Planning to buy a property in the Year of the Goat? Research firm HSR has some tips

Private condominiums and HDB flats in the eastern part of Singapore. Private property prices tend to rise in the years of the Dragon, Rooster and Pig, according to a tongue-in-cheek report from HSR Research linking property prices to Chinese astrolog
Private condominiums and HDB flats in the eastern part of Singapore. Private property prices tend to rise in the years of the Dragon, Rooster and Pig, according to a tongue-in-cheek report from HSR Research linking property prices to Chinese astrology. -- PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Private property prices tend to rise in the years of the Dragon, Rooster and Pig, according to a tongue-in-cheek report from HSR Research linking property prices to Chinese astrology, out just in time for Chinese New Year.

And if you happen to be born in the Year of the Rabbit, Monkey and Horse, you can forget about being a property agent. But if you are born in the year of the Dragon, Tiger and Goat, you should give it a try.

In the Chinese lunar calendar, each year corresponds to a different animal, and there are 12 animals in all. The coming Chinese New Year, which starts on Feb 19, marks the start of the year of the goat.

In a compilation of fun facts for the Chinese New Year, HSR classified its sales agents based on commission received from 2012 to 2014 and their Chinese Zodiac signs.

It found that its sales agents born in the year of the Dragon, Tiger and Goat made up the largest proportion of its top producers, while those born in the year of the Rabbit, Monkey and Horse made up the smallest share.

The property research unit also analysed URA Private Residential Property Price Index from 1979 to 2014.

The data showed that on average, property prices rose the most (41 per cent) in the year of the Rooster, which was in 1981, 1993 and 2005.

Then come the years of the pig in 1983, 1995 and 2007. Prices rose in all three years, spiking by 18 per cent on average.

In the last three Dragon years (1988, 2000, 2012), prices went up by an average of 10 per cent over the previous year.

Prices "consistently declined" in the year of the Ox (1985, 1997 and 2009), the report said.

As for the coming year of the Goat, no consistent trend was found in the last three cycles. Prices went up in 1979 and 1991, but declined in 2003.

In an analysis of rental index for private homes from 1991 to 2014, rents went up in the years of the dragon, rat and pig, HSR said.

The report also found that eight-floor units in three new developments commanded premium prices.

At condominiums d'Leedon, Parc Vera and Seastrand, an apartment on the eighth floor could cost up to 3.7 per cent more than one on the fourth storey. This was a larger difference than the average 0.4 per cent price premium per storey.

This is because "some Chinese consider eight to be an auspicious number as it sounds similar to the Chinese word for prosper and four to be an unlucky number as it sounds like the word 'death'", the report said.

Just a coincidence? Well, they do say the property market moves in cycles.

chuimin@sph.com.sg

rachaelb@sph.com.sg