The Market Surrounding Private Home Sales Could Boost due to the Spread of the Covid-19 Vaccine

The real estate market revolving around the private home sector is enjoying interesting growth, due to the upgrades provided by the HDB and the unsatiated interest of homebuyers. However, it is expected for things to get spiced up even more, now that the Covid-19 vaccine is being widely spread and used. Very soon, the borders abroad will open for those who got vaccinated, which could mean a significant increase in sales of private homes in Singapore.

Mr. Chia Ngiang Hong, who is the group general manager of City Developments, said that there is still room for development in this area if we are to look at the numbers. Compared to the peak period, which happened between 2013 and 2014, when 23,000 properties were sold, last year only 9,982 properties enjoyed closed transactions, while 2019 concluded with an even smaller number of units, of only 9,912. Thus, until the former peak values are reached, there’s plenty of room for growth.

Considering that the vaccine is now becoming widely available and that the number of vaccinated people is growing steadily from one day to another, plus countries are looking to reach arrangements regarding safe travels, the country expects to see more foreign buyers soon. Foreign homebuyers and investors are welcome to the country, as it is obvious that they can contribute to the revival of the market.

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February was a fruitful month for the HDB and its resale flats

The second month of the year summed up values of 23 million in the form of reselling apartments, released by the HDB. It is interesting to see that the prices of flats increased constantly over the past months, February is the 8th month in the row which recorded such increases. So, we can say that the past month brought another record, somewhat unexpected if we consider past events. More precisely, as numbers show, the price of resale units increased by 1.4% in February, compared with January of the same month.

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Little time remaining until the launch of the modern condominium developed by Guoco

Very soon the Tan Queen Lan Street, located in Bugis, will officially enjoy a brand-new Singapore condominium. The project developed by GuocoLand is almost done and getting ready to be launched. Those interested in units in this condominium should know that prices will start around $1.1 million for one-bedroom units ranging between 409 and 474 square feet. Penthouses with five bedrooms, on the other hand, which measure 3,500 square feet, will have selling prices of around $14.98 million. The good news is that you’ll have a good offer to choose from, as the condominium offers 558 units for all types of homebuyers.

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A New Peak Was Reached Last Year in Singapore as Foreigners Are Buying Less Homes

There were times, not so long ago, when foreigners chose the private properties of Singapore with a high amount of interest. Considering the fast-developing background of the country, no wonder things presented themselves this way. Their desire even contributed to the increases in price regarding some properties, as it added to the growing demand of homes in Singapore. However, the year 2020 recorded a new peak in this direction. In the past 17 years, 2020 brought the lowest level of purchases, concerning private residences, made by foreigners in the country.


The last low of the kind was back in 2003, when only 671 units were sold to non-Singaporeans. In 2020, the value was close to the previously mentioned one, since only 742 units managed to be purchased by foreigners. It is worth mentioning that these numbers include new units, second-hand units, and sub-sale properties. If we are to regard what happened last year, with all the travel restrictions and lockdown measures adopted by so many countries, it is easy to understand why the numbers are looking this way.

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Private Property Cooling Measures Talk

The recent ministerial remarks have intensified the talk on property cooling measures and it is believed that the government is now keeping a close check on the real estate market. It has become a matter of debate right since the Urban Redevelopment Authority estimates show a 2.1% rise in the price of private homes for the fourth quarter. This is believed to be the steepest quarterly increase after the second quarter of the year 2018 when a jump of 3.4% was recorded due to cooling measures that were applied in the month of July that year.

All this is happening despite the slow return of Singapore’s economy on track after the 6% shrink due to pandemic in the year 2020. In this phase, unemployment hit by 3.6% during the third quarter which is quite high as compared to the 2.3% of the previous year.
The strong sales of property at Normanton Park – one of the largest new condo launches of the year is also considered as another important factor for these cooling measures. Note that almost 1862 units were sold out of this park recently and they all were locked at a great price.

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China Cracks Down on Fake Divorces to Control Higher Property Purchase

The resurgence in the property prices in Shenzhen and Shanghai has forced authorities to rethink property market activities. The Chinese government has run a detailed analysis on market scenarios and they have finally come to a conclusion.
The officials at Shanghai recently revealed new policies to cool down the real estate market and it also includes a measure to capture the loopholes in fake divorce filing which makes people eligible to buy new properties. Furthermore, the government has also decided to levy a tax on all the houses that are purchased within the past five years. It is expected to be up from the tax barrier applied two years ago.

With this new policy on the ground, the professionals in big cities of Shanghai such as Hangzhou and Shenzhen are expected to crack down all the housing speculations due to fake divorces right from the year 2018.

It is important to mention that most of the Chinese cities follow certain limit on home buying trends on the basis of how many properties a single family can own. But divorce has become a way to bypass this restriction. As per existing guidelines, one family in Shanghai can own two homes at maximum. As per the new rules, the number of homes that are owned by divorced couples within the last three years will be counted and this count will be compared with the number of homes they used to own when they were married.
Other than this, the government authorities at southern boomtown have also decided to tighten the rules for a home purchase by this month. With the new rules, the cost of an apartment has to be equal the 43.5 times higher than the annual salary of the resident. Note that the housing affordability is generally better in Shenzhen as compared to Hong Kong, which is believed to be worse in respect to other 80 megacities.

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New Private Home Sales Boost by 57% Achieving Highest Level in Past 8 Years

The new private home sales climbed their peak level in December month recently and it was the highest recorded boost since the past eight years. This situation is believed to be a response to post-pandemic recovery where buyers jumped into the market while expecting a further rise in property prices.


If we look at the stats from the previous month, the sales by developers reached the count of 1,217 units with a rise of 57% as the count was restricted to 774 in the month of November. Note that this rise is almost 126% higher as compared to the market condition from a year ago.


These sales were mostly driven by several new launches in the real estate market. Clavon in Clementi reported a sale of 473 units which turned out to meet the median price of $1,537 per square foot. On the other side, Brookvale-based Ki Residences shifted almost 172 units and the median price for these sales was $1766 per square foot. As per the recent stats, both these projects represent 53% in terms of new home sales from the previous month. Note that the new home sales from the December 2012 records were found to be highest till now with the reported count of 1410 units.


A surprising turnaround in the real estate market was observed in the second half of the year 2020. The demand for the new private homes during these months led to the sale of a total of 10,024 units in the entire year. Note that this count was 1% higher than the records of the previous year (2019) when only 9912 transactions were reported.


Reports reveal that the new home sales have not crossed the estimated count of 10,000 units right since July 2018 when the fresh cooling measures were imposed in the real estate market. But this has happened somehow in a year loaded with all uncertainties. As the Singaporeans are advised to avoid travel plans as long as this global pandemic situation doesn’t fall under control, most of the local residents decided to visit show flats during the ongoing holiday season.


Note that the figures displayed above exclude the larger executive condominium units that fall into the category of public-private housing hybrid. If we include these units, the new hole sale can be reported to be 1265 units that come out to be 54% higher than the previous month and 129.6 percent more as compared to the previous year.


On the other side, the number of new housing units launched in the month of December surged at 265% as compared to the previous year; however, it was less than November month by 1.9%. As per the Huttons Asia report, a total of 23 private residential projects was introduced into the market in the year 2020 out of which ten projects came into the market before circuit breaker and 13 were launched after that. Some of the most popular and top-selling projects from recent listings include Piermont Grand, Jadescape, Treasure at Tampines, and Parc Clematis.

Condo Resale Prices Increased Surprisingly for 5th Straight Month

Covid-19 fallout has caused considerable turbulence in the business and real estate sector. However, even after this major fallout, the private property resale market in Singapore is still rising higher. After the implementation of cooling measures in the year 2018, these prices climbed consistently for the fifth month as reported in December.


For the entire 2020, the real estate experts have observed a considerable rise of 1.4% in the prices of condominium resale values. However, it is slightly lower as compared to the 1.8% rise reported in the year 2019. Note that the overall resale price for the non-landed properties in Singapore also rose by 0.3% as compared to the previous month.

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Ways the Health Crisis Made the Real Estate Market Adapt

When a crisis occurs, regardless of its type, it is hard to foresee what will happen and how industries will adapt. Concerning the real estate market, it seems that things are looking better than expected. Due to technology, homebuyers can enjoy virtual tours of properties, minimizing the need to go out and make room in their daily schedule. Also, it is expected for things to evolve even further, as new means may soon be adopted so that homebuyers and investors meet their needs and requirements in safer and more convenient ways.

At the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic in Singapore, the majority wondered what will this mean for the real estate market. Will it stop completely or slide on a downward spiral? The most pessimistic believed that this year prices will drop significantly, touching unprecedented records. However, the Singapore property market proved to be quite resilient, surprising everyone with its evolution. Of course, this did not happen by chance, as it was the sum of several efforts meant to keep the market on the floating line, if not even in between normal limits.

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Perennial Real Estate Purchased MediaCorp’s Former Caldecott Site for $280.9 Million

The widely known hilltop site at Andrew Road that formerly housed Caldecott Broadcast Centre for years has been now sold to the entity which is jointly owned and managed by Perennial Real Estate Holdings and Mr. Kuok Khoon Hong, who is the chairman of the company. The deal was closed at about $280.9 mil.

This site was being marketed by Showsuit Consultancy and CBRE real estate consultants and they closed the tender recently on 9th December by announcing it as sold.

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The Sale of Expensive Flats Reached a New Peak

The HDB unrolled an apartment resale event in the second half of this year, an event that exceeded all expectations. Homebuyers were much more interested in large, 5-room apartments, rather than in smaller, more affordable units. Thus, the units that had a price tag of at least $1 million were sold contrary to what was expected, a new peak being reached this way in a year when poor performances on the real estate market were foreseen. It seems that this is indeed a surprising year, from all points of view.


The information made public by the SRX this December revealed that 13 transactions completed in November, during the resale of HDB units, regarded 5-room units. All of the units sold during the January to November period summed up a value of $72 million, which exceeds the 64-threshold recorded by all the twelve months of 2019. However, the SRX also underlined the fact that the prices of HDB units increased, while the transactions volumed recorded a downward trend. This explains why the value is so large, despite the fact that sales are not as they used to be.


One particular 5-room flat stands out in the crowd, as it was sold for the highest price in the previous month. More precisely, we are talking about a unit provided by The Pinnacle @ Duxton, which found new owners for no less than $1,248,000. Regarding the resale of flats in November, this was the highest selling price. Of course, there were more affordable 5-room flats available as well. For instance, the units provided by Parkland Residences, located in Hougang, were sold for the price of $810,000. Still, taking into account that this is a non-mature real estate, the prices of these units were above average.


According to Wong Siew Ying, who is the head of research and content at PropNex, homebuyers were willing to pay $1 million or more on flats due to their location and the advantage of being close to a wider range of amenities. Being close to the city center is for many residents an advantage worth paying for. Also, Ms. Ying mentioned the fact that private apartments recorded no decreases in price during the health crisis. This can also be a good reason people turned to HDB units, which are more in the affordable range. In other words, homebuyers paid less to meet their needs and wishes regarding a home.


It is enough to consider that a condo located in the suburbs, adequate for a family, sells for price tags around $1.5 million. HDB resale flats of the same size, however, sold for $1 million or slightly over. Besides a smaller price tag, homebuyers are enjoying similar living spaces and the benefit of being located in central areas of the city. Since October, HDB resale flats recorded a price increase of only 1%. While it is true that the month of November brought an increase of 5% to these prices, the rise is still lower than the 9.5% increase recorded in April 2013.


Regarding HDB resale flats, the past eleven months of 2020 sold 21,876 units. Experts expect that by the end of this year, there will be 23,000 to 24,000 units of this kind sold. If this happens, there will be similar transaction values with 2019, when 23,714 HDB resale units found new owners.




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The Most Expensive Flats in Toa Payoh Were Highly Sought-after

Many events on the real estate market in Singapore managed to amaze the specialists, who expected to see significant changes due to the pandemic’s influence. The same happened with flats recently launched in Toa Payoh. The priciest HDB apartments of this November launch enjoyed the highest amount of attention from homebuyers. More precisely, the five-room flats of the new development got six times more applicants than expected. It appears that the elevated price tags for these spacious units didn’t discourage home seekers, who swarmed into making applications to get such a unit.


To the awe of everyone, the five-room HDB housing named Bartley Beacon, which is the new development launched in Toa Payoh, enjoyed a large deal of attention. How much does such a flat cost? Prices for these units vary between $627,000 and $726,000, without adding the grants that also have to be paid. Being the most generous apartments of the development, they were highly appreciated by applicants. There were four-room apartments available as well, but they only got three times the number of applicants for each unit, so they were slightly less popular.

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An Impressive Number of BTOs Were Launched Recently by the HDB

The HDB has an ambitious plan for Singapore’s residents, launching no less than 5,795 BTO units, of which 1,502 units will be located in Bishan alone. These units will be apartments with two, three, four rooms, meant to suit the needs of various homeowners and families. The previously mentioned number of units will not be concentrated in one single area, as it will be spread across five different estates. This way, future homeowners will have the possibility to choose the area that answers best to their requirements. Launched on the 17th of November, this will be the last project of this kind of HDB for this year.

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Smarter and More Sustainable Homes with Future HDB Projects

The needs of Singapore’s residents changed over the past years and will continue to change, as a way to adapt to the coming times. Out of the desire to make Singapore a smart and well-adapted country, authorities are already depositing efforts in creating future plans that will improve the lives of its people. What does this mean? It means that we should soon expect to see housing projects with smarter and more intuitive features. These features should not just make life easier and more convenient, but should also allow homeowners to enjoy their time more and worry less.


The plans of the HDB, regarding future homes in Singapore, are meant to span over 10 years, as the recently presented blueprint shows. This blueprint is the development plan of a project called Designing for Life and it targets both public and private developments in existing and future cities around Singapore. Three major concepts compose this project, created out of the desire to give Singaporeans of all ages the chance to a much-improved life. With the help of this project, people will Live Well, supported by an environment built to enhance life quality and health standards. Then, they will Live Smart, as future homes will incorporate advanced technologies that will transform residential units into sustainable and smart constructions. And, finally, they will Live Connected, as part of the project is the involvement of the entire community in the development of neighborhoods.

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Four Consecutive Months with Increases of Resale Prices in the HDB Sector

During the months of October, the volume regarding resale flats provided by the HDB decreased indeed, but we can’t say the same happened with their prices. Last month was the fourth month in a row when prices did not just stay steady but even increased, despite what everyone believed. This is a clear sign that demand still exists on the market, even if the pandemic threatened to ruin everyone’s plans.


Numbers show us that during last month 2,436 HDB units were sold. In comparison with what happened in September, the number of transactions dropped by 2.1%. Even so, these numbers exceeded any prediction and managed to become the months with the highest number of transactions of this kind. The last time such a phenomenon took place on the real estate market was back in 2018, during the month of June when units summing up $11 million were resold.

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