New private home sales in November fall to eight-year low

Sales of new private homes in November were down 17.3 per cent from the month before.

New private home sales in November fall to eight-year low
File photo of private homes in Singapore. (Photo: CNA/Jeremy Long)

SINGAPORE: New private home sales in November fell by about 17.3 per cent from the month before, amid a lack of new launches and year-end travel.

Excluding executive condominiums (ECs), developers sold 259 units in November, down from a revised 313 units the preceding month, data from the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) showed on Thursday (Dec 15).

This is the lowest number of private homes sold since December 2014, when 230 units excluding ECs were sold, said Ms Christine Sun, senior vice president of research and analytics at OrangeTee & Tie.

“Demand for new homes was muted last month amid the holiday season. Sales activities typically slow down during the year’s end, and developers hold back major launches,” she said.

“Some buyers were also holding back their purchases in anticipation of newer project launches next year when there will be more housing options,” she added.

Besides the year-end travel and the lack of new launches, the two rounds of property cooling measures have also affected new private home sales, said One Global Group’s senior analyst Mohan Sandrasegeran.

The Government introduced a set of cooling measures on Sep 30, which includes a 15-month wait-out period for private property owners who want to buy an HDB flat.

That came less than a year after a set of cooling measures was implemented in December last year.

CORE CENTRAL REGION MOST POPULAR

Of the 259 units sold in November, the majority – 148 units – were in the Core Central Region (CCR). A total of 73 units in the Rest of the Central Region were sold, while the Outside Central Region saw 38 units sold.

The proportion of foreigners buying a home in Singapore rose to 19.7 per cent in November, said Mr Lee Sze Teck, senior director of research at Huttons Asia.

He added that the top five projects with sales to foreigners last month were mainly in the CCR.

“As there have been limited number of fresh new launches in CCR introduced in 2022, it likely led to pent up demand from foreigners in the segment,” said Mr Sandrasegeran.

Looking to next year, Mr Lee said the supply of new homes will pick up to an estimated 10,000 to 12,000 units spread over 40 launches. That is more than the number of units estimated to be launched this year.

“Several of the major project launches in Q1 2023 should be well received by the market,” he said.

He added that with low levels of unsold stock, the market is likely to be resilient next year, and prices are expected to increase by up to 5 per cent.

Ms Sun said the increase in launches next year could help east some “pent-up demand, especially in the suburbs”.

“The increase in supply may alleviate some of the supply-demand imbalance facing the market and help to stabilise price growth next year,” she added.

Source: CNA/mi