New private home sales in Singapore fell 45 per cent in May from April as developers launched fewer units.
Data from the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) on Monday (Jun 15) showed developers sold 638 housing units last month – well below the revised figure of 1,167 units for April. The number of units sold in May was, however, higher than the monthly figures for January to March.
The bulk of homes sold last month were in the Outside Central Region, which accounted for 469 of the total.
Developers launched just 499 new units in May, down from April’s 1,382 units.
Including executive condominiums (ECs), sales by developers fell to 845 units in May from 1,293 units in April.
May is typically a month with several property launches, as developers make use of the window before the June holidays and the lunar seventh month, to put projects up for sale.
But there were no new launches in May this year, with developers spreading out their projects in the slow housing market. Market watchers said they are also focusing on clearing stock.
Said Mr Ku Swee Yong, CEO of Century 21 Singapore: “I think over the last one year, we have accumulated quite a lot of surpluses and the total number of units launched but unsold is at about 7,000. So developers are hoping to clear off some of the stock on the shelves before they take out new products to launch.
Dr Lee Nai Jia, head of research (Singapore) at DTZ Debenham Tie Leung, noted: “We have seen quite a number of launches prior to May, for instance North Park Residences, Sims Urban Oasis. And although their take-up rate is very high, you see that they actually still have quite a number of units that have yet not been launched into the market.
“I think developers generally are very mindful of what is available in the market. They probably want to pace (their launches) to avoid a glut in the market.”
Big project launches in the past few months include the 1,024-unit Sims Urban Oasis, which had only put up 300 units for sale so far. The 920-unit North Park Residences and 797-unit Botanique at Bartley, both launched in April, have more than 300 units left to launch each.
The only new launch outside of the private housing market in May was Westwood Residences, an EC. It sold 118 units over two days when it opened for booking on May 30.
Excluding ECs, recently-launched Botanique at Bartley was the top seller in May. It sold 94 units at a median price of S$1,292 per square foot.
The 920-unit North Park Residences in Yishun, which was launched in April, took the second spot – moving 59 units at a slightly higher median price of S$1,397 per square foot.
Ang Mo Kio project The Panorama – which was launched in January 2014 – also saw renewed interest last month.
Developers of the 698-unit project sold another 44 units in May, adding to the 222 sold before May.
WHAT LIES AHEAD
Looking ahead, analysts said the private residential market is likely to remain slow in June. It is the school holidays, and there have been no new project launches so far.
But there could be greater activity in the EC market, with developers of three new EC projects expected to launch some units for sale soon.
Analysts also said developers may be keeping their projects for the second half of the year, to ride on events which may boost market sentiments, such as Singapore’s 50th birthday celebrations.
Source : Channel NewsAsia – 15 Jun 2015