The market for resale condominiums and private apartments continued to strengthen last month with sale volumes rising and prices climbing for a sixth straight month.
Buyers found these properties more affordable than new launches while sentiment is being boosted by prospects of an economic recovery, note observers.
Resale prices last month rose 1.2 per cent from December and were 2.2 per cent up on the same month last year, flash figures from real estate portal SRX Property noted yesterday.
The number of sales also increased, up 8.6 per cent from December to 1,587 units, making last month the seventh straight month with more than 1,000 resale units transacted.
Sales were also 128.3 per cent higher than for the same month a year earlier and 136.5 per cent up on the five-year average volume for January.
Ms Christine Sun, senior vice-president of research and analytics at OrangeTee & Tie, said more buyers are entering the resale market as they may expect prices to rise further since global economies, including Singapore, are likely to perform better this year.
She added that some buyers turned to the resale market as new-home prices have been climbing in recent months.
"The widening price gap between resale and new properties has made some resale properties in certain locations more attractive to buyers," said Ms Sun.
Likewise, PropNex head of research and content Wong Siew Ying noted that the median price of new non-landed private homes, such as executive condominiums, was about 41 per cent higher than those of their resale counterparts in the fourth quarter of last year.
This was up from the price gap of 36.3 per cent in the third quarter, she said, citing caveats lodged on the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) Realis database.
The median transacted price of new non-landed private homes last month was 35.5 per cent higher than that of resale units sold, according to caveat data.
Ms Wong said: "Given the firm new launch prices, buyers who are price-sensitive or more financially prudent - being mindful of the potential challenges from a protracted Covid-19 pandemic - will be attracted to the more affordable homes in the resale market."
The highest transacted price for a private resale flat last month was $17.7 million for a unit at Le Nouvel Ardmore near Orchard Road.
Top spot in the city fringes went to the $5.9 million paid for a unit at The Interlace in Depot Road, while an apartment at Waterview that resold for $3.3 million led the way in the outside central region.
Ms Wong expects that more than 10,000 resale private homes could be sold this year, thanks to sustained demand from local buyers.
URA data showed 10,729 resale units were sold last year, about 20 per cent more than in 2019.
She added: "In view of the underlying demand, we anticipate that resale prices could continue to inch up, but likely at a slower pace compared with new launches. However, any government intervention in the form of fresh cooling measures will likely snap the growth momentum in the resale market."