Singapore New Home Sales Post Worst Start to Year Since 2009

General Images Of Property As Singapore Landlords Discover Perpetual Debt Is the New Equity

Singapore home prices dropped for a ninth quarter, posting the longest losing streak in 17 years, as tighter mortgage curbs cooled demand.

Photographer: Sam Kang Li/Bloomberg
  • Developers sold 322 units in January, down 16% from December
  • Annual sales of 7,440 units at half of level recorded in 2013

Singapore home sales posted their worst start to the year since 2009, as tighter mortgage curbs cooled demand in Asia’s second-most expensive housing market.

Developers sold 322 units in January, down 16 percent from the 384 units in December, according to data released Monday by the Urban Redevelopment Authority. While annual sales rose just under 2 percent to 7,440 units in 2015, it’s still half the clip recorded in 2013.

Singapore home prices dropped for a ninth quarter, posting the longest losing streak in 17 years, as tighter mortgage curbs cooled demand. An index tracking private residential prices fell 0.5 percent in the three months ended Dec. 31 from the previous quarter, according to data from the Urban Redevelopment Authority on Jan. 22. That took the annual decline in prices to 3.7 percent, almost matching the 4 percent drop in 2014, which was the first year-on-year slide since 2008.

The city-state’s government began introducing residential property curbs in 2009 as low interest rates and demand from foreign buyers raised concerns that the market was overheating. They have included a cap on debt repayment costs at 60 percent of a borrower’s monthly income, higher stamp duties on home purchases and an increase in real estate taxes.

Singapore was ranked the second-most expensive city to buy a luxury home after Hong Kong in Asia, according to a 2015 Knight Frank LLP wealth report.

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