Homebuyers are now at it. This is evidenced at the high sales recorded in the first half 2016. Botanique Bartley, Kingsford Hillview Peak and Poiz Residences have sold 157, 164 and 182 units respectively, an average of above 30 sales in a month. Other best sellers that have sold an average of more than 20 units in a month include The Glades, Kingsford Waterbay and Sims Urban Oasis.
The secondary market sold 703 non-landed units between January and second week of June a rise from 648 in first half 2015. Top on the list of completed project sales are OUE Twin Peaks, Ardmore Three and D’Leedon each selling at least 95, 32 and 21 units respectively.
However, developers have encouraged the sales with high commissions, steep discounts and creative schemes. For instance, Ardmore Three’s Wheelock Properties is giving buyers discounts of up to 30% while Wing Tai Holdings of The Crest at Prince Charles offered agents attractive commissions in April and May.
Also on the rise are mortgagee sales and retrenchment prospects. The non-landed segment had over 22,000 vacant units in first quarter of 2016 while 20,000 units are expected to be completed between second and fourth quarter of 2016.
Despite the mixed market signals, what is in it for the property market? Here are some experts’ insights.
The head of research, Savills Singapore, Alan Cheong is on the notion that developers sales are expected to pick up this year due to the launch of more projects. Although there are fewer launches than last year, sales are expected from previously launched project that are completing.
Competitive prices are also expected amid sales packages with prices of new sales remaining firm due to the high marketing budget by developers unlike in the resale market where prices are expected to reduce.
The head of research Knight Frank, Alice Tan noted that high quality projects that are well located are likely to maintain or have an increase in price due to their limited supply. The recovery predicted for the second half could occur in the last quarter due to built-up demand from foreign and local buyers.
Based on history, the price index for residential property usually correlates with growth in GDP and stock market index more than it does with variable such as interest rates and vacancy. The projected weak 2016 GDP growth indicates soft property prices up to the end of the year with no significant price cuts expected on City fringe projects.
However, new projects close to their extension charges deadline or ABSD are likely to give buyers discounts. Such include Queenstown and Bukit Merah.
There could be lower prices in the mass market with new launches such as Parc Riviera, Lake Grande by MCL Land, Clementi Avenue 1, Lorong Lew Lian’s Forest Woods Residences and The Alps Residences in addition to the 2 new ECs Northwave and Treasure Crest.