(Bloomberg) -- Singapore home sales dropped to the lowest since April 2020 as fresh property curbs soured residents’ typically strong buying appetite.

New privately owned apartments sold by developers fell to 312 units in October, Urban Redevelopment Authority figures showed Tuesday. That was about a third of the 987 sold in September.

Singapore’s housing market has started to cool since authorities took steps to tighten loan limits after the nation largely defied the global property downturn. Analysts had expected demand to wane because of the borrowing restrictions, as well as a cloudy economic outlook and a lack of new project launches in the fourth quarter.

The curbs could discourage financially stretched buyers from participating in the property market, said Nicholas Mak, the Singapore-based head of research and consultancy at APAC Realty Ltd. unit ERA. “Some home buyers would either have to buy within their financial means or exit the market.” 

Demand in the second-hand residential market also fell last month. The volume of private apartments resold slumped about 12%, according to online real estate portals SRX and 99.co. Resales of public apartments owned by the Housing & Development Board plunged 24%.

“Eventually, property buyers, sellers and developers will adjust their expectations and the new cooling measures will become part of the costs and considerations for conducting business in the Singapore property market,” said Mak.

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