How To Read HDB Floor Plan Like A Professional

You probably know how to read a floor plan but what about reading it like a professional? We’ve created this step by step guide for those of you who have a hard time following the blue lines or are looking for ways to understand the data behind each floor plan. Here are the basics of how to read a standard HDB floor plan, from the layout, to room types and sizes, to even what each line means.

What does DB mean in a floor plan?

The distribution board is referred to as your electrical switchboard. The location of major electrical points in your home can be identified.

Ways to find the floor area of an HDB flat?

You may get the floor size of your apartment on the HDB website if you apply for a floor plan. You can find the flat information section on your HDB page.

How do you read floor plan numbers?

The measurements of your internal space are shown by the numbers mentioned around the perimeter of your floor plan. This information is presented in millimeters (mm) to make calculations simpler. 

You can change the measurements from mm to meters because 1,000 mm = 1 meter. In this manner, converting numbers from millimeters to meters is simple. Look at the measures mentioned at the room’s length and width to determine the size of your area.

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How to read HDB floor plan measurements?

  • Floorplans are typically measured in square meters (sq m).
  • HDB floor plan scale 1: 100 is used.

What does HS mean in a floor plan?

A shelter for your house is called a household shelter, also known as a bomb shelter. These are bold structural walls that are to be saved for later demolition. Here are a few other abbreviations that may be helpful to note:

  • W/C: Water closet 
  • W/D: Dryer area
  • BW: Bay window 
  • DB: Distribution board/electrical switchboard 

How to get the floor plan of an HDB flat?

The floor plan of your HDB can be found by following these steps.

  • You can check your floor plan on the HDB website after you buy a home.
  • You have to use a credit card to pay for the application form.
  • The floor plan will be sent to you by email or post.
  • You can download the floor plan immediately after payment with the email option.

It can take longer if you apply for a floor plan that isn’t readily available. The seller or previous owners can share the floor plan with you.

Explanation of walls – Normal, Structural, and Gable-End 

There are three types of walls you can find on a floor plan. Normal walls, structural walls, and gable-end walls are included. 

Normal walls

A thin line divides the rooms. Depending on the design you’re considering, the walls can be demolished or hacked. Be sure to ask for permission from HDB before making any changes.

Gable-end walls

They are typical end-point units and represent a thin line within the wall. You can’t demolish the walls because they are the only barrier between the room and the outside area.

Structural walls

The main walls of your home are important and need to be designed for their function. Without these concrete walls, your home and building can become structurally unsound. These walls are detrimental to maintaining the structural integrity of the house. They cannot be hacked or disrupted.

Explanation of doors – Swing, Folding, and Non-HDB Provided 


Swing doors give you an idea of the direction in the door swings out.


There is a space-saving addition to the floor plan, which is folding doors. They are more compact and can be found at the service yards.

Non-HDB doors

Similar to swing doors, non-HDB doors have a dotted line. HDB doesn’t have doors here, so you can see what it would look like if you added your own.

Types of windows: Casement, Sliding, and Top-Hung 


Similar to the quarter circle symbols used for swing doors, these windows are denoted by a pair or more of quarter circles. They are one of the more common styles of windows in HDB and BTOs.

Sliding windows

Lines with hollows are called sliding windows. You may notice them more clearly in your floor plan’s living and bedroom rooms.

Top-hung windows

Take a look at your bathroom window. It’s none other than a top-hung window. And in a floor plan, it looks like a thin dotted line inside a rectangle. It gives you an idea of where the window will be placed with respect to other elements in the room.

Ceiling height In addition to the size of the window itself, the height of the ceiling above it is important. If the ceiling is high and the window is large, then it might not fit in well. Lighting A lot of factors go into choosing a window. A few of these include lighting, views, privacy, etc. In the case of a top-hung window, you need to take into account the height of the ceiling.

Staircase signs in your floor plan

Although a staircase isn’t common in most HDB flats, it’s still good to know how to find one on a floor plan if you upgrade to a bigger space. On your floor plan, you might see a series of rectangles lined up in a row with an arrow that runs through them, pointing to a direction. This reflects the staircase placement and direction of the landing.

How to notice laundry rack on your floor plan

A group of small lines bunched together next to the service yard. It looks like an aerial view of a laundry rack, that’s what it’s supposed to represent. You can see how the door and laundry rack go hand in hand on your floor plan.

Other elements of a floor plan you should know: 

50/100mm drop

If you see this mentioned anywhere on your floor plan, it simply indicates a drop in height or elevation level between two areas. 

Wall length

This is so that you know which room a door leads to. They are also located in the bottom right corner of the screen. Curtains on the walls and at the floor should not be disregarded. They are a useful technique to add natural light and stay warm in your house during the chilly winter months. The size of your home can be easily determined using this method. The millimeter units for these dimensions are listed.

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