HDB resale prices climb 3.8% to hit record high in Q4 2009

Prices of resale Housing and Development Board (HDB) flats rose 3.8 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2009, reaching the highest level since 1990, when records of such data began.

The Resale Price Index of public flats stood at 150.7 in the fourth quarter of last year. But some said that spiralling prices will not deter potential buyers.

Despite the record high prices, one real estate consultant said prices of most of the larger HDB units have not increased dramatically.

Donald Han, managing director, Cushman & Wakefield said: “If you look at the overall pricing for the four- and five-room flats, they are all still within the norm, and very much far apart from the kind of headline transaction news that you get of about S$700,000, S$800,000 in that sense.”

According to some others, resale flats have strong potential to rise further due to demand from newly formed families and permanent residents.

Nicholas Mak, real estate lecturer, Ngee Ann Polytechnic said: “Going forward the case of price growth is not going to be 3 to 4 per cent every quarter. Otherwise, we could see very high unsustainable levels for the HDB resale market.

“It is more likely going to grow at a pace of between, perhaps eight to maybe as high as 15 per cent for the whole of 2010.”

The HDB said it will continue to launch more Build-to-Order (BTO) projects this year, if there is a sustained demand for new flats. And it said it will continue to ensure that there is an adequate supply of flats to meet the prevailing housing needs.

For a start, 1,300 BTO flats in Choa Chu Kang and Hougang will be offered for sale on Tuesday. But it will take up to four years before the BTO flats are ready.

So for those who cannot wait, resale flats are one option, thereby, driving up demand and prices.

The HDB will release its detailed resale price data and public housing data for the fourth quarter on January 22.

Source : Channel NewsAsia – 4 Jan 2010

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