Singapore home sales declined for a third consecutive month in October, with the 203-unit tally marking the lowest total this year as homebuyers await lower prices.
Developers’ sales of new private homes last month fell by 6.5 percent from the 217 units sold in September, and were down 35 percent compared to the same period a year ago, according to data from the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) on Wednesday. With no new projects launched in October, sales during the month were the lowest since developers moved 170 units in December 2022.
Last month’s slide was the latest sign of a cooling housing market which had built up an estimated inventory of 3,423 of unsold homes by the end of October. That overhang of homes was up 66 percent from the level of unsold housing during the same month last year, based on analysis of URA data by Propnex Realty, while the agency noted that buyers continue to show interest in top developments.
“While buyers are cautious, they are also open to considering projects that are well-located, within walking distance to the MRT station and amenities, are sensitively-priced, and could offer potential upside in the future,” said Wong Siew Ying, head of research and content at PropNex. “With more new launches slated to come on in 2024, some buyers may be saving their bullets for upcoming projects.”
November Sales Jump Seen
October’s home sales brought the year-to-date tally in Singapore to 5,532 units, which was down 18 percent from the same period last year. With no new projects launched, developers introduced just 54 new homes to the market in October, which was down 26 percent from 68 units in the month prior.
Developers have seen their monthly sales slide since July when market turnover hit a two-year high of 1,413 units.
Wong expects home sales to rebound this month following the back-to-back launch of the J’den project in Jurong East and Hillock Green in Lentor Central this past weekend, which combined to sell 450 homes.
Buyers picked up 88 percent of the homes in CapitaLand’s 368-unit J’den project at an average price of S$2,451 ($1,817) per square foot.
The 474-unit Hillock Green development achieved a 27 percent take-up rate during its launch weekend launch, at an average price of S$2,108 per square foot. Hillock Green is being built by a joint venture between a unit of China Communications Construction Company; Yanlord Land Group’s United Engineers Ltd subsidiary and local builder Soilbuild Group.
“Going by buyers’ response and recent government land sales tenders, it seems that the residential property market is still relatively resilient and market confidence remains intact even though sales have been muted in the past months,” Wong said.
Price Growth Slowing
Huttons Asia senior director for data analytics Lee Sze Teck, sees home sales climbing by as much as 800 units in the last two months of this year, but still expects 2023 to represent a down year for developers.
Lee projects total home sales in Singapore for 2023 to range from 6,000 to 6,500 units, or around 20 percent less than last year’s total. Dampened demand is also slowing home price growth, which he expects to rise by 5 percent this year compared to the 8.6 percent jump in 2022.
The average price of a home in the Lion City inched up by 0.5 percent in the third quarter from the three months prior, rebounding from a 0.2 percent decline in the second quarter, according to URA data.