About Housing Developers – Singapore Property
Any developer who intends to carry out a project of more than 4 units of housing accommodation is required to obtain a housing developer’s licence from the Controller of Housing before he commences construction of the housing project. This is a requirement under the Housing Developer’s (Control and Licensing) Act (“the Act”)
Licensed housing developers are also subject to the rules made under the Act, namely the Housing Developers Rules and the Housing Developers (Project Account) Rules. These Rules provide a framework for fair market practice in the sale of uncompleted private residential properties by licensed housing developers.
Pre-requisites to Commence Sale
Developers can apply for either a “Sale” Licence or a “No-Sale” Licence depending on whether they meet the respective requirements. To view or search for a list of licensed housing developers, click here.
A “Sale” licence allows a developer to sell the units in the housing project after obtaining Building Plan Approval from the Commissioner of Building Control under the Building Control Act.
A “No-Sale” licence only allows a developer to carry out the construction of the housing project but not to sell the units. A developer with a “No-Sale” licence can only sell units in the housing project after obtaining the Temporary Occupation Permit (“TOP”) for the housing project and COH’s approval to convert the licence to a “Sale” licence upon TOP.
Every licensed housing developer is required to use the standard form of ‘Option to Purchase’ and ‘Sale & Purchase Agreement’ prescribed under the Housing Developers Rules in the sale of housing units. Read more about these standard contracts under the sections on Option to Purchase and Sale & Purchase Agreement.
A licensed housing developer undertaking a housing project is required under the Act to open and maintain a Project Account for the housing project with a bank or financial institution. Types of monies to be deposited into and withdrawn from the Project Account are stated in the Housing Developers (Project Account) Rules. To check the Project Account Number of a licensed housing project, click here.
The licensed housing developer must deposit into the Project Account -
1) All monies paid by a purchaser (including the booking fee) towards the purchase of a unit up to the issue of Temporary Occupation Permit for the unit; and
2) All loans obtained for the construction of the housing project.
Monies in the Project Account can only be withdrawn by the licensed housing developer for purposes related to the housing project.