June condo resale prices rise at slower pace

Volume falls for second straight month amid tighter Covid-19 measures

Condo resales may rebound this month as viewing curbs have been further eased and some people may rush to close a deal before the start of the Hungry Ghost Festival next month, said OrangeTee & Tie's Christine Sun.
Condo resales may rebound this month as viewing curbs have been further eased and some people may rush to close a deal before the start of the Hungry Ghost Festival next month, said OrangeTee & Tie's Christine Sun.ST PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI

Resale prices for non-landed private homes grew at a slower pace last month as the number of transactions fell for the second straight month amid tighter Covid-19 measures.

Condominium resale prices edged up 0.1 per cent month on month in June, easing from a 0.9 per cent increase in May, according to flash data from real estate portal SRX released yesterday.

Year on year, resale prices were up 6.8 per cent from June last year, with increases across all regions.

Prices rose 6.2 per cent in the core central region or prime areas, while prices in the rest of central region or city fringes climbed 6.5 per cent. Prices in the outlying areas or outside central region rose 7.1 per cent.

An estimated 1,510 units were resold last month, a 12.6 per cent drop from 1,727 units in May.

This was likely due to restrictions under Singapore's heightened alert period, which saw fewer in-person viewings allowed, said Ms Christine Sun, senior vice-president of research and analytics at real estate firm OrangeTee & Tie.

Mr Mark Yip, chief executive of Huttons Asia, called the decline in transactions "surprising as the other segments of the market have seen a rebound in activities after the lifting of viewing restrictions".

"We suspect it could be due to price resistance from buyers resulting in lower volume and flattish prices and lower capital gains in June," he said.

Mr Nicholas Mak, ERA Singapore's head of research and consultancy, noted that in comparison, transactions for Housing Board resale flats rose 17.5 per cent month on month in June. "The main reason for the difference is that (the fear of missing out) among HDB flat buyers is not as strong among buyers of resale condos, if any," he said.

"The robust demand for HDB resale flats is driven by the longer wait for subsidised, new Build-To-Order HDB flats. Although the delivery date of new condo projects that are under development will face the same construction delays that plagued the entire real estate market, the prices of new condo units are not subsidised."

Despite the dip in volume, condo resale transactions last month were still above the past 12-month average of 1,406 units and higher than the monthly sales from June last year to February this year, noted Ms Sun.

SRX data showed transactions were 198.4 per cent higher than in June last year, and 83.9 per cent more than the five-year average volumes for the month of June.

Ms Sun added that resales may rebound this month since viewing restrictions have been further eased and some people may rush to close a deal before the start of the Hungry Ghost Festival next month.

Mass-market homes made up about 58 per cent of the private resale volume last month, noted PropNex head of research and content Wong Siew Ying.

A number of new mass-market launches that are slated to come on soon should provide more opportunities for home buyers, she added.

"However, the price gap between new launches, excluding ECs (executive condominiums), and resale properties could still see some quantum-sensitive buyers gravitate towards the resale market," she said. "In addition, some buyers may prefer ready-built homes in the resale market to avoid uncertainties around completion delays for new projects."

The highest transacted price for a resale condo unit last month was $19.8 million at Sculptura Ardmore, a freehold condominium in District 10. Within the city fringes, the highest transacted price was $5.7 million for a freehold unit at Regency Suites in Kim Tian Road.

Within the outside central region, a unit at Clementi Woods scored the highest transacted price at $2.8 million.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 14, 2021, with the headline 'June condo resale prices rise at slower pace'. Subscribe