SINGAPORE condominium rents rebounded slightly in March after seven straight months of decline, supported by healthy leasing demand from renters who returned after the festive Chinese New Year period in February.

Rental volumes for both condo and Housing and Development Board (HDB) flats recovered during the month, after falling in February, based on flash estimates released by SRX and on Thursday (Apr 18).

The data indicated that condo rents inched up 0.3 per cent from the month before, but fell 3.4 per cent year on year.

Rental volumes, meanwhile, jumped 19.1 per cent on the month to 5,677 units in March, compared with 4,766 units in February. Year on year, rental volumes were 14.9 per cent higher, but 6.9 per cent lower than the five-year average volume for the month of March.

The Outside Central Region (OCR) had the most leasing activity in March, with 36.4 per cent of total volumes attributed to the region. This was followed closely by the Rest of Central Region (RCR), which accounted for 32.6 per cent of total rental volumes, and 31 per cent from the Core Central Region (CCR).

Rents in the RCR increased the most, rising 0.9 per cent, followed by rents in the CCR, which rose 0.3 per cent. In contrast, rents in the OCR fell by 0.3 per cent.

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Rental prices in all regions slipped compared with the previous year. Prices in the CCR declined the most, at 5.5 per cent, followed by the RCR at 2.6 per cent, and the OCR at 2.1 per cent.

Meanwhile, HDB rents rose for the second straight month, recording a gain of 0.6 per cent from February. Rents rose not only in both mature and non-mature estates, but also across all room types.

Mature estate rents were up 0.6 per cent on month and 7.5 per cent higher on year, while non-mature estate rents rose 0.7 per cent on month and 8.9 per cent on year.

Larger HDB flats commanded higher rents in March, with five-room flat rents rising 1.5 per cent and executive flat rents increasing 1.3 per cent. Four-room flat rents recorded a slight increase of 0.3 per cent, while three-room flat rents climbed 0.8 per cent.

HDB leasing volumes also recovered in March, advancing 9.8 per cent to 2,689 flats rented from 2,448 flats in February.

However, volumes were down 12.1 per cent year on year and were 11 per cent lower than the five-year average volume for the month of March.

Four-room flats continued to be popular, accounting for 36.3 per cent of rental volumes in March, followed by three-room flats (33.6 per cent) and five-room flats (24.5 per cent). Executive flats made up only 5.7 per cent of HDB rental volumes.

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