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To obtain a Licence for Home Office Scheme, you and the business you operate must fulfil the conditions of use.
Note: This FSSD safety requirement is mandatory as the papers, files, and office equipment in a home office pose a slightly higher risk than those in ordinary flats, thus the need for a fire extinguisher and smoke detector. If you have any enquiries on the fire safety requirements, please email SCDF_qp_consultant@scdf.gov.sg.
Here are the examples of both permitted and non-permitted businesses under the Home Office Scheme.
Any business activities carried out under the Home Office Scheme must be administrative in nature. All other business activities are to be conducted elsewhere and no clients or customers are allowed to visit the flat.
Examples of Permitted Businesses
Examples of Non-Permitted Businesses
Here are some FAQs from other Home Office Scheme applicants. You can check this section to see if your enquiry is already addressed here.
Can I submit my Home Office application before registering my business with ACRA?
Yes. Please select your profile as ‘Individual (I am an applicant not representing any company or applying on behalf of any other people)’ before you complete the application. However, it is good to check with the relevant authorities of your business nature if the business name and UEN need to be reflected in the Home Office Licence before applying for HOS.
I cannot operate my business from my flat as it falls under the list of non-permitted businesses under the Home Office Scheme. However, does the Home Office Scheme allow me to use my flat as an administration office and/ or as the address under which I register my business with ACRA?
Yes. Even if your business is under the list of non-permitted businesses, you can still use it as an administrative office, or as the address for business registration with ACRA. However, the business activities carried out in your flat must be administrative, with all other business activities conducted elsewhere. Also, clients or customers are not allowed to visit the flat.
I am an occupier in the HDB flat but I cannot submit my application online. Can you help me?
You must be registered as either an owner or occupier of the HDB flat before you can submit the Home Office Scheme application online. You can check if you are listed in the HDB flat by requesting the flat owner(s) to login to My HDBPage > My Flat at www.hdb.gov.sg using their Singpass. If you are not listed in the flat, the flat owner(s) can submit an online application at My HDBPage to request for inclusion of occupier.
Can more than one business/ company be registered at the same flat address?
An HDB flat can be used as a home office and for business registration for more than one business/ company under the Home Office Scheme. However, the businesses/ companies must be owned by the owners or listed occupiers/ tenants of the flat and separate applications for the Home Office Scheme are to be submitted for the individual businesses/ companies.
Do I need to obtain any approval from any other government agencies?
The applicant has to obtain all relevant approvals and permits from other government agencies before registering/ applying to HDB, where applicable.
Can I be exempted from the FSSD’s fire extinguisher and smoke detector requirement if I do not have any employees working in my home office?
No. You must still abide by FSSD's safety requirement to ensure the premise is safe for occupancy. The requirement is not based on the presence of employees – installing a fire extinguisher and smoke detector is a minimum safety requirement for any home office, including those under our Home Office Scheme.
The FSSD requirements for home offices are more lenient than those for commercial premises. You can easily purchase the required fire extinguisher and smoke detector from a DIY shop. The extinguisher required for home office use is a 2kg ABC Dry Chemical Powder fire extinguisher. The smoke detector can be the basic single-station, self-contained type, which is easy to install, battery-operated, and does not require any added wiring.
Why is there a 2-person limit on how many non-residents I can have working in my home office?
This limit is set to keep the scale of business activity small in order to minimise disturbance to the neighbouring flats and not overly compromise the residential ambience. This ensures that larger businesses and companies operate from commercial premises.
Why can’t I display my business signage or advertisements? These are important for my business.
Business signages and advertisements would negatively affect the residential character of the estate. While we do our best to exercise flexibility towards businesses operating from flats, we are always of protecting the living environment of HDB residents. Hence, we cannot allow such displays outside the flat or on the door/ windows of the flat as these do not align well with residential areas.
Can I use my home office flat to store goods?
No. The loading and unloading of goods, which includes goods storage, is not allowed under the Home Office Scheme. Storing goods in the flat would lead to additional human, vehicular, and lift traffic, which impacts the residential nature of the area and inconveniences other residents.
What will happen if any of the terms and conditions of the Home Office Scheme is infringed upon?
HDB has the right to revoke the approval granted for the use of the HDB flat as a home office. If the flat continues to be used as a home office after the approval has been revoked, HDB can take the appropriate action to revert the use of the flat to residential needs.
What will the property tax rate be if I use my home to carry out business activities?
The owner-occupied concessionary tax rate continues to apply as long as the flat is principally occupied as a residence by you or any other co-owner.