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Thread: is this legal?

  1. #1

    Default is this legal?

    i vaguely remember that doing business at home ( HDB flats, not private property ) is not legal in SG - i.e. turning your house into a shop/commercial studio and helping people to take studio portraits ( and of course charging them for a fee ).

    is this true? if not, are there any conditions that we need to fulfill before we can do 'commercial photography' at home?

    thanks for reading

  2. #2

    Default Re: is this legal?

    yes, you can setup a registered business in HDB flat. Certain conditions must be met such as eg, no heavy industries, smells , noise or excessive human traffic which can inconvenience your neighbours. For the detailed rules and regulations, it's best to refer to HDB

  3. #3

    Default Re: is this legal?

    heres some info..

    http://www.acra.gov.sg/Company/Start...ny+Address.htm

    i guess it shouldnt be a problem if you get permission from hdb.

  4. #4
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: is this legal?

    using HDB as register business address is allow by RCB

    using HDB as home office is allow if you apply with HDB thru area office

    as for conducting photo session in HDB flat, you have to explain in details and get approval.

    the bottom line is, as long you don't create nuisance and your neighbors don't complain.

    hope this help.
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  5. #5

    Default Re: is this legal?

    Quote Originally Posted by AsusEpoxy View Post
    yes, you can setup a registered business in HDB flat. Certain conditions must be met such as eg, no heavy industries, smells , noise or excessive human traffic which can inconvenience your neighbours. For the detailed rules and regulations, it's best to refer to HDB
    hey thanks for the info.

    i'm actually not looking to incorporate as a company. afaik, freelancers need not register with ACRA for such purposes right? (yep, sole proprietorship included)

    "as for conducting photo session in HDB flat, you have to explain in details and get approval."

    is this a one-off thing or per session? my idea is to treat the flat just like a studio in a mall, albeit without the rental charges.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Kit's Avatar
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    Default Re: is this legal?

    A bit rusty on this but I remembered that you also need to lodge an application with URA to register a residential address for business usage as well.

  7. #7

    Default Re: is this legal?

    i thought they were encouraging working from home a while back.

  8. #8
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: is this legal?

    Quote Originally Posted by tester99 View Post
    hey thanks for the info.

    i'm actually not looking to incorporate as a company. afaik, freelancers need not register with ACRA for such purposes right? (yep, sole proprietorship included)

    "as for conducting photo session in HDB flat, you have to explain in details and get approval."

    is this a one-off thing or per session? my idea is to treat the flat just like a studio in a mall, albeit without the rental charges.
    you need to register your business with ACRA if you want to conduct business.
    Every person, before carrying on business in Singapore, must register with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) except for those who come under the list of exempted categories under Section 4 of the Business Registration Act, Cap. 32.
    Individuals and companies, being “legal identities”, may set up and own a sole-proprietorship or partnership. A sole-proprietorship or partnership, not being a separate legal entity, cannot register another sole-proprietorship or partnership. A foreign company also cannot register a sole-proprietorship or partnership unless it has registered itself under the Companies Act, Cap. 50.
    Carrying on a business connotes some continuity in the activity carried out. Failure to register is an offence punishable with a fine of up to $5,000, or imprisonment for a term not exceeding twelve months or both.
    Furthermore, it also results in the rights under any contract being unenforceable by the person who did not register, unless that person applies to the court for relief or permission to enforce such rights. It would therefore be in the interest of all persons intending to carry on business in Singapore, and those who are not exempted from registration, to register with ACRA.
    Action will be taken against those who have breached the laws under ACRA’s purview. Members of the public may provide information on possible breaches to ACRA in writing.
    If you don't register your business, you can't do business in the HDB flat.
    Eligibility Criteria

    Owners, tenants, authorised occupiers and subtenants of HDB flats, who are 18 years and above, are eligible to apply under the scheme.

    To qualify for the Home Office Scheme, the following conditions must be met.

    Person Conducting the Business

    The person conducting the business must be the flat owner, authorised occupier or approved subtenant of the flat.

    Registration of Business

    The business has to be registered with the Accounting & Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) unless it is exempted from registration under the Business Registration Act.

    why don't you Just follow the LAW?


    .



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  9. #9
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Default Re: is this legal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kit View Post
    A bit rusty on this but I remembered that you also need to lodge an application with URA to register a residential address for business usage as well.
    Register with URA for private properties (condos). Register with HDB for HDB flats. If you are doing it out of a private property like upstairs of a shophouse that can be both residential or commercial, you need to register with URA for a change of use.

    List of businesses allowed and not allowed are all listed. And it seems you can only use a home office/small office for a limited period of time only (1 or 2 years or something. I can't remember).

  10. #10
    Moderator daredevil123's Avatar
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    Default Re: is this legal?

    Quote Originally Posted by tester99 View Post
    hey thanks for the info.

    i'm actually not looking to incorporate as a company. afaik, freelancers need not register with ACRA for such purposes right? (yep, sole proprietorship included)

    "as for conducting photo session in HDB flat, you have to explain in details and get approval."

    is this a one-off thing or per session? my idea is to treat the flat just like a studio in a mall, albeit without the rental charges.
    The only people who are not required to register a business entity are hawkers, taxi drivers and professionals. And by the term "professionals", the government refers to people like doctors and lawyers. read the the list in ACRA website.

    You can try to wriggle your way around by saying you are a part time worker and work by the hour. But if you go that way, you cannot advertise your services and do any real sales activities. Which means you cannot offer packages, and you will always have to work for a flat hourly rate. Even then, it is a grey area and they authorities can still ding you for it.

  11. #11

    Default Re: is this legal?

    yup, i read the list before some time back - but like you say, all is not black and white in the case of the SG law system, since it's about judge-made law.

    thanks for the input guys, i'll take it from here.

  12. #12

    Default Re: is this legal?

    Quote Originally Posted by daredevil123 View Post
    The only people who are not required to register a business entity are hawkers, taxi drivers and professionals. And by the term "professionals", the government refers to people like doctors and lawyers. read the the list in ACRA website.
    also professional (gambler, assassins, loan sharks, drug lords )
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  13. #13

    Default Re: is this legal?

    Quote Originally Posted by catchlights View Post
    you need to register your business with ACRA if you want to conduct business.
    If you don't register your business, you can't do business in the HDB flat.


    why don't you Just follow the LAW?

    .

    LOL.

    TS - i dont understand why it is so difficult to pick up the phone, call HDB and channel all your queries to them! this is what i would do at least. in any case, they are the authorities.

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