The median price of a private home in Singapore was US$1.2 million in 2022, the highest among cities in the Asia-Pacific, according to a report published on Tuesday, May 30.
In the latest Home Attainability Index by the Urban Land Institute (ULI) Asia Pacific Centre for Housing, Singapore also ranked as the region’s most expensive place to rent a private home.
The ULI Asia Pacific Centre for Housing bills itself as a think tank that aims to advance best practices in residential development and address housing issues relevant to the region.
In terms of affordability, the median private home price in Singapore was 13.7 times the median household income; the figure for median public Housing Board flats stood at 4.7. On the latter measure, Singapore ranks as the second-most affordable city in the Asia-Pacific, after Brisbane, with a ratio of 4.5.
The report gives a snapshot of the extent to which housing is attainable in 45 cities in nine countries in the Asia Pacific: Australia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea and Vietnam.
In the past year, Singapore’s median private-sector home price increased more than 8 per cent, while Hong Kong’s median home price fell 8.7 per cent, the report said.
It cited a few factors that led to the price increases in Singapore, including a large influx of immigrants and a growing trend of young professionals moving out of family homes for more space and freedom.
There was also a reduced new supply of housing in the past few years due to a Covid-induced disruption to the supply chain of building materials and labour.
The Singapore government has tried to address the issue of rising prices with a series of property cooling measures. The latest set, introduced in April, included measures such as the doubling of buyer’s tax for foreigners to 60 per cent.
In contrast, home prices in Hong Kong fell substantially, returning to 2017 prices. This was mainly caused by a drop in population and rising mortgage interest rates, the report said.