Resale private home prices slide further as curbs bite

Resale prices of completed non-landed private homes in Singapore fell at a faster pace last month, with weakness across all categories as evidence builds that the Government’s efforts to cool the housing market are working.

The Singapore Residential Price Index fell 1.2 per cent to 159.1 points last month from a revised 0.9 per cent decline in September, the National University of Singapore said yesterday. Resale prices for homes in the central region fell 1.4 per cent last month, those for homes in the non-central region decreased 1 per cent, while prices of small units dropped 0.2 per cent.

“The latest statistics are a reflection of the current measures starting to bite the residential market,” said Ms Alice Tan, Head of Consultancy and Research at Knight Frank. “Price quantum is still the key consideration for many prospective home buyers.”

Record home prices amid low interest rates raised concerns of a housing bubble and prompted the authorities to introduce new taxes and higher minimum downpayments in nine rounds of cooling measures since 2009 to curb speculation in Asia’s second-most expensive housing market.

Home sales have been falling in the past four months, after the Government imposed the Total Debt Servicing Framework in June that requires banks to ensure that housing loans they grant do not push a borrower’s total debt obligation above 60 per cent of his or her gross monthly income.

Source : Today – 29 Nov 2013

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