HDB resale market stays flat in October

The Housing Board resale market continued its long stagnation last month, SRX Property flash figures revealed yesterday.

Prices slipped a marginal 0.1 per cent and volume rose by 0.4 per cent, compared with September.

Experts said the figures are unsurprising and represent continued market stabilisation.

Prices of five-room flats fell 0.9 per cent, more than offsetting a 0.6 per cent rise for three-room flats and a 0.8 per cent rise for executive flats. Prices for four-room flats remained the same.

Overall, the 0.1 per cent fall last month was the same for flats in both mature and non-mature estates. Resale prices were also 0.5 per cent lower than a year ago.

The HDB resale market, which began a gradual decline in 2013, has been largely stable for the past two years. Monthly prices have not moved by more than 1 per cent in either direction since August 2014.

Meanwhile, resale volume inched up 0.4 per cent last month, with 1,673 flats sold compared with 1,666 the month before.

But this was 4.2 per cent lower than the 1,746 units which changed hands in October last year.

R'ST Research director Ong Kah Seng said the latest figures reflect an ongoing trend of stability in the HDB resale market. He noted that just as a 0.7 per cent rise in July was followed by a 0.7 per cent dip in August, a 0.1 per cent rise in September has now been followed by a 0.1 per cent correction.

The market is in an "ultimate compromise situation" between buyers and sellers, he added.

PropNex Realty chief executive officer Ismail Gafoor said that such minor or non-existent price movements were likely to continue.

But he added that transaction volume could rise in the coming months as buyers stop holding out for lower prices.

"Resale buyers who have remained on the sidelines should by now understand that the current price level is the new norm," said Mr Ismail.

With the Government closely monitoring the housing market situation, it is unlikely that prices will fall much further, he added.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 04, 2016, with the headline 'HDB resale market stays flat in October'. Print Edition | Subscribe