HDB BTO Renovation Cost Guide in Singapore for 2022

Renovation work in build-to-order flats in Singapore can cost a hefty sum. Here's our estimates on renovation costs for your multi-room BTO flat.
July 7, 2022

Many of the flats in Singapore fall under the jurisdiction of the Housing and Development Board (HDB), where any sort of renovations must secure permits before being done. Any construction works in the master bedroom, kitchen, bathroom, or even feature wall will need approval before proceeding, and may cost homeowners a considerable budget.

Every detail must be taken into account when budgeting renovation costs: from bathroom accessories to the painting costs of a multi-bedroom flat. A reputable contractor should be able to provide accurate quotations for specific projects, but here is our general guide to the costs of renovating a BTO flat.

What are BTO Flats?

Build-to-Order (BTO) flats are properties offered by the Housing and Development Board (HDB) of Singapore to citizens who may have preferences on location and specifics of the apartment complex. The HDB will first offer these flats to interested parties, and will start construction only when 60%-70% of the available flats have been reserved.

The Difference Between BTO Flats and DBSS Apartments

Unlike the Design, Build, Sell Scheme (DBSS), BTO flats are first sold to the public before they are built - the complete opposite of DBSS flats. DBSS flats come fully-furnished, and are developed by private contractors. Meanwhile, BTO flats are released to home buyers completely empty, save for basic amenities, which gives homeowners room for a renovation journey.

Requirements for BTO Renovation

Any type of renovations done on a HDB flat must be scheduled in advance as the homeowners will need to secure a permit from the HDB to proceed with their renovations. Once a homeowner secures a permit, they have three months from the date of the permit to accomplish the renovations they need to be done.

What Renovations are Allowed?

Renovation permits cover a wide range of projects, but have certain limitations regarding the overall building and structure of the apartment complex. Restricted renovations include permanent additions to the flat that cannot be removed without extensive renovation, as well as any renovations that will damage the structural walls of the building.

Renovations allowed include replacement of flooring and/or walls, replacement of windows, change of door location, kitchen works, necessary renovations on water and plumbing, renovation on staircases, and reinforcing gas lines.

Budgeting Your BTO Renovations

Renovation costs differ per contractor and space size, and depend on the scope of work that needs to be done. There are three levels of BTO renovation: Light, Moderate, and Extensive, which are determined by the gravity of BTO renovation works that need to be done.

Homeowners would typically collaborate with different contractors to work on each room BTO flat, secure renovation permits, and quote a renovation budget. Many homeowners also employ a third-party interior designer to work on the aesthetic of the space. However, contractors like Colebuild offer all-in-one packages for all renovation needs in the project.

BTO Renovation Costs

Light BTO Renovation Costs

Light renovations include additions of home appliances, cabinets, decorative pieces, and lighting without having to hack the walls or the flooring. Light renovations are meant to furnish the flat with basic appliances and amenities, but without doing any sort of extensive renovation or change in floor plan.

3BR Renovation Cost: $3,800 - $30,000 for the Entire Space

4BR Renovation Cost: $4,200 - $32,000 for the Entire Space

5BR Renovation Cost: $10,000 - $52,000 for the Entire Space

Moderate BTO Renovation Costs

Moderate renovations are done when there is a need to do a partial hacking of the walls or flooring. This includes the tiling of floors, constructing built-in furniture, erecting partial partition walls, lighting, large kitchen, laundry, and bathroom fixtures, waterproofing, plumbing, and pipeworks among others.

3BR Renovation Cost: $30,900 - $70,000 for the Entire Space

4BR Renovation Cost: $27,000 - $90,000 for the Entire Space

5BR Renovation Cost: $60,000 - $95,000 for the Entire Space

Extensive BTO Renovation Costs

Extensive renovations are more comprehensive than light or moderate renovations, and are often done to older flats to refresh or reinforce the functions of the flat. Under extensive renovations, the renovation process includes complete hacking or dismantling of walls, appliances, and furniture.

3BR Renovation Cost: $70,700 - $276,000 for the Entire House

4BR Renovation Cost: $89,600 per Area, or $373,000 for the Entire House

5BR Renovation Cost: $90,000 per Area, or $380,000 for the Entire House

Choosing the Right Contractor

Choosing the right contractors will help keep your costs within budget. The right contractors should be able to provide you accurate quotations, as well as offer alternative works and materials that will fit into your budget.

Colebuild is not just your trusted contractor, but your collaborative partner in bringing you a comfortable yet stylish home for you. Our architects, engineers, and interior designers work hand-in-hand to get you your dream home: fully functional, aesthetically-pleasing, and fits within your budget!

Get an accurate quotation of your preferred services today, and we can get started to getting you that dream home!

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