Experts share suggestions for Fresh Start Housing Scheme


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30/05/2016

Experts hope that the 2016 Budget, which will be announced this Thursday (24 March), will solve some current problems with the Fresh Start Housing Scheme, reported Channel NewsAsia. This scheme helps HDB tenants purchase their own flat, with a focus on families with young children, and those who previously owned a home. But a key problem is fine-tuning the eligibility criteria to ensure that the beneficiaries really deserve such assistance, said DTZ’s Research Head Lee Nai Jia. “I t...
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Wealthy Malaysians favour Singapore property


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30/05/2016

Singapore was ranked the second top choice for wealthy Malaysians who can afford offshore real estate, according to PropertyGuru’s latest market sentiment study. Of 326 individuals surveyed online, 21 (seven percent) own a high-rise or landed home outside Malaysia. Of this, 20 percent have acquired a house in Singapore. Meanwhile, Australia took the top spot, with 23 percent having bought a home there, while India and Germany were also among the most popular choices, with a respective 18...
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Thai developers now building more luxury homes


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30/05/2016

Property firms in Thailand have already launched several residential projects targeted at the high-end market in the first quarter of 2016, reported The Nation. This is due to the high household debt, which continues to create uncertainty in other segments of the property market. Anant Asavabhokhin, Chairman of Land & Houses’ Executive Board, reckons that the government should stimulate spending in the luxury segment, to help boost the overall economy. Land & Houses recently launched an ups...
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Developers confident of disposing units before ABSD deadline


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30/05/2016

Some developers in Singapore are optimistic they can sell all the remaining units in their private residential projects before the stipulated deadline, even if they don’t offer huge discounts, reported The Business Times. Under the Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) rules introduced in December 2011, these companies need to build, complete and sell all units within five years of purchasing the land. If there are any unsold units after that period, they need to pay a 10 percent levy, whi...
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Chinese nationals still buying Singapore homes for their kids


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30/05/2016

Despite facing weaker currencies and slowing economies, mainland Chinese and Malaysians remain the top foreign buyers of Singapore property, revealed DTZ. Together, they bought 1,952 private homes in 2015, or 54 percent of total foreign purchases. Specifically, sales to Chinese nationals fell slightly by 3.8 percent to 998 units, while Malaysian home purchases remained largely unchanged at 954 units. “The devaluation of the Chinese yuan in August 2015 meant that mainland Chinese natio...
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Katong bungalow put up for mortgagee sale


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30/05/2016

A single-storey bungalow in Katong, one of the few available freehold properties in the area with redevelopment potential, has been put up for mortgagee sale, revealed marketing agent DTZ. Located at 85 Branksome Road, the house sits on 13,189 sq ft of land and has a gross floor area of around 9,000 sq ft. According to DTZ, the property has an indicative price of $16 million, or $1,200 psf. Recent transactions of landed homes in the area have ranged from $1,200 psf to $1,400 psf. Last year...
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HLH launches phase two of Cambodian project


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30/05/2016

Singapore-listed HLH Group has launched phase two of its maiden mixed-use development in Cambodia, after the first phase was sold out. A total of 437 units were released in the latest phase of the D’Seaview project in Sihanoukville, with one- to three-bedroom units on offer. The waterfront development was first launched in September 2015. All 300 apartments released under phase one were snapped up by local and international buyers, with prices ranging from US$675 psm (S$922 psm) to US$1,...
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Singapore’s housing market among the weakest: Knight Frank


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30/05/2016

Prices of private residential properties in Singapore continued their downward trend, falling by 3.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2015 from the previous year, according to Knight Frank’s latest Global House Price Index. On a quarterly basis, prices slipped by 0.2 percent from Q3 2015. Singapore was ranked 51st out of the 55 housing markets tracked by Knight Frank, which puts it among the weakest performers, Ukraine and Greece. Between 2009 and 2011, prices of private units surged by ...
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South Beach wins top design award


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30/05/2016

South Beach, Singapore’s biggest mixed-use development, has won the only Platinum SG Mark, presented at this year’s Design Business Chamber Singapore (DBCS) SG Mark awards. Jointly developed by City Developments Limited (CDL) and Malaysian-based IOI Properties, the new project at Beach Road was built on a 3.5ha plot, and took eight years to complete. It faced design challenges that involved incorporating four conserved buildings with modern structures. Several of the project’s green ...
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Malaysia’s property market has hit bottom, says developer


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30/05/2016

Home sales in Malaysia are expected to recover in the second half of 2016, said Mah Sing Group, the country’s third largest property developer by sales. “We have reached the bottom of the downturn, and it will recover in the medium term,” as Mah Sing is witnessing signs of renewed confidence from home buyers, despite the negative reports on the weak ringgit, and allegations of corruption, said Group Managing Director Leong Hoy Kum. “The bad news like 1MDB and the ringgit have alrea...
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Top property agents earn 66% more than average Singaporean


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30/05/2016

The median gross monthly commission earned by the top 300 property agents at ERA Realty Network hit $11,686 in 2015, according to latest statistics released by the property agency. This is 66 percent more than the median gross monthly income of full-time employees in Singapore, which averaged $3,949 last year, based on data from the Ministry of Manpower. These 300 agents are aged 23 to 65, with four of them above 60 years old, earning more than $133,876 annually despite being of retirement...
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Expats still paying top dollar for historic bungalows


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30/05/2016

Sales of black-and-white bungalows, a type of good class bungalow (GCB), are few and far between given their limited number, reported The Wall Street Journal. Designed after the mock-Tudor architectural style, these houses come with whitewashed exteriors that contrast with black-stained timber details. To make them more suitable for the tropics, they feature broad verandas, wide eaves and tall shutters for shade, as well as masonry piers to elevate the structure and alleviate humidity. Acc...
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Colombian city wins LKY prize


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30/05/2016

Medellín, Colombia’s second largest city, has been named a 2016 recipient of the Lee Kuan Yew World City Prize, said the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) on Wednesday, 16 March. It beat out four other finalists – Auckland, Sydney, Vienna and Toronto, which will be honoured with a special mention. “Medellín’s transformation has been extraordinary. It has gone from being one of the world’s most dangerous cities into a liveable and innovative city,” said Kishore Mahbubani, Ch...
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Developer sales down almost 23% from year ago


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30/05/2016

New private home sales in Singapore fell by 22.8 percent to 301 units in February 2016, from 390 units in the same period last year, according to data released by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) on Tuesday, 15 March. On a monthly basis, the sales volume fell by 6.8 percent from the 323 units sold in January 2016, even though new launches surged 31.4 percent to 209 units from 159 units previously. According to JLL, the “slower developer sales were expected due to the Lunar New Yea...
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Economists cut growth forecast for Singapore economy to 1.9%


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30/05/2016

Economists polled by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) are cutting down their growth forecast for the economy for 2016 from 2.2 percent to 1.9 percent, the central bank’s latest quarterly survey revealed Wednesday (16 March). “As reflected by the mean probability distribution, the most likely outcome is for the Singapore economy to grow by between 1.0 to 1.9 percent this year, below the 2.0 to 2.9 percent range reported in the last survey,” the MAS said. Manufacturing is now ...
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Temasek overtakes GIC as Singapore’s biggest property firm


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21/05/2016

Temasek Holdings has been named the biggest real estate firm in Singapore, with total assets under management at US$39.9 billion, according to the latest Estates Gazette ranking, which pulled together the world’s top 100 investors. The state-linked investment firm overtook the sovereign wealth fund GIC, last year’s top performer, for the number one spot. Temasek has stakes in major local and regional players such as CapitaLand, M+S, Mapletree and Pulau Indah Ventures. CapitaLand took s...
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MAS, China central bank renew bilateral currency swap arrangement


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21/05/2016

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), and the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) on Tuesday (15 March) announced the renewal of the existing bilateral currency swap arrangement (BCSA) for another three years. “The BCSA is a key pillar of cooperation between PBOC and MAS to strengthen regional economic resilience and financial stability,” said MAS. The arrangement aims to enhance banks’ confidence in carrying out their business in the two markets and enables both central banks to provi...
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Pinnacle@Duxton prices unlikely to climb much higher


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21/05/2016

The Pinnacle@Duxton in Tanjong Pagar has recorded three transactions of above $1 million so far this year for its 5-room flats, similar to the four deals seen in the first three months of 2015. The development has regularly made headlines in recent months. For example, a unit was sold for $1.08 million ($945 psf) in November 2015, the most expensive sale ever for a 5-room flat in Singapore. In January this year, a unit changed hands for approximately $1.07 million. According to Eugene Lim,...
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900 families got a third HDB loan in 2015


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21/05/2016

The Housing and Development Board (HDB) granted a third housing loan to around 900 families last year, according to National Development Minister Lawrence Wong during a parliamentary session on Monday (14 March), reported Channel NewsAsia. Of this, 25 percent are concessionary loans, while about 75 percent consisted of non-concessionary loans, which are based on market rates. He explained that the agency is willing to help families obtain a third HDB housing loan, but it will only be allow...
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JLL remains top in the region, data shows


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21/05/2016

For the fifth year in a row, JLL has been named the top real estate investment advisory firm in Asia Pacific, based on the total value of sales completed, according to data from Real Capital Analytics (RCA). RCA is an independent body that monitors global real estate transaction volumes. JLL has been ranked in first place since RCA began releasing data in 2011. In 2015, the consultancy advised on investment deals worth US$16.6 billion, which corresponds to a 27.8 percent market share in th...
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Solid weekend sales at The Wisteria, Cairnhill Nine


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21/05/2016

Two newly launched private residential projects reported brisk sales over the weekend, an indication that units within integrated developments remain popular despite the lacklustre housing market. The Wisteria in Yishun sold more than 80 percent, or 116 of the 138 units released for sale. Its developer Northern Resi initially launched 108 units on Saturday (12 March), priced from $1,030 psf to $1,050 psf on average. Subsequently, another 30 units were released due to keen interest for the ...
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218 HDB flats were sold before MOP in 2015


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21/05/2016

The Housing and Development Board (HDB) allowed 218 flats to be sold last year, even though the owners did not fulfill the required minimum occupation period (MOP) of five years, reported The Straits Times. But this figure only represents around one percent of the 19,306 flats sold last year, as this practice is only permitted under “exceptional circumstances”, said a HDB spokesperson. Valid reasons include emigration, wanting to live near a terminally ill family member, and financial ...
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Foreigners shying away from US property


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21/05/2016

The US National Association of Realtors (NAR) has stated that demand from foreign buyers is weakening, with the strong US dollar and rising home prices forcing some investors to look at other countries that offer more value, reported The Wall Street Journal recently. Many experts had predicted that foreigners would flood the US property market last year, as they seek a safe haven from the volatile global economy. Realtors revealed that the Chinese had surpassed Canadians as the top foreign bu...
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Wandervale’s sales outperform EC launches in 2015


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21/05/2016

The 534-unit Wandervale project in Choa Chu Kang, the first executive condominium (EC) to launch in 2016, has beaten market expectations after its developer managed to sell 50 percent of the units last weekend. “Despite tepid market conditions, it was well received by the market,” said Wong Xian Yang, Senior Manager for Research and Consultancy at OrangeTee. The good performance is unsurprising, given the lower prices of Wandevale’s units. Prices for a three-bedroom apartment start f...
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Home price drop of over 20% unlikely, say experts


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21/05/2016

Analysts believe that private residential prices will continue to fall this year and into 2017, but the rate of decline is unlikely to exceed 20 percent, reported Singapore Business Review. “We forecast private residential prices would dip five percent to 15 percent over 2016 to 2017 and that 2016 primary residential sales would remain muted at between 6,000 to 9,000 units,” said Eli Lee, an analyst at OCBC Investment Research. At the same time, residential rental levels could drop by ...
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PropertyGuru’s Malaysia Property Show still attracting strong interest


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21/05/2016

Speculation has been rife of late that the Malaysian property market is going to have a quiet year. Analysts anticipate that demand will remain an issue despite property prices in key areas such as Penang, Johor and Klang Valley remaining relatively stable, with house-price indices holding up. Nonetheless, this presents a good chance for Singaporean investors, as they can still strive to capitalise on existing opportunities in the market. This was evident at PropertyGuru’s most recent Malay...
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Eye on Yishun: Ward of the north


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21/05/2016

As an HDB estate, Yishun is only 40 years old, but is one of the most popular towns in northern Singapore, thanks to the convenience afforded to residents by its accessibility and many amenities. And though it is a fully developed residential estate with its own MRT stations (Yishun and Khatib), Yishun is continually being improved. From shopping and dining to education and housing, the estate seems to be in a state of constant development. Unsurprising, perhaps, when one considers the two wo...
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One of the most affordable homes above a lifestyle mall


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21/05/2016

Special Advertising Feature Offering thoughtfully-designed residential spaces, state-of-the art facilities, as well as a good mix of retail and F&B shops under one roof, The Wisteria presents itself as the ideal space for live and play. In recent years, mixed-use developments, which encompass both commercial and residential units in a single complex, have become increasingly popular, with a growing number of developers starting to roll out mixed-use developments across the island. This com...
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Strong property potential for northeast Singapore


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21/05/2016

With the first quarter of 2016 well underway, property seekers were keen to find out about current property market statistics and what these data trends could tell them about the outlook for the local property market. This interest was reflected by the large crowd at the Kingsford Waterbay show suite, where the latest edition of PropertyGuru’s Guru Talk was held. Guru Talk is a series of property knowledge empowerment seminars aimed at providing a comprehensive Guru View of the property mar...
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Small island, big plans


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21/05/2016

It is often said that a man’s reputation precedes him. In the case of Cui Zhengfeng, owner of Kingsford Development, part of the impression I had of him prior to our first meeting was that he took great pride in his work. After all, he had decided this interview was to be conducted at the Kingsford Hillview Peak showflat in Bukit Batok, and seemed rather pleased that I had arrived slightly early to view the condominium, which happens to be Kingsford’s first project in Singapore. Anothe...
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Phnom Penh: Asia’s next top city


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21/05/2016

Cambodia’s real estate market is heating up, especially in its capital Phnom Penh, with foreign developers from China, Singapore, Taiwan and Korea looking to expand their footprint in the fast-growing city. For Singaporean developers, restrictive cooling measures in the city-state, as well as the passing of legislation some years back allowing foreigners to own Cambodian property, have been the main pull factors for companies such as Oxley Holdings, Teho International and TA Corporation to ...
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Budgeting tips for aspiring homeowners


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21/05/2016

1. Determine your type First and foremost, there are two things to establish: the type of house you want, and your buyer status. Are you looking at a HDB flat, a condominium or a landed home? Are you single, or buying together with your spouse or spouse-to-be? Are you a Singapore citizen, permanent resident (PR), or foreigner? Regardless of your marital status or nationality, you can buy a condo or landed home if you are at least 21 years old. If you are single, you are eligible to purchase a...
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Rental woes in our residential market


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21/05/2016

When we go out and speak to real estate agents, many of them tell us they need to work harder now, because of sluggish transactions in the real estate market. Many of them were used to earning a month’s income from one or two transactions, but had to turn to the rental market and work a lot harder, since commissions were smaller. From afar, Singapore’s residential rental market looks like a bright spot in a lacklustre real estate industry. For both the HDB and private rental market, trans...
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S’pore still the world’s most expensive city


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21/05/2016

Singapore has retained its status as the world’s most expensive city for a third consecutive year. However, its lead over the next two cities, Zurich and Hong Kong, has narrowed, according to the latest Worldwide Cost of Living Survey by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU). Geneva and Paris round out the top five cities, followed by London, New York and Los Angeles. The rankings list tracked 133 cities. Despite Singapore topping the list, the report revealed that prices in the city-sta...
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URA revises rules for property developers


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21/05/2016

In a bid to promote accountability and protect the interests of home buyers, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) recently revised the criteria for issuing sales licences for home builders, reported The Straits Times. First, the minimum paid-up capital or deposit for those applying for a licence, has been raised from $1 million to between $1 million and $4 million, depending on the project’s size. Those intending to build and sell a housing project with up to 50 units must have a paid...
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More Singaporeans now living in condos: survey


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21/05/2016

More Singaporeans now own their own homes, according to results of the latest General Household Survey released by the Department of Statistics (Singstat) on Wednesday (9 March). In 2015, homeownership among resident households reached 90.8 percent, up from 87.2 percent in 2010. Chinese households recorded the highest rate of homeownership at 93.1 percent, followed by Malay (86.9 percent) and Indian (84.1 percent) households. Around 80.1 percent of households in Singapore lived in HDB flat...
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PropNex bucks trend with $200m in commissions


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21/05/2016

Despite Singapore’s sluggish property market, PropNex Realty saw gross commissions soar to a record high of $200 million in 2015, while transaction volume surpassed 40,000 for the first time. In a statement, the real estate agency said its strong financial results were achieved against a backdrop of rising interest rates, softer economic growth, falling prices and transaction volumes, oversupply worries and higher vacancy rates. Developers also face hefty extension charges for unsold uni...
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Prime properties now more affordable: JLL


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21/05/2016

Prime residential property in Singapore is significantly more affordable now than in the rest of the world’s best cities, according to the latest JLL report. “Singapore ranks amongst the top global cities, together with London, New York, Paris, Tokyo and Hong Kong. Forbes named Singapore the fourth most visited city globally. Mercer ranks Singapore the top city in Asia for quality of living and the fourth most expensive city in the world for expatriates,” said Regina Lim, JLL Singapore...
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S’pore named best city for young professionals


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21/05/2016

Singapore was named the world’s best city for young people, in terms of employment and entrepreneurship opportunities, according to a study conducted by The Economist Intelligence Unit and commissioned by the Citi Foundation, reported The Guardian. Based on the Accelerating Pathways Youth Economic Strategy (YES) Index 2015, the city-state took the top spot in the rankings, considering factors like employment growth, availability of quality jobs and the ease of starting a new business. ...
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NParks seeks design ideas for Jurong Lake Gardens


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15/05/2016

Singapore’s National Parks Board (NParks) is inviting consultancies to take part in the concept design plan for Jurong Lake Gardens (JLG) Central and East. A key requirement is that the ideas must integrate well with the design guidelines for JLG West and the surrounding area. JLG West is the new name for Jurong Lake Park. JLG Central consists of the Chinese and Japanese Gardens, while JLG East comprises a five-metre wide promenade fronting the new Science Centre and the northern part of...
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HK home sales plunge 70% from last year


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15/05/2016

The number of residential transactions in Hong Kong plunged by 70 percent on an annual basis last month, as buyers shunned the housing market amidst falling prices and economic uncertainty, reported Bloomberg. According to government data, only 1,807 units were sold in February compared to 2,045 in the previous month. This is a far cry from the 6,027 transactions recorded during the same period last year. “The newspapers keep on saying the market is going down and buyers think they can g...
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Ascott to open serviced apartment in one-north


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15/05/2016

Serviced residence owner-operator The Ascott Limited has secured a serviced apartment at one-north business park through a lease awarded by JTC Corporation. The 50-unit property is currently operating and will be rebranded to Citadines Fusionopolis Singapore from 1 April 2016. “With its choice location within the Fusionopolis, and its spacious loft apartments that appeal to expatriates on long stay, we are confident that Citadines Fusionopolis Singapore will further strengthen Ascott’s bu...
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Johor to become an economic powerhouse


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15/05/2016

With four ongoing large-scale projects, Malaysia’s Johor state is set to become the next economic powerhouse in the country behind Klang Valley, reported The Star Online. These mega developments comprise the multibillion-ringgit Forest City, the oil and gas facilities in Pengerang, the double-tracking project between Gemas and Johor Bahru, and the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore high-speed rail (HSR). “All these projects, together with good planning not just coming from Putrajaya but at the dis...
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Johor’s Forest City given duty-free status


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15/05/2016

Forest City in Johor is set to become a duty-free zone, announced Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razak at the project’s opening ceremony today (6 March), which was also attended by Johor’s Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar. Other packages unveiled include corporate tax incentives for qualified companies, or companies with Iskandar Development Region (IDR) status involved in the tourism, education and healthcare sectors. Being a green development, there will also be corporate tax incent...
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Residential land prices down 5.8% in 2015


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15/05/2016

The price of land sites in Singapore for prime residential and office projects did not change in the second half of 2015, according to Knight Frank’s latest Prime Asia Development Land Index. But for the entire year, residential land prices in the city-state fell by 5.8 percent, while office prices grew by six percent. “The soft demand in the housing and office rental markets as a result of both domestic and external economic challenges coincided with strong supply pipelines to weaken ...
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Strong Indonesian interest for Cairnhill Nine


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07/05/2016

A significant number of condo units have been reserved at the 268-unit Cairnhill Nine development in the Orchard area, after its developer CapitaLand held a VIP preview in Jakarta on 20 to 21 February, reported The Business Times. Potential buyers deposited cheques to secure the units they were interested in, but they may still cancel their bookings. According to Tata Goeyardi of Religare Capital Markets, Indonesians were attracted to the luxury condominium’s direct linkage to Paragon sh...
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Singapore developers buoyed by Chinese demand


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07/05/2016

Amidst the lacklustre residential market in Singapore, the earnings of local developers have been boosted by strong sales in China’s largest cities, reported Nikkei Asian Review. For instance, CapitaLand’s revenue surged by 21.3 percent year-on-year to US$3.41 billion (S$4.73 billion), driven by robust residential transactions in China. Despite the country’s softer economy, sales increased two-fold to US$2.36 billion (S$3.27 billion). City Developments Limited (CDL), another major de...
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No respite from mounting extension charges for developers


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07/05/2016

Property developers forked out $24.9 million in extension fees last year for failing to dispose of all the residential units in their developments within the mandated period, reported The Straits Times. While this is lower than the $29.98 million recorded in 2014, a recent report from Swiss bank Credit Suisse forecasts that extension charges could rise significantly this year. Based on Qualifying Certificate (QC) rules, overseas developers are required to offload all the units in their pri...
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New overseas projects launching in Singapore


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07/05/2016

Two new overseas properties are set to launch in the city-state this weekend (5 to 6 March). Homegrown developer TA Corporation will unveil its first large-scale project in Phnom Penh, while Chengdu Galencia will showcase Chelsea Residences, the first one in Singapore from a mainland Chinese developer. TA Corp’s twin tower project, called The Gateway, was officially launched last Sunday (28 Feb) in Cambodia’s capital. It consists of a 36-storey tower with 299 strata-titled office units...
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Wandervale’s prices start from $655,000 for a 3-bedder


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07/05/2016

Sim Lian Group has released prices for the 534-unit Wandervale executive condominium (EC) in Choa Chu Kang, the first major property launch this year. In a statement, the group said prices start from $655,000 for a three-bedroom unit, $753,000 for a three-bedroom premium unit, and $896,000 for a four-bedroom unit. The project has an average price of $755 psf. “Wandervale is competitively priced against other ECs in the market,” said Sim Lian. The EC units range in size from 958 sq ft t...
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$1 million buys you 452 sq ft in Singapore


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07/05/2016

For US$1 million (S$1.4 million), you can purchase 452 sq ft of prime real estate in Singapore (or a small studio apartment), making it the world’s seventh most expensive place to buy luxury property, noted findings from Knight Frank’s Wealth Report 2016. The city-state fell two places from last year’s report due to property price declines. According to the firm’s Prime International Residential Index, luxury prices here dropped by 2.1 percent in 2015. This year, Knight Frank expects ...
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79% of young couples will consider a smart home: survey


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07/05/2016

Around 79 percent of young couples in Singapore will consider living in an executive condominium (EC) enabled with smart technologies, according to results from an online survey carried out earlier this year by Qingjian Realty. The study polled 100 respondents between 20 to 40 years old, to measure their attitudes towards smart living. Among those surveyed, 63 percent said they are willing to pay $30,000 to $40,000 to furnish their home with smart technologies, including security features,...
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20% of HDB loan applicants asked for larger loans


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07/05/2016

There were about 200,000 qualified applications for an HDB Loan Eligibility (HLE) letter from 2012 to 2015, revealed National Development Minister Lawrence Wong during a parliamentary session on Tuesday (1 March), reported Channel NewsAsia. Flat buyers need to request for an HLE letter before they can obtain an HDB concessionary housing loan for their flat purchase. Of this figure, 20 percent, or 40,000 of those who applied for the letter, appealed for a higher mortgage. Most did so to inc...
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Completed condo prices up 0.1%


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07/05/2016

Prices of completed condominiums edged up by 0.1 percent in January 2016 compared to the previous month, according to latest flash estimates of the NUS Singapore Residential Price Index (SRPI). Based on the Index, prices of completed units in the central region (districts 1 to 4 and 9 to 11) dipped by 0.5 percent, while those in the non-central region rose by 0.5 percent. As for small units measuring up to 506 sq ft, prices climbed by 0.6 percent. In comparison, the revised index for Decem...
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Yangon looks to rebound in 2016


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07/05/2016

According to latest research from JLL, Yangon’s budding real estate market is expected to show moderate growth in 2016 as it recovers from the uncertainty of last year, reported The Nation. The market cooled in 2015 as foreign investors waited to see the results of November’s historic elections. This caused office rents to fall while residential sales came to a standstill. Andrew Gulbrandson, Research Head at JLL Thailand, is responsible for coordinating much of the firm’s consultanc...
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Govt cuts development charges amid soft market


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07/05/2016

UPDATED: The development charge (DC) rates paid by developers to enhance a site or build bigger projects on them were trimmed by the Ministry of National Development (MND) for the period of 1 March to 31 August 2016. The review is carried out on a half-yearly basis, with consultation from the Chief Valuer, said the MND. Desmond Sim, Research Head at CBRE, said the consultancy is unsurprised by the downward revision in rates. “This is on the back of a softening real estate market, both...
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5-room Bidadari flats more than 75 times oversubscribed by 2nd timers


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07/05/2016

As of 5pm on Monday (29 Feb), the 236 five-room and 3Gen flats at Alkaff Oasis in Bidadari have emerged as the most popular units in the February Build-To-Order (BTO) exercise, with an application rate of 7.6 for first-time buyers and 75.6 for second-time buyers, according to the HDB. An application rate of 75.6 means that for every one flat available, there are over 75 applicants vying for the unit. In mature estates such as Bidadari, up to 95 percent of the supply of three- to five-room ...
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Wandervale EC more than 40% oversubscribed


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07/05/2016

The application period for the Wandervale executive condominium (EC) closed on Sunday (28 Feb) after receiving 750 e-applications, said its developer Sim Lian Group. This means that the 534-unit project is more than 40 percent oversubscribed. OrangeTee and ERA are the marketing agents for the 99-year leasehold EC. Priced at approximately $750 psf to $770 psf on average, the Wandervale showflat at Choa Chu Kang Avenue 3 has attracted more than 5,000 visitors since e-applications started on ...
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Median household income on the rise


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07/05/2016

Singapore’s median monthly household income from work rose to $8,666 in 2015 from $8,292 in the previous year, revealed data published by the Department of Statistics (SingStat) on Friday (26 Feb). This represents a rise of 4.5 percent in nominal terms. With inflation taken into account, this translates to a gain of 4.9 percent in real terms, according to the agency’s annual Key Household Income Trends survey. In comparison, the median monthly household income from work climbed 3.8 per...
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Tanah Merah site awarded


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07/05/2016

The Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) on Friday (26 Feb) awarded the tender for a residential site at New Upper Changi Road/Bedok South Avenue 3 (Parcel B) to CEL Residential Development, a subsidiary of Chip Eng Seng Corporation. Launched for sale on 20 January, the property developer had offered the highest bid of $419.38 million for the 2.4ha site. This translates to about $761 psf on the gross floor area. The tender for the land parcel closed last Tuesday (23 Feb) after attracting ei...
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5 tips when navigating Singapore’s property market in 2016


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30/04/2016

The Singapore property market faces a lacklustre year ahead as the various cooling measures, interest rate hikes and more unsold units continue to put pressure on rentals, while developers are faced with hefty extension fines. According to fourth quarter data from the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA), prices of condominiums in the Rest of Central Region (RCR) declined the most by 0.3 percent, followed by those in the Core Central Region (CCR) by 0.2 percent. Meanwhile, the Outside Centr...
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UOL reports 43% profit drop, no condo launches in 2016


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30/04/2016

Singapore-listed UOL Group, a major player in the local property market, reported a 43 percent slump in net profit to $391.4 million for the 2015 financial year. In a statement released on Friday (26 Feb), the group blamed the profit fall on lower fair value gains for its investment properties, as well as the absence of a large one-time profit made from the sale of a land site in Malaysia in 2014. UOL also incurred losses of $22 million, mainly from impairment charges for a hotel in Tianji...
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Riverbank @ Fernvale – an unbeatable choice


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30/04/2016

Special Advertising Feature A convenient location coupled with a slew of outstanding facilities, UOL Group Limited’s residential project Riverbank @ Fernvale is hitting all the right notes with home buyers and investors alike. These days, when it comes to purchasing a new property for investment or as a residential home, there’s little doubt that home buyers are pretty much spoilt for choice. There’s plenty of new project launches available in the market, with each development offeri...
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Oxley launches final phase of London project


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30/04/2016

Homegrown property developer Oxley Holdings will launch the final phase of its Royal Wharf waterfront township development in London to Singaporean buyers next weekend (12 to 13 March) at Regent Hotel Singapore, following today’s launch in London and Hong Kong. Dubbed Mariner’s Quarter, the new phase of properties comprises 207 one- to three-bedroom apartments across two buildings. Prices at Mariner’s Quarter start from £395,000 (S$773,921) for a one-bedder, said the developer. C...
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Third mixed development in Yishun launched


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30/04/2016

As a sign of developers’ confidence in the growth potential of Yishun, a new mixed-use development comprising residential and commercial units will be launched on 12 March. Located at Yishun Ring Road, The Wisteria and Wisteria Mall is the third mixed commercial and residential project to launch in the area since the end of 2013, following Nine Residences and North Park Residences, both of which are also integrated with shopping malls. Zoned for commercial and residential use, the approx...
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Govt may ease property measures this year, says CDL’s Kwek


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30/04/2016

The government may ease some of its property cooling measures this year in light of the sizeable upcoming supply, according to comments made by Kwek Leng Beng, Executive Chairman of City Developments Limited (CDL), and reported by Bloomberg and TODAYonline. “Developers hope that the government presses the button sooner than later,” he said after announcing the company’s latest financial results on Thursday (25 Feb). “I would think that they would do something this year. That’s my...
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S’pore still top city for Asian expats, but haze worries persist


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30/04/2016

Singapore has been named as the best place to live in for Asian expatriates for the 17th consecutive year, taking the number one spot globally, according to the latest rankings published by human resources consultancy ECA International. The city-state scored highly in several categories, like housing, personal security as well as diversity in culture and language, said Lee Quane, ECA’s Regional Director for Asia. “Solid infrastructure, decent medical facilities, low crime rates and hea...
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Borey Penghuoth sweeps inaugural Cambodia Property Awards


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30/04/2016

The inaugural Cambodia Property Awards were held last night at Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra, where leading property players around the world were recognised at a black-tie gala dinner and awards ceremony. The Phonm Penh-based Borey Penghuoth Group was the night’s biggest nominee and winner with five awards, coming out tops in all the categories in which it had been nominated. Its awards included Best Developer (Cambodia) and Best Residential Development (Cambodia, category Grand Star Plati...
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Ho Bee suffers $34.7m impairment loss from Sentosa condo stake


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30/04/2016

Ho Bee Land, a leading developer of luxury homes in Sentosa Cove, revealed on Thursday (25 Feb) that the group has suffered an impairment loss of $34.7 million due to its 35 percent interest in the Cape Royale development in Sentosa. The Singapore-listed firm also reported a 23 percent slump in full-year net profit to $242.2 million from 2014. In a statement, Ho Bee attributed the profit fall to a lower gain in fair value investment properties which amounted to $186.4 million, down from $2...
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URA launches site in Sembawang


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30/04/2016

A residential site at Jalan Kandis in Sembawang was launched for sale by public tender this morning (25 Feb) by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA). Released under the confirmed list of the first half 2016 Government Land Sales (GLS) Programme, the 75,851 sq ft plot has a gross floor area of 106,197 sq ft. Offered on a 99-year lease, the site could yield about 110 low-rise condo units. Located within an established residential area, the site is next to Sembawang Park, and within proxim...
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ECs offer good profits: report


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21/04/2016

While demand for executive condominiums (ECs) have slowed down since 2014, data from the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) shows that this property type is generally a profitable investment in the long run, with prices catching up with private condos, according to an OrangeTee report. In 2012 and 2013, 14 of the 16 new EC projects sold at least 33 percent of their units during the first month of launch. But in 2014 and 2015, only one of the 11 developments managed to do this due to the toug...
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Foreign buyers of UK property face overwhelming tax challenge: expert


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21/04/2016

Many property agents and developers marketing prime London homes in Singapore like to espouse the benefits of investing in the British capital, such as its global-city appeal, prospects for capital appreciation amid a housing shortage, and the British pound’s weakness in recent years, but very few investors here are aware of the increasing complexity of the UK’s taxation system. Steven Knight, Chairman of Gibraltar-based Castle Trust Group, a financial services firm, told PropertyGuru tha...
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HDB launches 4,170 new flats


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21/04/2016

UPDATED: In the first Build-To-Order (BTO) exercise of 2016, the Housing and Development Board (HDB) launched 4,170 new flats for sale on Wednesday (24 Feb). Spread across three projects located in the non-mature estates of Bukit Batok and Sengkang, and the mature estate of Bidadari, they make up the first batch of 18,000 flats that will be launched this year, the HDB said in a statement. According to Mohamed Ismail, CEO of PropNex Realty, this is “about 20 percent more than the 15,100 u...
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Australia is the favourite among S’porean property investors


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21/04/2016

Australia, the UK and Japan have emerged as the top three destinations for Singaporeans looking to invest in overseas property, according to a survey commissioned by property investment firm IP Global. Australia topped the list with 32 percent of respondents saying they would consider investing there. This was followed by the UK (16 percent) and Japan (13 percent). These countries are considered favourable for investment due to their political stability, strong rule of law and ease of acce...
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S’pore still top for safety, quality of life in Asia


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21/04/2016

Singapore has retained its position as the safest Asian city and for offering the best quality of life within the region for expatriates, according to Mercer’s 18th Annual Quality of Living Survey, which ranked 230 cities worldwide. Globally, the city-state remained in 26th spot for quality of living, beating out its Japanese rivals Tokyo (44th), Kobe (46th), Yokohama (49th) and Osaka (58th). Singapore also surpassed other Southeast Asian cities like Kuala Lumpur (86th), Bangkok (129th),...
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Top bid of $419.4m for Tanah Merah site


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21/04/2016

The tender for a 2.4ha residential site at New Upper Changi Road/Bedok South Avenue 3 (Parcel B) closed on Tuesday (23 Feb), after attracting eight bids from property developers, revealed the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA). Launched for sale on 20 January this year, the site was originally on the reserve list of the Government Land Sales (GLS) Programme. The URA had, on 7 January, accepted a successful application for the site to be triggered for sale. The highest bid of $419.38 milli...
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Singapore homes seriously unaffordable: report


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21/04/2016

Singapore’s market cooling measures have been effective in reducing the prices of HDB flats and private homes over the past few years, but housing costs here are still seen as too high, revealed findings published by a global report last month. According to the 12th Annual Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey, Singapore has a “seriously unaffordable” rating of 5.0, no change from last year’s survey. The report used the median multiple indicator, which is the media...
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CapitaLand to launch integrated project in Orchard


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21/04/2016

UPDATED: CapitaLand will launch an integrated development consisting of residential apartments and serviced residences in the Orchard Road district to the public next month. At 122 metres tall, it is set to become one of the tallest buildings in the area, and will be directly linked to Paragon via a covered link-bridge. Located at Cairnhill Road, the 30-storey Cairnhill Nine is the first condominium to launch in the Orchard area in the last three years, and features 268 one, two and four-b...
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Pound hits 2.5-year low against the Sing dollar


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21/04/2016

Amidst rising fears that the UK will leave the European Union (EU), the pound sterling dropped to a two-and-a-half year low against the Singapore dollar on Monday (22 Feb), after a prominent politician announced his support for Britain to exit from the 28-nation bloc, reported TODAYonline. London Mayor Boris Johnson pledged to back the ‘Brexit’ campaign in opposition to Prime Minister David Cameron, who wants the country to remain within the EU. “The fact that prominent members of th...
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Over 400 applications for Wandervale EC


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21/04/2016

The Wandervale executive condominium (EC) by Sim Lian Group has received more than 400 e-applications since its launch on Thursday (18 Feb), sources told PropertyGuru. This figure accounts for more than 75 percent of the 534 units at the 99-year leasehold project, which sits on a large land parcel measuring about 205,138 sq ft. Crowds were seen streaming into the showflat located at Choa Chu Kang Avenue 3 when PropertyGuru visited the site on Sunday afternoon (21 Feb). The EC consists o...
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Larger resale condos selling for less than $1m


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15/04/2016

With the various property cooling measures in effect, buyers are spotting homes in the private resale market for $1 million or less, reported The Straits Times. And these homes are not all shoebox-size. Some of the bigger units in good locations like Bayshore Road have been going for this amount. “In 2010 to 2012, $1 million was a sort of standard or expected price to pay, and it was unlikely buyers could get something good for less than that,” said R’ST Research Director Ong Kah Sen...
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S’pore property investments up sharply in Q4


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15/04/2016

Property investment volumes in Singapore’s residential sector rose 14.8 percent to $1.69 billion in Q4 2015 from $1.47 billion in the previous quarter, revealed a Colliers International report. “The $999.98 million transacted from the sale of three public residential state land parcels helped sustain the overall investment sales value for the residential sector during the final quarter, enabling it to claim its second top spot on the quarter’s sales chart with a market share of 28.4 per...
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Landmark launch in Singapore


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15/04/2016

Landmark Place, the latest UK development, is hoping to attract buyers from Singapore with a property exhibition being held here next weekend (27 to 28 February) at the Four Seasons Hotel, revealed marketing agent Knight Frank. Located within the prime London city district, the 165-unit development consists of two interconnected buildings, one of nine storeys and the other eleven storeys, which appear to be wrapped in glass. The project gets its name from three landmarks bounding the building...
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Developers call for cooling measures review amid hefty $100m charges


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15/04/2016

Real Estate Developers’ Association of Singapore (Redas) President Augustine Tan has urged the government to review the property cooling measures as developers face potential charges of $100 million for unsold private residential units, reported TODAYonline. “The real estate market is reeling from the compounding effects of an oversupply situation, rising vacancy rates, weak demand and increasing interest rates,” said Tan at the association’s Spring Festival Lunch. “There is ther...
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Too many malls in Singapore?


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15/04/2016

According to the latest data from the government, Singapore currently has over one hundred shopping malls spread across the island. Just along Orchard Road—the country’s world-famous shopping belt—are at least 40 retail malls, with many standing side-by-side along the 2.2 kilometre shopping boulevard. For a country known as one of the hottest shopping destinations in Asia, the number of malls currently operating in the Republic might be an indicator of how the retail property market has...
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Commercial property outlook 2016


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15/04/2016

A year ago, the commercial market was a lot more optimistic and buoyant, on the back of tight supply, and rising rents, especially in the tight CBD area. Coupled with the outflow of capital from a residential property market seized up by 13 rounds of cooling measures, the commercial property market seemed like a bright spot in Singapore’s frigid real estate market. In the space of a year, this optimism has become a lot more muted, with the tumbling of oil prices, a bearish Mainland Chinese ...
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Malaysia: Down, but not out


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15/04/2016

With the Malaysian ringgit falling 30 percent against the Singapore dollar, an uncertain economy, and the political scandal affecting Prime Minister Najib Razak, many Singaporeans are left wondering whether this is the right time to enter Malaysia’s property market, or whether they should adopt a wait-and-see attitude. According to Ryan Khoo, Founder and Director of real estate consultancy Alpha Marketing, the current bearishness on Malaysia stems from oil price drops and the fallout from t...
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Eye on Ang Mo Kio: In the red


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15/04/2016

Singapore has no shortage of residential estates, what with more than 80 percent of its population living in HDB flats. In this regard, Ang Mo Kio is no exception. A brief history Unlike many other mature estates in Singapore, however, Ang Mo Kio as we know it today remained largely undeveloped till the late 20th century, after being mostly uninhabited in the 19th century. It wasn’t till the beginning of the 20th century that settlers started arriving in Ang Mo Kio because of its rubber ...
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