Friday, July 6, 2012

» A string of private housing launches around the corner

Business Times: Fri, Jul 06

[SINGAPORE] Developers are preparing a slew of private housing projects for release in the next few weeks, including V on Shenton on the former UIC Building site, Parc Olympia at Flora Drive in the Upper Changi area and Parc Centros near Punggol MRT Station.

Next week, City Developments and Hong Realty are expected to roll out their Green Mark Platinum landed housing project, Haus@Serangoon Garden. The 99-year leasehold development will have 97 terrace houses. The homes are expected to cost $2.5 million-$3 million each. A typical intermediate terrace house will have land area of about 1,600 sq ft and built-up floor area of about 3,600 sq ft.

Capitol Investments is also said to be mulling over the release of some of the 39 units at its Eden Residences Capitol, near City Hall MRT Station, perhaps later this month or early next month.

The 99-year leasehold units - comprising three and four-bedders, as well as penthouses and garden villas - are on levels 3-11 of a new tower that will rise next to the landmark Capitol Theatre. The apartments will be opposite St Andrew's Cathedral; most units will enjoy views of Marina Bay.

A typical three-bedroom apartment will be about 2,200 sq ft and a four-bedder, over 3,000 sq ft. Pricing for the apartments has yet to be fixed but some market watchers suggest it could touch $3,000 psf - given their unique positioning within Singapore's civic and cultural district.

Eden Residences Capitol will be part of a mixed development (retail, theatre, hotel and residences) that will include the historic Capitol Theatre, Capitol Building and Stamford House - which are being conserved and restored for adaptive re-use.

In the financial district, United Industrial Corporation is getting ready to release its V on Shenton (or Five on Shenton) towards the end of this month, BT understands. The project comprises 510 apartments in a tower that will rise to 54 storeys. Units range from studios to three-bedders; there will also be six penthouses. Word on the street is that the average pricing for the 99-year leasehold project could be in the $2,300-$2,500 psf range.

Unit sizes are about 440-plus sq ft for studios, 880 sq ft for two-bedders, 1,000 sq ft for two-bedder-plus-study units and 1,500-1,750 sq ft for three-bedders. Penthouses range from around 3,300-7,000 sq ft. In addition to facilities like a swimming pool and club lounge (on the roof of the carpark podium), residents can use outdoor dining areas to host private parties (on level 24) and take in views from open-air landscaped gardens (on level 34). An indoor gym will be on the 35th level. V on Shenton is part of a mixed development that will include a 23-storey office tower.

In the 99-year, mass-market condo segment, Koh Brothers is expected to preview next week its Parc Olympia project at Flora Drive. Observers say that pricing could average around $880-$900 psf.

Near Punggol MRT Station, Wee Hur Holdings is expected to roll out Parc Centros within a fortnight. The pricing may be around $950 psf on average. The 16-storey condo will feature one to five-bedroom apartments as well as penthouses. Absolute prices start from about $550,000 for a 460-sq ft one-bedroom apartment, working out to about $1,195 psf.

Meanwhile, Allgreen Properties is expected to release two projects over the next few months - the 928-unit Riversails at Upper Serangoon Crescent and The Sorrento on West Coast Road. The latter will be a five-storey, freehold project with 131 units (one to three-bedders). Average prices could be around $1,300-$1,400 psf. Riversails - an 18-storey, 99-year condo - will have one to four-bedroom apartments. The average price is expected to be around $850 psf.

In the first five months of this year, developers sold 10,724 private homes, excluding executive condos. CBRE estimates that the figure for June could be around 1,100 units which could take the first-half figure to about 11,800 units.

Assuming developers sell 3,000-4,000 units in each of Q3 and Q4, the full-year tally would be 17,800-19,800 units, according to CBRE's forecast. Developers sold 15,904 units in 2011 and a record 16,292 units in 2010.

CBRE's executive director Joseph Tan said: "In the second half, we expect home prices to remain stable as developers continue to keep mass-market condo prices affordable at below $1,000 psf to move units; buyers will continue to be drawn to property investment as long as interest rates remain low."

But rents could dip marginally later this year as more projects are completed, and the inflow of expats slows amid a global economic slowdown, he added.

Urban Redevelopment Authority's flash estimate Q2 private home price index was up 0.3 per cent from Q4 last year. The index rose 5.9 per cent in 2011 and 17.6 per cent in 2010.

Savills Singapore research head Alan Cheong expects developers to fast-track new residential launches ahead of potentially negative economic developments and the Hungry Ghosts Month, which begins on Aug 17.

Martin Koh | 86666 944 | R020968Z
Sherry Tang | 9844 4400 | R020241C
Senior Sales Director
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