are reserved only for 5-room or executive apartments, think again.

Earlier this year, a 4-room flat at Clementi was sold for a record-breaking $900,000. Similarly, the 4-room flats in the same street were selling at the high $800,XXX as well in the previous 6 months.

What you can buy instead - Sol Acres, Choa Chu Kang

Believe it or not, you can get a bigger-sized EC at Sol Acres (Choa Chu Kang) for a lower price. A 3+1 bedroom unit is currently being listed at $824,000. The unit is not only newer and cheaper, but also bigger (1,098 vs 1,001 sqft) as well. 

Million-dollar HDB resale homes

  • A flat near Clementi Mall was sold for $1,005,000 in August 2016, marking the first time a five-room HDB flat outside the Pinnacle @ Duxton has been sold for over $1 million.
  • A four-room flat in Clementi was sold for a record-breaking $900,000 in December 2015.
  • The flat sold is near Clementi MRT, The Clementi Mall and Clementi Central Market & Food Centre. Click through the gallery to check out resale HDB flats which have fetched more than $1 million in recent years.
  • 1) Bishan - $1.09m

    An executive maisonette at Block 194 was sold for $1,088,888 in October 2014, setting a new record.

  • 2) Pinnacle @ Duxton - $1.06m

    In April 2015, it was reported that one unit on the 28th to 30th floor of Pinnacle @ Duxton was sold for $1.06m.

  • 3) Pinnacle @ Duxton - $1.05m

    One unit at the Pinnacle @ Duxton on the 46th to 48th floor fetched $1.05m in April 2015, according the Housing Board website.

  • 4) Bishan - $1.05m

    A 20th-storey maisonette at Blk 190 Street 13 sold in December 2013 for $1.05m.

  • 4) Bishan - $1.05m

    A 20th-storey maisonette at Blk 190 Street 13 sold in December 2013 for $1.05m.

  • 5) Bishan - $1.01m

    A 21st storey maisonette at Blk 194 Bishan St 13 was sold on Jan 1, 2013.

  • 5) Bishan - $1.01m

    A 21st storey maisonette at Blk 194 Bishan St 13 was sold on Jan 1, 2013.

  • 6) Queenstown -$1m

    A flat at Block 149 Mei Ling Street in Queenstown sold for $1 million in September 2012.

  • 6) Queenstown -$1m

    A flat at Block 149 Mei Ling Street in Queenstown sold for $1 million in September 2012.

  • 7) Toh Yi Drive - -$1m

    An executive maisonette at Blk 3 Toh Yi Drive was sold in July 2013.

  • 7) Toh Yi Drive - -$1m

    An executive maisonette at Blk 3 Toh Yi Drive was sold in July 2013.

  • 7) Toh Yi Drive - -$1m

    An executive maisonette at Blk 3 Toh Yi Drive was sold in July 2013.

  • 8) Whampoa - $1.02m

    A rare HDB terrace house at Jalan Ma'mor sold in July 2013.

  • 8) Whampoa - $1.02m

    A rare HDB terrace house at Jalan Ma'mor sold in July 2013.

  • 8) Whampoa - $1.02m

    A rare HDB terrace house at Jalan Ma'mor sold in July 2013.

  • Also: Bishan - $980,000

    An executive maisonette at Bishan St 13 sold for $980,000 on the first day of its open house.

  • Also: Bishan - $980,000

    An executive maisonette at Bishan St 13 sold for $980,000 on the first day of its open house.

3. Pinnacle@Duxton

If we tell you it is better to have bought a flat at Pinnancle@Duxton in 2004 compared to winning the 1st price in 4D once a month ($3,000 per win) for 10 straight years ($360,000), would you believe us?

A 5-room flat at Pinnacle@Duxton was sold between $345,100 and $439,000 when it first launched in 2004. Last year, a 5-room unit was sold for $1,088,000. That equates to a profit of about $649,000 over a 10-year period, which equates to a return of about 15 per cent per annum, for 10 straight years, not withstanding interest cost.

In addition, buyers get to live in the flat at no cost for about 5 years.

What You Can Buy Instead - Savannah Condopark, Simei

If you are willing to give up on the centralised location, you can get an equally large 3-bedroom condominium unit at Savannah Condopark for about $1.04 million. Yes, the location is definitely different, but you get the full condominium facilities that include a bowling alley, a huge swimming pool and two tennis courts, in addition to many other amenities.

4. Bedok

If it has never occurred to you that Bedok is a premium location, you are not alone.

This did not stop news from breaking out last week that a 27-year old executive flat in Bedok was sold for $935,000. It is remarkable when you think about it. A $935,000 price tag is pretty hefty for an old HDB flat situated in an average location.

What you can buy instead - Coco Palm, Pasir Ris

While you will be giving up some size, you would be able to get a much newer 3-bedroom condominium unit at Coco Palm. At a sale price of $935,000, this CDL development is very likely to also come with much better furnishing, which would save you a bomb from having to do extensive renovation at a resale location.

With resale flats at prime location still selling at high prices, it might be possible for someone to "upgrade" from their HDB flat to a private condominium unit while spending less money. You might need to compromise on the size and location, but as with all things in life, it's all about balancing between the pros and cons.

5 interesting facts about The Pinnacle@Duxton

  • Located at Duxton Plain, The Pinnacle@Duxton is built on a 2.5ha site where the first two blocks of public housing in Tanjong Pagar - among the oldest public housing estates in Singapore - originally stood.
  • The housing project's story began in 2001, when the Urban Redevelopment Authority organised an International Architectural Design Competition to find a design worthy of being erected on the site.
  • The winner, local firm ARC Studio Architecture + Urbanism emerged the winner, worked with RSP Architects Planners and Engineers to produce it.
  • The Pinnacle@Duxton is the first 50-storey public housing project in Singapore, and also the first one in the world to have two sky bridges linking the seven towers that it comprises of. Its design was considered groundbreaking in the field of public housing.
  • The Pinnacle@Duxton is the recipient of several design awards.
  • The first came in 2010: the prestigious Best Tall Building Asia & Australasia award from the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, a US-based international authority on tall buildings and urban design.
  • Most recently, The Pinnacle@Duxton swept up the 2014 President's Design Award Singapore.
  • 50th floor of the building respectively, offering panoramic views of the cityscape.
  • The one on the 26th floor is exclusive to residents, but its counterpart is assessable to the public on most days from 9am to 10pm.
  • A cool feature of The Pinnacle@Duxton's flats is that the walls within it are made of lightweight concrete. This allows residents to easily remove and reconfigure them according to space or aesthetic needs.


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