URA Caveat for Property Transactions: What It Is And Why It’s Useful

Everyone knows that buying a home can be a pain, which is why property buyers should always do their due diligence before making a purchase. But what really sets the smart property buyers apart from the rest is the ability to identify the right data to draw insights from. One such useful resource is the Urban Redevelopment Authority’s (URA) transactions tool, which shows you the caveats lodged and options issued.  

In this article, we’ll explain what the URA caveat is and how you can use this information to your benefit. Hang on tight, because this can get messy.

No time to read? Here’s a quick summary:

What is a URA caveat? It is a legal document to protect buyers’ interests in a property for sale.
How to lodge a URA caveat Your lawyer must lodge the caveat with SLA.
Benefits of URA caveat for buyers If you lodge a caveat, it secures you the property. Analysing the data also helps you to ensure you are paying a reasonable price. 
Benefits of URA caveat for sellers The URA caveat can help you gauge the interest of buyers.
Benefits of URA caveat for those looking to sell The URA caveat can help you gauge the market price of your property. 
How to find URA caveat data  Access the URA transactions portal and search by project name, or by the property type and district.  

Need more details? Here’s more information for those looking to leverage on URA caveat data to make smarter property buying decisions. 


What is a URA caveat?

Typically, a URA caveat is lodged once a buyer exercises the Option to Purchase (OTP) agreement or entered into a sale and purchase agreement with a seller.

So in layman terms, lodging a URA caveat is a legal way of telling everyone else to “back off” from buying a property that you’ve been eyeing on.

It’s not compulsory, but it’s a good precautionary measure to protect your interest in a property while preventing others from buying it. In other words, a caveat is a legally certified way of “chope-ing” your prospective new home.


How to lodge a URA caveat

Your lawyer will need to lodge a caveat with the Singapore Land Authority (SLA) to fill a form which contains information which includes details of the buyer and transaction, before paying a fee.

Once your URA caveat is approved, you can legally prevent the seller of the property from making a deal with someone else. 

Do note that this information is public. (Remember how we said that this information is readily available on the URA transactions tool?) 

So when you lodge a caveat, you’re basically showing the world how much you’re paying for a property. This also means that the public (including your nosy neighbour) can search for your caveat and find out how much you’re buying or selling your home for, and vice versa. 


Why is the URA caveat important?

So, how does the URA caveat affect you? And more importantly, why should you bother to search for caveats?

1. If you’re a home buyer:

As mentioned, if you’re interested to buy a particular unit that’s listed for sale, caveats are a sure-fire way to confirm that no one else has already called dibs on the unit.

In order to do that, you’ll need your lawyer’s help to search and ensure that there isn’t a caveat lodged on the unit. This saves you from wasting your time to speak to the owner and making house visits (unless the buyer foregoes his/her OTP).

Thinking about getting a new unit instead? Check out upcoming new projects in Singapore here with PropertyGuru’s expert reviews on each project.

2. If you’re a seller who has just “sold” your unit:

As a seller, knowing that a potential buyer has lodged a caveat for your home is a sign that he/she is serious in acquiring your home. It gives you the assurance that you can start your hunt for another home to settle into.

3. If you’re a potential home seller:

Thinking about selling your home? The URA caveat is a simple and fuss-free way of gauging the market price of your unit. All you need to do is to find a unit similar to yours on URA caveat to check how much other sellers are offering their units. 

Thinking of selling your home but not sure where to start? Let PropertyGuru help you make confident property decisions with our selling guides.


What should you look out for in URA caveat? (if you’re a buyer)

For home buyers, the OTP price listed on the URA caveat is the most updated market transaction you can get. Having this information lets you compare the per square foot (psf) prices of units similar to the unit you are eyeing, just to make sure that you aren’t getting ripped off. And if you find a bargain buy, make sure to close the deal as soon as possible!

Pro tip: When comparing the transaction price, make sure you find a unit that has a similar tenure and size to the unit you are eyeing. Otherwise, the apple to orange comparison will give you a wrong impression on the unit’s desirability.


How to use the URA transactions portal to search for caveats

If you are a prospective home hunter that is looking for a home to call your own, you can search for the URA caveats lodged here within the last 36 months. You can choose to either search by project name, or by the property type and district. 

The results will include the following information:

  • Project name
  • Street name
  • Type
  • Postal district
  • Floor level
  • Tenure (freehold or 99-year leasehold)
  • Type of sale (resale, sub-sale or new sale)
  • Nett price
  • Unit size
  • Unit price
  • Date of sale
URA Caveat transaction sample
Source: URA caveat


Frequently Asked Questions on URA Caveats

Are all property transactions in Singapore shown in the URA caveat data?

No, as it is not compulsory to lodge a caveat, this data set does not fully reflect all the property transactions in Singapore.

Why can’t I find URA caveat information on a particular sold property?

The buyer may not have lodged a caveat with the Singapore Land Authority. Otherwise, the transaction may have taken place over 36 months ago.

Does the URA caveat prices include discounts?

It may or may not – the price shown is based on the price declared by the purchaser when they lodged the caveat.

If I lodge a URA caveat, will everyone see my full address?

No, your property unit number will not be shown. It may, however, be available on URA’s Real Estate Information System (REALIS), which is a paid subscription portal for more detailed property-related data.

If I lodge a URA caveat, will everyone see my name and other personal details?

No, URA is not allowed to disclose the names of the buyer and seller.


Let PropertyGuru help you with your home-buying journey

While understanding the URA caveat is a great first step to be smarter about buying a home, financing your home is probably an even bigger hurdle.

Do you know that 40% of Singaporeans don’t know that they can refinance their home to reduce their home loan repayments? Committing to a home unit with a mortgage that you are going to service for the next 20 years is excruciating.

Why not let us help you to find the best home rates with PropertyGuru Finance? Our expert advisors offer you future-proof advice that will provide you with the best long-term benefits. 

Need to find a home instead? Check out thousands of listings on PropertyGuru. Find a unit for sale in Singapore, whether if it’s an HDB home, private condo, or landed property.  


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