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Property Valuation in Singapore – How To Know The Right Purchase Price!

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Overlooking the property valuation process in Singapore is one of the most common mistakes people make when purchasing a home. Some buyers don’t get a bank-indicated property valuation, which is an appraisal of the property’s value provided by a bank, and typically conducted by a professional valuation firm. Skipping this crucial step can have an undesirable impact on your ability to finance your property purchase.

To ensure that you get the most bang for your buck, we will dive into the nitty gritty of property valuation and how to secure the right purchase price for your property.

How does the property valuation affect my purchase?

Property valuation in Singapore affects two major factors — the loan quantum and property stamp duties.

The loan quantum refers to the maximum loan you can take out to buy the property.  It’s best to keep an eye on it as it tends to decrease when the valuation of the property drops. Simply put, the lower the valuation, the lower your loan. At present, the maximum Loan to Value (LTV) ratio when buying real estate in Singapore is 75 per cent of the property’s price or of its valuation — whichever is lower.

For example, say the asking price of the property is $1,600,000. However, the valuation places the property at $1,585,000. The maximum loan quantum will be 75 per cent of $1,585,000, or $1,188,750.

If the valuation had matched the selling price, the maximum loan quantum would have been $1,200,000.

With a lower loan quantum, you’ll also end up having to pay a bigger down payment on the property.

Second, stamp duties, such as the Buyer’s Stamp Duty (BSD), can increase if the valuation is higher. This is because stamp duties are based on the property’s purchase price or valuation — whichever is higher.

Say you are purchasing a property and the seller’s asking price is $1,480,000. However, a valuation places the same property at $1,500,000. When you buy the property, the BSD would be $44,600, based on the valuation of $1,500,000.

On the other hand, if the BSD was based on the price, which is lower than the valuation, the BSD would be just $43,800.Keep in mind that the BSD rates may change. Here are the latest rates provided by the Internal Revenue Authority of Singapore following the release of the 2018 Budget:

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As you can see, the property valuation can have a significant impact on your cash flow when purchasing real estate. It can result in having to fork out more cash for a down payment or in a heftier stamp duty.

These issues aside, there’s the simple fact that having an accurate property valuation ensures you pay a fair price for what you get.

Why is a bank-indicated property valuation important?

Unfortunately, it is difficult for a regular buyer to get an accurate valuation amount. Professional valuation firms —those the banks rely on — seldom work with the public. While you can get any number of estimates from property agents, it is ultimately the word of the valuation firm that banks will accept.

This also goes for data pulled up from the internet. Many property portals, as well as the Urban Redevelopment Authority, offer transaction histories of surrounding properties. While this is a good way to get a ballpark estimate of property value, it still isn’t accurate enough. A professional valuation firm may reveal numbers that are quite different from what online data suggest.

What do I do if I disagree with the property valuation?

In such a case, you should know that different banks use different valuation firms. This means that it is possible to get a higher or lower valuation by going to a different bank.

As this is a time-consuming process, buyers are better off consulting a mortgage consultant in Singapore. This type of consultant, also known as a home loan mortgage broker, can handle the process of contacting multiple banks to find the best-accepted valuation, at no cost to the buyer.

DollarBack Mortgage provides valuation advisory for the following loan applications:

Key tips on valuations

When browsing around for a property purchase, do also have a good foundation of how home loans work and keep in mind these facts about property valuations in Singapore.

  • Any renovations done more than two years ago will not have a big impact on the market value of a property. If you own such a property, avoid inflating the renovation costs to raise your asking price, as such things are ignored by professional valuation firms looking over your place.
  • For condominiums with no patio, an asking price of $50,000 to $80,000 above valuation is acceptable.
  • For condominiums with a patio, an asking price of $10,000 to $30,000 above valuation is acceptable. This is lower because a patio is considered non-living space, which developers charge for nonetheless.
  • For landed properties, an asking price of $100,000 to $150,000 above valuation is acceptable.

If you need further help with  property valuations in Singapore, contact a DollarBack Mortgage Consultant. Our consultants can help you discover the acceptable valuation of a property much faster and more effectively than if you tried negotiating with dozens of banks or sticking to armchair research.

DollarBack Mortgage is an independent mortgage broker in Singapore with partnerships with all major banks. Get the lowest home loan rates in Singapore and enjoy cash rewards!

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