The price index increase is seen as a strong signal that the market has turned. However, as the TDSR framework continues to keep a lid on prices, any price increase may be gradual.
In the latest estimates, prices of private residences in the suburbs, or outside central region (OCR) rose by 0.7 per cent, after a 0.3 per cent decline in the preceding quarter. In the city centre, or core central region (CCR), prices of non-landed private residential properties increased by 0.2 per cent, rebounding from a 0.5 per cent drop in the second quarter. Prices in the rest of the central region (RCR), or city fringes remain unchanged.
In the first half of 2017, the total transaction volume in both the primary and secondary markets was 12,107 units, up 64 per cent compared to the first half of 2016. Market sentiment has picked up considerably this year, despite the Government remaining firm that property cooling measures are unlikely to be lifted any time soon. In March, however, the Seller’s Stamp Duty was tweaked slightly, stoking buyer optimism. The duty, paid by sellers on residential properties, was reduced, while rules on loan thresholds were also eased slightly.