Friday, March 15, 2013

New private residential property sales down by 65 percent in February 2013

February private home sales took a 65% nosedive to 708 units.New private residential property sales in Singapore were sharply down from the 2,016 new homes in January 2015 to 708 units last month:
Singapore home sales plunged 65 percent last month after the government introduced its seventh round of cooling measures in January to cool home prices.
Home sales dropped to 708 units in February from a revised 2,016 units in January, according to data released by the Urban Redevelopment Authority today. Home sales reached 22,699 units in 2012, according to calculation by Bloomberg News based on the government data, which dates back to 1996. 
Singapore home prices reached a record in the fourth quarter amid low interest rates, raising concerns of a housing bubble and prompting the government to widen a four-year campaign to curb speculation prices in Asia’s second-most expensive housing market. Knight Frank Pte cut its estimates for new home sales for 2013 by 20 percent and expects annual sales to range between 12,000 and 14,000 units.
Source : Singapore February Home Sales Drop 65% After Government Measures
 Although the mainstream media attributed the decline to Chinese New Year holiday and February being a short month, the sharp decline came after new property market cooling measures of January 2013. The latest measures increased the stamp duty for home buyers by between 5 per cent and 7 per cent, with Singapore permanent residents paying taxes when they buy their first home. Singaporeans will also have the levy starting with their second purchase. Since a significant part of the home buying activity in Singapore is investment riding on low and saving punishing interest rates, the cooling measures may be starting to take effect:
“The government’s measures are starting to take effect,” said Vijay Natarajan, a Singapore-based analyst at UOB-Kay Hian Pte. “In addition, fewer units were offered because of the Chinese New Year. Over the coming months, I expect volumes to decline further.”
Source : Singapore February Home Sales Drop 65% After Government Measures
Knight Frank previously predicted that these new property policies could badly hurt investment demand.

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