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HDB resale prices rise 1.4%: flash data

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Resale prices for Housing Board flats increased in the third quarter of this year, with the resale price index reaching 133.7, said the Housing and Development Board (HDB) on Thursday.

[SINGAPORE] Resale prices for Housing Board flats increased in the third quarter of this year, with the resale price index reaching 133.7, said the Housing and Development Board (HDB) on Thursday.

This is an increase of 1.4 per cent from the previous quarter.

Last quarter's performance also marked a significant improvement from the previous quarters. The resale price index had risen by a marginal 0.3 per cent in Q2 after staying flat in the first quarter of the year.

OrangeTee and Tie's head of research and consultancy Christine Sun said that the HDB resale market has "outperformed" expectations in the last three months.

She noted that stimulus measures and past property curbs may have played an instrumental role in keeping home prices up amid the current economic headwinds.

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For instance, cooling measures such as the mortgage servicing ratio were applied to tighten the disbursement of housing loans.

This may have prevented buyers from overleveraging and selling their flats at excessively low prices during the current market slowdown, Ms Sun said.

"Fears of a property meltdown amid Singapore's worst economic crisis were abated as the public housing market performance emerged stronger than expected last quarter," she added.

The robust increase in resale prices could also possibly be due to the long completion period for some recent build-to-order (BTO) launches.

This may have led some buyers to switch to the resale market, said Ms Sun.

HDB will release the final figures, with more detailed public housing data, on Oct 23.

About 9,300 BTO flats will be on offer in November this year and February 2021, HDB said.

These flats will be available in various estates and more information on them will be found on the HDB InfoWeb.

"Barring any unforeseen circumstances, the next sale of balance flats exercise is also scheduled to be launched in November 2020, together with the BTO exercise," said HDB.

All unsold BTO flats are offered through Sale of Balance Flats exercises. Those that remain unselected are directly offered for open booking.

The Sale of Balance Flats exercise, which usually takes place twice a year, is the first to occur this year. The previous exercise had been deferred due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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