The last month of the year often translates to a lacklustre showing in the real estate market as buyers busy themselves with the year-end festivities and school holidays, and developers hold off on new launches.
Fall in sales last month though figures still higher than the year before
Only 101 private home units were launched in December, a whopping 92% down from the 1,342 units launched the month before. This is also 57% lower than the 231 units released in December 2017.
While the 602 new homes sold by developers last month were the lowest since September 2017, sales volume was still nearly 50% of the 1,201 units sold in November 2018.
Are developers holding back on launches in wait for an increase in demand this year?
Some analysts think that the 61% increase in new launches in the second half of 2018 could mean the market could be expecting a higher number of major launches this year.
The momentum from H2 could very well be carried over to this year as 10,000 to 12,000 new private homes are expected to hit the market.
Sales expected to pick up after Lunar New Year
The executive condominium (EC) segment was rather subdued in December with only 3 units sold in the month. Over the entire year, however, 628 new EC units were launched at 1,137 units sold.
The number of units launched was about 45% of the number sold, indicating an imbalance in supply and demand in this sector. Thus it was no wonder that prices rose nearly 25% from $793 psf to $989 psf over a 12-month period.
The private properties which sold well last month included Parc Esta, Whistler Grande, Riverfront Residences, Park Colonial, Stirling Residences and The Tapestry.
Median sale prices ranged between $1,313 psf to $1,745 psf. New launches to expect after the Lunar New Year include The Florence Residences in Kovan and Treasure@Tampines.
Analysts are expecting a more moderate pace of price-increments in the private homes sector this year as higher financing costs and restrictions stem an unduly rapid market growth.