Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Property market moving in the stable path, says Khaw

Following the implementation of recent cooling measures, indications that the property market is moving in a stable and more sustainable path are now more apparent, according to Khaw Boon Wan, Minister for National Development.

Despite this, Khaw said that the government continues “to monitor the market closely, and remain ready to revise and enhance the policy, if and when the situation demands it.”



The minister’s remarks were included in a written response to a query by Tan Su Shan, Nominated Member of Parliament, who asked whether the Additional Buyer's Stamp Duty (ABSD) has been effective and how it has helped the middle or low-end of the housing market.

Khaw explained that the cooling measures, like the ABSD and ramping up of supply in public and private housing, delivered “encouraging results.”

In fact, the proportion of private residential properties purchased by foreigners and companies fell dramatically to seven percent in 1H2012, compared from 20 percent last year. Also, private home prices have “moderated significantly”, increasing by 0.3 percent over the same period from six percent last year, noted Khaw.

Even short-term property speculation dropped significantly, as shown by relatively lower volume of sub-sales.

Khaw assured that home buyers, including those in the middle and low-end of the market, were benefited by the property curbs.

“For mass-market private housing outside the Central Region, prices have moderated with a slower pace of increase of 0.4 percent in Q2, compared to the 1.1 percent increase in the previous quarter,” added Khaw.

“For the public housing market, the significant ramp-up in new flat supply has given most first-timers a chance to select a BTO (build-to-order) flat if they apply for one.”

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