Citibank HDB Loan

Citibank HDB Loan Review: Best for Shorter-Term Borrowers

Citibank HDB Loan offers professional pre-application services like In-Principle-Advisor and an assigned mortgage advisor to manage homebuyers’ finances. Though the loan rates are competitive in the promotion period from the first to the third year, the rates increase faster than the peers from the fourth year onwards.

 

Key Features

Careful selection on a mortgage from a bank helps you save money and effort on the way to owning your dream home. Citibank is one of the major financial institutions offering competitive loan services to homebuyers. Let’s see Citibank’s loan features:

1. Transparent loan rates

Citibank has its rate-determining mechanism open and uses compounded SORA as a benchmark for its mortgage rates. 

2. Compounded SORA

SORA is a volume-weighted Singapore interbank overnight average rate. It is administered and published by the Monetary Bank of Singapore(MAS).

3. The mechanism

The MAS computes the SORA over one, three, and six-month history and publishes the compounded SORA on its website. Based on the compounded rates, the bank adds an interest rate spread to the SORA to be the compounded SORA rates.

4. Professional pre-application assessments

Citibank develops an In-Principle-Approval system(IPA) — a web-based platform to assess a client’s financial capability and credit ratings.

5. Easy to use IPA

You can get an initial assessment of your repaying capability from a website-based platform without creating a login ID or password.

6. A personal mortgage specialist

More than that, an assigned mortgage specialist will guide you to make the loan application process more smooth.

7. Preferential mortgage interest rates for Citigold and Citigold Private Client

Clients of Citigold and Citigold Private Client may enjoy lower interest rates by 0.1 to 0.13% if they successfully apply for a loan of S$800,000 or above. More preferential rates are available even after the promotional period. 

8. Mortgage Loan Interest Offset services

Citibank offers to use the interests from your deposit(including your savings accounts) with Citibank to offset the loan mortgage interests.

9. The mechanism

The loan adjustment rate is the lower of the credit balance of your Citi Home Saver Checking Account and the loan amount outstanding.

10. Legal fee subsidy for loan cost

Successful applicants can get a maximum legal subsidy of S$2,500 or 0.2% of a loan approved by Citibank, whichever is lower.

 

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Homebuyers have a clear picture of the rate-determining mechanism and maximize the benefits of financing with the bank. 
  • Initial online pre-application assessment(In-Principle-Approval) of a loan request makes potential homebuyers know the loan amount they will get. It helps borrowers plan well. Click here to find out how much you can borrow when taking a home loan. 
  • Citibank assigns a personal mortgage advisor to assist loan applicants with a smooth and quick process.
  • Loan applicants may get better mortgage rates if they upgrade to Citigold or Citigold Private Client status.
  • Citibank offers an interest-offset mortgage service to let applicants minimize interest costs.
  • Successful homebuyers can reduce their legal fees by refinancing with Citibank.

Cons

  • Interest costs increase after the promotion. Borrowers may have sought to refinance alternatives after the period.
  • Incentives are only for property refinancing applicants only. New HDB and private property applicants are not entitled to the benefit.
  • The In-Principle-Approval process is only valid for 60 days from the assessment result. Applicants may have to retake a test after the expiry. 

 

Citibank Home Loan Packages for Various Property Types

Let’s dive into the characteristics of Citibank’s loan packages for various property types:

Types Citibank Loan Features
Private Properties(completed) 2-year floating rates; 2 and 3 year fixed rates
Private Properties(under construction) Floating rate; no lock-in period
HDB Properties(resale/completed) 2-Fixed-RateFixed-Rateyear fixed rate
HDB(under construction) Floating rate; no lock-in period

 

Loans for buildings under construction

Citibank offers loan packages of floating rates and no lock-in periods to attract homebuyers. The rates are as follows:

Periods Details
Year one SIBOR + 0.2%
Year two SIBOR + 0.25%
Year three SIBOR + 0.45%(0.40% for loans over S$1.5 million)
Year four & onwards SIBOR + 0.6%

 

Loans for completed buildings

Fixed and floating rates are available for this type of loan.

Fixed-rate plans: 1. Two-year plan: 1.98% to 2.03%; 2. Three-year plan: 2.04% to 2.09%(private properties only).

Floating rate plans: The rates range from SIBOR + 0.35% to 0.70% in respective years.

You may notice the rates from Citibank are competitive in the first few years but rise more in the following period.

 

Citibank Home Loan Rates 2021

Citibank HDB Home Loan Rates

Loan Types Year One Lock-in Period
Compounded SORA 1.02% 2 Years
Compounded SORA 1.03% 2 Years
Fixed-Rate 1.28% 2 Years
Fixed-Rate 1.4% 3 Years

 

Citibank Private Home Loan Rates

Loan Types Year One Lock-in Period
Compounded SORA 1.02% 2 Years
Compounded SORA 1.03% 2 Years
Fixed-Rate 1.28% 2 Years
Fixed Rates 1.40% 3 Years

 

Citibank Refinancing Home Loan Interest Rates

Loan Types Year One Lock-in Period
Compounded SORA 1.02% 2 Years
Compounded SORA 1.03% 2 Years
Fixed Rates 1.28% 2 Years
Fixed Rates 1.40% 3 Years

 

What makes Citibank stand out vs. other major banks in Singapore?

A comparison of loan packages by the major banks in Singapore is as follows:

Banks Loan Plans Year One Year Two Year Three
Citibank Three-month compounded SORA plan with two year lock-in period 1.93% 1.03% 1.43%
Citibank Two-year fixed rate with completion 1.28% 1.28% 1.44%
Citibank Three-year fixed rate with completion 1.40% 1.40% 1.40%
HSBC One-month compounded SORA plan with a two-year lock-in period. MinS$200,000 1.14% 1.14% 1.39%
HSBC Three-year fixed rate for completed properties. Min S$500,000 1.2% 1.2% 1.2%
Hong Leong Finance HDB Variable Package 1.2% 1.2% 1.45%
Hong Leong Finance HDB Fixed-rate package 1.23% 1.23% 1.45%
Hong Leong Finance 2.80% 3.20% 3.70%
Hong Leong Finance Two-year fixed rate package 3.0% 3.30% 3.80%
State Bank of India One month compounded SORA plan with two year lock-in period MinS$250,000 0.92% 0.92% 1.34%
State Bank of India One month compounded SORA plan with three year lock-in period MinS$250,000 0.92% 0.92% 0.92%
State Bank of India Three-month compounded SORA plan with two year lock-in period MinS$250,000 1.01% 1.01% 1.33%

 

Citibank’s loan packages are in the middle scale in the market. However, you should notice other benefits like pre-application assessment(IPA), preferential rates for Citigold clients, interest-offset mortgage service, and legal subsidy of S$2,500 are also valuable to applicants.

 

Passing of house keys

How to apply?

You should get well prepared before applying. The following is a must, but the list is not exhaustive.

  • Completed duly signed Citi Home Saver Application Form
  • Copy of NRIC/Passport of applicants
  • Latest six months contribution history (for salaried applicants)
  • Latest three months of computerized payslip by companies (for salaried applicants)
  • Latest annual Notice of Assessment (self-employed applicants)
  • Copy of HDB financial information
  • Option to Purchase/ Sales and Purchase Agreement (if applicable)
  • Latest CPF withdrawal statement (if applicable)

In addition, you have to be the following:

  • You must be aged between 18 and 65.
  • Permanent residents, Singapore citizens, and foreigners can also apply.
  • If you apply for a property loan, the bank will consider a Total Debt Servicing Ratio(TDSR) and cap the ratio to 60% of borrowers’ gross monthly income.
  • If you apply for an HDB loan, the bank will assess your Mortgage Servicing Ratio(MSR). The bank caps it to 30% of borrowers’ gross monthly income.

Three steps: 1. Use IPA(In-Principle-Advisor) to assess the loan amount; 2. An assigned mortgage advisor helps you with the loan application procedures; 3. You go on with the rest of the buying process besides the loan application.

 

More to Read

1. Which is better? Fixed or floating rate packages?

It depends on a homebuyer’s preferences. The fixed-rate is a better option if you think the future interest rates will rise and want to lock in the current rate. However, you may know the fixed rate is higher than the market rate.

The variable rate is a better option if you think the future rates are likely lower than now. But you may face more rate changes in your repayment schedules in the future.

2. Should you choose a Citibank bank mortgage or other loans?

Citibank offers promotion loan rates in the first to three years. They are competitive with other loan providers. However, borrowers may have to shoulder more interest payments due to rate increases after the promotion periods from the fourth year onwards. You may need to seek alternative bankers to refinance and reduce your interest burden. Know more about the best home loans in Singapore here.

3. Should I apply for the Citibank BUC(Building Under Construction) Home Loan?

Citibank offers two loan packages to BUC applicants. The rates are competitive from the first to the third year. However, rates increase more than the market from the fourth year onwards.

The details of the Citibank BUC loan

  • The first year: SIBOR plus 0.2%
  • The second-year: SIBOR plus 0.45%
  • The third-year: SIBOR plus 0.45% or 0.4% for a loan of S$1.5 million or above
  • From the fourth-year onwards: SIBOR plus 0.60%

The loan rates may range from 2.10% to 2.40%, assuming SIBOR is unchanged after the third year. The packages apply to the HDB and private homebuyers. The borrowers may need to seek other banks for cheaper rates.

4. Should I apply for Citibank’s loans for completed properties?

Citibank offers competitive fixed and variable loan packages to HDB and private property applicants. The rates may increase more from the third year.

The fixed rates range from 1.98% to 2.03% for the first two years or about three-year 2% for private property borrowers.

The variable rates are pegged to SIBOR with a margin spread.

 

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, the professional services and promotional packages offered by Citibank are competitive among other banks. If you are a Citigold client, you can get more preferential loan rates. Nevertheless, you may pay more interest as the rates may increase more after promotion. Homebuyers with short-term repayment periods are more likely to buy from Citibank.

  • Professional services from Citibank like In-Principle-Advisor(IPA) assist homebuyers in managing their finance.
  • An assigned mortgage advisor offers advice on the loan application process.
  • Preferential rates are available to Citigold/Citigold Private Clients.
  • Clients may face sharp increases after the rate promotion.
  • Citibank’s loan interest rates are competitive from other banks, but borrowers face increases after promotional periods.

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