Private home sales rise by three times

January’s private home sales were undaunted by the gloomy economic outlook and recent cooling measures, recording 2,077 transactions for the month, a whopping three times higher than December’s 670 units.

Excluding executive condominiums (ECs), this marks a 55 percent year-on-year rise to 1,872 units compared to 1,210 units in January 2011. Top-selling projects include Watertown at Punggol Central, The Hillier at Hillview Rise and Parc Rosewood.

The volume was largely sustained by sales in the OCR (Outside Central Region), which posted a record number of transactions at 1,966.

“The hike in sales was due to the launch of 2,665 units in the month compared to just 937 in December,” said Tejaswi Chunduri, Real Estate Analyst at PropertyGuru.

“In fact, more than 90 percent of the units launched were in the OCR, with the highest median price at S$1,644.”

Meanwhile, activity remained muted outside the OCR, as there were no new launches within the Core Central Region (CCR). Sales activity there dwindled 51 percent month-on-month to just 17 units.

As for the Rest of Central Region (RCR), launches reached 224 units but overall take-up was only 42 percent, down from December’s 81 percent.

On the lacklustre performance of the other regions, Chia Siew Chuin, Director of Research & Advisory at Colliers international, said that with the “global economic uncertainties and the imposition of the ABSD, developers as well as prospective buyers and investors largely stayed away from the high-end/luxury and mid-tier markets in January 2012.”

Alan Cheong, Head of Research at Savills Singapore added that “the ABSD possibly had a negative impact on foreign buyers who traditionally favoured launches in CCR and RCR.”

“Going forward, we expect the sale of mass-market projects to remain healthy. Developers will continue to be innovative in the lifestyle options for new projects while at the same time, offering attractive discounts to negate the ABSD,” noted Li Hiaw Ho, Executive Director at CBRE Research.


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