Expat accommodation monthly rents in Singapore drop 2%

Average monthly rent prices for unfurnished, mid-market, three-bedroom apartments dipped slightly to $5,747 in Singapore.

Average monthly rental prices in areas commonly inhabited by expats in Singapore fell 2% year-on-year to $5,747 in 2021, reported Singapore Business Review (SBR) citing a new study by ECA International.

With this, Singapore is listed as the 26th most expensive location for expat accommodation in the world.

The study collected figures from unfurnished, mid-market, three-bedroom apartments.

Lee Quane, Regional Director for Asia at ECA International, said the drop in rent was a foreseeable consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as the tight immigration restrictions on foreign workers.

“Rent levels in Singapore are always notably stable and this year is no different, with the country seeing only a slight dip in market rents,” he said as quoted by SBR.

“This represents a reversal of the increase in rental costs seen in the previous year and is likely the consequence of COVID-19’s impact on the wider economy in Singapore. Moreover, with greater immigration restrictions for overseas workers set in place, this has suppressed the demand for accommodation in the country this year.”

Hong Kong continued to top the list even as it registered a 5.95% drop in average rental prices over the past year.

“The pandemic has had a serious effect on international business in general, but more specifically, has severely limited the number of overseas workers moving to Hong Kong,” said Quane.

“This, together with the ongoing impact of socio-political tensions on Hong Kong’s economy, and the city’s unemployment levels at its highest rate in over 15 years, has resulted in a lower demand for high-end accommodation.”

Meanwhile, Taipei jumped 20 places to 29th most expensive location in the world for expatriate accommodation.

The research attributed the growth mainly to Taiwan’s success in mitigating the transmission of the COVID-19 virus in 2020 and to the increased demand for talent in key industries within Taiwan, which helped maintain and increase rent in high-end locations.

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Cheryl Chiew, Digital Content Specialist at PropertyGuru, edited this story. To contact her about this story, email: cheryl@propertyguru.com.sg

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