Renovation resale: Singapore’s most daring 5 room transformations

Many are turning to resale rather than BTO flats as wait times and prices continue to rise.

Renovation resale: Singapore’s most daring 5 room transformations

BTO: built to order flats which are only constructed once 65-75% of the flats in a proposed complex are booked in advance. Resale flats are HDB flats which have already been built and lived in by an individual for the 5-year contractual obligation period after purchase and are now fit for selling. For a comprehensive summary of the two, see here.

Resale flats are generally older and more expensive, but they have been rapidly rising in popularity because they are available immediately (while wait times for BTO flats are often extended for years at a time). The average wait time for a BTO flat is four to six years, though some families have had to wait as long as eight years before their move in date. It is no wonder that so many are seeing resale flats as an alternative; but this comes with its drawbacks as well.

For the same reason that BTO flats are taking so much longer to construct, renovating a resale flat has been made more difficult due to recent circumstances. The pressures of Covid-19 have led to an increased renovation cost of approximately 20% per project. This is due to the combined factors of material shortages, the rapid rise of inflation, and scarcity of manpower.

HDB 5 room resale flat renovation cost

As of 2022, the average resale HDB renovation will cost between $40,000-$80,000. This includes all types and sizes of resale flats. For a 5 bedroom, the cost is firmly planted on the higher end of the spectrum – ranging from approximately $60,000-$80,000. However, remember that there are different levels of renovation and many other factors likely to influence the cost. These include:

  • The intensity of the renovation
  • The type of renovation
  • The HDB renovation permits required
  • The professional experience required
  • The individual contractors chosen
  • The type of materials chosen
  • The time frame
  • The age of the flat
  • The size of the flat
  • The state of the flat

There are a number of reasons to renovate a resale HDB flat. Most commonly, people will renovate their HDB flat before selling as a way to drive up the price. This is becoming more and more necessary as resale flats become more desirable and competition spikes.

Some will choose to renovate their resale flat immediately after the purchase, especially if the flat in question has not had work done in recent years. This is a way to reduce costs by buying cheap and will also help to make the home feel more personalized. Others may find themselves wanting a change a few years into living in a resale flat, which can be cause for renovation.

When it comes to grand projects, the most impressive designs are always the 5 room resale renovations. HDB 5 room renovations are the most luxurious and often creative of all HDB construction projects. This is because 5 and 4 room resale flats are the largest sizes available (except perhaps for certain executive condos) and therefore provide the most space to work with for a designer. For some 5 room resale renovation ideas, take a look at these incredible transformations.

BTO 5 room renovation resale: The best 5 room HDB renovations in Singapore

1. Ryokan HDB apartment, Singapore

japanese style hdb flat in ryoken

This Ryokan apartment was a standard cookie-cutter HDB apartment before Sync Interior transformed it into a haven of Japanese design.

renovation japanese style hdb flat in ryoken

The home became an open plan space with platforms and shoji doors abound.

renovation japanese style hdb flat in ryoken

Sync Interior ran with the homeowner’s love of Japanese design, embracing minimalism and natural tones. For more on the transformative capabilities of Japanese design, see here.

2. Westcove HDB apartment, Singapore

hdb staircase renovation design ideas windows high ceiling open concept unique

This double storey condo was renovated with an open plan concept and a modern glass staircase. The cost of this renovation was just under $70,000. See here for more renovation projects undertaken with unique HDB floor plans.

3. Lemonfridge Studio Butit Batok, Singapore

living room open concept renovation in 5 room hdb flat

This extensive renovation completely transformed an old resale apartment into a spacious and open haven of warm, natural design. Read more about the Scandinavian style here.

What next?

So, now that you have seen some of the possibilities a renovation can unlock, it’s time to think about how to make it happen at home. The majority of contractors will offer a variety of renovation packages (rather than a job-by-job basis). It will include guidance and allowances for the HDB hacking permit costs and permit approval times where necessary.

This gives you an up front figure that should come with no surprises. Whether you are after a simple renovation package, extensive resale renovation package, or something partial such as a kitchen renovation package, there is sure to be a company with the perfect package for you. Here are some of Singapore’s most trusted renovation companies.

Luxury and budget renovation packages: 4 best renovators in Singapore

4. Home Reno Guru

home guru renovation

Home Reno Guru is known as Singapore’s leading online renovation marketplace. They offer more than 150 meticulously crafted renovation packages to cater to any budget and all sizes. For information on their 5 room HDB renovations, see here.

3. AC vision design

ac vision renovation

AC Vision design is an interior design renovation company with an extensive portfolio of both residential and commercial projects. For more information on Singapore’s best interior designers, see here.

2. Edgeline planners

edgeline planning home renovations hdb

Edgeline planners is a multi-disciplinary design firm which has been transforming Singaporean homes since the 80s. They are known for luxurious designs and bespoke furniture. Edgeline Planners can guide you from concept through to construction. View their packages here.

1. Chew vision design

chew vision design hdb renovation for a 5 room flat

Chew Vision design is a one-stop local interior design company dedicated to making the absolute most out of every renovation. They have over 20 years of experience providing cutting edge designs for over 20,000 home renovations. Chew Vision Design is known for exceptional customer service and deeply personalised designs. Book a consultation now here or browse their portfolio.


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