Prices of completed private homes up 0.1% in Jan

High-rise private apartment condominiums in the Scotts Road and Cairnhill area.
High-rise private apartment condominiums in the Scotts Road and Cairnhill area. PHOTO: ST FILE

The new year did not bring much cheer to home owners in the core central region as prices there continued to fall.

Overall, the NUS Singapore Residential Price Index (SRPI) found that prices of completed private apartments rose 0.1 per cent in January from December.

But the rises were uneven. While prices in the non-central region rose 0.5 per cent and prices of small units rose 0.6 per cent, central region prices slid 0.5 per cent.

The index also showed prices in December fell more steeply than previously estimated. Prices fell a revised 0.6 per cent in December over November, more than the estimated 0.4 per cent.

The capture of more transactions resulted in downward revisions across all four of its indices: the overall SRPI, that for central units, non-central units and small units.

Starting from the January 2016 indexes published yesterday, the Institute of Real Estate Studies (IRES) has introduced a new basket, the eighth in the series, to include newer projects.

It now comprises 574 private residential projects across 26 postal districts that were completed between October 2003 and September 2015.

This is up from 429 private residential projects across 25 postal districts - and completed between October 2003 and September 2013 - in the previous basket.

Some of the newer projects taken into account are D'Leedon, Skyline Residences and Silversea.

This latest basket does not remove the projects that were completed between October 2003 and September 2005, noted Associate Professor Lum Sau Kim of IRES.

"Given the lower transaction volumes in the previous year, this increases the number of price signals for computing the SRPI suite of indices," he said.

Small units - which IRES defines as those up to 506 sq ft - are also better represented this time around. Small units now account for 6.4 per cent of the total number of units, or about 7,120, up from 3,092 previously.

The total number of units under coverage has risen from 78,877 to 111,811.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 01, 2016, with the headline 'Prices of completed private homes up 0.1% in Jan'. Print Edition | Subscribe