15th March to 21st March 2022
Singapore saw new private home sales drop by almost 23% month-on-month to 527 units in February – the lowest monthly sales since May 2020, when 487 units were shifted. The Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) announced that the strata subdivision of commercial complexes or mixed-use developments with a commercial component will no longer be allowed in Central Areas.
1) New private home sales slump to lowest since May 2020
While developers launched more new private housing units from existing projects in February, new homes sales dropped by almost 23% to 527 units last month from 680 units in January due to the absence of major new launches and the typical Chinese New Year lull, reported The Straits Times citing Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) data.
On an annual basis, new home sales declined 18.3%.
February’s sales figure was the lowest monthly sales since May 2020, when 487 units were shifted.
Notably, developers launched 194 units in February, up 9% from the 178 units rolled out in the previous month and 16.2% higher than the 167 units launched in the previous year. Only one new project was launched last month – the 32-unit Royal Hallmark in Haig Lane.
Including executive condominiums (ECs), new home sales declined 23.6% to 559 units in February from 732 units in January.
Aside from the lack of new launches and the typically low transaction volumes expected over the Chinese New Year period, the new property cooling measures introduced in December 2021 and rising interest rates could have also played a part in the dip. Potential buyers may exercise more caution before committing to a purchase.
Related article: Executive Condo Singapore (2022): 4 Upcoming ECs We Can Expect
2) Dunman Road site launched for sale
A residential site at Dunman Road, which could potentially yield around 1,040 units, has been launched for sale by public tender under the Confirmed List of the 1H 2022 Government Land Sales (GLS) programme, announced the Urban Redevelopment Authority.
Spanning 25,234.3 sq m, the site has a leasehold tenure of 99 years and a maximum gross floor area of 88,321 sq m.
Tricia Song, Head of Research for Southeast Asia at CBRE, described the site as one of the most attractive on the GLS due to its locational attributes, including proximity to Dakota MRT station and popular schools as well as “unblocked views over the large landed enclave at its southern perimeters”.
Huttons Asia said the site “will test developer’s appetite for mega projects”.
“If participation in Dunman Road GLS is good, it will give confidence to the mega-developments seeking to go en-bloc,” it said.
Last week, it was reported that the Dairy Farm Walk site was awarded to Sim Lian Group for $347 million. The Bukit Batok West EC site also received a record bid of $266 million from the Qingjian Realty and Santarli Construction Joint Venture. Experts have cited that the Dunman Road site could potentially fetch an expected investment quantum of more than $1 billion.
3) PropertyGuru begins trading on NYSE
Online real estate marketplace PropertyGuru commenced trading on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on 18 March under the ticker PGRU, reported Channel News Asia.
This comes after it merged with a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), Bridgetown 2 Holdings.
“It’s taken us 15 years to get here. We still have a lot of work ahead of us,” said PropertyGuru CEO Hari Krishnan.
“This creates new opportunities, new venues for to exploit the future … We are very proud to wave the flag of Southeast Asian tech and to bring it to the New York Stock Exchange.”
The company’s shares swung between gains and losses before closing the day at US$8.46, or up 1.56% on the US$8.33 list price.
This date marks a significant milestone for PropertyGuru, serving its customers in five markets across South East Asia, helping millions of people achieve their property aspirations. Keep up with the latest PropertyGuru Group news at our newsroom.
- PropertyGuru Successfully Completes Business Combination with Bridgetown 2 Holdings
- PropertyGuru Delivers over S$100m Revenue in 2021, Beats Full Year Forecast
- Bridgetown 2 Announces Effectiveness of Registration Statement and EGM Date for Proposed Business Combination with PropertyGuru
4) Scammers impersonate real estate agents
Property agency Huttons Group has warned of a new type of scam, in which scammers impersonate real estate agents and solicit deposits even before viewing, reported Channel News Asia.
Using fake Council of Estate Agencies’ (CEA) identity cards, the scammers upload fake listings on “alternative platforms” and would ask prospective tenants for a deposit even before they conduct a property viewing.
Huttons shared that the scammers would then become uncontactable once they receive the deposit.
In one case, the scammer sent a tenancy agreement for the tenant to sign and asked for deposits to “secure the unit first”.
“Once transfers are made, the possibility of recovery is very low. As such, consumers remain the first line of defence against such scams,” said Huttons.
The property agency has reported four such scams, all of which were for home rentals. ERA Realty has reported two cases, while OrangeTee & Tie has witnessed one such case.
The members of the public are advised to check with the Council of Estate Agencies (CEA) on the credentials of their property agent. Other tips as advised by CEA on how to avoid these spate of recent scams include using standard contract templates for transactions, knowing agents cannot dual represent and handling all money for property transactions yourself.
Watch this video by CEA for more information:
5) Vicenta Lodge sold en bloc for $27.2mil
This works out to a land rate of $968 per sq ft per plot ratio (psf ppr), after factoring in the development charge and bonus balcony space.
The sale comes after the development was relaunched for en bloc sale on 10 February with a reserve price of $27.2 million – a reduction from the $29 million price tag it carried when it was launched for sale on 22 April 2021. PropNex noted that the latest tender closed on 10 March.
“The tender relaunch saw renewed interest from developers and new entrants who are keen to redevelop small boutique residential development,” said PropNex Head of Investment and Collective Sales Tracy Goh.
Previously, Vicenta Lodge was launched at $33.6 million in 2018, before being relaunched again in 2021 for $29 million. According to the PropertyGuru Singapore Property Market Report Q1 2022, it is predicted that developers will go for small- to medium-sized sites for en bloc.
6) Chuan Park relaunched for en bloc sale, price unchanged at $938mil
The 444-unit development was last put up for tender on 5 October 2021, before the government introduced its latest cooling measures in December.
Including an upgrading premium of $192.62 million, the price tag works out to a land rate of $1,256 per sq ft per plot ratio (psf ppr), said marketing agent ERA Realty. It added that no development charge is payable due to the property’s existing high baseline.
The tender for Chuan Park will close on 26 April.
7) GCB transaction volume reach new high in 2021
The Good Class Bungalow (GCB) market ended 2021 on a high note, with transaction volumes hitting a new high of $3 billion, revealed CBRE. This comes as a total of 99 GCBs were sold last year.
Last year’s figure surpassed 2010’s previous record of $2.425 billion by 23.7% and is nearly three-fold 2020’s $1.086 billion.
CBRE attributed the improved activity within the GCB market to “fresh demand from digital economy entrepreneurs, key executives, and continued demand from new citizens”.
Related article: Who Are Buying Good Class Bungalows (GCBs) in Singapore? (2021)
The GCB market also saw average prices soar to a record high in 2021 at $1,771 per sq ft (psf), surpassing the previous peak in 2019 ($1,617 psf) by 9.4%.
For this year, CBRE expects the GCB market’s sales momentum to slow down largely due to the limited supply available for sale.
In 2021, the demand for GCBs rose alongside the demand for luxury property in Singapore. GCBs offers not only space and comfort but also the prestige of living in a highly desired area; the property type is seen as a status symbol. Those in the market for a GCB are likely to purchase when they come across an appropriate property that fits their needs, keeping demand up.
Browse all Good Class Bungalows for sale on PropertyGuru.
8) Strata subdivision of commercial properties no longer allowed in Central areas
The strata subdivision of commercial complexes or mixed-use developments with a commercial component will no longer be allowed in Central Areas, announced the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA).
This comes as strata subdivided developments tend to face challenges in maintenance and upkeep due to their fragmented ownership.
“For example, they may have difficulties in obtaining consensus to regularly maintain and/or upgrade the building, which can result in deteriorating physical condition, and in curating a good tenant mix,” said URA.
The restriction will apply to developments situated along Orchard Road, Scotts Road and Tanglin Road as well as those along Robinson Road, Shenton Way, Raffles Quay, Raffles Place Park, Anson Road and along the Singapore River. It will also apply to developments near key landmarks of national significance.
Moreover, the new rule will apply “to redevelopment proposals under the Central Business District (CBD) Incentive and Strategic Development Incentive (SDI) schemes”.
According to ERA Realty head of research and consultancy Nicholas Mak, small investors and business owners may have fewer opportunities to invest in commercial strata units, as more of these properties undergo redevelopment.
9) STB seeks proposals for Jurong Lake District integrated tourism development
The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) is seeking proposals to develop and operate an integrated tourism development at Jurong Lake District.
In a release, STB shared that it expects the new tourism hub to comprise “high-quality accommodation as well as a mix of attractions, retail, F&B and entertainment offerings – all with an emphasis on technology, “edutainment” and sustainability”.
It added that the new development should complement existing nearby attractions like the new Science Centre and the Jurong Lake Gardens, and will be well-integrated with the Jurong Lake District via a network of pedestrian-friendly streets and well-designed public spaces.
Plans for the development of the 6.8ha site next to Jurong Lake into a lifestyle and tourism hub was first announced in 2019. With the launch of the Request for Proposal (RFP), the tourism development is now expected to be completed from 2028.
The tender for the tourism development will open for seven months and close on 18 October.
A well-known industrial region, once ready, this development will complement existing attractions in the area boosting its reputation as a tourism hub for both residents and visitors. Additionally, the upcoming Jurong Region Line (JRL) will make the area more accessible for residents living in the district.
10) Pair of adjoining shophouses at Jalan Besar on sale for $23mil
A pair of adjoining shophouses located at 309 and 311 Jalan Besar has been launched for sale via expression of interest (EOI) with a guide price of $23 million or $2,520 per sq ft (psf) based on its existing gross floor area, revealed exclusive marketing agent Savills Singapore.
Comprising a two-storey building, with an attic and a four-storey rear extension, the freehold shophouses sit on a corner plot of about 3,267 sq ft, featuring an existing built-up area of about 9,127 sq ft.
Savills noted that the property, which is fully tenanted, comes with “F&B approval on three floors – ground, third and fourth floor”. It added that the corner plot location provides the buyer potential naming and signage rights.
The EOI exercise for 309 and 311 Jalan Besar closes on 19 April.
Benjamin Su, Digital Content Specialist at PropertyGuru, edited this story. To contact him about this story, email: firstname.lastname@example.org