Monday, December 15, 2008

Privare Residential Property Sales Up 63% On Month In November

Source : Channel NewsAsia, 15 December 2008

Sales of uncompleted private homes rebounded 63 per cent on month in November, after falling 70 per cent in October. Some 192 new units were sold in November.

Data from the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) also shows that developers put out more units for sale.

Condominium showflats

According to analysts, many developers had launched new projects in November after delaying launches in October, in the wake of the global financial crisis.

Among these, 52 per cent were projects in the core central region.

"What is significant in the recent launch trend is that we are actually seeing developers stepping up launches of prime properties. This could indicate the weakening holding power of small or mid-tier developers who are still holding on to prime development sites," said Tay Huey Ying, director of Research & Advisory at Colliers International.

The mass market segment dominated November's sales. Six in 10 units were sold at below S$1,000 per square foot. Mid-tier units priced between S$1,000 psf and S$1,999 psf made up the rest.

Observers said mass market home prices are also likely to be more resilient, compared to high-end ones.

Looking ahead, market watchers said prices of private residential properties could fall by an average of 10 to 12 per cent for the whole of 2009. This is partly due to slower demand growth and the fact that property prices went up too quickly in 2007.

Barring more bad news in financial markets, analysts said there could be bright spots ahead for property sales.

Said Ku Swee Yong, director of Marketing & Business Development at Savills: "The banks have been hoarding a lot of Singapore dollars in the past few months as they go conservative and try to improve the balance sheet quality. As such, the inter-bank lending rates have become very low. The 3-month SIBOR rate has been below 1 per cent for the past two to three weeks.

"And the banks might start to come out to offer very attractively priced mortgages in the first two quarters of next year, in order to (seize) market share, especially of good credit, quality customers."

Some observers said sales may slow in December, ranging between 150 and 200 units. This will bring the total sales volume to 4,500 units for 2008, which is about one-third lower than last year. - CNA /yb/ls

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