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Singapore home prices climb 3.4% even as interest rates rise

Singapore private home prices climb 3.4% in Q3 even as interest rates rise.
Singapore private residential property prices rose 3.4 per cent in the third quarter compared to the 3.5% increase in the previous quarter. (PHOTO: Bloomberg)

By Nurin Sofia

(Bloomberg) — Singapore home prices maintained a brisk pace of increase in the third quarter as buyers brushed aside concerns for higher interest rates.

Private property values rose 3.4% from the previous three months, when they climbed 3.5%, according to flash estimates released by the Urban Redevelopment Authority on Monday.

Singapore’s buoyant housing market has largely defied a global downturn triggered by steep rate hikes. US home values have dropped for the first time in a decade, while Sydney saw prices slump for the eighth straight month in September.

“The robust property price increase shows that some home buyers are discounting the risks of rising interest rates and possible economic slowdown,” said Nicholas Mak, the head of research and consultancy at APAC Realty Ltd. unit ERA.

Borrowing costs in Singapore have surged alongside global rates, as the Federal Reserve and other central banks take aggressive steps to contain soaring inflation. The three-month compound average Singapore overnight rate — used by banks to set interest rates for mortgages — has jumped to about 2% from 0.2% at the start of the year.

Singapore authorities last week tightened housing loan limits to ensure borrowers can afford higher rates. Officials also took steps to cool the public housing market, including imposing a 15-month waiting period for some buyers of resold units.

The cooling measures aren’t likely to have a significant impact on home prices, according to Christine Sun, senior vice president of research and analytics at OrangeTee & Tie. Sun maintained her projection for prices to climb between 4% and 7% for the whole of 2022.

© 2022 Bloomberg L.P.