Our Easy Guide to HDB Building Works Renovation Guidelines

Our Easy Guide to HDB Building Works Renovation Guidelines

As you know, HDB guidelines are a comprehensive list of do’s and don’ts that you must follow while renovating your interiors. All interior design services must concur with these rules, in order for you to get a fully HDB sanctioned interior. Building works make up the majority of the HDB guidelines. Every interior design company in Singapore must adhere to the guidelines mentioned below.

Building works include a reference guide for all major residential interior design services for your HDB flat/apartment. Let’s take a look at all the guidelines you have to follow for each of these services.

Ceiling Design

You should keep the following points in mind while installing a false ceiling and ceiling fans:

    • All materials used should be non-combustible
    • The void in between the false ceiling and the actual ceiling should not be used for storage.
    • The false-ceiling should have a clear height of 2.4m from the finished floor level. The clearance height for a ceiling fan would also be at least 2.4m from the finished floor.
    • Purlins are not allowed to use for suspension of the false ceiling.
    • No existing fire-fighting devices are allowed to be covered by a new false-ceiling.
    • The existing structural system of your building should not be meddled with during installation of the new false-ceiling.
    • No existing structural details should be harmed during the installation of the ceiling fan.
    • The ceiling fan should not exceed the weight limit of 35 kg.

Door Design

Here is all you should know about installing or replacing doors in an HDB.

    • There is no permit required for replacing an existing entrance or internal door. But this only applies if you do not enlarge the existing portals. You should also note that all the exit doors should be 850 mm wide when opened.
    • You will not need a permit for the installation of a roller shutter or metal gate in front of existing shop fronts and entrances given that you do not enlarge the existing portal. Note that swing gates should not open up in public corridors and common accesses.
    • You will need an official HDB sanctioned permit to replace the existing entrance or exit door. You will also need an official HDB permit for closing up an existing entrance.

Window Design

Your interior design services should follow these guidelines while designing windows.

    • You do not need a permit for the replacement of existing windows, given that they are similar in size and dimensions of the existing ones. This means no enlargements.
    • You do not need a permit for installing window grills, given that they do not project beyond the building façade.
    • You do not need approval for the sealing of louvered windows on terrace workshops. This is applicable for office buildings only.

Floor Design

    • For floor renovations, just keep in mind that the total thickness of the floor finishes cannot exceed more than 50 mm. you cannot hack the existing slab, and waterproofing for the new floor finishes is a must.

Wall Design

Wall construction is a major part of all provided interior design services. Here’s the gist of what you should know:

    • You need an official permit for dismantling existing interior walls, construction of new internal walls as well as installation of gypsum board partitions.
    • There are specific structural requirements for the demolition and construction of each kind of internal wall.
    • You do not need a permit to lay down or remove the existing wall tiles.

Storage Design

You must follow the mentioned guidelines while designing your storage shelving and/or rooms:

    • You don’t need a permit to install shelving racks, granted that they are less than or equal to 3m high and 1.2 m in width. They must not exceed the allowable floor load ratio and must be designed with non-combustibles.
    • You do need to get Singapore Civil Defence Force’s Fire Safety & Shelter Department, and Building & Construction Authority sanctioned permits to design storage units/shelves that exceed the 3m high and 1.2m wide design.
    • You also need to get an official permit in order to design mezzanine floor and storage platforms in your interiors.

Sign Boards and Advertisements

Here’s everything you and every interior design company in Singapore should know about putting up sign boards and advertisements:

    • Yes, you do need an official permit to install a signboard.
    • The signboard must be supported by a column, beam or other RCC (Reinforced Concrete) structure.
    • All the bolts, nuts and steel plates are to be corrosion free.
    • The clear height should be 2.6 m from the floor level.
    • All neon lights used must be non-flickering.
    • You cannot hack at any of the existing structures while installing.


    • An awning is a cantilevered projection or shade that is installed on building or storefronts to keep them in shade. You need a permit to set one up. These can be installed outside ground floor units only, and must not damage existing structures while installation.


Here are all the small uncategorized things that you have to get official HDB permit as well as a Singapore Civil Defence Force’s Fire Safety & Shelter Department, along with a Building and Construction Authority permit from:

    • Spray paint booth
    • Installation of liquid petroleum gas cylinders
    • Installation of raised floors
    • Construction of Reinforced Concrete Trenches on the premises
    • Demolition of existing toilets and load bearing walls


This is the basic gist of the guidelines that you need to know in order to supervise your interior design remodelling or renovation. Hone Guide is a registered HDB Renovation Contractor and one of the most well-known interior design company in Singapore. We can easily get permits for all the design works that need to be sanctioned by the HDB authority, so your renovation experience is hassle free and easy!

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