How to 'Avoid' ABSD in Singapore: 7 Legal Ways Reduce Your ABSD Payment (2023) Title: How to ‘Avoid’ ABSD in Singapore: 7 Legal Ways to Reduce Your ABSD Payment (2023)


In a bid to regulate the property market and curb excessive speculation, the Singapore government introduced the Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) in 2011. This measure requires buyers to pay an additional tax on top of the existing Buyer’s Stamp Duty (BSD) when purchasing residential properties. However, with the dynamic real estate landscape constantly evolving, it is essential for investors and homebuyers alike to stay ahead of the game and understand the existing legal avenues available to minimize their ABSD payment.

In this article, we will explore the various legal strategies and techniques that individuals can employ to reduce their ABSD obligations and navigate the intricate nuances of Singapore’s property market. By equipping ourselves with these knowledge and tools, we can make informed decisions while balancing our financial goals with compliance to the law. Let’s delve into the seven effective methods that will empower prospective buyers and investors to proactively manage their ABSD liabilities.

1. Understanding Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD): An Overview of Singapore’s Property Tax Policy

When it comes to purchasing property in Singapore, homebuyers need to be well-versed in the Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) policy. ABSD is a form of property tax implemented by the Singapore government to regulate the local real estate market and curb excessive property speculation. The amount of ABSD payable varies based on factors such as the buyer’s residency status, the number of properties owned, and the type of property being purchased.

For those looking to navigate the complexities of ABSD, expert insights can prove invaluable. By exploring legitimate strategies to minimize ABSD liability, homebuyers can make informed decisions and optimize their property investments. Seasoned real estate professionals advise considering factors such as property ownership structuring, timing of property purchases, and the utilization of available tax reliefs and exemptions.

One effective way to maximize savings on your property investment is by utilizing stamp duty remission and exemptions. Singapore offers various remission schemes, such as the remission for the purchase of a second property, the remission for married couples, or the remission for developers. Familiarizing yourself with the specific remission schemes applicable to your situation can help you save significantly on ABSD costs.

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In conclusion, the implementation of Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) in Singapore can significantly impact property transactions, imposing substantial financial burdens on prospective buyers. However, by leveraging legitimate avenues and adopting prudent financial strategies, individuals can navigate the ABSD landscape more efficiently, ultimately reducing their ABSD payments. By carefully considering one’s unique circumstances, exploring available schemes, and seeking professional advice, it becomes possible to make informed decisions and maximize the potential for savings. In harmonizing personal financial goals with the existing regulations, Singaporeans can approach property acquisition with confidence, ensuring a more favorable outcome in the dynamic real estate market. Stay informed, stay compliant, and make well-informed choices to safeguard your financial interests.
How to ‘Avoid’ ABSD in Singapore: 7 Legal Ways to Reduce Your ABSD Payment (2023)


The Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) is a policy implemented by the Singaporean government to regulate the property market and curb excessive demand from foreign buyers. The ABSD acts as an additional tax imposed on eligible entities and individuals buying residential properties in the city-state. However, there are legal ways to minimize the impact of ABSD payment and make property acquisition more financially feasible. This article aims to explore seven strategies to help Singaporean property buyers reduce their ABSD payment in 2023.

1. Utilize the ABSD remission schemes:

The Singaporean government offers several ABSD remission schemes that can help eligible buyers reduce their ABSD payment. For example, under the Family Grant Scheme, Singaporean couples who are married or intending to marry can enjoy partial remission of their ABSD payment. Other schemes, such as the Non-Remissible ABSD Scheme and the Non-ABSD Assessed Buyers Stamp Duty (Non-ABSD ASD) Scheme, provide relief for specific situations or types of buyers.

2. Opt for ABSD deferment schemes:

ABSD deferment schemes allow buyers to delay their ABSD payment, providing them with more time to arrange their finances. These schemes are particularly beneficial for property buyers who face cash flow constraints. Examples of ABSD deferment schemes include the ABSD Payment Deferment Scheme and the Enhanced CPF Housing Grant Scheme.

3. Explore the use of property trust structures:

By utilizing property trust structures, buyers can legally minimize their ABSD payment. Property trust structures involve the transfer of properties to a trust, where buyers retain control over the assets. This arrangement can be an effective strategy to reduce ABSD when purchasing multiple properties, as the ABSD is calculated on a per-property basis.

4. Consider ABSD remission for developers:

Developers who are engaged in property development activities might be eligible for ABSD remission. Under certain conditions, developers can be exempted from the ABSD for residential properties they acquire for development and sale. This exemption can significantly reduce the overall ABSD liability.

5. Purchase under joint tenancy:

When purchasing a property jointly, buyers have the option to hold the property as “joint tenants” or “tenants-in-common.” By selecting the former, the ABSD will only be levied on the share of the property owned by the buyer. This allows the buyer to reduce their individual ABSD liability, making it a favorable option for property co-ownership.

6. Explore ABSD remission for collective sales:

When participating in collective sales, buyers may qualify for ABSD remission based on specific criteria. The remission aims to encourage collective sale participants to reinvest their sale proceeds into new residential properties. By meeting the necessary conditions, buyers can reduce their ABSD liability and make the most of their collective sale transaction.

7. Leverage on ABSD reductions for Singapore Permanent Residents (SPRs):

Singapore Permanent Residents enjoy ABSD concessions when purchasing their first residential property. As of 2023, SPRs face a flat rate of 5% ABSD for their first property, compared to 20% for foreign buyers and entities. Therefore, SPRs can choose to purchase their initial property before acquiring citizenship to benefit from the reduced ABSD rate.


While the ABSD aims to regulate the property market in Singapore, there are legal strategies available for buyers to minimize their ABSD payment. By utilizing the various remission schemes, exploring deferment options, considering property trust structures, and understanding the different conditions for remissions, buyers can significantly reduce their ABSD liability. These strategies, when applied in accordance with the law, provide Singaporean property buyers with greater financial flexibility and make property acquisition more attainable.