Total mortgagee listings soared 59.1% year-on-year to 751, while owner listings increased 14.8% year-on-year to 707.

Singapore saw total auction listings jump 34% year-on-year to a new high of 1,458 listings in 2019 as both owner listings and mortgagee listings registered strong increases, revealed Colliers International.

Total mortgagee listings soared 59.1% year-on-year to 751, while owner listings increased 14.8% year-on-year to 707.

The number of listings climbed across the board, with residential properties leading with 798 listings.

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In fact, the residential sector made up 57.5% of the total mortgagee sale listings at 432.

“We believe the higher mortgage payments due to rising interest rates during 2015-2019, coupled with a subdued residential rental market, have contributed to the increase in residential mortgagee sale listings,” said Tricia Song, Head of Research for Singapore at Colliers International.

“Personal circumstances such as loss of job or bankruptcy could also have led to higher defaults. Post cooling measures in July 2018, we think possibly more distressed owners were unable to dispose of properties quickly enough and may have defaulted on their loans.”

Despite the hike in auction listings, the number of properties sold at auctions dropped 40% year-on-year to 21 in 2019 from 35 in 2018.

As such, the success rate dropped further to 1.4%, way lower than the 3.2% posted in 2018.

Steven Tan, Senior Director of Capital Markets at Colliers International, said the declining success rate mirrored the continued price gap between buyers and sellers.

He also noted that only eight out of 21 of the properties sold during auctions were transacted above their opening prices, signifying that buyers still took a cautious stance during auctions, while sellers continue to hold onto prices.

“It may also be a case of buyers needing more time before taking the plunge, which resulted in some sales being done after auction sessions – these sales are not reflected in the data set under successful auction sales,” he added.

Looking ahead, Colliers Research expects this year’s total listings to grow 10% as “more properties are put up for sale amid an uncertain environment, particularly in view of the potential economic impact should the COVID-19 outbreak becomes protracted”.

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Victor Kang, Digital Content Specialist at PropertyGuru, edited this story. To contact him about this or other stories, email