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880,000 HDB households to receive $120m of S&CC rebates

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 3rd April 2017 in Blog
HDB flats at night

The S&CC rebate was announced during Budget 2017 to provide additional support to households.

As part of Budget 2017, around 880,000 Singaporean HDB households can expect to receive $120 million worth of service and conservancy charges (S&CC) rebates in the 2017 financial year, revealed the Ministry of Finance (MOF) on Thursday (30 March).

To be disbursed over the months of April, July, October and January 2018, the rebates aim to provide additional support to households.

Depending on their HDB flat type, each eligible Singaporean household will receive a total of 1.5 to 3.5 months of S&CC rebate.

“The S&CC rebate will be used to offset a household’s S&CC payment directly. For households who pay their S&CC through GIRO, their town councils will make the necessary arrangements with their banks,” the ministry said.

“Eligible households will receive a letter from end-March with more details of the S&CC rebate.”

credits: propertyguru


Kallang River transformation may offer 100,000 new homes

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 31st March 2017 in Blog
Kallang River transformation

Kallang River is set to get a facelift, which will include new waterfront homes and recreational facilities. (Photo: URA)

There is potential to develop another 100,000 residential units along both sides of the Kallang River over the next 20 years, revealed the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA).

The URA announced this following the launch of an exhibition on Wednesday (29 March), showcasing opportunities to rejuvenate the 10km-long river and surrounding areas. Dubbed “A River Runs Through It”, the exhibition is a call for public feedback and ideas on a preliminary conceptual plan to rejuvenate Singapore’s longest natural river.

In line with this, the government has outlined five broad key ideas to develop the Kallang River. One of them is to inject new waterfront housing developments in park-like settings and renew old industrial estates within the vicinity.

For instance, the authorities will look to transform Kampong Bugis near the Lavender and Kallang MRT stations into a vibrant residential precinct that is car-lite, people-centric and sustainable.

“There is potential for the government to collaborate with the private sector, for a master developer to master plan and oversee the implementation of developments in Kampong Bugis,” said the URA.

According to Ong Teck Hui, JLL’s National Director for Research & Consultancy, the Kampong Bugis project is expected to benefit from the river rejuvenation as the site has about 1km of river frontage.

“Units fronting the river would be in greater demand and command higher prices,” he said, adding that the master developer would have an additional unique selling point to leverage on.

“Besides the Kampong Bugis project, other residential developments along the Kallang River comprising both private and public housing would also benefit from the rejuvenation plans. River-fronting homes would become more attractive and likely to command higher prices.”

In addition, the government is looking to redevelop Kallang Distripark, a private industrial estate near the future Geylang Bahru MRT station, into a residential project due to its attractive waterfront location.

Meanwhile, there are possible plans to establish a mixed-use precinct in Kallang Industrial Estate, which consists of several smaller industrial estates at Kallang Basin, Kallang Bahru and Kallang Avenue.

The other four ideas to rejuvenate Kallang River are:

– Activate the waterfront, and enhance Kallang Basin as a sports and recreational venue

– Enhance accessibility by providing a seamless active mobility route along Kallang River between Bishan and the city centre

– Enrich the biodiversity of Kallang River

– Celebrate and incorporate the river’s rich heritage

credits: propertyguru


50% of Park Place Residences sold on launch day

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 28th March 2017 in Blog
Park Place Residences sales launch

Overwhelming response seen at the one day launch of Park Place Residences last Saturday. (Photo: Lendlease)

Australia-based developer Lendlease sold 215 (50 percent) of the 429 available units at Park Place Residences in Paya Lebar Quarter (PLQ) during the first day of launch last Saturday (25 March).

This represented over 100 percent of the planned sales under the first phase, making it one of Singapore’s most successful private condominium launches in recent years.

Lendlease had originally intended to release only 40 percent of the units last weekend, but due to overwhelming response from buyers who queued from early morning, an additional 10 percent of the condo units were launched for sale.

Prices of the units ranged from around $800,000 for a one-bedroom apartment to $2.1 million for a three-bedroom premium unit, which works out to $1,600 psf to over $2,000 psf.

“The strong sales show our buyers confidence in the quality of the project and in Lendlease,” said Tony Lombardo, CEO for Asia.

One of the buyers was Patrick Yap, 39, who purchased a one-bedder for investment purposes. “Park Place Residences is part of an integrated development (PLQ) with an upcoming retail mall and offices. Together with its convenient location, I am confident that it will attract many tenants,” he said.

Similarly, 31-year-old Huang Zhenbiao and his wife bought a two-bedroom apartment after being attracted to the project’s strategic location.

“The development is on the Paya Lebar MRT interchange, and we can get to the Central Business District (CBD) quickly. There is potential development around the area too, which is another plus point.”

Meanwhile, prices of the remaining units at Park Place Residences are expected to increase when details of other upcoming developments in the vicinity are announced, especially in the greater Paya Lebar Central area.

The location is also emerging as a new vibrant hub in Singapore, given its position on the double MRT Interchange and proximity to the CBD and Changi Airport.

Following the successful launch, Lendlease will now temporarily close the showflat. Details on the next phase of sales are expected to be revealed later this year, while construction of the entire development is expected to be completed by early 2019.

credits: propertyguru


Investment opportunities in the city fringe

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 27th March 2017 in Blog
Event News - Thomson Impressions

A big crowd turned up at the Thomson Impressions showflat to find out key predictions for the property market in 2017.

The most recent Guru Talk seminar held at the Thomson Impressions showflat covered predictions for the Singapore property market in 2017, as well as the benefits of city fringe living.

By Mindy Chong

The private residential market in Singapore is divided into three regions, according to plans laid out by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA). They comprise the Core Central Region (CCR), the Rest of Central Region (RCR) and the Outside Central Region (OCR).

Last year, the total number of residential units sold reached around 8,000 units, with more than 70 percent coming from the OCR, 15 percent from the RCR, and the rest from the CCR. The Government Land Sales (GLS) programme focuses mainly on the OCR, followed by the RCR and the CCR.

The RCR, also known as the city fringe, is defined as an area just outside the city centre. But why is it an important market, and how can prospective buyers benefit from investing in this region?

These questions were answered during a Guru Talk seminar held on 25 February 2017 at the Thomson Impressions showflat. Guru Talk is a series of knowledge empowerment seminars that aim to provide “Guru Views” on the property market.

Property predictions

The most recent seminar drew more than 88 property seekers looking for insights from industry expert Donald Han, Managing Director of Chestertons. He began by providing an overview of the residential market in 2017.

Following the bottoming out of the market in 2016, he predicts an inflection point in the second half of this year. While the global economic slowdown may impact Singapore’s recovery and growth, he foresees an increase in sales volume due to liquidity in the market and current low interest rates, a gradual reduction in unsold units, limited supply of housing under the GLS programme, ongoing cooling measures, and a slow dip in property prices.

Making an impression

Han also discussed the key advantages of investing in city fringe properties, including their proximity to commercial centres and greater preference among tenants. At the same time, attendees were provided with information on some of the top-selling residential projects in January 2017, which included Thomson Impressions.

Developed by Nanshan Group, the 99-year leasehold project is within proximity to the MRT network, parks, golf courses and retail facilities.

In addition, visitors enjoyed up to $18,888 off their property purchase on the day of the event.

credits: propertyguru


Get the Guru View: HDB resale – A buyer’s market

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 26th March 2017 in Blog
Public Housing in Bishan, Singapore

Upcoming BTO launches could draw demand away from the HDB resale market.

The HDB resale market has seen prices stay flat since Q2 2015. With an increase in the grants available for use, will this market start to see a pickup in 2017? We give you the Guru View.

By Chang Hui Chew

For the HDB resale market, the past few weeks have been an interesting time.

In late February, Minister for National Development, Lawrence Wong, announced that the CPF grants for HDB resale flats would increase from $30,000 to $50,000 for couples, and to $25,000 from $15,000 for singles, for four-room flats and smaller units. This increase in grants should help those young couples start their families sooner, as they have more incentive to buy a resale flat, rather than wait for a Build-To-Order (BTO) flat to complete construction.

In this edition of the Guru View, we examine the performance of the HDB resale market in 2016, and look at some likely implications in this year.

Flat prices

Despite the fervour around private property, most Singaporeans live in HDB flats, and their resale performance is an important bellwether for Singapore’s property market.

The HDB Resale Price Index (RPI) has remained flat since the second quarter of 2015, hovering between 135 and 134 (refer to Figure 1). This is likely due to affordability curbs such as the Mortgage Servicing Ratio (MSR), which limits how much monthly income HDB flat buyers can use to pay their housing loans.

Guru View - HDB Resale Price Index and Transcation Volume










HDB resale flats remain a very price sensitive segment, with many HDB flats in the same area largely similar products, differentiated only by factors such as height. Sellers who wish to ask for higher prices often see buyers seek the next cheapest offering, a likely factor that contributes to the HDB RPI’s lack of growth.

In March 2014, the state also abolished the practice of Cash-Over-Valuation (COV), where buyers and sellers negotiated on the additional cash to be paid to homeowners above the agreed upon value of the flat. This practice led to soaring resale flat prices, as sellers, in a bid to outdo their neighbours, asked for higher COV.

Without COV, sellers and buyers are now negotiating based on agreed upon valuations, rather than a perceived premium. This has led to a lot more sense in the process when sellers are pricing their HDB flats.

At the same time, HDB resale volumes have improved since its low point in 2014. In 2016, total resale volume saw a year-on-year increase of 7.8 percent to 20,813 units, from 19,306 units the year before (refer to Figure 2). This was led primarily by a growth in transaction volumes in four-room and five-room flats.

Guru View - HDB Resale Transactions by Flat Type










Upcoming supply

Sellers in the resale market also need to contend with BTO launches in 2017.

At the end of 2016, Wong announced that the HDB would be launching over 17,000 BTO flats in 2017. Over 4,000 units were launched in February 2017’s BTO exercise, with two popular mature estates, Clementi and Tampines, in the mix.

The next exercise in May is more highly anticipated, with the up-andcoming Bidadari estate offering more than 1,300 units. In 2016, Bidadari’s BTO launches saw more interest than supply could meet, especially with the larger units among applicants.

Bidadari’s popularity stems from the government’s plans for the areaas part of the extended decentralised Central Business District in Paya Lebar, as well as its convenient location in the city fringe, just minutes away from Dhoby Ghaut via public transport. Furthermore, the state’s urban planners have drawn up plans for a garden estate, with lakes, parks and suburban shopping centres.

While the HDB resale market continues to be propped up by demand from those who need to move with a degree of urgency, or who choose not to wait for a new flat to be built, the relatively lower price and the attraction of being the first occupant of the unit continues to draw buyers to BTO launches. This could potentially drain demand away from the HDB resale market, another factor that continues to keep prices in that segment suppressed.

Buyers undecided on the route to take, but are looking to live in popular estates could potentially wait for the next BTO launch, trying their luck at the ballot. It is only if they are unable to secure a BTO unit that they decide to enter the resale market.

Not so great expectations

According to PropertyGuru’s Property Sentiment Survey for H2 2016, more than half of the respondents felt that HDB resale prices are likely to rise over the next five years, despite the weaker macroeconomic climate and continued affordability curbs.

This is not necessarily a worrying sign, and suggests sense in the market. Most Singaporeans have their wealth tied up in their real estate assets, which are largely HDB flats. An increase in prices, especially one that is sustainable, will also imply an increase in wealth for many Singaporeans.

More importantly, price increases will need to come with an overall increase in wages, to prevent issues of affordability.

The increased grants are likely to help Singaporeans who want to buy a resale flat, especially in the more expensive mature estates. In the short term, they might motivate individuals who have been waiting on the sidelines to enter the market. Longterm however, the increase in grants might not necessarily move the needle significantly, if wages are unable to rise with housing prices.

credits: propertyguru


Northwave EC: Right location, right time

Posted by Singapore Property Launch on 23rd March 2017 in Blog
Northwave EC

Artist’s impression of Northwave EC.

Did you know Woodlands is set to be the next success story?

Singapore’s northern gateway – One of the Urban Redevelopment Authority’s (URA) proposed new regional centres, Woodlands is set to be transformed into a booming metropolis, offering a modern, dynamic and diverse environment in which to live, work and play. Around 700,000 sq m of new commercial space is planned, as well as significant infrastructure improvements throughout the region. No wonder it is widely considered to be Singapore’s next big thing.

Incredible connectivity – Woodlands North and Woodlands South on the brand new Thomson-East Coast Line both come online in 2019, bringing the number of MRT stations in the area to five, with Admiralty, Woodlands and Marsiling already serving the region via the North South Line. The North-South Corridor – Singapore’s first integrated transport route – will be an expressway directly linking to the Central Business District (CBD), and will feature dedicated and continuous bus and cycle lanes. A new Integrated Transport Hub will provide a seamless connection between the MRT station and bus interchange at Woodlands Central.

Unrivalled dining, retail and leisure – When Northpoint City opens its doors in 2018, it will be the largest mall in the north of Singapore, and will add to the considerable choices already offered by Sun Plaza, Causeway Point and Sembawang Shopping Centre. Woodlands Central will feature a new retail and food hub, while Kampung Admiralty will be home to, among other exciting unique amenities, hawker centres, F&B outlets and supermarkets. Leisure wise, the Singapore Zoo, Night Safari, River Safari, soon to be relocated Bird Park, and recently announced Rainforest Park are 10 minutes’ drive away, while ORTO, the island’s first 24-hour leisure facility, is also nearby.

First world amenities – Woodlands and the immediate area is home to established schools and educational facilities covering the whole spectrum from childcare and primary schools up to secondary and tertiary, local and international. As well as existing specific centres for the elderly, there will shortly be a fully integrated healthcare hub with a community hospital, an acute hospital and nursing home.


Did you know luxury could be so affordable?

21st century luxury living – Northwave boasts all the modern facilities you would expect from a high-end condo, but with some unexpected and unique twists, such as its fully air-conditioned badminton court cum multi-purpose hall that can be used for organising big functions.

Promoting community and family values – Many of its recreational and leisure facilities are specifically designed to encourage and promote health and wellness, as well as engender family bonding. The ground-breaking Patio Homes concept recreates the feel and atmosphere of a landed property and garden.

Ideally located near transport links – The development is in easy reach of Admiralty MRT station and the soon to be completed Woodlands South station. Cyclists are well catered for with cycling paths leading to park connectors, linking numerous nearby parks including Woodlands Waterfront.

Executive condos: Great homes, great investments – In an uncertain market, ECs have stood out as being some of the most sought-after properties in recent years. Hand in hand with the restrictions come several grants and subsidies, turning an already attractive proposal into one of the very best options available for HDB upgraders and young upwardly mobile couples.


Did you know there has never been a better time to invest in Woodlands?

Woodlands map

Master Plan for the Woodlands North Coast Innovation Corridor.

10,000 new jobs on your doorstop – The development and investment that its regional centre status draws is a massive boost to the area’s economic and employment prospects. More than 10,000 new jobs will be created in the new business clusters in Woodlands North, Gambas Avenue and Woodlands Avenues 9 and 12, as well as along the upcoming North Coast Innovation Corridor that will run from Woodlands to Punggol.

Gateway to Malaysia – The recent announcement of the planned RTS (Rapid Transit System) between Woodlands and Johor Bahru, to complement the existing causeway and Shuttle Tebrau, is certain to cement Woodlands as the gateway to JB and beyond.

The perfect time – Woodlands as a place is booming. The population has increased by more than 30 percent in 15 years, and that trend is set to continue. In a similar period, resale prices for non-landed private residential properties have appreciated by 92 percent. Demand is particularly high in regional centres and for developments near MRT stations. This is a perfect opportunity to buy while you still can, and before the infrastructure is completed and prices inevitably rise.


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