New private home sales down 47.6% in August amid lack of new launches, GuocoLand’s Lentor Modern sold 84% of units at launch and Reserve Residences
13th September to 19th September 2022
Singapore saw new private home sales drop 47.6% to 437 units in August 2022, from 834 units in July due to a lack of new launches during the seventh lunar month (Hungry Ghost Festival). Meanwhile, GuocoLand sold 84% or 508 of the 605 units at its Lentor Modern project over the launch weekend.
1) New private home sales down 47.6% in August amid lack of new launches
New private home sales in Singapore, excluding executive condominiums (ECs), dropped 47.6% to 437 units in August from 834 units in July due to a lack of new launches during the Hungry Ghost Festival month.
PropNex Realty noted that the monthly sales were the lowest since April 2020 – when the Circuit Breaker period had just started with 277 new units sold.
On an annual basis, new home sales fell 64.1% from the 1,216 units sold over the same period last year.
“The Lunar Seventh Month which straddled almost the whole month of August resulted in developers deferring the launch of new projects. The number of units launched for sale fell by 66.7% month-on-month to 134. This is the lowest units launched for sale since September 2017,” said Huttons Asia.
The Core Central Region (CCR) made up 50% of sales in August, while the Rest of Central Region (RCR) and Outside Central Region (OCR) contributed 29% and 21%, respectively.
Related article: Singapore District Map: Defining the CCR, RCR and OCR by the 28 Districts
Edmund Tie’s Head of Research and Consulting Lam Chern Woon attributed the outperformance in the CCR to the fact that “104 new units were launched in this market segment, compared to just 24 and six new units in the RCR and OCR, respectively”.
2) GuocoLand’s Lentor Modern sold 84% of units at launch
GuocoLand sold 84% or 508 of the 605 units at its Lentor Modern project over the launch weekend, with prices ranging between $1,856 and $2,538 per sq ft (psf), reported The Business Times.
Unit prices at the District 20 integrated mixed-use development ranged from $1.07 million for a 527 sq ft one-bedder to $3.33 million for a 1,528 sq ft four-bedder, revealed GuocoLand.
“The number of units sold on launch weekend makes (Lentor Modern) the best selling project in 2022,” noted Huttons Asia’s Senior Research Director Lee Sze Teck.
“The one- and two-bedroom units are the first to be sold out, reflecting buyers’ keen interest to gain a first mover advantage in this new private residential enclave. Buyers have also accepted that $2,000 psf or higher will be the norm going forward so they are not waiting,” he added.
GuocoLand shared that Singaporeans accounted for about 92% of the total buyers, while permanent residents and foreigners made up the remaining 8%.
Other successful new condo launches in Q3 2022 include Sky Eden @ Bedok, which sold 75% of its units on the first day of launch; AMO Residence sold over 98% of its units on the first day of its launch; Piccadilly Grand sold 77% of its units over its launch weekend; Liv @ MB sold over 75% of its units over its launch weekend.
3) Lentor Hills Road, Lentor Central sites receive lukewarm interest
The tender for two sites at Lentor Central and Lentor Hills Road (Parcel B) attracted fewer than expected bids, albeit the bid prices were close to earlier projections.
The Lentor Central site received three bids, with a consortium comprising Forsea Residence, Soilbuild Group Holdings and UED Alpha submitting the highest bid of $481 million ($1,108 psf ppr). The Lentor Hills Road (Parcel B) site, on the other hand, drew two bids with the highest bid coming from TID Residential at $276 million ($1,130 psf ppr), revealed the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA).
OrangeTee & Tie Senior Vice President of Research and Analytics Christine Sun noted that while the bid prices were close to their earlier projections of $1,000 to $1,100 psf ppr, the number of bids received was lower than the seven to 10 bids expected.
“Developers may have held back their bids in view of the global economic uncertainties and rising interest rate environment,” she said.
“Moreover, there will be a ramp-up of new home supply in the Lentor area with six land sale sites (five confirmed list plots and one reserve list plot). Therefore, future launches may face stiffer competition for buyers,” added Sun.
4) Bukit Batok West Avenue 5 site gets four bids
The tender for the executive condominium (EC) site at Bukit Batok West Avenue 5 drew four bids – the lowest since February 2015, when the Anchorvale Crescent site attracted just three bids.
In a release, the Housing and Development Board (HDB) revealed that CDL Zenith submitted the highest bid at $336 million.
Tricia Song, Head of Research for Southeast Asia at CBRE, noted that it was a tight race as CDL edged out the second contender, Sim Lia, by only 0.17%.
She attributed the less-than-stellar interest for the site to “looming headwinds such as the uncertain economic environment and steeper interest rates which not only increase development costs but could also undermine the demand for new homes”.
Looking ahead, Song expects demand for the project to be “supported by a ready pool of upgraders, on the back of a strong HDB resale market”.
Currently, HDB resale prices have risen for the 26th straight month in August 2022. Punggol, Bukit Batok and Tampines are the latest estates to have million-dollar HDB flats transacted.
Related article: HDB Estates With Flats Trending Towards 1 Million Dollars: Where Will The Next Estate Be?
5) Government urged to lower BTO eligibility age for singles
Workers’ Party Member of Parliament Louis Chua has called on the government to lower the age by which Singaporean singles are eligible to apply for a Build-to-Order (BTO) flat from 35 to 28, reported CNA.
Chua (WP-Sengkang) noted that lowering the BTO eligibility age for single Singaporeans would provide most Singaporeans some chance to “lead independent lives and steady their financial footing”.
“This proposal would be a critical change, yet a continuation of the Government’s efforts over the years to expand HDB options for singles, while still allowing HDB to give priority to providing for families,” he said.
“In fact, we believe lowering the threshold for owning HDB flats to 28 years would go a long way towards HDB’s stated aims for Singapore’s public housing to be ‘inclusive’ and to ‘reflect the diversity of our society’.”
Related article: BTO Flat vs Resale Flat Cost Breakdown: HDB Flats for Singles in Singapore (2022)
6) About 20% of Ang Mo Kio households applied for new flats
The Housing and Development Board (HDB) said about 20% of Ang Mo Kio households whose blocks have been chosen for the Selective En-bloc Redevelopment Scheme (SERS) have applied for new flats during the May and August BTO sales exercises, reported CNA.
Notably, the affected flat owners can apply for seven BTO projects that were launched in May and August 2022 and will be given priority for allocation, with 10% of the flat supply set aside for such owners.
HDB noted that 117 of the 606 affected households applied for a new flat in the May and August 2022 BTO or Sale of Balance Flats (SBF) exercises.
Of these households, 107 applied for a BTO flat, while the other 10 applied for an SBF unit.
“About nine in 10 applicants fall within the 10% priority allocation quota, which means a vast majority of the Ang Mo Kio SERS households will be successful in their applications,” revealed HDB.
7) ‘Bulk purchases’ of private residential property unlikely to impact market
Minister for National Development Desmond Lee said instances of “bulk purchases” of private property here in Singapore are uncommon, with multiple-unit acquisitions accounting for just 1% of the total private property transactions so far this year, reported The Business Times.
Units involved in multiple unit acquisitions of over two units are even fewer at about 0.2%. “Hence, bulk property purchases are unlikely to have a significant impact on the property market,” said Lee in a written reply to Member of Parliament Yip Hong Weng’s questions.
Meanwhile, real estate agents noted that while “bulk buys” are not uncommon, they are not prevalent, making up less than 5% of units transacted at launch.
“It could be parents and children who want to stay together, so they select units next to each other. We can also have siblings coming together to buy,” said Lee Sze Teck, Senior Director of Research at Huttons Asia.
On whether discounts are given to bulk buyers, PropNex Realty’s Head of Research and Content Wong Siew Ying said: “There is no certainty that bulk purchasers will get a better price. It depends on the project and prevailing buying interest.”
8) Euro-Asia Park goes en bloc for $500mil
Euro-Asia Park, a 163-unit condominium in District 13, has been put up for collective sale with a guide price of $500 million, reported The Business Times citing exclusive marketing agent OrangeTee Advisory.
The low-rise development occupies a 129,793 site that is zoned for residential use under the 2019 Master Plan with a gross plot ratio of 2.8.
Including an additional 7% bonus floor area for private outdoor spaces, developers could expand up to the site’s maximum allowable gross floor area of 388,860 sq ft. This brings the land rate to $1,520 per sq ft per plot ratio (psf ppr), after factoring a land betterment charge of about $71.5 million.
The site is expected to yield up to 397 new housing units, subject to the relevant authorities’ approval. OrangeTee revealed that a pre-application feasibility study is being conducted for this purpose.
9) Pair of shophouses on Ann Siang Hill on the market for $33.8mil
A pair of 999-year commercial shophouses on Ann Siang Hill has been put up for sale via expression of interest (EOI) with a guide price of $33.8 million, revealed exclusive marketing agent Savills Singapore.
Located within the Ann Siang / Club Street enclave, the two-storey attic shophouses sit on separate land titles and have a combined land area of about 2,649 sq ft.
They also have a built-up area of about 5,550 sq ft. Currently, the shophouses are interconnected and fully occupied by a multinational corporation tenant. Notably, the shophouses can be acquired individually or collectively.
“This is a truly exceptional opportunity for buyers to own this prized asset in an exciting district. It presents a great option for owner-occupiers such as family offices who are looking to acquire commercial property to use as their own office premise or investors who are looking to purchase property with stable rental income stream,” said Yap Hui Yee, Senior Director of Investment Sales and Capital Markets at Savills Singapore.
The EOI exercise for the shophouses closes on 19 October.
10) Balestier Road shophouse up for auction, guide price at $4.288mil
A two-storey conservation shophouse located at 463 Balestier Road will be put up for auction on 20 September carrying a guide price of $4.288 million, reported Singapore Business Review.
With a land area of 1,068 sq ft, the freehold shophouse has a built-up area of 2,036 sq ft, said One Global Group. It is also being sold with existing tenancy as well as on an “as is where is basis”.
The property – approved for commercial and residential use – is presently leased to a beauty salon. Given its residential component, foreigners are not allowed to acquire the shophouse, while Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) will be applied on the sale.
“Potential owners looking to purchase this shophouse unit would be able to benefit from the existing leasing arrangements that are in place, and they can expect a steady stream of rental income. As the lease is up to two years for services at level one and the lease is up to 2023 in level two, with option to be renewed yearly,” said Linda Lim, Corporate Sales Manager at One Global Group.