SINGAPORE - Prices of Housing Board resale flats inched up for the 29th straight month in November, with more units changing hands as the market adjusted to the latest round of cooling measures.
HDB resale flat prices grew at a slightly faster pace of 0.6 per cent in November compared with October’s 0.5 per cent, according to flash data from real estate portals 99.co and SRX on Thursday.
Prices were up 10 per cent year on year.
The number of HDB resale flats sold rebounded in November, rising by 8.9 per cent to an estimated 2,140 units, in contrast with the 24.1 per cent decline seen the month before.
However, compared with November 2021, transactions were down by 17.3 per cent.
Property analysts attributed the momentum gain to buyers returning to the market after having digested the cooling measures that kicked in on Sept 30.
Ms Christine Sun, senior vice-president of research and analytics at OrangeTee & Tie, said buyers could have brought forward purchases ahead of the December holiday period and Chinese New Year.
“However, the rebound may not necessarily indicate a market recovery as sales are still lower than in the two months prior to the measures,” she added.
PropNex Realty head of research and content Wong Siew Ying noted that despite the curbs, which were aimed at encouraging greater prudence among home buyers amid high interest rates, prices remained resilient in November.
“We think HDB resale prices are not likely to see a significant downward correction as tight resale stock and stable demand will help to keep prices relatively steady,” she said.
Price increases were seen across all flat types, with prices of executive units climbing the most at 2.5 per cent. While prices in non-mature estates increased by 1 per cent, those in mature estates dipped slightly, by 0.1 per cent.
Many HDB owners have become more realistic in their asking prices, which could have led to stable flat prices and more flats sold in November, said Huttons Asia chief executive Mark Yip.
Fewer million-dollar flats were transacted in November, with 26 HDB resale flats changing hands for at least $1 million, down from 40 units in October. The number of million-dollar HDB flats sold comprises 1.2 per cent of the total resale volume in November.
The 15-month period that private property downgraders have to sit out before buying a resale flat after selling their private properties could have led to the decline, said Ms Wong.
The number of million-dollar flats sold in November was the lowest since April.
Among the 26 million-dollar flats sold, five were in the central area, and three each in Woodlands and Toa Payoh. The most expensive resale flat was a five-room, 114 sq m unit at The Peak @ Toa Payoh, which sold for $1.345 million.
In non-mature estates, a 189 sq m executive flat in Woodlands Street 83 fetched the highest price, changing hands for $1.1 million.
Ms Sun noted that there were five million-dollar transactions in non-mature estates in November, a record for such estates.
“This indicates that a growing number of buyers see value in and are willing to pay top dollar for big flats in the suburbs,” she said.
So far, 342 resale flats have changed hands for at least $1 million in 2022, far exceeding the 259 transactions in 2021, said Ms Wong. She noted that most of these flats were in the central area, Bishan, Toa Payoh and Bukit Merah.
“However, the number of such flats sold still accounted for a small fraction of overall HDB resale transactions, at about 1.4 per cent of the total in the first 11 months of 2022,” she said.
She expects HDB resale prices to rise by 9 per cent to 10 per cent for the whole of 2022, and thinks that prices may see further growth in 2023, though at a slower pace.