Singapore: Developer sales on a temporary lull in June

According to real estate firm JLL, the decline is due to the mid-year vacation period.

People stand in front of a view of public housing and private residential condominiums in Singapore. REUTERS

The number of Singapore's private residential units sold by developers in the month of June declined 21.1 percent, from 1,039 units in the previous month to 820 units.

According to real estate firm JLL, the decline is due to the mid-year vacation period. Looking from a yearly perspective, developer sales in the said month is 53 percent higher than the 536 units sold last year.

JLL noted that the mid-year market lull resulted in only one new launch, the Park 1 Suites at Lorong 40 Geylang launched 26 of its units. For the said month the top selling private residential projects were the Santorini with 75 units sold, Parc Riviera with 55 units sold, Commonwealth Towers with 47 units sold, and Sophia Hills with 44 units sold.

The executive condominium (EC) market was also affected by the temporary inactivity. EC sales for the month fell 35.3 percent to 244 units from the previous month. No new EC projects were launched for sales in June. The best performing EC projects were Sol Acres with 41 units sold, The Visionaire with 35 units sold, Signature at Yishun with 30 units sold, and Westwood Residences with 29 units sold.

JLL National Director of Research and Consultancy Ong Teck Hui noted that on a quarterly basis, the sale of 3,426 private residential units by developers in 2Q17 is the strongest since 2Q13 just before the total debt servicing ratio (TDSR) was imposed.

"The 6,388 units sold in 1H17 is a significant recovery compared to the 2,907 units transacted in 2H14, although it is below the 9,950 units sold in 1H13 before the TDSR took effect. This analysis points towards a market that has regained confidence and recovered substantially in transaction volume," Ong said in a statement released to the media.

Meanwhile, PropNex CEO Ismail Gafoor shared that stronger take-up rates for all existing projects that are rightly priced are expected in the coming months as buyers come to the realization that prices of new launches will likely be higher.

With this, he predicted, "With upcoming new launches of Martin Modern, Le Quest and Hundred Palms Residences EC in July and August, the volume of the transaction will likely to exceed 1,000 units monthly for the upcoming 3Q 2017."

For ERA Key Executive Officer Eugene Lim, the recent sales figures reflect the growing buyer interest since last year.

"Most of them are of the opinion that the private residential market is bottoming out and they are buying with longer term prospects in mind," he said in a statement.

He also agreed with Ong's point of buyers committing a purchase early on to dodge higher prices.

"2017 new home sales will probably be in the range of 10,000 to 12,000 for private residential and 3,000 to 4,000 units for ECs," he forecast.