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Highest home sales in 4 years – March 2017

New private residential homes saw a 82 percent surge as we concluded March 2017 and this is a four year high since the adjustment of the property cooling measures introduced back in 2009. To sum it all up,
the private home sales saw 1,780 units sold in the month of March 2017, an 82 percent increase compared to February’s 979 and this is excluding the sales of executive condominiums.

People in the property industry say that the latest figures released by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) points to the gradual recovery in the private residential property segment and is a huge boost to the market sentiment. The overall strong sales figures in March concluded Q1 2017 sales of the private homes at 3,141 and this is the first time crossing the 3,000 units mark since Q1 2013.

“This is reflective of a broad-based improvement in demand, with buyers not just attracted to newly launched projects, but also to those launched previously as well,”

Ong Teck Hui, JLL’s National Director of Research and Consultancy.

“The recent easing of the Seller’s Stamp Duty (SSD) and the Total Debt Servicing Ratio (TDSR) would have had a favourable effect on March’s new-home sales,” notes Ong.

The government unexpectedly announced last month that it will reduce the SSD holding period for homes bought from March 11 to three years instead of four. It will also cut rates for each tier by four percentage points.

“With liquidity aplenty, waning concerns over the supply situation, buyers are coming back to the primary market in droves, as many are buying into the idea that Singapore’s residential market is moving a step closer to a turning point,”

Christine Li, research director at Cushman & Wakefield.

The new-home sales level of 1,780 units achieved last month has not been seen since June 2013, when about 1,806 units were sold. Monthly sales cooled substantially after the government implemented the TDSR framework in June 2013.

Strong demand in new projects

The strong performance came on the back of two private residential project launches: Grandeur Park Residences and Park Place Residences at PLQ. Both projects accounted for about 40% of the sales.

Grandeur Park Residences was the top seller, with 484 units sold at a median price of $1,406 psf, followed by Park Place Residences at PLQ, with 217 units sold at a median price of $1,805 psf. Parc Riviera came in third with 163 units sold at a median price of $1,246 psf.

Property consultants believe March’s sales momentum is likely to continue over the next few months when several new projects such as Seaside Residences in Siglap and Artra in Redhill are due to hit the market. Despite the surge in sales and the positive sentiment, market watchers say it is still premature to conclude that private home prices will rise this year.

Head of research for SLP International Property Nicholas Mak says some developers may try to increase prices to test the market, but it may not be enough to move overall prices because only select well-located projects will be able to pull this off.

For the EC segment, a total of 578 units were sold in March — 76% higher than the 329 units sold in February. Qingjian Realty sold 187 units at iNz Residence, the first EC project launched this year, at a median price of $774 psf. This was followed by Sol Acres, which saw 147 units sold at a median price of $794 psf, and The Visionaire with 43 units sold at a median price of $811 psf.

Cushman’s Li expects sales momentum to remain relatively strong in the 1,000 range due to the expected launches of Seaside Residences, Alexandra View, Bukit Batok West Avenue 6, Martin Place and Fernvale Road. The full-year new-home sales figure is estimated to range from 8,000 to 10,000 in absence of an economic recession.

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