HDB resale prices jumped 12.7% in 2021, record 259 million-dollar flats sold

The highest price on record is for a $1.36 million five-room flat at Natura Loft in Bishan sold last month. PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO

SINGAPORE - The Housing Board resale market ended 2021 on a fresh high as prices rose 12.7 per cent, the steepest full-year climb since 2010.

Data released on Friday (Jan 28) showed that a total of 259 HDB resale flats changed hands for at least $1 million last year, the highest number of such flats on record so far and more than three times the 82 units in 2020.

Of these, 40 units transacted for at least $1.2 million in 2021, compared with seven such units in 2020.

The highest price on record is for a $1.36 million five-room Design, Build and Sell Scheme flat at Natura Loft in Bishan sold last month.

The steady clip of million-dollar flats changing hands has hardly slackened in 2022 despite property cooling measures introduced in December, with 24 such resale units already sold as at Jan 28.

The measures to cool both private and public housing prices came in response to the hot property market.

Since Dec 16, the loan-to-value (LTV) limit for housing loans from HDB has been tightened from 90 per cent to 85 per cent, among other measures, to encourage buyers to exercise greater financial prudence.

The 12.7 per cent full-year HDB resale price increase, which edged up slightly from flash data released earlier this month, is the highest annual growth recorded since 2010, when prices grew by 14.1 per cent.

In 2020, HDB resale prices climbed 5 per cent in the whole year.

In the fourth quarter of 2021 alone, HDB resale flat prices grew 3.4 per cent, outpacing the 2.9 per cent growth in the third quarter and 3 per cent in the second quarter of last year.

A total of 31,017 HDB resale flats changed hands in 2021, up 25.3 per cent from the 24,748 units in 2020.

Five-room flats in the mature town of Queenstown were the most expensive in the fourth quarter, with a median price of $935,000, up from the median price of $926,000 in the third quarter of last year.

This was followed by Toa Payoh, where the median price of a five-room flat in the fourth quarter was $894,900, up from $818,000 in the third quarter.

HDB data did not provide the fourth-quarter median resale price of five-room flats in the central area, which covers The Pinnacle @ Duxton.

The median resale price of a four-room flat in the central area is recorded as $972,500 in the fourth quarter, up from $950,000 in the third quarter.

Data showed that 75 units at The Pinnacle @ Duxton changed hands for at least $1 million last year, making it the public housing project with the most number of such deals.

Mr Mohan Sandrasegeran, research and content analyst at real estate agency Ohmyhome, said median HDB resale prices of various flat types had risen across the board last year, with five-room units proving to be the most popular.

"The work-from-home culture has invigorated the demand for a bigger space," he said.

Data showed that 75 units at The Pinnacle @ Duxton changed hands for at least $1 million last year. ST PHOTO: JASON QUAH

Ms Christine Sun, senior vice-president of research and analytics at real estate firm OrangeTee & Tie, said the HDB resale market may see slower price growth this year as buyers become more unwilling to fork out high prices with rising mortgage rates and inflation on the horizon.

"In general, buyers may exercise more prudence in their home purchases. Although not all buyers are affected by the new cooling measures, some may think twice about paying record prices for certain flats," she added.

"The slower price growth this year may bring reprieve to some buyers as last year's rapidly rising home values have priced out families with little cash savings."

HDB has stepped up its flat supply and plans to launch up to 23,000 Build-To-Order (BTO) flats a year in 2022 and 2023, across mature and non-mature towns, to cater to the strong demand.

The board said it is prepared to launch up to 100,000 flats in total from 2021 to 2025, should demand calls for it.

Next month, HDB will offer about 3,900 BTO flats in towns such as Geylang, Kallang/Whampoa, Tengah and Yishun.

In May, about 5,200 to 5,700 BTO flats in towns such as Bukit Merah, Jurong West, Queenstown, Tampines, Toa Payoh and Yishun will be on offer.

The projects are under review, and more details will be announced when ready.

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