Condo and HDB rents down in Sept: SRX

Number of private, HDB units leased also drop from August

The sluggish rental market for both private and HDB properties is showing no signs of improving, going by flash data from real estate portal SRX yesterday.

Rents for condominiums and private apartments last month dipped by 0.4 per cent from August. They were unchanged in August, from an earlier SRX estimate of a 0.1 per cent dip.

After falling far from their peak and then stagnating, private rentals have barely budged from a year ago - they are down by 0.1 per cent from September last year. Compared with the record high in January 2013, they are weaker by 19.4 per cent.

Going by location, private rents in the prime or core central region (CCR) fell by 0.5 per cent month on month in September. Rents in the suburbs or outside central region (OCR) declined by 0.7 per cent, while rents in the city fringes or rest of central region (RCR) were unchanged.

Year on year, RCR and OCR rents rose 0.5 per cent and 0.3 per cent respectively, but CCR rents dropped by 1.6 per cent.

SRX said the number of condo and private apartments leased fell by 14.8 per cent from 4,929 in August to 4,199 units last month. Year on year, however, rental volume last month was 1.8 per cent higher than the 4,126 units in September last year.

POSSIBLE REASON FOR FALL IN DEMAND

Rental demand for private and HDB markets could have fallen due to the slight decline in foreign employment this year, especially (in) the construction and marine shipyard sectors. The permanent resident and non-resident population in Singapore had also dipped year on year.

MS CHRISTINE SUN, OrangeTee & Tie's head of research & consultancy, on last month's figures.

Meanwhile, HDB rents fell 0.5 per cent from August, after posting two straight months of slight gains. Year on year, they are down by 1 per cent from September last year, and off by 15.6 per cent from their last peak in August 2013.

SRX revised upwards the monthly change in August HDB rents from a 0.1 per cent to a 0.3 per cent rise.

Fewer HDB flats were rented out last month, with leasings down 3.8 per cent to 1,690 units from 1,757 in August, SRX said. Year on year, last month's rental volume fell 0.9 per cent from the 1,705 units rented in September last year.

Rents for five-room flats inched up 0.1 per cent month on month. Meanwhile, rents for three-room, four-room and executive flats decreased by 1.2 per cent, 0.3 per cent and 0.6 per cent respectively.

Rents in mature estates fell 0.9 per cent month on month, while those in non-mature estates slid 0.1 per cent. Year on year, rents of mature estates last month slipped 0.9 per cent and rents of non-mature estates fell 1.2 per cent.

Commenting on last month's figures, OrangeTee & Tie's head of research & consultancy Christine Sun said: "Rental demand for private and HDB markets could have fallen due to the slight decline in foreign employment this year, especially (in) the construction and marine shipyard sectors. The permanent resident and non-resident population in Singapore had also dipped year on year."

Private rents in the third quarter have dipped by 0.1 per cent from the previous three months, while HDB rents edged up by 0.1 per cent.

SRX said its quarter-on-quarter calculations are based on the index average of the three months in the third quarter and that of the preceding quarter.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 11, 2018, with the headline 'Condo and HDB rents down in Sept: SRX'. Print Edition | Subscribe