SINGAPORE: Resale prices in the public housing market rose 2.8 per cent in the second quarter of 2021, according to flash estimates released by the Housing and Development Board (HDB) on Thursday (Jul 1).
The resale price index, which provides information on the general price movements in the resale public housing market, rose from 142.2 to 146.2, the HDB estimates showed.
This comes after prices in the first quarter of 2021 climbed 3 per cent over that in the previous quarter.
Construction delays of new Build-To-Order (BTO) flats drove many couples to look for housing in the secondary market, which explains the increase in resale prices, said OrangeTee & Tie's senior vice president of research and analytics Christine Sun.
Buyers who are downsizing from private properties have also turned to the HDB resale market, she added.
"Due to the robust housing demand and supply shortage, bargains were fading, and buyers have to move quickly if they spot a home that interests them, especially for popular locations," said Ms Sun.
"With many eager buyers willing to match the valuation of properties, prices of resale flats are creeping up in many areas."
Ms Sun added that the strong demand and home supply shortage may keep resale prices "elevated" in the coming months.
"The fast-rising prices may raise the barrier of entry for some first-time buyers. Those who cannot afford an HDB resale flat may either turn to the rental market or delay their wedding plans as they apply for BTO flats," said Ms Sun.
Huttons Asia CEO Mark Yip said resale prices for flats in the central area, Serangoon and Woodlands saw the biggest increases.
Resale prices in the central area rose 10.8 per cent, with 53 units sold, while prices in Serangoon increased 9.6 per cent with 112 units sold. Woodlands saw an 8.5 per cent rise in prices, with 393 units sold.
Almost all towns saw lower transaction volumes in the second quarter of this year, except for Bukit Merah, Choa Chu Kang and Marine Parade. The lower volumes were due to restrictions imposed on viewings during Phase 2 (Heightened Alert), which started on May 16 and ended on Jun 13, said Mr Yip.
"Generally there remain keen interest in the market for resale flats because of delays in completion of new homes," he said.
"We expect HDB resale prices to increase by 8 per cent to 10 per cent in 2021, surpassing the gains of 5 per cent in 2020," added Mr Yip.
More detailed housing data will be released along with the final resale price index for the full quarter on Jul 23, said HDB.
UPCOMING BTO LAUNCHES
In the release, HDB also said that it will offer about 4,900 BTO flats next month in Hougang, Jurong East, Kallang Whampoa, Queenstown and Tampines.
In November, about 3,100 to 3,600 BTO flats in Choa Chu Kang, Hougang, Jurong West, Kallang Whampoa and Tengah will be offered.
"As the COVID-19 pandemic is evolving, HDB is monitoring the situation, and will make adjustments where necessary," said HDB.