Singapore

13 HDB resale flats sold for at least $1m each last month

The Housing Board resale market started the year on a strong footing as prices rose for the seventh consecutive month last month, propped up by the continuing strong demand for public housing.

According to flash data from real estate portal SRX released yesterday, resale prices rose by 1.7 per cent last month, compared with last December.

The overall price increase was 7.7 per cent compared with last year, but still 7 per cent lower than the peak in April 2013.

Last month, a total of 13 Housing Board resale flats also changed hands for at least $1 million each. The highest transacted price was $1.21 million for a five-room Design, Build and Sell Scheme unit at Natura Loft in Bishan Street 24.

Other units sold for at least $1 million were located in Cantonment Road, Lorong 1A Toa Payoh, Clementi Avenue 3, Ghim Moh Link, Commonwealth Drive, Bishan Street 12, Bukit Merah View and Serangoon Avenue 2.

The strong demand for public housing has continued to prop up resale prices and is expected to be sustained in the coming months, with prices rising by 2 per cent to 5 per cent this year, said Ms Christine Sun, OrangeTee & Tie's senior vice-president of research and analytics.

She said: "Demand for HDB resale flats seems to be outpacing supply now, as evident by the high subscription rates of recent Build-To-Order launches and increasing resale transactions."

A total of 2,501 HDB resale flats changed hands last month, a marginal 0.5 per cent increase from last December, but the resale volume was 30.3 per cent higher than in January last year.

The bulk of the sales volume came from four-room flats, which made up 41.7 per cent of all sales transactions, followed by five-room flats (26.2 per cent), three-room flats (21.5 per cent) and executive flats (9 per cent), with two-room flats making up the remainder.

Mr Nicholas Mak, ERA Realty's head of research and consultancy, noted that the resale price index had increased steadily over the same period.

"The rising price index indicated that the typical sellers are asking for higher prices and the buyers are willing to pay the higher prices," he said.

Mr Mak noted that some HDB resale flats were sold above their valuation amounts, which meant that buyers paid cash to the seller for the difference between the transaction price and the valuation amount, adding that such cash-over-valuation transactions would accelerate the rise in HDB resale prices.

Property