Singapore Home Sales Slump to Two-Year Low on Lack of Supply

(Bloomberg) — Singapore home sales fell 48% in August to the lowest in more than two years as a lack of supply kept buyers at bay. 

Purchases of new private apartments dropped to 437 units last month from 834 in July, Urban Redevelopment Authority figures showed Thursday. That was the fewest since April 2020, when 277 new homes were sold as Singapore went into lockdown. 

Despite the decline in transactions, Singapore’s property sector remains buoyant even as markets from Sydney to Stockholm cool on the back of rising interest rates. Home prices in the city-state are still increasing, spurred by the shortage in supply due to construction setbacks during the pandemic, as well as demand from people seeking upgrades and an influx of wealthy foreigners.

There were no new launches of residential projects in August, so buyers are waiting until they have more choices, said Christine Sun, senior vice president of research and analytics at OrangeTee & Tie. 

Unlike other markets, rising interest rates and inflation don’t appear to be having a significant impact in Singapore, Sun said. “For some people, affordability is not an issue even if prices are still rising.”

There is still a genuine appetite for purchases of new private units from new and seasoned investors, who may be looking at property as an investment to build their portfolio and generate profits from future sales, said Ina Sultan, a Singapore-based real estate agent at ERA Realty.

“We can expect a positive rebound in quarter four with more launches,” Ina added.

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