HDB built slightly over 1 million apartments since its founding in 1960 (the 1 millionth flat was completed in December 2010), additionally a small number of public housing flats were built by SIT, JTC and HUDC. Of them, 940871 flats are in use at 31 March 2014, the rest being demolished or converted (2 units joined into 1 unit).
According HDB Annual Report 2014, out of 3.9 million resident population (Singapore Citizens and Permanent Residents, as June 2013), 3.213 millions live in HDB apartments, this means 82% (non-residents are not allowed to own HDB apartments but they can live in apartments owned by a resident spouse, also they are allowed to own apartments in private condominiums taller than 6 storeys but not landed houses or apartments in low-rise condominiums). This means average family size of 3.42 residents per apartment and 27.56 sqm per person. For comparison, in 1968 were in average 6.2 people per apartment (average flat size I estimate around 40 sqm).
Many HDB owners are renting rooms or entire flat to foreigners, some HDB owners are citizens married with foreigners, HDB never provide official statistics about how many non-residents live in HDB apartments.
According Yearbook of Statistics 2010, Singapore population including non-residents is 5076700 living in 1180500 dwelling units (HDBs, condos, private flats, landed houses, others), of which 76.3% are HDBs, this means a nationwide average of 4.30 people per dwelling unit, if the average would be same for HDB, it would mean 22 sqm per person (no newer statistics available for non-residents).
As 31 March 2005 (peak)
Total population (Jun 2005) – 4265800 people
As 31 March 2014 (latest)
Total population (Jun 2014) – 5469700 people
The average flat size of total flats is about 95 sqm, despite of shrinking flat sizes in late 1990s, average flat size still grown to 2005 peak, thanks to demolition of small 1/2/3-room flats built in 1960-1970s and upgrading programmes that add 5 sqm utility rooms. After 2005 average flat size is slowly falling down because HDB resumed building smaller flat types. BTO flats launched since 2011 and completed from 2015 onward are about 80 sqm in average, for comparison the flats build in mid-1990s were about 120 sqm in average, a world record for public housing.
Home ownership of HDB flats reached the peak of 94% in 2002, then slowly felt down to 90% in 2011.
Sources: SingStat for the population, HDB Annual Reports for the number of flats (units) and HDB Resale Flat Prices database for 2008-2013 (149930 records) for estimating average flat sizes. For 2005 average flat size by type I used resale transactions with lease year pre-2005.
SingStat also show population living in condos and landed houses, in case you are interested, but unfortunately there are NO detailed statistics for about number of private housing breakdown by type.
Excel HDB Statistics
HDB Statistics.xls – Excel file compiled by me, containing:
– Number of dwelling units by town and flat type, table and chart
– Number of dwelling units by town and year, table and chart
– Number of dwelling units by flat type and year, table and chart
– Statistics for calculation of the average flat size along history
– HDB achievements since 1960
– Resale market statistics
Please leave your opinion about my work!
Source of data: HDB Annual Reports 1994-1996 (available on archive.org) and 2000-present (available currently on HDB website even if they are no longer in Annual Reports page, but doing a Google search you may find the direct link to files still hosted on HDB server. I was not able to get 1997-1999 because since 1997 HDB provided in PDF format instead of HTML page, and archive.org did not cached PDF files.
HDB flat size statistics based by HDB Resale Transactions
I copied the listings from HDB Resale Flat Prices e-service (April 2008 – December 2013) in Microsoft Excel for purpose of making statistics. Results:
– As country level: the average flats size is 97.41 sqm (average of ~149930 transacted units).
– As town level: Central Area (most built in 1970s) have the smallest flats, 72.24 sqm (average of 998 units) while Pasir Ris New Town (built between 1988 and 1996) have the biggest flats, 123.38 sqm (average of 5184 units).
– As neighborhood level: Pasir Ris 2XX neighborhood have the biggest flats, 132.36 sqm (average of 694 units), Pasir Ris 5XX have 129.25 sqm (average of 875 units), Pasir Ris 6XX have 127.17 sqm (average of 521 units), Choa Chu Kang 5XX have 126.39 sqm (average of 607 units), Tampines 3XX have 121.79 sqm (average of 1129 units).
– As five-year period: 1991-1995 have the biggest flats, 124.48 sqm (average of 11398 transacted units).
Note that the average size of resold flats is slightly bigger than the real average flat size, because the big and <10 year old flats tends to change their owners more frequently than the small old flats owned mainly by elderly, also some of the small flats are rented from HDB rather than owned, so they never appear in resale transactions.
I noticed many visitors coming here by searching things like “total number of HDB blocks in Singapore“. HDB provide official numbers of units but not of blocks. Blocks can be ONLY counted manually.
Do we should also count the 2-storey shophouse that contains no residential units, only commercial units (flats accessible from shop entrance)? Do we should also count under-construction blocks and blocks awaiting demolition? Do we should count multi-storey carparks and precint pavilions too?
According Database of blocks, there are about 9800 residential HDB buildings in Singapore (not including carparks, shops, etc).
Note that the database is, in the current version, NOT ACCURATE… being made for personal curiosity without being paid for, with limited time available for voluntary jobs. Some under construction blocks are counted, others not. Some demolished blocks are counted too.
I will provide detailed statistics with higher accuracy if someone will pay my time required to make them.
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