There are numerous factors to consider when running a home-based business in Singapore, and you must exercise extreme caution on the legalities involved.

However, home-based businesses are one of the best ways to earn extra income. Especially if your home is well-equipped with all of the tools needed to run a successful business.

How to Get Started?

You are allowed to run a small home business to augment your income without getting HDB’s permission.

Your apartment must still be used largely for residential reasons, and no nuisance-causing business operations are allowed next door. If not, you must stop doing business or find new space, such as a commercial unit.

Home-Based Business Requirements:

  1. The owners, registered occupiers, or tenants of the apartment must run the business (with consent from the flat owners). No outsiders or non-resident staff are permitted to work in the apartment.
  2. The flat must not have any advertisements, signage, or posters.
  3. No additional traffic should be brought to the area, and there shouldn’t be any negative effects on the neighbourhood or the quality of life, such as noise, smoke, stench, litter, affluent, dust nuisances, or any risk to the nearby residents.
  4. Use of large machinery or appliances not intended for home use is prohibited.
  5. No regular loading and unloading of products, especially heavy ones, no large-scale storage, and no use of the apartment as a distribution hub.
  6. Activities need to abide by other authorities’ laws and regulations (e.g. Singapore Food Agency, for food safety and hygiene, Fire Safety and Shelter Department, for fire safety requirements)

Examples of Permitted Home-Based Business Activities:

  1. Food business such as baking on a small scale
  2. Hairdressing, facial and beauty (excluding massage), manicure, or pedicure services
  3. Private tuition for not more than three students at a time
  4. Sewing services
  5. Work as a freelance artist, journalist, photographer or writer

*Note: Massage services are not allowed on residential premises.

Find out more details about the Home-Based Business Scheme on the HDB website.