Auctions gaining traction among ultra-rich as a mode of sale

Romesh Navaratnarajah10 Dec 2018

Even landowners and developers have been considering auctions as an effective mode of selling properties.

More high-net-worth individuals are turning to auction as an effective mode of selling their properties, with one in four properties put up for auction during the first 10 months of 2018 valued at $5 million and above, reported Singapore Business Review citing JLL.

The figure has increased significantly from 2010 when at least one in 10 owner listings were placed under the hammer.

The report drew upon last year’s $11.4 million sale of a good class bungalow (GCB) at Chestnut Drive as an example of high-value owner auction. A property at Chee Hoon Avenue was also sold in 2013 for $22.9 million, while a property in the White House Park area was sold in 2010 for $13.6 million.

“These were sealed at 13-26 percent above their respective opening bids,” said Terry Poon of JLL Singapore.

Even landowners and developers have been considering auctions as an effective mode of selling properties. Sentosa Development Corporation was able to sell 12 oceanfront bungalow sites within the resort island of Sentosa Cove via an international auction in 2006 at $5.56 million to $8.15 million each.

“Frenzied biddings amidst keen competition for the coveted land parcels resulted in benchmark land prices set,” revealed Poon.

In 2015, the developers of prime condo development Suites @ Newton put up two units for auction. Two seafront bungalows at Wak Hassan Drive were also placed for auction in 2017, with opening bid prices at above $5 million each.

“As seen in Singapore, there is a growing trend of owners of high-end properties turning towards auction as a form of sale,” noted Poon. “It is hoped that as the negative light of auction properties begin to dim, more buyers will turn to it as a possible means of acquiring assets in Singapore.”

What are property auctions? For more information, read our buying guide.


Romesh Navaratnarajah, Senior Editor at PropertyGuru, edited this story. To contact him about this or other stories, email


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