Mortgage Rates to Increase in Singapore
The recent announcement by the government that Singapore’s mortgage interest rates are expected to rise will affect both new and existing homeowners. While the government has warned that these increases will affect existing homeowners, new home buyers should still exercise caution before making any large financial commitments. Homeowners should make sure that they can meet the mortgage obligations before signing the contract. The cooling measures already implemented in the property market have impacted existing homeowners.
Interest rates will continue to rise in Singapore
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) is concerned about the rising household debt in the country and has warned against taking on further loans. In its annual Financial Stability Review, issued in December 2021, the MAS warned borrowers with heavy debt loads to refrain from taking on additional debt. In anticipation of the rise in interest rates, the MAS urged borrowers to review their mortgages and refinance existing loans. While higher interest rates will likely push more Singaporeans into saving, it will also affect local businesses by reducing profit margins and increasing the required return on new investments.
Higher interest rates may be attractive to investors, but they increase the burden on the government. Singapore’s framework includes borrowing limits of S$90 billion and interest payment caps of S$5 billion annually. As Singapore’s economy continues to expand, higher interest rates will probably help to temper inflation. The Singapore dollar will likely weaken against the US dollar, making overseas travel more expensive. But as long as Singapore is able to maintain its low cost of living, higher interest rates are expected to remain a factor.
Rising interest rates will affect Singapore’s property market. Because Singapore is a small open economy, its domestic interest rates are heavily affected by global market fluctuations. The Fed has already announced several hikes in its policy, and one of them may occur as early as March. Goldman Sachs predicts four or more rate hikes this year. This is not a good sign for the property market in Singapore. However, if Singaporeans are determined to own a home, rising interest rates will make the process much more costly.
Impact on existing home owners
With the recent announcement of the US Federal Reserve’s intention to raise interest rates, the situation for existing homeowners in Singapore is uncertain. While the move will help foreigners, the rise in interest rates will have a negative impact on existing home owners. Home loans are long-term financial commitments, and increased interest rates will make them more expensive to repay. Moreover, the situation is even worse for businesses, which may be tempted to borrow money but are unsure about the terms of the loan.
The rising interest rates have affected the property market in Singapore. The government has urged homeowners to exercise caution before taking on large financial commitments. In particular, the rising mortgage rates will affect existing homeowners, as the government has implemented several measures to cool the market. The new cooling measures imposed by the government to curb the over-supply of properties have already had an effect on homeowners. If these measures continue, mortgage rates in Singapore may increase even more.
The low interest rates in Singapore may last only for a few months. The low interest rates started out hot for the mortgage market in 2019, but a pandemic in the economy in March and April hit the nation’s economy. The current market conditions could see mortgage rates increase as high as three per cent. A further rise in interest rates may be necessary, but homeowners should be prepared for the long-term implications of this policy change.
Impact on investors
The United States Federal Reserve has announced its intention to raise interest rates, and while this may benefit foreign investors, it has a negative impact on Singapore homeowners. Rising rates will make home loans more expensive to repay, affecting existing homeowners as well as new ones. Rising mortgage rates will have a negative effect on property prices, as rising interest rates will make the repayment amount of existing mortgages higher. In addition, rising interest rates will negatively affect home loans, causing many investors to refinance their mortgages.
For example, a couple making a combined take-home pay of S$3,000 per month would have to cut back on other forms of consumption, such as dining out or shopping. When interest rates rise from 1.5 per cent to three per cent, the consumer debt service burden doubles. This is especially difficult for lower-income groups. Hence, rising mortgage rates will reduce demand for real estate, and may cause sellers to discount their prices in order to attract buyers.
As interest rates rise, investors’ discretionary spending will reduce, lowering the price of property in Singapore may result in lower prices. Rising rates will also dampen the broader housing market, which is dominated by government-built housing. And as the US economy continues to grow, the rising mortgage rates will have a negative impact on the real estate sector in Singapore. This is why property investors in Singapore should wait and see.