Wednesday, May 29, 2024
HomesingaporeHDB Q3 resale prices up 1.3%; lowest volume since 2020

HDB Q3 resale prices up 1.3%; lowest volume since 2020

SINGAPORE: Prices of resale Housing and Development (HDB) flats increased by 1.3 per cent with resale transactions falling to the lowest in three years in the third quarter of 2023.

The Resale Price Index (RPI) for the third quarter of 2023 is 178.5, an increase of 1.3 per cent from the previous quarter, according to data released by HDB on Friday (Oct 27).

This is a drop from the 1.5 per cent growth in the second quarter of 2023, and lower than the average quarterly growth of 2.5 per cent in 2022.

The RPI reflects the general price movements in the resale market.

“We are seeing some moderation in the rate of increase in resale prices since the government’s implementation of a strong pipeline of supply, as well as the cooling measures to promote a stable and sustainable property market,” said HDB.

Among the cooling measures implemented in December 2021, September 2022 and April 2023 were a wait-out period of 15 months before private property owners could purchase a non-subsidised HDB resale flat and the lowering of loan-to-value limit for HDB housing loans.

The third quarter’s figures suggest that sellers in mature estates are reluctant to adjust their selling price down and prefer to wait out for a buyer, said ERA Realty Network’s key executive officer Eugene Lim.

Transaction volume in non-mature estates also fell faster than mature estates, he noted. 

“Generally, it is taking a longer time to sell homes in non-mature estates, but units located near amenities and major transport nodes are still sought after.”

Some buyers decided to sit on the fence while awaiting more clarity in the market before committing, noted Lee Sze Teck, Huttons Asia’s senior director for data analytics. 

“There were some buyers who erred on the side of caution in view of the economic uncertainties and high for longer interest rates.”

He added that 17 out of 26 HDB towns saw price gains in the third quarter, four less when compared to the previous quarter.

“Resale flats in Bukit Timah had the biggest increase of 38.1 per cent, followed by Serangoon 10.8 per cent and Bishan 7.2 per cent,” Mr Lee said.

Quarter Resale Price Index % Change
Q3 2023 178.5 1.3
Q2 2023 176.2 1.5
Q1 2023 173.6 1.0
Q4 2022 171.9 2.3
Q3 2022 168.1 2.6

The resale volume for the third quarter is the lowest in the last three years since the third quarter of 2020, HDB said.

Resale transactions for the third quarter rose by 2.8 per cent, from 6,514 cases in the second quarter to 6,695.

Compared to the third quarter of 2022, resale transactions in the third quarter of 2023 were 11.3 per cent lower, said HDB.

Repeated delays to the Build-to-Order (BTO) launch and news on potential changes to housing policies created uncertainties for sellers and buyers of HDB resale flats in the third quarter of 2023, Mr Lee said.

He added that the third quarter of the year is usually one of the busiest periods for the HDB resale market, and that the pullback from both sellers and buyers led to a smaller-than-expected transaction volume.

The top five most popular HDB towns among buyers in the third quarter of 2023 are Sengkang, Punggol, Woodlands, Yishun and Jurong West, noted Mr Lee.

RENTALS

In the rental market, the number of approved applications to rent out HDB flats rose by 0.1 per cent from 9,842 cases in the previous quarter to 9,852 cases in the third quarter.

Compared to the third quarter of 2022, the number of approved applications in the third quarter of 2023 was 20.3 per cent higher, according to HDB data.

As at the end of the third quarter of 2023, there were 57,797 HDB flats rented out, a 1.7 per cent increase over the previous quarter’s 56,858 units.

“The leasing volume may remain firm in the long term as public housing offers cheaper rents than private homes, and the market will continue to be supported by foreign students, locals, and foreign workers seeking affordable rents,” said Christine Sun, senior vice president of research and analytics at OrangeTee.

6,000 FLATS WILL BE LAUNCHED IN DECEMBER

In the next BTO sales exercise in December, HDB will offer about 6,000 flats in towns and estates such as Bukit Panjang, Jurong West, Woodlands, Bedok, Bishan, Bukit Merah and Queenstown.

More details on the launch numbers and project details will be provided closer to the launch date.

“HDB has launched about 16,700 flats till date and remains on track to launch up to 23,000 flats in 2023,” it said.

HDB added it will consolidate the available Sale of Balance Flats (SBF) supply and conduct the next SBF exercise in 2024. Details on the next SBF exercise will be released when ready.

Related:

First Sin Ming flats in 35 years among 8 BTO projects to go on sale in December

First-time BTO applicants who give up chance to select flat will lose priority status

MARKET OUTLOOK

A divergence in demand for HDB resale flats is expected and resale demand in non-mature estates could moderate as the BTO sales launches in October and December are likely to divert the demand in these areas, Mr Lim said.

“Demand for mature estate is expected to hold strong and price to trend upwards in view of the lack of units available for sale,” he added.

Ms Sun noted some demand may be diverted to the BTO market as some of the new BTO sites are on the city fringe or within walking distance of an MRT station.

“The interplay of these effects may see resale volume dipping slightly to about 26,000 to 27,000 units this year, compared to 27,896 units in 2022,” she said.

Mr Lee noted that new BTO flats will be reclassified to Standard, Plus and Prime flats from the second half of 2024.

“While there may be applicants who are put off by the penalties for non-selection of flats, there may be applicants who want to secure a BTO flat in mature estates before the new classification kicks in from 2H 2024,” he said.

The interplay of these factors may not see a significant impact on the resale market, according to Mr Lee. 

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