0.1% dip in private apartment resale prices last month

Resale prices of private apartments here inched down 0.1 per cent last month from August, according to SRX Property's flash estimates released yesterday.

The fall came on the back of a revised 0.1 per cent increase in August, half the estimated 0.2 per cent rise flagged earlier.

From September last year, resale prices are down about 1.2 per cent - and 6.7 per cent below the recent peak in January last year.

The relatively small price change in the past year indicates home owners are not under any great pressure to sell as interest rates are still fairly low, said Mr Desmond Sim, CBRE research head for Singapore and South-east Asia. "There is no panic in the market to have many resales taking place. Resale volume has even gone down."

Resale volume for private apartments fell 10.6 per cent last month from August to an estimated 446 units, according to SRX Property. This was 4.7 per cent lower than September last year.

"The market suddenly went quiet last month, which could have been partly due to haze - foreign buyers were not travelling here; and there was an overlap with the Hungry Ghost Festival as well. The general election also deflected the local buyers' attention from purchases," said Mr Alan Cheong, Savills Singapore research head.

The core central region (CCR) posted a price rise of about 2.8 per cent from August.

Median resale prices of non-landed private homes rose 5.1 per cent from August in District 9, and 0.2 per cent in District 11, said Ms Elaine Chow, Chestertons research head.

Still, year on year, median resale prices of private apartments are down 5.7 per cent in District 9 but are up 0.6 per cent in District 11.

On the other hand, prices on the city fringe fell 1.4 per cent, while those in the suburbs fell 0.9 per cent, said SRX Property.

Mr Cheong noted that while the trough for CCR prices was apparently reached in May or June, prices have been fluctuating for the city fringe and suburbs due to the many new projects launched in these areas. In contrast, very few of the recent launches are in the CCR.

Overall, prices inched up in July and August, reflecting rising stability in the prices of completed properties, said Mr Ong Kah Seng, R'ST Research director. He said last month's price dip was within expectations given the seasonal cooling in home-buying sentiment.

"The overall flattish price trend for (this half of the year) will likely persist into the next half-year."

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 14, 2015, with the headline 0.1% dip in private apartment resale prices last month. Subscribe