SINGAPORE — So you’ve just seen how much you’re paying this month on your home loan, and you’re seriously considering switching to another bank with the lower interest rates… Except you don’t know if refinancing is a good choice. Will it really be able to save you money in the long-term? Is the cost of refinancing really worth it? Here are some costs you will encounter when refinancing your home loan:
DBS no longer sole provider in three-year fixed-rate space; BOC’s package has varying yearly rates; OCBC conspicuous by its absence
SINGAPORE — Banks in Singapore have started a mortgage war, spurred by the lower interest rate for a longer duration, to the delight of the legions of home buyers who are pouring back to a buoyant residential market.
Last week, both United Overseas Bank (UOB) and HSBC launched three-year fixed-rate home-loan packages which until now had been mainly the preserve of DBS Bank, the nation’s largest housing-loan provider. Bank of China (BOC) also has a three-year fixed-rate package but with varying yearly interest rates.
SINGAPORE — During a recent reservist In-Camp Training, I had meaningful conversations with my buddies. Over the years, 10 years in total, our conversations evolved from talking about furthering our studies and girlfriends to discussing our education and finding a job, and eventually to investing and starting a family.
One of my conversations with a close buddy was about investments. This was quite prevalent during this reservist because I’m writing for DollarsAndSense. What struck me when I spoke to him was that my friend believed that buying a 4D ticket from Singapore Pools was akin to making an investment.
Sometimes adulting can be really difficult. Especially when we’re trying to get a home in Singapore and we know zilch about the terms used in home loans. All these home loan terms and jargon bankers are using… What if we accidentally sign our life away to slavery?
In the event of a dispute, our chances of wriggling free are probably about the same as a sick snail in a Sumo wrestler’s armpit. In court, we can’t tell the judge we didn’t know what this or that term meant, ignorance just isn’t a legit excuse in the court of law. Here’re a few basic terms that you’ll encounter in your home-buying process and what they mean:
Buying a home in Singapore is a complicated procedure. Unless you’ve got the dough for private property, you’re pretty much stuck playing by the HDB’s rules: get married or be over 35. For most people, that means when you can buy a home is something that has to be left up to fate.
But buying a home as early as you can does have its advantages, assuming you can find somebody who is willing to do so with you. Here’s why:
Everyone in Singapore should fully understand what really happens to our money once we have sold our HDB flat, private condominium or landed property in Singapore. This is so we can prudently use the money we have for financial planning purposes – investing, buying another property, even starting a business or promising to pay for your children’s education.
Often, people receive less in cash than they had expected for various reasons. If they commit to using the bulk of that money for other purchases or investments, they may be in for a rude shock after seeing the cash balance in their bank accounts.
There is a reason the overwhelming majority of Singaporeans continue to live with their parents until they’re married—the right to walk around naked at home isn’t worth dying of starvation for.
While married couples and over-35s can take advantage of government grants to buy HDB flats, the rental market is another story. The cost of renting the cheapest possible one bedroom condo unit in Singapore in an area as far flung as Bukit Panjang can cost around $1,500 a month, and when you get closer to the city fringe you can end up paying 50% to 100% more.