You can probably easily differentiate high-rise apartments like HDB flats and condominiums from landed property in Singapore, but when it comes to houses, do you know exactly what a bungalow is? If you’re curious about what bungalows are and how they differ from semi-detached and terrace houses, this guide will help you.
What are bungalows in Singapore?
For some background, bungalows are regarded as one of the top-tier landed property types in Singapore. First built during the colonial era, many bungalows were the houses of British officers, high court judges, and other people of high social standing who could afford such luxurious homes.
When faced with a row of landed houses, how do you identify a bungalow? Is it just based on the size and how many ‘linked’ houses there are?
Bungalows are stand-alone landed houses
In Singapore’s real estate market today, a bungalow refers to any stand-alone landed house. According to the Urban Development Authority (URA), a bungalow has to be on a site no smaller than 400 sq m and with a minimum width of 10m. The site coverage also can’t be bigger than 50%.
Bungalows in Singapore are usually low-rise houses, usually up to 2 stories in height and physically detached from other houses. They are usually surrounded by a wide veranda, and can also contain small lofts and basements.
Because of its exclusivity and high price tags, these homes are associated with the rich and affluent. At the time of writing, the cheapest bungalow on PropertyGuru costs $2.3 million, and the most expensive one is a whopping $78 million.
There are two main types of bungalows, regular bungalows and Good Class Bungalows.
Bungalows vs Good Class Bungalows (GCB) in Singapore
In Singapore, Bungalow houses are classed according to the size of their land plots.
|Class of bungalow in Singapore||Size|
|Class 1||400 to 550 sqm|
|Class 2||550 to 700 sqm|
|Class 3||700 to 1,000 sqm|
|Class 4||1,000 to 1,400 sqm|
|Usually Good Class Bungalows||Above 1,400 sqm|
If a bungalow’s plot of land exceeds 1400 sqm, there is a good chance that it is considered a Good Class Bungalow (GCB). For a bungalow to be classed as a GCB, it needs to meet other strict criteria:
What is a Good Class Bungalow (GCB) in Singapore?
If you thought regular bungalows were fancy, wait till you hear about Good Class Bungalows (GCBs), which are the most expensive housing type in Singapore.
A bungalow needs to meet the following criteria to qualify as a GCB:
- Plot size of at least 1,400 sqm
- Located in one of the 39 areas zoned for GCBs
- Minimum plot width of 18.5m and a minimum plot depth of 30m
- Maximum building height is 2-storeys. Attics and basements are permitted.
- The maximum site coverage (footprint) of GCBs must not exceed 35% of the plot.
Read more about GCBs in this article: Good Class Bungalows: The Creme De La Creme of Singapore Homes
Important things to know when buying a bungalow in Singapore
There are quite a few restrictions when it comes to buying bungalows in Singapore.
Citizenship eligibility criteria for bungalows
First of all, only Singaporean citizens can purchase landed property. If you have been a permanent resident for at least five years, you can apply to purchase. Applications are evaluated on a case by case basis, taking several factors into consideration. If you decide that you want a GCB in particular, first check that the bungalow is located in one of the districts defined by the URA for GCBs.
Bungalows under the conservation plan
If you are eyeing a colonial-era bungalow, there is a high chance it has been marked for conservation. A total of 65 GCBs are gazetted for conservation. If you are the owner of such a bungalow, it cannot be torn down and rebuilt. As such, should you want to renovate or make changes to the bungalow, the URA has set conservation guidelines that the owners must take note of.
Redeveloping other landed houses into bungalows
Outside of the GCB areas, if you would like to buy a semi-detached or terrace house, and then redevelop it into a bungalow, you may be able to.
Redeveloping to a Bungalow
Outside GCBA, the redevelopment of other housing forms to Bungalows may be considered under the following conditions:
According to URA, a semi-detached or terrace house may be redeveloped into a bungalow if it follows the bungalow minimum plot size of 400 sqm and plot width of 10m. For semi-detached houses, the previously attached house must also meet the plot size and width so it can be redeveloped into a bungalow in future as well.
For terrace houses, the adjoining terrace house must be big enough to become a corner terrace unit in future (plot size 200 sqm and plot width 8m).
Bungalow house prices in Singapore
Bungalow prices are in the millions, but as mentioned above, they vary widely depending on things like how big they are and in which area they’re located. If you have a specific area in mind, you can either browse PropertyGuru for an idea of the current bungalow prices, or look for recent bungalow transaction data on URA.
If not, here are the 10 cheapest bungalows currently listed on PropertyGuru.
|Bungalow listing on PropertyGuru||Price||Details|
|Jalan Bingka||$2,300,000 ($321.59 psf)||7,152 sq ft land (single storey), Bukit Timah area, 31 years left on lease|
|The Medallion||$2,700,000 ($608.93 psf)||4,434 sq ft land, Braddell Road area, freehold cluster housing|
|Kew Heights||$2,950,000 ($667.12 psf)||4,422 sq ft land, Bedok area, 77 years left on lease|
|Mosella||$3,150,000 ($537.91 psf)||5,856 sq ft, Macpherson area, freehold cluster housing|
|1 Champions Way||$3,200,000 ($534.33 psf)||6,103 sq ft land, Woodlands area, 74 years left on lease|
|Mosella||$3,380,000 ($579.36 psf)||5,834 sq ft land, Macpherson area, freehold cluster housing|
|Matlock Residences||$3,380,000 ($614.09 psf)||5,504 sq ft, Macpherson area, freehold cluster housing|
|Dunsfold Residences||$3,600,000 ($627.51 psf)||5,737 sq ft land, Serangoon area, freehold cluster housing|
|Seletar Hills Estate (Jalan Bangau)||$3,620,000 ($715.42 psf)||5,060 sq ft land, Yio Chu Kang area, 73 years left on lease|
|Seletar Hills Estate (Begonia Lane)||$3,620,000 ($715.42 psf)||5,060 sq ft land, Yio Chu Kang area, 73 years left on lease|
Disclaimer: These homes were available at the time of writing, but due to the nature of property listings, they may be sold after. These prices are listed as a guide only, and if you are keen, you can shop around for other available listings in the same area/estate.
From the above table, you can see that generally, leasehold bungalows are cheaper. The shorter the remaining lease, the lower the price. Also, you will notice some very affordable freehold options above: these are not ‘normal’ bungalows. Instead, they are either townhouses (bungalows within a condo complex) or cluster bungalows (bungalows within a cluster of landed houses).
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