RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Prices of completed condos up 0.1% in January

But prices of prime units fell.

Prices of completed condominium units in Singapore inched up by 0.1% in December, according to the latest National University of Singapore (NUS) Singapore Residential Price Index (SRPI) series.

The latest statistics were based on transactions received as at 22 February 2016 and used an updated property basket.

Prices of properties in the Central Region—namely, districts 1 to 4 and 9 to 11—declined about 0.5%. Meanwhile, those located in the Non-central Region appreciated by 0.5%. Small unit prices also climbed 0.6% in January this year.

The new NUS SRPI basket comprises 574 private residential projects located across 26 postal districts in Singapore that were completed between October 2003 and September 2015.

In general, the projects must comprise at least 40 units, have good amenity levels, enjoy reasonable transaction activity, and should not be targeted for redevelopment. Further, the properties should have received TOP (Temporary Occupation Permit) status no more than 12 years from the basket formation date. 

The NUS said that the current NUS SRPI Basket 8 differs from the earlier Basket 7 in three main respects. First, Basket 8 comprises newer projects and is better marked-to-market in terms of the residential amenity levels expected of non-landed housing. 

The newly-added projects to Basket 8 are expected to exert a greater influence on price indices that are capital-weighted such as the NUS SRPI. Some examples include D’Leedon, Skyline Residences and Silversea. 

Second, Basket 8 does not remove the earlier projects that were completed between October 2003 and September 2005. Given the lower transaction volumes in the previous year, this increases both the number of price signals for computing the NUS SRPI suite of indices and the coverage of the non-landed private residential market. 

Third, small units are more prevalent in Basket 8, as properties in projects that have small units trade within larger price bands than those in projects comprising larger or more uniformly sized units. This potentially induces greater volatility in house price behavior, holding other factors constant. 

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