Property policies

Lending curbs deal heavy blow to home sales in Singapore

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 18 March, 2015, 6:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 18 April, 2015, 4:53pm

Home sales plunged 48 per cent in Singapore last month from a year earlier as lending curbs stemmed purchases.

Developers sold 382 units, down from 739 in February last year, according to data released by the Urban Redevelopment Authority.

Last year, home sales dropped to a six-year low as property policies hurt demand.

Sales fell by half to 7,316 units from 2013, the lowest since 2008, according to data from the authority.

The government began introducing residential property curbs in 2009 as low interest rates and demand from foreign buyers raised concerns that the market was overheating.

Prices surged 40 per cent in the five years to 2013 to a record, prompting some of the strictest measures, including a cap on debt at 60 per cent of a borrower's income, higher stamp duties on home purchases and an increase in real estate taxes.

Residential prices dropped 4 per cent last year, the data showed.