Tag Archives: private homes

Chinese buyers shun Singapore

Discouraged by the high taxes in Singapore, fewer foreigners are purchasing private homes here, leaving the market to rely on local buyers, reported Reuters.

Data compiled by DTZ showed that foreigners, including permanent residents, purchased 499 homes in Q4 2015. This accounted for around 16 percent of total transactions, down from 30 percent recorded in Q3 2011 just before the introduction of the Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty.

Acquisitions by the Chinese, considered one of the biggest foreign buyers of Singapore private homes, fell 40 percent from a year earlier to 151 units. DTZ noted that the figure is also down 80 percent from the peak in Q3 2011.

The figures were based on caveats lodged as of 15 January, with the land planning authority maintaining an online database.

“Chinese money is being attracted by Australia and the UK,” said Alan Cheong, Research Head at Savills Singapore.

He noted that the stamp duties should be rolled back to a level where the city-state can still capitalise on Chinese funds without attracting too much hot money.

“If we continue to sit by with all these measures, we are just going to miss the boat,” he said.

And with the benchmark 3-month Singapore Interbank Offered Rate (Sibor) on an uptrend, local buyers may also become cautious. The Sibor, which is used to set interest rates on mortgages, rose to 1.254 percent this week, or its highest since October 2008.


Private property prices down 3.2% from year ago

Prices of non-landed private homes in Singapore fell 3.2 percent in the second quarter of 2015 from the same period last year, according to the latest Knight Frank Global House Price Index.

The report tracked 56 countries and ranked them according to the annual percentage change in home prices. Singapore placed 49th on the list.

Since 2009, the government has introduced several rounds of property cooling measures to slow down the pace of sales and push prices down.

Like Singapore, Hong Kong also introduced measures to cool its red-hot property market, but mainstream prices have shot up 20.7 percent year-on-year, the highest globally.

“Increasing liquidity and the continual flow of wealthy mainland Chinese investors into Hong Kong’s residential sector meant the number of new homes sold in the first half of 2015 exceeded 8,700,” said Knight Frank.

Globally, the Index rose marginally by 0.1 percent in the year to June 2015, its weakest rate of growth since Q4 2011.

“Of the 56 housing markets tracked, 27 percent recorded an annual decline in prices, but back in 2011, 44 percent of housing markets fell into this bracket,” added the report.

Annual price change