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Rochor Centre soon to be vacated

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 6th January 2017 in Blog
Rochor Centre soon to be vacated

The multi-coloured residential blocks will be demolished to make way for the 21.5km long North-South Corridor.


Most of the residents at Rochor Centre have relocated, while the few remaining ones have until the end of this week to move out, according to the Housing and Development Board (HDB) in a report by TODAYonline.

The iconic estate, known for its multi-coloured residential blocks, will be demolished to make way for the 21.5km long North-South Corridor, an expressway which will link the city centre with towns in northern Singapore.

On Thursday (29 December), the HDB said nearly all the 567 households there have obtained the keys to their replacement flats, with 504 families opting to resettle at Kallang Trivista in Upper Boon Keng Road.

Although most of the residents have returned the keys to their flats in Rochor Centre, some have asked the authorities to extend the deadline, as they are not able to vacate their premises by year-end.

Among them is housewife Shanel Yep, 38, who intends to relocate to a flat in Bendeemer before the Chinese New Year.

“We have considered their individual circumstances and will continue to work with them to vacate the units as soon as possible. For security reasons, we have advised the remaining residents to move out soon,” said an HDB spokesman.

Once all residents have moved out, the property will be handed over to the Land Transport Authority (LTA).

credits: propertyguru

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High Court gives green light to Shunfu Ville sale

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 5th January 2017 in Blog
High Court gives green light to Shunfu Ville sale

The collective sale of the HUDC estate faced a major hurdle last year after five owners objected to its sale. (Photo: JLL)

The High Court on Wednesday (4 January) approved the collective sale of Shunfu Ville to Qingjian Realty, reported The Straits Times.

While no written judgment was issued, the two objecting owners were given 30 days to file an appeal, which could be based on a point of law, or a combination of facts and law, said Kenneth Szeto, a partner at law firm Colin Ng and Partners.

The en bloc sale of the 358-unit privatised HUDC estate to Qingjian Realty faced a major hurdle in October last year, after five owners objected to its sale. It was reported that three of them eventually withdrew their objections.

With two owners still objecting the sale, the property developer had to obtain the High Court’s approval for the deal to go through, even though the sale committee had achieved the requisite percentage of owners’ approval. About 82 percent of Shunfu Ville owners had consented to the sale.

Qingjian’s Managing Director, Li Jun, said the company was “very happy” with the High Court’s approval. In fact, it is already examining plans and designs for the estate, even though it has to wait 30 days in the event of an appeal, he said.

Meanwhile, Lee Liat Yeang, senior partner in the real estate practice group at Dentons Rodyk and Davidson and a representative for Qingjian, said: “This is an important jab of confidence in the collective sale market, which has not seen much success in the past few years.”

credits: propertyguru

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Dubai developer offers BMWs with apartment purchases

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 30th December 2016 in Blog
Dubai developer offers BMWs with apartment purchases

Dubai property developer Damac Properties has bundled a luxury car with apartment sales worth over AED599,000 (S$236,290), media reports revealed.

Damac revealed that buyers can have the chance to drive away a BMW or another luxury car, whenever they buy a property in one of its luxury developments across Dubai.

“From luxury apartments overlooking Dubai Canal to branded residences in Dubai Marina, this offer allows property buyers not only to live the luxury, but to drive it too,” said Damac Properties senior vice president Niall McLoughlin.

He noted that average returns for Dubai real estate stands at seven to nine percent, up two to three percent compared to its matured international counterparts such as Paris, New York or London.

“In prime areas, even a 10-12 percent return isn’t uncommon,” he added.

“With the city’s development still on the rise, there’s no better time than now to invest in property that will show high appreciation in the years to come.”

Available until 28 January, the promo was launched as part of the Dubai Shopping Festival, said Damac in a statement.


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Land acquisition for HSR project to take place next year

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 29th December 2016 in Blog
Land acquisition for HSR project to take place next year

The future HSR stations will be built in new areas close to existing population and business centres.


Malaysian agency MyHSR expects land for the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High Speed Rail (HSR) project to be acquired by the third quarter of 2017, after the alignment plan’s public display by the middle of the year, reported The Star.

Tasked with overseeing the bilateral project, MyHSR is now looking at parcels of land measuring 50m wide that can be used as the final alignment from the terminus at Bandar Malaysia in KL.

The 50m-wide band will house not only the tracks, but also a buffer zone for safety purposes considering that the trains could travel by up to 350kmh, said Mohd Nur Ismal Kamal, CEO of MyHSR.

“A mix of private and state land will be acquired, though a lot of them run through plantations,” he said.

The project is expected to achieve two milestones by Q1 2017.

The first is the announcement of the tender to appoint a joint development partner (JDP).

Singapore and Malaysia will jointly award the tender for the JDP, which will provide advice on technical, operational and procurement matters, particularly in relation to the project’s system aspect.

MyHSR will also release the result of the tender for the services of reference design consultants (RDC) for the Malaysian stretch by Q1 2017, said Mohd Nur.

“The RDCs will look at the respective stations and alignments to optimise them all, though it will be more from the civil engineering perspective.”

He explained that the future HSR stations will be built in new areas not far from existing population and business centres, so as not to negate the time savings from HSR by the longer travel time for the last mile.

“The stations also need to be big enough to cater to the expected and future ridership, and have ample space for development around them,” he added.

“We have to balance between these factors.”

credits: propertyguru

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Property company, director fined $215,000 for unlicensed work

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 26th December 2016 in Blog
CEA reception-crop

This is the largest fine handed down by the court for this offence.

A property management company and its sole director have been fined a total of $215,000 for conducting unlicensed estate agency work, the largest fine ever meted out by the court for this offence, the Council for Estate Agencies (CEA) said in a statement.

Franks Property and its sole director and shareholder, Lim Koon Heng, 70, previously held a House Agent Licence issued by the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS).

After the CEA’s formation in October 2010, all property agencies and agents were required to be licensed and registered with the CEA before they could carry out estate agency work. However, Franks Property and Lim did not do so.

Despite their failure to register with the CEA, Franks Property carried out three sale and purchase property transactions between 2012 and 2013.

Under the Estate Agents Act (Cap. 95A), an officer of a company may be guilty of the same offence committed by the company if the offence was committed with the officer’s consent.

Lim signed off on the invoices issued for all three transactions, which involved the $8.02 million sale of a home at Vanda Drive, the $7.5 million sale of a shophouse at Smith Street, and the $1.02 million sale of a unit in Far East Shopping Centre.

For these transactions, Lim and Franks Property received a total commission of $94,976.64.

“This is the highest amount of commission collected among the unlicensed estate agency work cases that the CEA has prosecuted,” it noted.

For the purpose of sentencing, the court also considered six other charges filed against Lim and Franks Property.

Franks Property was fined $115,000, while Lim was slapped with a $100,000 fine, in default of 32 weeks’ imprisonment.

Under Section 28(1)(b) of the Estate Agents Act, the punishment for each offence is a fine not exceeding $75,000, or imprisonment of not more than three years or both.

“In the case of a continuing offence, there may be a further fine not exceeding $7,500 for every day or part thereof during which the offence continues after conviction,” added the CEA.

With this, the CEA advises consumers to engage only property agencies and agents who are licensed and registered with them. They can verify whether an entity or individual is licensed or registered via the public register on the CEA website.

credits: propertyguru

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Hopes of tweaking cooling measures revived

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 24th December 2016 in Blog
Private property

Will the property cooling measures be eased in 2017? 

Hopes of seeing the government tweak the property cooling measures have been rekindled after the US Federal Reserve signalled a faster pace of interest rate hikes in 2017, reported The Business Times.

Expecting stronger economic headwinds, some industry players believe that it is better to ease the measures now than try to revive the market when the economy is already in a dire state.

However, it may be too early to unwind the policies now given that the cycle of Fed rate hikes has just started, and most central banks have taken a wait-and-see approach.

Also, the private residential market does not seem to need any propping up as it registered more moderate price declines from the previous year, while witnessing a recovery in sales momentum.

In the first 11 months of the year, developers sold 11,573 private residential and executive condominium (EC) units, surpassing the 9,990 units sold for the whole of 2015.

Resale volumes increased by 27 percent during the first three quarters than in the same period last year, due to the narrowing of the price expectation gap between buyers and sellers.

The improvement in transactions is, in fact, setting the stage for a sustainable recovery within the housing sector.

The constraints brought forth by the TDSR has not dented investment appetite for residential properties as shown in the brisk sales recorded in some project launches this year, particularly those offering many smaller units with palatable quantums.

A study of project launches with at least 100 housing units indicates that the average take-up rate (based on all units) was 41 percent in the first month of launch, an improvement from 25 percent for project launches in 2015.

Moreover, the supply pipeline of housing units to be completed has steadily dropped from the peak in Q1 2013.

More than 50 percent of the 43,693 private residential units (excluding ECs) in the pipeline as at end-Q3 2016 have been sold, bringing the number of unsold units to 20,577.

The remaining 47 percent of units left unsold is below the historical average of 58.7 percent since 2001.

However, some signs of strains have emerged. The MAS revealed that the share of mortgage loans over 30 days in arrears rose to nearly one percent in September, while non-performing housing loans climbed to 0.4 percent.

Despite the uncertain economic environment, views on the property cooling measures remain mixed.

OCBC Bank analyst Eli Lee, for instance, believes that there is significant scope to unwind the measures.

Since 1985, he noted that the government had loosened its stance in three instances (1997, 2001 and 2008) after property prices fell by 8.3 percent to 16.4 percent.

In Q3 2016, private home prices were 10.8 percent below their peak in Q3 2013.

Maybank Kim Eng analyst Derrick Heng, on the other hand, said Hong Kong’s recent policy tightening should make Singapore wary of fund flows from overseas markets in case it loosens the measures.

To support the prime residential segment, others believe that the Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) on home acquisitions by foreigners can be tweaked without affecting the mass market. This line of argument is, however, misguided.

Foreigners’ share of residential purchases within the city-fringe and suburban regions dropped only after the ABSD was introduced in December 2011 – from 17.5 percent in Q4 2011 to about 5.5 percent in Q4 2016.

In recent quarters, the suburban region has accounted for over 40 percent of home purchases by foreigners.

credits: proerptyguru

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