Benefits / Pros / Advantages and Cons / Disadvantages of becoming Permanent Resident (PR) in Singapore

Click here to learn more about Singapore Permanent Residency in details such as eligibility, processing, guidelines, etc.
Click here to learn from the SUMMARY list of Privileges of Permanent Residency (PR) and comparison with foreigners (EP/PEP/EntrePass).
Click here to learn from the detailed list of ONLY ADVANTAGES / Benefits / Pros of becoming Permanent Resident or obtaining Permanent Residence (PR) status in Singapore.
Click here to learn from the detailed list of ONLY DISADVANTAGES / Cons of becoming Permanent Resident or obtaining Permanent Residence (PR) status in Singapore.

Here we go with full detailed list of Favourable Features / Benefits / Pros / Advantages and Unfavourable Features / Drawbacks / Cons / Disadvantages of becoming Permanent Resident (PR) in Singapore

Please read the below Remarks before learning the features of PR in Singapore:
  • When you are considering for applying Permanent Residence in Singapore, you may be interested to know the factual advantages and disadvantages. Every person will weigh the advantages and disadvantages at least somewhat differently, and nobody else can decide which characteristics of PR are more or less important to you.
  • The below information is divided into three sections: Advantages, Disadvantages and Combination of Advantages/Disadvantages which are subject to be determined by any individual whether as an advantage, disadvantage or neutral.
  • Some advantages may be disadvantages to other individuals and vice versa being the reasons that the features depend on the individual’s personal situations.
  • This comparison, pros and cons list is not exhaustive.
  • The rules and regulations are subject to change by the Government of Singapore.
  • The information was updated on 25-Apr-2019 from the source of various Government Authorities in Singapore.
  • You may wish to visit the relevant authorities’ websites for up to date rules, guidelines, policies, acts and laws in Singapore.
  • You may wish to share your own opinions and experiences with us by emailing to biz@achibiz.com for our analysis and further updates.
Favourable Features / Benefits / Pros / Advantages of becoming PR in Singapore
Comparison with “If not situation” / “Foreigners” / “Citizens”
Immigration: Re-Entry Permit (REP):
  • Permanent Residents have the most stable immigration status in Singapore. They may live and/or work in Singapore as long as they wish however REP is still subject to renewal once every five years.
  • In case your REP is not successful, you may be facing many difficulties such as disposing your properties, relocation, schooling of your children, etc
LTVP for Family Members:
  • A dependant or spouse of a PR can still enjoy good immigration stability with an option to apply with Long-Term Visit Pass (LTVP).
  • By holding LTVP, a place in public school is a challenge. However, you can still send to international schools which are with many varieties.
Employment for Family Members:
  • The dependants who hold LTVP may apply for Letter Of Consent (LOC) for employment if they find the jobs.
  • Due to strictly adopting the policy of Fair Employment Practices (FEP), it may be a kind of challenge to find the jobs for LTVP holders when it is compared with LTVP+ holders which is applicable only to citizen’s dependants.
PR for Family Members:
  • An adult PR can sponsor certain immediate family members such as spouse and unmarried child aged below 21 born within the context of a legal marriage to, or have been legally adopted by a PR for Permanent Residence to allow them to immigrate to Singapore.
  • The approval for family members is not guaranteed, even for citizen sponsors, and it will depend on financial and many other factors.
The only realistic path to citizenship for foreigners:
  • After a waiting period of two years, PRs can apply for Singapore citizenship.
  • Living in Singapore for a period of two years does not mean for the guaranteed Singapore citizenship as it depends on numerous factors such as educational qualifications, financial strength, serving to the community, stable employment, etc.
Employment privileges:
  • PRs are fully employable without requiring work permits or Letters Of Consent (LOC), in practically any full-time or part-time employment including government employment (with the exception of certain sensitive government roles), and can even hold more than one part-time job, freelancing work, contract job, etc.
  • Some Government grants are applicable only for recruiting Singapore citizens.
  • The privileges for employing the PRs may be the secondary next to Citizens when the unemployment exists.
Business privileges:
  • PRs can be self-employed, start their own businesses, be directors and officers of most Singapore companies, own businesses, and otherwise lead full economic lives in Singapore.
  • For some businesses the PRs may not be enjoying the same kind of benefits like citizens.
  • Eg: Deposits may be lower for citizens whereas higher for PRs for commercial units from the Public agencies such as HDB.
Ability to retire in Singapore:
  • Singapore doesn’t offer a “retirement visa.” However, like citizens, PRs can stay in Singapore through their retirement years, living off their savings and pensions.
  • Some of the PRs still prefer to retire in their home countries as they do not have any restrictions to surrender the Re-Entry Permit (REP).
Lower cost infant care and childcare:
  • PR children pay lower fees than foreigners to attend government-supported infant care and childcare centres.
  • PRs may not be eligible for Government subsidies for their children to send to Infant care and childcare centres.
Placement to Public (Government) educational institutions:
  • Citizen children come first, but PR children receive placement priority over foreigners when enrolling in government-run primary and secondary schools.
  • The priority for school placement is for citizens even though the PRs live next to their choice of Schools.
Lower costs to Public (Government) educational institutions:
  • PR children also pay substantially lower fees than foreign children when they enrol for Primary school, Secondary school, Junior College, Polytechnic and University in other words Primary to University.
  • The educational fee for PR children is lower when it is compared with the foreign children.
  • There is a wider gap in educational fees between citizen children and PR children where the formers are enjoying with more subsidies.
Eligible to buy resale HDB leaseholds:
  • After a waiting period of 3 years from obtaining the status of PR, PRs are eligible to buy resale public housing leaseholds for their own occupancy, with limited subletting privileges.
  • PRs are not allowed to buy newer flats or Build-to-Order HDB units which are reserved only for citizens.


Lower stamp duty on real estate purchases:
  • PRs pay a substantially lower Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty rate than foreigner purchasers pay.
  • Citizens required to pay stamp duty from 2nd residential property whereas the PRs required for even the first residential property.
Greater chance of approval to buy landed property:
  • Non-citizens need Government approval to buy so-called landed property in Singapore. PRs have a better chance of approval than foreigners.
  • Such approval is not guaranteed for PRs to buy a landed property.
Eligible to buy resale executive condominiums earlier:
  • Singapore has a few executive condominium developments. PRs are eligible to buy resale executive condos only 5 years after construction (with 94 years or less remaining on the leaseholds) and, unlike foreigners, do not have to wait 10 years.
  • Only Singapore citizens can buy new build executive condos.


Privileges at government-run sports facilities:
  • PRs pay the same, lower rates as citizens for admission to government-run sports facilities such as public swimming pools, and they can also participate in the ActiveSG $ rebate program.
  • This is to encourage the people regardless of the immigration status towards national health policies.
Lower cost privileges at public libraries:
  • PRs pay a nominal one-time registration fee for a basic National Library Board (NLB) membership.
  • The NLB fee is much lesser for PRs than the annual fee for foreigners for more limited privileges.
No need to renew driving licences:
  • PRs can convert their Singapore driving licences after passing the applicable theory and practical driving tests to reflect their new NRIC numbers.
  • Note: Older drivers’ periodic checks still apply.
  • Foreigners required to renew their licenses periodically.
Limited merchant (agencies) privileges:
  • Like citizens, PRs enjoy some limited privileges from merchant institutions.
  • Eg:  Easier to sign longer term contracts for telecommunications services and utilities with lower deposit requirements.
  • Comparatively foreigners required to place higher deposits.
Limited financial privileges:
  • Like citizens, PRs enjoy some limited privileges from financial institutions.
  • Eg: Credit cards are available only to citizens and PRs with lower income criteria.
  • Foreigners required to meet with higher income criteria when it is compared with PRs.
Some privileges when obtaining visas to visit foreign countries:
  • A few foreign countries may offer Singapore PRs greater odds of visa approval, longer term visas, and/or lower cost visas.
  • Foreigners may lack some privileges when obtaining visas to visit foreign countries when comparing with PRs.
Unfavourable Features / Drawbacks / Cons / Disadvantages of becoming PR in Singapore
Justifications to consider positively in case they seem to be negative
Minimum waiting time for purchasing of Public housing (HDB flat):
  • PR couples can be eligible to lease the public HDB flat only after completing the waiting period of three years.
  • In case the spouse is obtaining the PR status much later, then again the PR couple have to wait for the same three years period in order to buy an HDB flat.
  • Eg: The husband is PR w.e.f. Jul-2017. The spouse is PR w.e.f. Apr-2019. Then the couple can be able to purchase an HDB flat only after Mar-2022 which is after completion of 3 years from the date of granting PR to the spouse.
  • This waiting period for PRs is part of cooling measures for real estate market in Singapore by the Government.
  • In order to avail the much lower public housing flat from HDB by purchasing an own flat, it is much worth when we compare with buying a private residential apartment which is generally very expensive in Singapore.
  • Higher Stamp Duty also is applicable for purchasing such private residential apartment.
Lower Supplementary Retirement Scheme (SRS) contribution limits:
  • PRs are more limited than foreigners in how much they can contribute annually to Singapore tax-advantaged SRS accounts.
  • The limitation is due to the privilege of tax relief for CPF for PRs whereas the foreigners do not have such CPF contributions.
Not Ordinarily Resident (NOR) tax break curtail:
  • In certain situations Singapore tax authority viz. IRAS offers a special income tax break to fairly highly compensated (or higher) individuals based in Singapore who spend a lot of time working outside Singapore. This tax break is called the Not Ordinarily Resident (NOR) Scheme.
  • It may be very difficult to meet the full criteria for citizens and PRs to qualify for this particular tax break.
  • NOR tax break is permitted based on the eligibility criteria and periodical reviews by the tax authority IRAS.
Levy or Entrance Fee to casinos in Singapore:
  • Like citizens PRs also must pay the levy to access the two gambling areas / local integrated resorts (IRs).
  • Levy can be chosen based on 24-hour daily levy or annual levy.
  • Comparatively foreigners enjoy the free entrance to access the two gambling areas / local integrated resorts (IRs).
Limitations on other countries’ residence and benefits (exclusivity restrictions):
  • Certain countries may bar Singapore (and other foreign) PRs from obtaining permanent residence and/or from enjoying certain tax breaks (and other benefits) available to residents.
  • It depends on the individual countries’ national policies.
Features or Combination of both Advantages / Benefits / Pros (and Disadvantages / Drawback / Cons, may be in your own opinion) of becoming PR in Singapore
Justifications to consider positively in case they seem to be negative
National Service Liability / Obligations:
  • Under the Enlistment Act, all male Singapore Citizens and Permanent Residents, unless exempted, are required to serve National Service (NS).
  • Following the completion of full-time NS, they will be required to serve up to 40 days of Operationally Ready National Service (ORNS) per year for the duration of their ORNS training cycle, till the age of 50 years (for officers) or 40 years (for other ranks).
  • Male applicants who are granted PR status as a Foreign Student or under their parents’ sponsorship are required to register for NS upon reaching 16½ years old and will be scheduled for enlistment at the earliest opportunity upon reaching 18 years old. Deferment from NS for university studies, regardless of whether such studies have begun, will not be granted. Those who are pursuing full-time GCE ’A’ Level or Polytechnic Diploma studies (or equivalent) may be granted deferment if they meet the deferment conditions stipulated by the Ministry of Defence.
  • Males who are granted Singapore PR, and who were previously Singapore Citizens or Singapore Permanent Residents, are liable to be called up for NS regardless of the scheme under which their PR status was granted.
  • Renouncing or losing one’s PR status without serving or completing full-time NS would have an adverse impact on any immediate or future applications to work, study or live in Singapore, or for Singapore citizenship or PR status. Renouncing or losing one’s PR status without serving or completing full-time NS may also adversely affect any immediate or future applications for renewal of Re-entry Permits made by one’s family members or sponsors.
  • NS is very important – it is the bedrock of Singapore’s national defence because Singapore depends on a very strong defence for her survival, success and security.
  • NS experience also provides young men with plenty of opportunities for personal growth.
  • NS is not only of benefit to defence but also to society as a whole, and to NS men and their families.
  • NS allows many Singaporean men and women a chance to come up close and personal with the tactics, equipment and training that have been created and deployed to safeguard the country. In Singapore, about half of the citizen population have been exposed to some form of tactical scenario or environment during NS.
  • Given the need for a whole-of-nation approach to tackle the rising threat of terrorism, this will not only hold in good stead those called upon to serve in the face of a real threat, but may also play an important role for those who are involved as civilians.
  • Basic training in how to deal with armed threats, how to evade and escape, or provide emergency medical treatment, can be invaluable in unfortunate situations as well.
Waiver of National Service obligations:
  • NS obligations are waived for first generation PRs under the Professionals/Technical Personnel and Skilled Workers (PTS) and Investor Schemes.
  • Males who get granted the PR status under the Professionals/Technical Personnel and Skilled Workers Scheme or the Investor Scheme, are exempted from NS.
Mandatory Central Provident Fund (CPF) contributions:
  • Working PRs and their employers are required to contribute to Singapore’s mandatory national savings program, the Central Provident Fund.
  • CPF is a comparatively safe and high yielding savings vehicle, and both contributions and earnings are Singapore tax free.
  • CPF savings can be used for retirement and also for medical care, medical insurance, and certain real estate purchases in Singapore.
  • Many individuals would voluntarily contribute to CPF if they could.
  • However, there are some possible disadvantages. Take home pay is reduced compared to a similarly situated foreign worker. Also, those PRs with limited non-CPF savings who plan to retire outside Singapore could end up somewhat “over-invested” in CPF assets and thus incur some currency risk.
  • In some rare cases CPF assets and payments might cause reductions in a PR’s entitled benefits from other countries.
  • In Singapore, the Central Provident Fund (CPF) acts as the country’s pension scheme to assist all Singaporeans (including PRs) for their retirement.
  • The save-as-you-earn element employed by the CPF ensures that both time (employees and employers start contributing as soon as a person begin working) and discipline (contributions to CPF are meant for retirement and a few other essential items such as housing and medical bills only) are incorporated.
  • It is important for us not to forget that the primary purpose of CPF is to ensure that we have enough to cover our basic retirement needs.
  • In other words, money that was meant for tomorrow is being used today.
MediShield Life:
  • Singapore requires both citizens and PRs, no matter where they live, to pay MediShield Life premiums (taxes).
  • MediShield Life provides a basic set of medical insurance benefits at public hospitals and public clinics in Singapore.
  • The premiums are set annually and increase with age, and they are paid from CPF Medisave funds (if there are Medisave funds available; otherwise the premiums must be paid out of pocket).
  • The premiums are not adjusted for income except for the very poorest, when they are subsidised or waived, so middle class PRs and citizens pay exactly the same MediShield Life taxes as the wealthiest PRs and citizens.
  • Integrated Shield insurance policies are available to supplement MediShield Life, and since PRs already have mandatory MediShield Life they pay a lower premium for an Integrated Shield plan than foreigners do.
  • Whether a particular PR gets value-for-money from MediShield Life is highly situational.
  • Comparatively MediShield Life is not applicable for foreigners.
  • Foreigners pay higher premiums for Integrated Shield plans than citizens and PRs.
Possible loss of “expatriate” employment compensation elements:
  • If you arrived in Singapore with expatriate compensation provisions then your employer may terminate some or all of those elements once obtaining PR status.
  • Such provisions might include annual home country trips for whole family, housing, children’s education, tax preparation, tax equalization, continuation of home country social insurance and/or retirement savings contributions, pension, seniority privileges, employee stock purchase discounts and stock options, per diems, relocation / repatriation / moving, household goods storage, provision of maid (domestic helper), nannies, transportation / private car, professional society memberships, disability insurance, life insurance, unemployment insurance and severance, global medical insurance, employee income tax, and  medical evacuation, as some examples.
  • You might also lose an implied or even actual right to return to a home country position. On the other hand, you might be entitled to new employment benefits as a fully localized employee in Singapore.
  • Highly compensated executives from developed economies on expat packages tend to suffer a net loss of compensation and benefits when becoming PR, while less highly compensated workers, including those from countries with few employment-related benefits, may find that fully localized employment in Singapore is a net positive.
  • When you compare as a foreign Expatriate with your PR status in Singapore the net losses may not be seeming as huge.
  • When you are a foreigner you are to be tied with only one same employer unless you switch your job / work pass.
  • However, when you obtain your PR status, you are free:
  • To hold multiple employments;
  • To carry on any businesses in Singapore;
  • To purchase the public properties;
  • To avail the subsidies;
  • Etc, etc.
  • Refer to the above advantages to compare with the losses arising out of becoming a local resident (PR) from foreign expatriate.



Common Challenges Faced by Many Applicants

  • Lacking Knowledge of ICA Policies up to date
  • High Rate of Rejections
  • Panicking after listening stories by Friends
  • Unfamiliar with New e-PR application channel
  • Attempting with Insufficient Documents
  • Time Consuming
  • Unsure of the Best Time To Apply
  • Finding difficulty to reach a genuine service provider

ACHI BIZ’s Unique Approach

1) Consultation

  • Face to face consultancy
  • Analysing nucleus family
  • Analysing Educational Qualifications
  • Assessing experiences against qualifications
  • Focusing to strengthen overall profile
  • Updating with current Policies
  • Determination of potential eligibility

2) Submission with ICA

  • One-To-One Case Study
  • Special Attention to more complexities
  • Reviewing of all Documents
  • Processing of all required Documents
  • Checking if any preferred date for submission
  • e-Submission with ICA

3) Post Submission with ICA

  • Regular monitoring of changes in Policies
  • Advices in case of changes in Policies
  • Special Attention to more complexities

4) Rejection and Appeal

  • Advisory on Rejection in case
  • Free Appeals
  • Regular monitoring of changes in Policies during appeal
  • Advices in case of changes in Policies during appeal
  • Determination of potential eligibility on Appeal

Why ACHI BIZ is specialist for SPR?


  • Proficiency in handling
  • Sound Knowledge of Immigration Policies
  • Analysing Policies up to date
  • Gathering information from our other pool of clients too
  • Case studies based on the gathered information
  • Strong competency on documentations
  • Adhere to internal Policy for structured approach
  • Know how to handle with complex cases
  • We strive best towards success
  • Prepare Appeal
  • We are genuine professionals with Trustworthiness & Honesty


Source of Information, Guidelines, Compliance, Laws, Rules & Regulations is from the relevant authorities of Singapore
Details of Source Name of Authorities
  • Corporate matters such as Companies, Businesses, etc
  • The Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA)
  • CPF matters
  • CPF Board
  • Fair Employment Practices (FEP)
  • Tripartite Alliance for Fair and Progressive Employment Practices (TAFEP)
  • Immigration matters & Student Passes
  • Immigration Checkpoints Authority (ICA)
  • Taxation and GST
  • The Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS)
  • Skills Development Levy (SDL)
  • SkillsFuture Singapore Agency
  • Work Passes
  • The Ministry Of Manpower (MOM)
ACHI BIZ is one of the licensed Employment Agencies in Singapore. We will assist your Immigration related applications and appeals at our level best with the regulatory authority The Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) for successful outcome.
Please refer to our GUIDES to know About Singapore or choose SERVICES to meet your requirements or CONTACT us if you wish to avail these or many other services.