The HDB resale price index (RPI) will be updated to make it more representative of the variety of flats on the resale market, such as proximity to amenities, age, and floor level, according to the housing board.
The revised index will also make better use of data and provides superior quality control.
In a statement, HDB said the index, which shows the general price trend of resale flats, was last revised in 2002.
Currently, the RPI is computed using the stratification method, with a representative basket of towns and flat models. Resale prices are grouped into segments based on flat types, models and regions. The average prices for each segment are then aggregated using 12-quarter moving average weights to derive the index.
Starting from Q4 2014, HDB will switch to the stratified hedonic regression method to compute the RPI. This method will control for variations in flat attributes, such as proximity to amenities, age and floor level, to derive the general price movements in each segment. These are then aggregated using five-quarter capital value fixed weights to derive the aggregate price change. To better reflect prevailing market structure, the weights will be updated once every three years.
At the same time, the base period will be changed from Q4 1998 to Q1 2009. This means that the RPI for Q1 2009 will be at 100. The current RPI series from Q1 1990 to Q3 2014 will be re-scaled to the new base period of Q1 2009. This adjustment will only impact the absolute levels of the index, and the quarterly percentage changes will remain unchanged.
Commenting, Mohamed Ismail, CEO of PropNex Realty, said the introduction of the revised index is timely as it covers all towns and flat models.
“We are expecting the revised resale price index to show a greater dip in the coming quarters as the inclusion of these highly transacted new estates may pull down the overall prices as demand in these estates are comparatively weaker.”
In a blog post last week, National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan shared that the HDB resale market has seen significant changes in recent years, and the current RPI may not reflect this.
“It is therefore timely to review the RPI methodology to better capture price changes over time, and control for the variations in attributes of the resale flats transacted. This will allow the index to continue serving its purpose of providing timely and reliable information on the resale market movements,” he said.