INVESTMENT HACK: Invest in Singapore without ABSD

INVESTMENT HACK: Invest in Singapore without ABSD

Investing in Singapore's vibrant property market is an exciting proposition. But let's face it, the Additional Buyer's Stamp Duty (ABSD) can throw a wrench in your plans, especially for residential purchases.

Singapore ABSD Table Overview

Singapore ABSD Rates (2024)

ABSD for 2nd property, Singapore Citizen


ABSD for 3rd and subsequent properties, Singapore Citizen


ABSD for PR, first property


ABSD for PR, 2nd property


ABSD for PR, 3rd and subsequent properties


ABSD for foreigners, any and all properties


But what if I told you there's a unique property type that offers the best of investment potential without paying ABSD that typically applies to foreign investors?

Sounds too good to be true?
Well, it's not. Let me introduce you to the captivating world of Commercial SOHOs - commercial units with unique use.

Note: ABSD is not applicable to commercial properties, which is why commercial SOHOs can be an attractive option for investors looking to avoid this additional tax burden.

Commercial units with unique use, are a rare investment opportunity that is becoming increasingly popular among global and Singaporean investors. These units offer the best of both worlds - the convenience of a residential development with the potential for high returns on investment.

Ready to delve deeper and learn how you can leverage this exciting investment opportunity?

Let's explore the details together!

SOHO stands for "Small Office, Home Office."

In Singapore, however, a special breed exists - commercial SOHOs.

These ingenious units offer the perfect blend of functionality: zoned for commercial use, yet boasting condo-style amenities like gyms and pools. Imagine - a sleek, modern workspace by day, transforming into a chic city pad by night.

Unique Brilliance: Why This Matters to You

This "commercial SOHO" aspect is the magic bullet.

Since commercial SOHOs are classified as commercial properties, they're exempt from the dreaded ABSD. That's a game-changer, especially for global investors and savvy Singaporeans seeking a foothold in the Lion City's booming economy.

These units are designed to cater to individuals seeking spaces that can serve both as a living area and a workspace. SOHO properties typically feature a combination of play and work in office spaces within the same unit, allowing occupants the convenience of working from home while enjoying the comforts of a residential setting.

The concept of Commercial Units with Unique Use has gained popularity due to its flexibility and efficiency, especially for those looking to streamline their work-life balance.

These properties are ideal for individuals who prefer the convenience of having their office space within their residential premises, eliminating the need for separate locations for work and living.

Singapore's business landscape is on fire.

Start-ups are flourishing, established companies are expanding, and the demand for prime and flexible workspaces is undeniable, and tenants are willing to pay a premium for well-located, modern units.

Here's where commercial SOHOs come in.

Commercial SOHOs perfectly cater to this trend, offering a unique blend of functionality and lifestyle.

With Singapore's robust rental market, you can leverage your SOHO as a high-yielding investment property.

Unlike residential rentals, commercial SOHOs typically enjoy longer lease tenures, translating to steadier income for you.

Beyond ABSD Savings

ABSD exemption is just the tip of the iceberg. Commercial SOHOs offer a compelling value proposition for investors:

UNIQUE Income Stream

Rent out the unit as an office space during weekdays and enjoy a cozy home environment on weekends. Talk about flexibility!

Capital Appreciation

With Singapore's property market projected for continued growth, commercial SOHOs present an attractive opportunity for long-term capital gains.

Lower Entry Barrier

Compared to traditional commercial properties, commercial SOHOs often boast smaller price tags, making them an accessible option for first-time investors.

Education Hub

If you're considering Singapore for your child's education, a SoHo unit can serve as a comfortable home base while they pursue their academic goals.

No Capital Gains Tax

Singapore has no capital gains tax, allowing investors to keep the profits from selling a commercial property.


Investing in commercial units with dual use allows you to diversify your investment portfolio. This can help reduce risk and increase potential returns.

But don't just take my word for it. According to a recent report, the demand for flexible workspaces is on the rise, with the Asia Pacific region leading the way. This trend is expected to continue, making dual-use commercial units a wise investment choice.

Thinking Long Term? Location is King!

Now, let's talk location. When choosing a commercial SOHO, proximity to business hubs and trendy neighborhoods is paramount. Imagine owning a unit at Regency Suites, nestled in the heart of Orchard Road's shopping haven.

Situated opposite Tiong Bahru MRT and shopping mall, this centrally located property boasts greenery surroundings, convenience with nearby amenities like NTUC and supermarkets, making it a prime investment opportunity in a strategic location with easy access to public transportation and essential services for businesses seeking a well-connected workspace.

This beautiful loft unit at Regency Suites offers a unique layout with a lower deck office/living room and an upper deck meeting room, featuring high ceilings of approximately 5.9m and an open concept ideal for working from home or as an office space.

Or imagine yourself at Soho Life, mere steps away from the buzz of Robertson Quay.

This rarely available freehold Soho unit in Joo Chiat offers an excellent location for your business needs, priced attractively at S$1,100,000 and spanning 441 sqft in a vibrant neighborhood with a variety of dining options.

With proximity to reputable schools like Haig Girls' School and Tanjong Katong Primary School, as well as convenient access to Eunos MRT at 0.92KM, this property presents a compelling opportunity for those seeking a prime commercial space in the dynamic and well-connected Joo Chiat area.

Locations like Eon Shenton in the CBD or Southbank in the vibrant Robertson Quay enclave offer unparalleled access and prestige.

This EON SOHO office for sale offers an enticing opportunity with its lowest quantum pricing at 1.25 million, approximately $2470 psf, featuring a high floor with a city view, high ceilings, and great potential, all while being tenanted until February 2025, making it a promising investment in the realm of Soho living.

This property boasts a prime location with 180 degrees of unblocked views, featuring a Soho unit suitable for office or residential use, complete with high ceilings, a mezzanine 2nd floor, and a bright, airy ambiance.

Conveniently situated near Lavender MRT, hawker centers, and amenities, this attractively renovated space is listed for sale at $2.08 million (negotiable) and available for rent at $5,500.00, with GST applicable, offering a versatile and well-appointed option for those seeking a dynamic living or working environment in a bustling area.

But wait, there's more! Owning a unit at The Central offers the benefit of a well-regarded address with a proven track record.

This prime Soho 1 property offers a high rental yield opportunity with features like a high floor unblocked view, well-maintained north-south facing orientation, tenancy to a reputable company at an attractive rate resulting in a 4% rental yield, and complimentary facilities including a swimming pool, gym, jacuzzi, and steam room.

Situated above Clarke Quay MRT and surrounded by amenities like restaurants, supermarkets, hawker centers, shopping malls, and the convenience of having Don Don Donki in the basement, this property presents a lucrative investment with strong rental potential in a vibrant and well-connected location.

Commercial SOHOs aren't ideal for everyone due to their zoning and potential restrictions. Here's a breakdown of who would find them most suitable:

  • Entrepreneurs and Freelancers: They crave a dedicated workspace with a professional atmosphere, but also appreciate the flexibility and convenience of living close by. 

  • Small Businesses: Startups or growing businesses can benefit from a cost-effective office space that avoids lengthy commutes for employees. 

  • Investors: Those seeking high-yield rental properties can capitalize on the demand for flexible workspaces with commercial SOHOs. 

  • Independent Professionals: Lawyers, consultants, and other professionals who work from home can enjoy a clear separation between work and personal life within the same unit. 

  • People Who Value Flexibility: Those who crave a dynamic living situation that adapts to their needs. You can host client meetings in your workspace or unwind at the pool after a long day. 

  • Those on a Budget: Compared to traditional office spaces, commercial SOHOs can offer a more affordable option for small businesses or entrepreneurs starting out.

While commercial SOHOs offer flexibility, some business activities aren't permitted due to space limitations, potential disruption to other tenants, or licensing restrictions. Here's a breakdown:

Businesses with Public Interaction

Businesses with Nuisance Factors

Other Restricted Businesses

  • Retail shops (think boutiques or convenience stores)
  • Restaurants and catering companies
  • Beauty salons and massage parlors
  • Tuition centers or enrichment classes
  • Clinics and pharmacies
  • Manufacturing or processing units (due to noise and potential fumes)
  • Repair services (noise and potential hazardous materials)
  • Businesses generating excessive traffic or deliveries
  • Employment agencies
  • Maid agencies
  • Car dealerships
  • Funeral homes or chapels
  • Fortune telling or psychic services

Essentially, any business requiring frequent client visits, generating excessive noise, odor, or using hazardous materials wouldn't be suitable.

Considerations for Potential Residents

While commercial SOHOs offer a unique lifestyle, some factors might not suit everyone's needs:

Limited Space

These units tend to be smaller and may not have the amenities suitable for families.

Potential Noise

Noise from neighboring businesses might disrupt those seeking a quiet environment.

Renovation Restrictions

Building management might restrict renovations compared to a traditional home.

Limited Entertainment

Zoning regulations or building management might limit large gatherings or parties.

Parking Availability

Parking availability can be limited in prime locations, and guaranteed parking might not be offered.

Always check the specific regulations and restrictions of the commercial SOHO development you're interested in before making a decision.

Commercial SOHOs are a unique asset class, offering the perfect blend of functionality, investment potential, and lifestyle benefits. But with rising demand and limited availability, this window of opportunity won't last forever.

As demand rises, so will competition and prices. Don't let this opportunity slip through your fingers.

Contact me now to discuss your investment goals and find the perfect commercial SOHO that aligns with your vision.

Have questions about financing, legalities, or managing your commercial Space?

I've got you covered. Let’s talk!