New home sales up 24 per cent on suburban demand

PHOTO: New home sales up 24 per cent on suburban demand

SINGAPORE - Sales of new private homes surprisingly picked up pace last month on strong demand for suburban projects such as J Gateway and Jewel @ Buangkok.

New home sales jumped 23.8 per cent from 1,459 units in May to 1,806 units last month, which analysts said was unexpected as buyer activity usually slows during the June school holidays.

May's sales figure was in turn 5.4 per cent higher than April's tally of 1,384 new homes sold.

The figure for last month also exceeded the 1,768 units that went on the market that month, Urban Redevelopment Authority figures showed on Monday. The numbers exclude executive condominium (EC) sales.

In total, 10,061 new private homes were sold in the first half of this year, a figure which was around 16 per cent lower compared with the corresponding period last year, said CBRE Research associate director Desmond Sim.

Analysts added that new home sales this month could fall by as much as half from last month, as home loan curbs imposed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore late last month take their toll.

"Nonetheless, developers' launch strategies could turn more aggressive in terms of timing and incentive as it would be more advantageous for them to launch sooner rather than later," said Colliers Singapore research director Chia Siew Chuin.

Suburban mass-market homes made up three quarters of new home sales last month.

The top-selling project was the 99-year leasehold condominium J Gateway in Jurong East, which sold 737 out of 738 units at a median price of $1,486 per sq ft (psf) at its launch late last month.

Sales were also brisk at the 616-unit Jewel @ Buangkok condominium, which went on the market early last month. The 99-year leasehold project moved 282 out of 350 units launched last month at a median $1,183 psf. Only 6.6 per cent of sales last month were in the city centre.

Still, some projects in prime central districts continued to move units, such as the freehold 64-unit Liv on Sophia which launched in May. It sold 42 units last month at a median price of $2,460 psf and is fully sold.

The city fringe accounted for 18 per cent of new private home sales last month. Including ECs, which are a hybrid of public and private housing, new home sales reached 2,119 units last month, up 10.6 per cent from May.

This was mostly due to the 653-unit Forestville EC in Woodlands, which sold 226 units at a median price of $730 psf last month.

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