A local registered office address is one of the requirements in registering a business in Singapore. This address will be used in all official business correspondence, including sending and receiving important documents.
Since some businesses do not require a commercial space in order to operate, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) of Singapore introduced the Home Office Scheme in 2003 with the aim of helping small-scale businesses lower costs by cutting rental out of the equation. Through this scheme, entrepreneurs can register and utilize private residential properties and Housing & Development Board (HDB) flats as an official place of business as long as they remain compliant to the restrictions, conditions and performance criteria set by the URA.
Registering for a Home Office in Singapore
Under the Home Office scheme, owners, tenants and occupiers of private residential properties and HDBs who are interested in operating a small scale business in their residence may register. You may hire 2 employees who are non-residents of the property.
For authorized occupiers and tenants, a written consent from owners must be obtained prior to registering for a home office. Once approved, a permit will be issued by URA which will remain valid as long as the small business remains operational.
Take note that having a registered local office address is just one of the requirements for starting a business in Singapore. You still have to register with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) and apply for necessary licenses of permits before you start operating the business. For a guide on starting a business in the city-state, read How to Register a Company in Singapore for an overview of the requirements along with the process before, during, and after the company registration.
Conditions & Restrictions Business Owners Must Adhere To:
In order to ensure that businesses using home offices remain small in scale and prevent any disturbance or inconvenience for residents in the neighborhood, URA implemented the following conditions and restrictions:
– The business owners may only hire at most 2 non-resident employees to guarantee that operations are kept small.
– No form of signage or advertisement may be displayed in the home office premise. This is implemented to avoid affecting neighbors or altering the residential property’s character.
– To prevent any threat to the health of everyone in the neighborhood, the business must not generate loud noise, odor, smoke or any dust waste matter.
– It must not fall under URA’s list of businesses that cannot register for a home office. The majority of the businesses that are not allowed to register under the HO scheme are those that may possibly generate a high volume of human and vehicular traffic, causing inconvenience to other residents. Running a retail business is a good example for this. For examples, businesses that can be allowed under the HO, read this guideline for home-based businesses allowed in private residential properties and HDB’s.
Registered Office Address in Singapore
If you are looking for alternatives for a home office, we offer a premier registered office address situated at the heart of Singapore – the Central Business District. You will be able to use this address for all your official business correspondence. If you need more information, get in touch with us and we can schedule a free consultation.