SINGAPORE: The rise of private property prices in Singapore slowed in 2019 to 2.5 per cent, compared with the 7.9 per cent increase in 2018, according to official flash estimates released on Thursday (Jan 2).
In the fourth quarter of last year, the private residential property index inched up 0.3 per cent to 153.3 points following two consecutive quarters of growth.
Market experts said the slowing pace of price increase is in line with expectations and could track higher this year.
"The slowing pace of price increase indicates a stabilised environment, reducing any risk of the government imposing more cooling measures at this stage," said Ms Tricia Song, head of research for Singapore at Colliers International.
"With home prices highly correlated to household income and the economy, we expect private residential prices could grow 3 per cent in 2020, tracking a recovery in economic growth," she added.
Ms Christine Sun, head of research and consultancy for OrangeTee and Tie, said that while the market will be influenced by the external economy, several factors will help it sustain demand.
"As we approach the dawn of a new decade, we remain sanguine about the private residential market. While the market will undoubtedly be influenced by the wider economy, several factors like the easing of trade tensions, interest rate cuts, positive employment numbers and strong income growth will continue to sustain demand and boost buyers' confidence," she said.
FOURTH QUARTER SUSTAINED BY LANDED PROPERTY SEGMENT
The increase in the fourth quarter was sustained by landed property prices (4 per cent) and non-landed property prices Outside Central Region (2.9 per cent), figures released by the Urban Redevelopment Authority showed.
Prices dropped by 3.7 per cent in the Core Central Region, and by 1.4 per cent in the Rest of Central Region.
The flash estimates are compiled based on transaction prices given in contracts submitted for stamp duty payment and data on units sold by developers up until mid-December.
The statistics will be updated on Jan 23 when URA releases its full set of real estate statistics for the fourth quarter of the year.