Resale prices of private homes have surged to record highs in August.
This is despite a slew of property cooling measures introduced by the government, including recent curbs on housing loans.
Still, analysts are mixed on their outlook on where private property prices are heading.
Prices of private non-landed residential resale units climbed 1.5 per cent last month, according to data compiled by the Singapore Real Estate Exchange (SRX).
This follows a 0.5 per cent decline in the previous month.
Yet, the number of homes changing hands last month dipped marginally.
540 private homes were sold in the resale market in August, slightly lower than 573 units transacted in July.
Recent loan curbs were cited for slowing down the market.
Jeffrey Hong, CEO of GPS Alliance, said: “I think the resale property prices in the next 1-2 months will basically be very stagnant. Buyers are waiting along the sidelines to watch for any good buy or prices dropping further… I think towards the end of the year, I would see some price corrections but not by a lot. I think it’s about 3-5 per cent.
Introduced in June, the total debt servicing ratio (TDSR) framework limits how much property buyers can borrow to buy homes. Banks now have to check if a borrower’s total repayments of car, student or mortgage loans do not exceed 60 per cent of their gross income.
Other market watchers said the TDSR has also pushed buyers to look for smaller units – those costing between S$800,000 and S$1 million in August. The upper range is expected to increase to S$1.2 million.
However, this means units sold would record higher prices on a per square foot basis.
The resale market saw price increases across all locations.
Private home prices in the city fringe led the market with a 2.4-per cent gain.
This is followed by resale prices of homes in the city – at a 1.8-per cent increase.
Mass market resale home prices inched up 0.2 per cent last month.
Going forward, analysts expect prices of suburban homes to remain stable at current levels.
Lim Yong Hock, key executive officer at PropNex, said: “I think the developers and home buyers are now very cautious, especially now with the latest news of the recent announcement of TDSR. First of all, the developers know it’s for the mass markets, so the price cannot be too high. I don’t think the price will go down with the fact that land bid prices are still remaining strong and developers are still confident in the future.”
On Thursday, a land tender for a mixed use site in Yishun beat market expectations with a top bid of S$1.43 billion – 43 per cent higher than the second highest bid.
Source : Channel NewsAsia – 6 Sep 2013