In an unprecedented move, the HDB has released new data on the number of approved flats available for rent according to different flat types.

Currently, there are 14,600 approved flats for rent in the open market.

Since March, the number of eligible flats for rent in the market has reached 645,000.

HDB releases data on median rents

HDB also releases median sub-letting rents by flat types and areas. For example, in Ang Mo Kio, the median sub-letting rents for 4-room flats is $1,100 in the second quarter. In Bedok, a 4-room flat will cost $1,200 in median rent. The overall median sub-letting rents for 4-room flats in Singapore is $1,180.

HDB to lease out vacant flats under SERS

The HDB will rent out flats vacated under the Selective En-bloc Redevelopment Scheme (Sers) to the public in the short term.

About 120 flats in Blocks 1, 3, 5, 7 and 9 at Tiong Bahru Road will be rented out under the new scheme.  If the response is good, HDB may supply a further 4,000 to 5,000 such units for rental over the next three years.

The Housing and Development Board (HDB) will also offer 3,000 new flats under the 'built-to-order' (BTO) system in the second half of the year to meet rising demands.

HDB rents hitting the roof

HDB flats in good location can now command more than $2,000 a month in rental. For example, a four-room HDB flat at Crawford Lane near Lavender MRT station was rented for $2,800 a month.

Likewise, rents for flats in less popular areas are also rising. A four-room flat at Bedok North was rented out for $2,400 a month and a three-room flat in Jurong East was rented out for $2,500 a month.

A severe constraint in the demand and supply situation has been caused by the influx of expatriates arriving in Singapore and the high number of private homes being sold in en bloc sales.

The booming economy has sustained home rents at high levels, and if the situation persists, many expatriate tenants will have to down-grade to HDB flats. This will cause a further crunch and higher rents.

HDB resale market is blossoming

HDB data showed that 8,700 resale flats were transacted in the second quarter. In the first quarter, 6,300 resale deals were done.

HDB's resale price index also rose by 3%; while in the first quarter, it grew at a slower 1.3%.

More flats are fetching higher than their market valuations. En bloc sellers are largely being credited with the honour of making HDB flats more expensive.

Likewise, home buyers who are priced out of the private property market have to settle for larger resale flats, causing an upward spiral of prices for all flat types.
According to HDB’s data, the overall median cash-over-valuation (COV) was about $7,000.

Edited by Sam Gian

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