March Lease Volume up, Sales Volume Down.

Singapore – As the Covid-19 cases spiking up these recent days to 12,075 cases with a surge of 1037 cases on April 23, 2020, even with the Circuit Breaker in place. On the other hand, private home sales slipped last month down by 32 per cent from 972units to 660units from February to March and are poised to stay low this month as show-flats close and more launches are expected to be pushed back on account of the circuit breaker measures.

This is expected as individuals can’t go out to show houses to check out new units during this “CB”. People rather extend their leasing agreement as lease sales volumes seem to be increasing and doing well from February to March.

This is a bad time not just for Singapore’s developers but the whole of Southeast Asia. It is expected that from March to May the sales of private homes will keep on plunging down. It was also seen that for the past 5 years, sales from March to May usually made up 26 per cent to 38 per cent of total sales in those years.

Year on year, the number of new private homes sold last month was down 37 per cent from 1,054 units in March last year. 

It’s not just private homes, ECs are not doing so well too, there were 4 new launches recently that did not do well. Including ECs, developers moved 904 units last month, down 31 per cent from February’s 1,315 units, and nearly 15 per cent lower than the 1,062 units sold in March last year.

While virtual show-flats saw interest, actual sales have not materialised as buyers prefer to get a sense of the actual size, layout and finishes.

New sales launches could be scaled back due to uncertainty over whether the circuit breaker may be extended, which would reduce transaction volumes this year. So let’s do our part, stay home and fight this pandemic together. With the new cases surging up fast and high, it is crucial for us to stay home to reduce the spread of the virus. 

Grace Leong, The Straits Times

APR 16, 2020, 5:00 AM

Circuit breaker measures to take toll on new home sales

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