Explaining the difference in flat resale prices in Hougang and Aljunied

One set of figures said flats in Aljunied GRC fetched higher resale prices.

Now, another set claims flats in Hougang SMC are worth more.

Two PhD students have calculated, based on transactions found on the Housing and Development Board’s (HDB) website, that flats in Hougang were nearly 4 per cent higher in value than the same type of flats in Aljunied GRC.

In contrast, National Development Minister Mah Bow Tan had said on Tuesday that flats in Aljunied GRC, just across the road from Hougang, fetched average resale prices that were 3 to 16 per cent higher.

The reason for the difference?

Mr Mah looked at flats that were completed between 1980 and 1985, while Mr Chong Kwek Yan and Mr Giam Xingli looked at flats which were between 15 and 20 years old. All transactions were carried out between May 1 last year and April 30 this year.

The PhD students, who contacted Today, said their study suggests there is “no significant difference” in the prices of flats in different areas of Hougang town: A resale flat in Aljunied-Hougang, under Aljunied GRC, can be sold on average between S$22,600 more to S$3,600 less than Hougang SMC.

The students also claimed resale flats in Hougang town that come under Ang Mo Kio and Pasir Ris-Punggol GRCs were worth less than a flat in Hougang SMC.

On this point, the HDB said: “The statistical analysis by the PhD students does not appear to have accounted for locational differences. It is well-known that flat prices are also strongly influenced by their location e.g. how near they are to amenities and transport nodes.”

“Within Hougang town, flats in Hougang SMC generally have a locational advantage compared to Ang Mo Kio and Pasir-Ris-Punggol GRCs, as flats in the SMC are generally located near the town centre and MRT station,” the HDB told Today.

“This is why it is more meaningful to compare flats in Hougang SMC with flats in Aljunied GRC, and even then, only between those in comparable vicinities. As their findings showed, the average five-room resale price in Hougang SMC was about S$443,500, which is lower than those in Aljunied GRC of about S$474,500.”

The HDB also noted that the students had focused on five-room flats, comprising only 22 per cent of total transactions in Hougang town during the period of study.

As opposed to Mr Mah who looked at transactions across three-room to five-room flats.

Source : Today – 6 May 2011

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