What can be a better question than “how is the property market doing currently”?

So how is the property market in Singapore lately? Some say that price going to drop and opportunist are on the lookout, while others say there will be a pent up demand in Singapore which will drive the price up. Which one is correct?

Imagine if you have a crystal ball that can predict the future accurately, how can you make use of this prediction to make an true impact in your life? The data for the first quarter 2020 is out and in summary private residential price index went down by 1% quarter to quarter and no change for hdb index, so what does it mean to you?

When given a choice, will you want to sell high and buy low. Most of us would like buy at a low price and sell high, end of the day, who doesn’t? But don’t you agree that most of the time when we want buy a property, it can be very stressful because, what if I buy at a high price and then the market drop? And then also there are cases such thing as panic buy, where it’s like “oh my gosh, I better buy now if not the price’s going to shoot up!”

There are many useful information out there, but yet we are flooded by all these information that is impossible to organise them, isn’t it? To add another layer of stress is that Singaporeans are generally very busy people, and things move so fast nowadays, a useful info today can become irrelevant very soon.

So whenever you see a piece of information, one suggestion is to think of how can you use it, to improve your life or others life, if there is nothing you can do about it, you can skip it. You see, the time in our lives are limited, and we want to have meaning in everything that we do, ain’t it what we all want, to be able to look back when we are old and be in peace knowing the things we did in our life are all worthwhile?

So why am I saying this? Because the quality of the questions we asked has a direct or indirect link to the quality of life we will have. It is nothing wrong to ask “how is the market today” but I feel the better question to ask ourselves is, “how can today’s market help me to improve my life, improve my love ones life, give me security, allow me to provide to my families with more assurance, reach my retirement goals”… and so on..

Are you aware that in the HDB market, it takes 12 years to breakeven for someone who purchased a HDB property in 1997 at the high price? A long 12 years indeed. So, question, can someone wait 12 years just to buy a property? Yes if I am 10 years old today, but it is going to be even more stressful if I’m 30years today? 12 years later I will be 42 years old and I may still not own any property.

But those people who bought when market dropped during 1997 financial crisis, can they don’t buy and just wait for a better market? It is not easy to decide because of two main things:
1. You absolutely do not know the market tomorrow
2. Your current phase of life may not allow you to wait further

With regards to property in Singapore, we got to be aware of some fundamentals:
1. There is a holding period involved – we can’t just buy today and sell tomorrow, high chance we will lose money if we do that

2. Assessing which phase of life are we in – in some point of our life we need a property, if you are lucky, it just happens you are in the right cycle, but can we all be so lucky? Couple who reach the age to get married and need a house, say 27 years old in the year of 2005 can be considered lucky, but what if you are only 19 years old in the year of 2005, pretty high chance getting a property will not be in your mind frame, when you turn 27-30 years old and seriously thinking of getting a property, it will be in the year of 2012/13, and most buyers who bought resale hdb in 12/13 are not making money now or in the red.

3. Your age is an important factor (and this is the key difference when buying a stock or commodity) – the amount of loan we can leverage depends on our age so, early planning is crucial.

It take two hands to clap, on one hand is “how is the property market today”, which almost everyone got this correct), so now just need to get another hand to clap, and this hand refers to “at my current age, my phase of life, how can I make the most informed decision in order to have the most positive impact to my life right now”?

Some food for thought, discussion & opinions are welcome to share and learn together.