Home Loans

OCBC Home Loan Review Singapore 2019 – Which Mortgage to Choose from OCBC

Peter Lin


OCBC home loan packages have always shown a willingness to remain competitive and ensure that the housing loan packages they offer are among the best in the market.

Early in 2018, they introduced the OCBC Home Rate, or OHR, a new way of calculating a housing loan interest rate that claims to be much more stable than SIBOR or even fixed-deposit linked home loan packages.

However, this has all changed in 2019, and OCBC home loans are now either pegged to MBR or SIBOR.

If you’re buying a new property and looking for an OCBC home loan, here are the best packages they offer, whether your property is uncompleted or completed.


OCBC BUC home loans for buildings under construction

There are two types of floating rate loans provided by OCBC for buildings under construction (BUC). One is pegged to the MBR while the other is pegged to 3M SIBOR.

OCBC BUC home loans Home loan package
Floating rate for BUC (MBR) Year 1: 1.95% (MBR + 0.40%)
Year 2: 1.95% (MBR + 0.40%)
Year 3: 1.95% (MBR + 0.40%)
Thereafter: 1.95% (MBR + 0.40%)
Floating rate for BUC (SIBOR) Year 1: 2.18% (3M SIBOR + 0.3%)
Year 2: 2.18% (3M SIBOR + 0.3%)
Year 3: 2.18% (3M SIBOR + 0.3%)
Thereafter: 2.28% (3M SIBOR + 0.4%)
Floating rate for BUC BTO only (MBR) Year 1: 2.00% (MBR + 0.45%)
Year 2: 2.00% (MBR + 0.45%)
Year 3: 2.00% (MBR + 0.45%)
Thereafter: 2.30% (MBR + 0.75%)

*updated as of 31 January 2019

Apart from the 3M SIBOR package, the other two home loan packages are quite competitive and offer rates that are among the lowest in the market.

SIBOR has climbed up in the last few months, and the rate is relatively volatile as compared to MBR. There are predictions that SIBOR may stabilise or even decrease, but there is still a level of risk involved.

One tip we can give is that if you are buying an uncompleted building under construction, consider packages that don’t change their rates too quickly each year. This is because the loan amount is disbursed in stages, so you don’t want to waste the better rate on a small disbursed amount.


OCBC fixed and floating home loans 2019 (HDB resale or private)

Bank OCBC home loans
Loan type Floating 2 Years, No Lock-in
(Subject to approval)
Floating 2 Years, No Lock-in
(subject to approval)

Fixed (2 years)
Year 1 2.30%
(MBR + 0.75%)
(3M SIBOR + 0.35%)
Year 2 2.30%
(MBR + 0.75%)
(3M SIBOR + 0.45%)
Year 3 2.30%
(MBR + 0.75%)
(3M SIBOR + 0.50%)
(MBR + 0.93%)
Year 4 2.50%
(MBR + 0.95%)
(3M SIBOR + 0.60%)
(MBR + 0.93%)
Thereafter 2.50%
(MBR + 0.95%)
(3M SIBOR + 0.60%)
(MBR + 0.93%)
Benchmarks MBR: 1.55% 3M SIBOR: 1.88% MBR: 1.55%
Minimum loan amount $500,000 $200,000 $100,000

*updated as of 31 January 2019

If stability is what you’re looking for and you’re afraid of drastic increases in the future, it might be better to secure the fixed rate of 2.48% for 2 years. Considering that SIBOR rates are stabilising right now, it might be safer to go for SIBOR-linked packages rather than MBR-linked ones. 

Interestingly, OCBC floating rate packages do not have lock-in periods. Rather, OCBC has implemented minimum loan amounts for their home loans. The 2-year MBR rate is only offered for $500,000 and above, while the 2-year 3M SIBOR rate is only offered for loan amounts $200,000 and above.

All BUC packages have no lock-in periods, partial repayment penalty and full redemption penalty. The cancellation fee is 0.75%.


Illustration: Financing a $1mil condominium or HDB resale flat

The below is calculated for a loan amount of $750,000 (75% of purchase price), over a loan tenure of 30 years.

Home Loan Package Interest rates Estimated Monthly Instalment
OCBC 2-Year Floating No Lock-In (MBR) Year 1: 2.3% (MBR + 0.75%)
Year 2: 2.3% (MBR + 0.75%)
Year 3: 2.3% (MBR + 0.75%)
Thereafter: 2.5% (MBR + 0.95%)
OCBC 2-Year Floating No Lock-In (3M SIBOR) Year 1: 2.23% (3M SIBOR + 0.35%)
Year 2: 2.33% (3M SIBOR + 0.45%)
Year 3: 2.38% (3M SIBOR + 0.50%)
Thereafter: 2.48% (3M SIBOR + 0.60%)
OCBC 2-Year Fixed Rate Year 1: 2.48%
Year 2: 2.48%
Year 3: 2.48% (MBR + 0.93%)
Thereafter: 2.48% (MBR + 0.93%)

*updated as of 1 January 2019

One very attractive thing about 2019 OCBC home loans is that there is no penalty for partial repayment during lock-in period if the outstanding loan is above 50% of original loan, and there is also no full redemption penalty.

Comparing to other floating rate (no lock-in) plans on the market right now, OCBC offers the one of the lowest rates in the market.

Our recommendation is to make your decision based on your risk appetite and your expected cashflow over the next two years. If you are a gambler at heart and don’t mind the risk of paying more down the road, go with the SIBOR-linked package. If your risk appetite is zero or you expect cashflow to be a problem and don’t want to risk paying more than you can afford, it might be better to go with the fixed rate.

For most people, however, we would recommend the MBR-linked rate, simply because we feel it’s the closest to a fixed rate you can get, and you’ll probably end up paying less in the first two years compared to the other two.


Should you go with an OCBC home loan package?

OCBC provides the most holistic selection of home loan packages in the market. Whether you want a SIBOR-linked package, one pegged to MBR, or a fixed home loan rate, the choice is yours. OCBC’s housing loan packages are also available to all properties, regardless of purchase price.

And while OCBC’s offerings are not THE cheapest in the market right now, they’re definitely among the top 5, and one should expect them to remain competitive in the years ahead.

Are you interested in applying for an OCBC home loan? Speak to one of our mortgage specialists to find out which bank is offering the best housing loan in Singapore for your particular needs.


Looking for home loans from another bank? Here are the other home loan packages we’ve reviewed.

Best Home Loans Singapore – Most Affordable Housing Loans Reviewed

DBS Home Loan Reviews Singapore

UOB Home Loan Reviews Singapore

BOC Home Loan Reviews Singapore

Maybank Home Loan Review Singapore

Citibank Home Loan Review Singapore

Standard Chartered Home Loan Review Singapore

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Peter Lin

I am the poster boy for reinventing one's self. I've been a broadcast journalist, technical writer, banking customer service officer and a Catholic friar. My life experiences have made me the most cynical idealist you'll ever meet, which is why I'm also the co-founder of a local pop culture website. I believe ignorance is not bliss, and that money is the root of all evil only if you allow it to be.