Ohmyhome Insights: HDB resale prices surged by 12.5% in 2021, the highest rise since 2010

Mohan Sandrasegeran

Mohan Sandrasegeran

Every month, the Housing Development Board (HDB) releases a comprehensive database of resale transaction information on Data.gov.sg. Ohmyhome analyses this huge chunk of data and picks out the most relevant points and trends for readers.  

Source: Ohmyhome Research, Data.gov.sg as of 4 Jan 2022 //*Updated figures for Oct & Nov is reflected

Preliminary figures from data.gov.sg retrieved on January 4th indicated that HDB resale transactions had a 5.9% month-on-month (m-o-m) decline for the month of December. 

Total transactions rose to 2,428 as compared to the 2,580 flats transacted in November, and about 43.4% of the flats transacted in December were 4-room flats. Noticeably in the fourth quarter, December had a lower number of transactions. 

Typically, sales are lull in December due to the school holidays. It could also be an early indication of the newly announced property cooling measures’ effects. However, it’s still too early to speculate and attribute the dip in sales to these measures as we may have a better idea of the impact in the coming months.  

Demand for HDB resale flats in newer towns remain strong 

Source: Ohmyhome Research, Data.gov.sg as of 4 Jan 2022

Sengkang and Punggol consistently remain as the popular towns among buyers for the month of December. The demand for newer flats has garnered stronger interest in these two towns. 

About 46% of the HDB resale flats sold in Sengkang and Punggol had a remaining lease balance of 90 to 94 years.

Highest number of million dollar deals in a single month in Dec 

Source: Ohmyhome Research, data.gov.sg as of 4 Jan 2022

There was definitely more appetite for million-dollar HDB flats in 2021. Based on the information gathered from data.gov.sg on 4 January, there were a total of 37 million-dollar deals in the month of December, 2021 which is 8 more than in the month of November 2021. It is also the highest number of deals achieved in a single month in 2021. 

Highest recorded price in 2021: $1.36 million

Source: Ohmyhome Research, data.gov.sg as of 4 Jan 2022

The most expensive flat sold in December 2021 was transacted at Bishan’s Natura Loft: a 5-room DBSS flat at a price of $1.36 million, the highest recorded price in 2021. 

Natura Loft also accounted for at least a total of 16-million-dollar deals last year.

Source: Ohmyhome Research, data.gov.sg as of 4 Jan 2022

Based on the inclusion of the preliminary 4Q numbers gathered from data.gov.sg, the total number of million-dollar deals reached 260 in 2021. 

In comparison with 2020, this is a sizable increase in the quantum of million-dollar deals and it was the highest ever recorded million dollar deals in a single year.

Looking ahead in 2022: HDB resale prices 

Source: Ohmyhome Research, HDB

Flash estimates from HDB indicated that prices in the HDB resale market rose by 3.2% in the fourth quarter of 2021, reaching a new peak in prices. 

Overall HDB resale prices have increased by 12.5% in 2021. This is the highest annual growth recorded since 2010 when prices grew by 14.1%. 

In 4Q 2021, a total of 19 out of the 26 HDB towns saw a price increase across the varying flat types compared to the price increases of 18 HDB towns in 3Q 2021. The highest price increase was in the Central Area at about 12%. 

The price increase late last year can be attributed to a greater number of million dollar deals in the Central Area, growing from 18 deals in 3Q2021 to 27 deals in 4Q2021. 

The biggest drop in price was in Bukit Timah at -13.6%. This is in juxtaposition to 3Q2021 when Bukit Timah had the highest price change for that quarter. 

This is due to a lower number of million-dollar deals occurring in the area in the fourth quarter, which could indicate that price resistance might be setting in. 

Source: Ohmyhome Research, data.gov.sg as of 4 Jan 2022, HDB

Looking from a historical standpoint, it is likely we may see a repeat of the 2018 sales movement; we can expect transaction volumes to potentially dip in the first half of 2022 as the market readjusts to the cooling measures. 

While there may not be an immediate drop in prices, we can anticipate a semblance of modest price movement in the first half of 2022. It is likely that prices would be growing at a slower pace in the range of 2% to 3%, compared to the 6% increase in the first half of 2021. 

HDB indicated that its flash figures were compiled based on the transaction prices of resale flats up till about the third week of December in 2021. The resale price index for the full quarter, together with more detailed public housing data, will be released on Jan 28, 2022.

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