The Straits Times | 14 May 2013
Prices of luxury homes continued to rise across much of Asia in the first quarter, except in Singapore and Hong Kong, where property market cooling measures deterred buyers
PRICES of luxury homes continued to rise across much of Asia in the first quarter, except in Singapore and Hong Kong, where property market cooling measures deterred buyers.
The capital values of high-end residences climbed 2.2 per cent on average across nine Asian markets in the three months to March 31 from the preceding quarter, consultancy Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) said in a report yesterday.
Prices were also 6.1 per cent higher year on year on average, noted JLL, which tracked Beijing, Shanghai, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, Manila, Jakarta and Mumbai in addition to Singapore and Hong Kong.
The luxury segment here recorded a price dip of 0.6 per cent in the first quarter from the preceding three months.
High-end prices also fell 4.3 per cent in the corresponding period a year ago, making Singapore the only market tracked where first-quarter home prices fell year on year.
JLL head of research for Singapore and South-east Asia Chua Yang Liang said in the report yesterday that the Singapore high-end residential market "continues to face price corrections".
Dr Chua pointed to a seventh round of property curbs imposed by the Government in January and noted that slower population and economic growth here are likely to weigh down capital values.
The priciest high-end condominium transaction this year, in per sq ft terms, was for a unit at Ardmore Park, in the prime District 10. The 2,885 sq ft unit was sold at $3,640 per sq ft (psf) for a total price of $10.5 million in February, Urban Redevelopment Authority caveats show.
Prices for high-end homes in Hong Kong dropped 1.1 per cent quarter on quarter but were still 2.4 per cent higher from the preceding year.
Jakarta had the biggest jump in luxury home prices in the first quarter, with increases of 8.7 per cent from the preceding quarter and a stunning 32.9 per cent from the preceding year.
Other cities with solid price increases were Kuala Lumpur and Beijing, where prices rose 6 per cent and 2.4 per cent respectively from the preceding quarter.
Ms Jane Murray, the head of JLL's Asia Pacific research, said in the report that Singapore's high-end property prices could fall by as much as 5 per cent over the rest of this year.
Flash figures released last week by the Singapore Real Estate Exchange showed that city centre prices fell 1.9 per cent to $1,772 psf from March to April this year after sliding 2 per cent from February to March.
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