Home Loans In Singapore (2024): Best Mortgage Rates To Consider

Deborah Gan

Deborah Gan

Last updated 14 May, 2024
 

Don’t go eenie meenie miney mo when choosing which bank loan to take up - we’ve provided you with the best home loans for your property with the lowest interest rates to help you save (or squander) some extra bucks each month.


Every spending situation is unique. SingSaver assembles the 'Best For' list, so you can decide what’s best for you.


In September 2022, HDB announced tightened cooling measures for properties in Singapore, which affected the Total Debt Servicing Ratio (TDSR) and home loans.

The maximum loan-to-value for HDB loans is now 80% from 85%. With that said, it means that the downpayment for HDB flats has been increased from the current 15% to 20% (staggered downpayment is split into 5% and 15%).

Being able to afford the downpayment for your house is one thing, but making monthly mortgage repayments is another ball game altogether - you’ll realise how much extra you’re paying just for the accumulated interest.

In this high-interest home loan (or overall personal loan) climate, choosing the right loan for you is crucial. Treat it as if you’re buying a new pair of shoes - you have to shop around to find the best pair that fits you while also making sure they’re at the lowest price possible. With so many banks offering different home loans with variable or fixed interest rates and varying lock-in periods, you might be at a loss.

But don’t worry, we’ve got you. Here’s what you need to know about home loans in Singapore:

Table of contents:



How to choose the best home loan?

1. Type of home loan

The first thing that you have to consider is whether you want a loan that has a fixed or floating interest rate, which largely depends on your risk appetite. This will be further elaborated on later.

Homebuyers buying an HDB flat have the option of taking up an HDB loan as opposed to a bank loan. Although HDB's home loan generally has a higher interest rate, it is maintained at a fixed rate and requires a 20% down payment, compared to the usual 25% down payment for bank loans.

2. Interest rates

Though you may think interest rates make up a very small proportion of the property price, you’ll be surprised at how much extra you’ll have to fork out when accumulated. This is why shopping around for a loan with a low-interest rate can save you thousands of dollars.

Current bank rates are usually offering about 4.25% p.a. and more, so be sure not to settle for the first bank loan you lay your eyes on.

It’s worth noting that banks usually offer lower spreads (the rate you see after “+”) and hence lower “promotional” rates for the first few years, before increasing it back to a higher rate thereafter.

3. Lock-in period

With most bank loans, you’ll realise that they always have a lock-in period, usually between zero and five years. This lock-in period is the period of time when you’ll be charged a penalty (usually 2% to 5% of your outstanding loan amount) if you decide to make prepayments or cancel your home loan.

This is the bank’s way to cover its base as banks typically offer promotional rates in the first few years with a lower interest rate, incentivising buyers to be “locked in”.

This is why if you’re purchasing a home that is still under construction, also known as Building Under Construction (BUC), it is recommended that you take up a bank loan with no lock-in period, so you can decide to refinance any time when your home is completed.

 

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Fixed home loan rates vs floating home loan rates

Fixed interest rates 

Fixed interest rates are self-explanatory, meaning that the interest rate will be maintained during the entire period of the mortgage agreement. This gives you stability and consistency, making it handy when you plan out your finances every month, since the monthly mortgage repayments are always static at a specific amount.

Fixed interest rates are great for those with a low-risk appetite, since the interest rates will not increase due to market fluctuations, though fixed interest rates are usually higher than floating rates.

Since these rates are fixed, they are not pegged to market or board rates during the lock-in period. However, once the period is over, the prices will be pegged, which is a good indicator for you to refinance.

Floating interest rates 

On the other hand, floating or variable interest rates are subjected to the volatile market fluctuations, and are pegged to Singapore Interbank Offer Rate (SIBOR), Singapore Overnight Rate Average (SORA), Board Rate or Fixed Deposit Home Rate (FHR) that changes according to the index.

However, do note that SIBOR-based loans will be discontinued by the end of 2024.

They are more preferable for those who have a higher risk appetite. Dips in the market interest rates can translate into more savings for the month, while any increase will have you paying higher amounts.

Despite this, do note that most banks will usually inform you 30 days in advance when interest rates change, giving you the option to refinance, which is a full repayment of your existing home loan or moving your loan to another competitor lender because of their lower interest rates.

When it comes to SIBOR rates, banks usually offer either 1M SIBOR (1-month SIBOR) or 3M SIBOR (3-months SIBOR), which essentially means that the rates are revised every one or three months, depending on the loan package you choose. If you’re looking for a less volatile package, go for the 3M SIBOR as rates only change every three months, making it less volatile and less risky.

  Fixed interest rates Floating interest rates
Risk appetite Low High
Volatility Fixed rates, not volatile Subjected to market fluctuations, very volatile
Interest rates Higher interest rates Lower interest rates, but spread applies after promotional rate
Pegged to market? No, only after lock-in period Yes - FHR, board rates, SIBOR or SORA

Best home loans for HDB flats

If you’re buying a HDB flat, you have the option of opting for a HDB loan or a bank loan. While HDB loans are fixed at a specific rate (2.6% currently), and only require a down payment of 20% of your flat’s purchase price, the interest rate is a lot higher than what banks offer. HDB loans also allow you to borrow up to 80% of the purchase price while banks only loan you up to 75%.

On the other hand, opting for a bank loan will grant you a much lower interest rate, be it fixed or floating rates. We’ve scoured the internet for the best rates for you - both fixed and floating to meet your every need. The rates below are based on a bank loan of S$500,000 and a tenure of 25 years.

Best fixed home loans for HDB flats

Here are the best loans with fixed interest rates:

Bank First year Interest rate Lock-in period
Citibank 3.20% p.a. 2 years
DBS 4.66% p.a. 2 years
HSBC 4.00% p.a. 2 years
OCBC 2.95% p.a. 2 year
OCBC 2.90% p.a. 3 years
UOB 3.90% p.a. 3 years

*as of 9 May 2024


 

If you're interested in getting the best home loan rates, speak to a Mortgage Master Specialist by filling out the form below:


Which bank’s fixed home loan is best?

As you can see, there aren't many fixed-rate home loans in the market right now, as most of the mortgages offered are floating home loans. 

For more information, you can always head over to the bank's website to enquire more.

Best floating home loans for HDB flats

If you have a higher risk appetite and do not want to pay for the high interest that a HDB loan would entail, then you’d probably want to sign up for a home loan with floating rates. 

Here are the best home loans with the lowest floating interest rates:

Bank First year Interest rate Lock-in period
Citibank 3M SORA 3.67% + 0.55% p.a. 2 years
Citibank 3M SORA 3.67% + 0.80% p.a. 2 years
DBS CPF Home Rate (CHR) 2.50% p.a. 3 years
DBS 3M SORA 3.67% + 0.75% p.a. 2 years
DBS Bridging Loan (no lock-in) 4.25% p.a. NA
Maybank 1M SORA 3.67% + 0.80% p.a. 1 year
Maybank 3M SORA 3.67% + 0.70% p.a. 1 year
OCBC Eco-Care Home Loan (3M SORA) 3.67% + 0.65% p.a. 1 year
Standard Chartered HDB Bridging Loan (3M SIBOR) 3.67% + 2.50% p.a. Not specified
UOB 3M SORA 3.67% + 0.70% p.a. 2 years

*as of 9 May 2024


Which bank’s floating home loan is best?

Interest-wise, your best bet would be to sign up for the Citibank 3M SORA or the DBS Bridging Loan, which offer the lowest interest rates at 3.64% + 0.55% p.a. and 4.25% p.a. respectively.

However, if you’re planning on refinancing your bank loan soon, you might want to go for the DBS Bridging Loan which has no lock-in period. However, their interest is relatively on the high side.

Do remember to check the SORA and SIBOR rates as they are always changing.


Best home loans for private property

If you’re getting a private property loan, your only option would be to take up a home loan from a bank, as you won’t be able to get an HDB loan. With both fixed and floating rates available for you, it’s best to choose a plan based on your risk appetite, and whether or not you plan to refinance soon after.

Best fixed home loans for private property

Here are the best loans with fixed interest rates:

Bank First year Interest rate Lock-in period
Citibank 2.95% p.a. 3 years
DBS 2.95% p.a. 2 years
HSBC 4.00% p.a. 2 years
OCBC 2.90% p.a. 3 years
OCBC 2.95 p.a. 2 years
UOB 3.60% p.a. 2 years

*as of 9 May 2024

Best floating home loans for private property

We’ve compared the best home loans with floating interest rates:

Bank First year Interest rate Lock-in period
Citibank 3M SORA 3.67% + 0.50% p.a. 2 years
Citibank 3M SORA 3.67% + 0.80% p.a. 2 years
DBS CPF Home Rate (CHR) 2.50% + 0.10% p.a. 3 years
DBS 3M SORA 3.64% + 0.75% p.a. 2 years
DBS Bridging Loan (no lock-in) 4.25% p.a. NA
Maybank 1M SORA 3.67% + 0.80% p.a. 1 year
Maybank 3M SORA 3.67% + 0.70% p.a. 1 year
OCBC Eco-Care Home Loan (3M SORA) 3.67% + 0.65% p.a. 1 year
Standard Chartered HDB Bridging Loan (3M SIBOR) 3.67% + 2.50% p.a. Not specified
UOB 3M SORA 3.64% + 0.70% p.a. 2 years

*as of 9 May 2024


Standard Chartered CashOne Personal Loan

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Existing Customers: Receive up to S$520 Cash via PayNow upon loan approval when you apply for a minimum loan of S$8,000 with a tenure of 3 to 5 years. Valid till 30 June 2024. T&Cs apply.

Plus, enjoy up to S$4,100 cashback when you apply for a min. loan of S$12,000 with a tenure of 3 to 5 years. Valid till 31 May 2024. T&Cs apply.


Best home loans for Buildings Under Construction (BUC)

While you may think that getting a loan after your house is completed might be the best way to go, we recommend otherwise - not only does settling your home loan give you peace of mind, you might also be able to get better interest rates.

Since your home is not yet completed, many homeowners opt for home loans with no lock-in period, which gives them the freedom to refinance and get a lower interest rate after their property is complete.

On this basis, we’ve compiled a list of bank loans with no lock-in period and the lowest interest rates.

Bank First year Interest rate Lock-in period
Citibank 3M SORA 3.67% + 0.65% p.a. 0 years
DBS Bridging Loan 4.25% p.a. 0 years
Maybank 1M SORA 3.67% + 0.80% p.a. 0 years
Maybank 3M SORA 3.67% + 0.70% p.a. 0 years

*as of 9 May 2024

Which bank’s home loan is best for BUC?

Since the loans we’ve compiled do not have a lock-in period, the only variable is the interest rate. From the table, the DBS bridging loan package offers the lowest interest rate at 4.25% p.a.

However, as the interest rate and spreads are always changing, it is best to check their website before signing up for a loan to get their latest rates.


Read these next:

The When And How Of Refinancing Your Home Loan
Fixed vs Floating Home Loan Rates: Which One Is Suitable For You?
Home Insurance Promotions And Discounts To Protect Your Home
How Much Can You Borrow For Your Home Loan?
Million Dollar HDB Home: What’s The Hype All About?

Singapore Budget 2023 Preview: What To Look Out For

A mahjong addict with an undying love for dogs, Deborah is always on the hunt for cheap deals because she is always broke. That is why she is attempting to be more financially savvy to be.. less broke

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