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Singapore 'not closed' to options for moderating rent hikes

Bloomberg • 1 min read
Singapore 'not closed' to options for moderating rent hikes
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Singapore is “not closed” to options to tackle rental pressures in the city-state, though the government cautioned that measures such as regulating prices could have unintended consequences.

International experience has shown that while rent controls may moderate increases for some tenants in the short run, they are likely to distort the housing market, the country’s Ministry of National Development said in a written parliamentary response to whether the government had considered capping rental fee adjustments.

Rent controls may lead to a cut in the amount of properties available, prompting demand to outstrip supply. This may also distort property prices and disincentivize landlords from maintaining proper upkeep of their rental units, MND added.

“Nevertheless, we are not closed to any option and will continue to monitor the situation closely and adopt such measures as may be necessary,” it said.

Rents for private apartments and public housing in Singapore surged about 32% and 27% respectively in March from a year earlier, though landlords often demand more. Singapore has topped New York with the world’s fastest pace of rental growth for high-end properties.

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