When something goes on in the communities of Singapore, such as the gathering of stalls at hawker centers and the organization of wet markets, many senior citizens are unable to participate. This is due to the fact that they move around by using wheelchairs or walking sticks, which makes the task of checking out the available stalls, placed in a crowded area or around wet floors, a mission impossible. Thus, until now, Singapore’s elders that had mobility issues had no other options but to stay away from these crowded events. But this doesn’t have to be a problem in our present days anymore, as there are ways to make these events enjoyable for senior citizens as well, regardless how they manage to visit the venue.
By now, it’s no secret that the prices of condos in Singapore are going up. But, how much is up? Well, this February, these prices reached an increase of 1.9%, exceeding not just the increase of 1.3% that was recorded in January, but also the most significant increase recorded in the past 4 years. Thus, ever since 2014, in the month of January, the apartments and Singapore condominiums in Singapore that were put up for resale, did not record such important price increases. Specialists estimated an increase of only 1% in February, compared with January, but the market proved them wrong, as the increase was almost 2%.
Over a weekend in March 2018, Hong Kong’s hot residential market reared its head, as a new housing development in Kowloon Wheelock & Co, was completely sold out. The development is made up of 750 units and they were 100% sold. There a huge buyer enthusiasm over the units, with over 9,800 applicants submitting for approval despite only having 750 residential units. This has shown that the housing market does not show any sign of stopping even though Hong Kong is the least affordable city in Southeastern China. To put this in perspective, Hong Kong’s housing prices have seen a three hundred percent surge since 2003.
An outstanding property app was introduced by Desmond Lee, Second Minister for National Development. This app was designed with the purpose of enhancing the transaction services in the real estate industry. The RealHome app will be available for free on both Play Store and App Store.
RealHome is the perfect solution for contacting top real estate agents. This app is developed to make it easy to find experienced and qualified real estate agents. This app is headed by PropNex Realty, Huttons Asia, and ERA Realty with the aim to boost the standards of the real estate industry. Through this app, the customers may be able to review and rate agents. In order to provide authentic information to the users, the review will contain details such as the type of transaction and concise address of the property.
According to an article in Straits Times dated 26th Feb 2018, Mr Yeoh who is a resident that needed to give up the canteen helper job a few years ago because he had a poor health, and he was actually diagnosed with cancer. The problem for him and his wife is that he had to move from a 5-room flat to a 2-room flexi flat and a 30 year lease came with that one. They are not the only people doing this.
Most seniors are downsizing right now, but it’s easy to see why. Not only do they want to avoid spending a lot of money, but they want to figure out a good, creative and professional way to handle with the shorter leases in a meaningful and powerful way. The best part about handling them this way is that it’s a lot easier for them to move into a smaller place.
Is it wise to give up your financial security and follow the type of dream that may never be able to pull of adequately? It can happen, but in the end the best thing that you can do is to identify the best options and just go ahead with them the best way that you can. This approach is quite good for old people that want to downsize.
SCCB – Singapore Commercial Credit Bureau released a survey recently that showed an upward trend for a second consecutive quarter in local business confidence. As per the chief executive of SCCB, Audrey Chia, there will be certain downside risk prevalent during 2018; however, the overall growth outlook is expected to remain positive. She cited service-oriented and transportation sectors as the major factors that will lead the growth in 2018.
On the other hand, she believes that there are fewer chances of growth in the construction sector. This is due to the lacklustre performance expected in this sector in the near future. However, the overall trend is going to remain positive.
Built somewhere in the middle of the 80s, Hollandia, which is a beautiful property located at the intersection of Queensway and Holland Road in District 10, was just won by FEC Properties as a result of a collective sale. The property has quite a potential when it comes to future developments, considering that at the moment it has 6 stories and a total of 48 flats to offer. FEC Properties, which is a subsidiary company owned entirely by Far East Consortium International, from Hong Kong, got the property for $183.38 million. The price was triggered by the value of the property’s square foot, which was $1,703 at the moment of the collective sale, as mentioned by Savills Singapore, the market agent that supervised the selling process.
The collective market has seen another four freehold residential development sites of different region go on the market in Singapore for millions of dollars. The insatiable demand for development has taken the market by storm over the last few months, causing many residential properties to choose to sell their land. The four residential sites include the Asia Gardens which is in the central Singapore along Everton Road, Park View Mansions which is the West and is close to the Jurong Business District, Moulmein Rise, and Katong Omega Apartments.
Bidding for sites across Singapore are very actively taking place across Singapore. Developers firmly believe that supply and demand for executive condominiums will drive bidding higher and higher. There is a great deal of speculation where this will go during this year. Some analysts are still quite skeptical and warning developers to slow down a bit. That said, developers are not sharing their views and believe the market is ripe for picking.
City Development Land Constellation, in joint-venture with TID Residential, won the bid for executive condominium site, setting the highest record for Executive Condo Land. The winning bid was a stunning $509.37 million, equating to $583 per square foot per plot ratio. This price was higher than anyone could have imagined and believed it’s due to a shortage of executive condos in Singapore. The executive condo site on Sumang Walk in Punggol brought in an astonishing 17 bids and closed on Tuesday. Acting as land sales agent, the site’s tender was conducted by the Housing & Development Board.
Starting at the beginning of this year, we keep hearing about how well the economy of Singapore is doing, as it began to recover and follow a positive trend since the last part of 2017. But, for the moment, the households of Singapore are only seeing the numbers, as there are no palpable effects of this economic improvements just yet. Still, the statistics are showing that we are doing better than in 2016. So, according to a report made public by the Department of Statistics, a medium sized household had its income increased by 2% every month starting with 2016. Thus, if this income was around $8,846 in 2016, it reached $9,023 in the year that just passed.
But, of course, the numbers are a bit better than what is actually happens in reality. So, the increase was only 1.5% because we had to think about the inflation as well and cut it from the increase the authorities are bragging about. Still, having in mind that the economy surprised everyone with its improvements that exceeded all expectations, an increase of 3.5% is expected to be recorded during the remainder of the year. Even so, some state that the income of the average household increased by 2.6% in reality, in spite of an economy that was not showing signs of improvement at the moment. According to experts, this happened because of two main reasons.
While it is not believed that the rise in the value of Buyer Stamp’s Duty will affect the current recovery of the property market in Singapore in any way, this change may affect the prices of future projects. The much higher prices of land, which falls in the expenses supported by developers, is another factor that can lead to a price rise as well, according to specialists. According to Mr. Augustine Tan, who is the president of Redas, or Real Estate Developers’ Association of Singapore, the sudden increase in this particular stamp duty will not impair the recovery of the market in this sector, although it may cause a certain degree of friction. Home buyers are still reacting to prices in a very sensitive manner, but they will still do their best to obtain the desired property.
Mr. Tan spread the good news at a lunch during the Spring Festival, an event that is celebrated every year by Redas. Having no less than 620 guests, there were plenty of people to hear the news and share them with the rest. As Mr. Tan said, the recovery of the market is just in its beginnings, but the feelings are positive about it and it is expected to the trend to continue in the same manner. Although there are circumstances that are difficult to predict, the economic growth recorded in Singapore in recent times, which is more than expected, gives everyone hope that that the positive trends will remain the same in the following years.
But, in spite of all these increased, the property prices in Singapore are still affordable, if we are to compare them with what you can find in larger cities like London or Shanghai. While it takes 14 or 15 years to afford a property in Beijing or Shanghai, and 8 and a half years to afford one in London, it takes only 4 or 5 years to be able to afford one in Singapore. So, the situation is by far a grim one. It is also worth mentioning that the rise in buyer’s stamp duty applies only in the case of properties that cost more than $1 million. For the properties that have a selling price of $1 million or less, the stamp duty will remain in the 1 to 3% area, as it did so far.
Let us not forget that property prices were on a constant drop in the past years, falling 3.7% in 2015 and 3.1% in 2016. Last year the first raise was recorded, of 1.1%, in the past 3 years, so we are still far from having to face large prices. Desmond Lee, who is the Second Minister for National Development said that even though he is confident in the market growth Singapore is enjoying at the moment, the number of properties that will be available for sale will likely double or go beyond this threshold in the near future. At the end of 2017 alone there were no less than 17,000 unsold properties, so we tend to believe Mr. Lee. Mr. Tan added the fact that there may be more than 34,400 private residences available on the market between 2018 and 2019, a number that is generated by the sales of land sites that have not received planning approval just yet. But he also said that the limited land availability in Singapore will lead to the development of properties with mix uses, if the country and its developers wish to maintain the economic growth and meet the demand.
Upcoming new launch condos in Singapore
The job market in Singapore could be seriously refreshed by new investments in the offshore engineering and marine sectors. Besides bringing an additional $5.8 billion to the local budget, these investments will also generate approximately 1,500 new positions on the job market until 2025. A team formed out of the representatives of several agencies and managed by the Economic Development Board came out with a plan involving roads that are meant to refresh these two sectors of Singapore’s industry. Also, a few days ago, a map that presented the transformations that were going to take place in these industries was released by S. Iswaran, who is the current Minister for Trade and Industry.
The Economic Development Board, or EDB, mentioned, in a public statement, the fact that the offshore engineering and marine sectors went through three very difficult years. Also, the significant decrease in the price of oil that took place in 2014 did nothing but aggravate the situation. Even so, these two sectors are still very important for the economy of Singapore, offering jobs to 23,000 locals and bringing $3.6 billion to the GDP of the country. The Government couldn’t just stand and do nothing while this part of the industry was being challenged, so it came up with measures meant to offer support to the business owners in these sectors during the years of hardship. Thus, two different schemes were used, the Internationalization Finance Scheme and Spring Singapore’s Bridging Loan. These schemes provided loans to approximately 100 different companies, or more, which summed up the amount of $700 million. The majority of the companies that applied for such a loan were the small and medium ones.
Collective sales have been quite the hit recently in Singapore. But as you can imagine, even these won’t be able to run away from glitches. Tampines Court is one of the collective sales that actually had to deal with this sort of problems. Those technical glitches mired the entire sale. The firm is engaged with the LTA as it tries to create a new link to the Pan Island Expressway. The company has to make the road improvements, otherwise they will not be able to increase the number of units.
And yes, this is the most important thing for any type of sales person at the end of the day. But it seems that the Tampines Court sale was delayed mostly because the developer is still trying to get the planning permission approval from the URA. These things are extremely important at this time, and they may end up having a major significance in the very near future.
Recently, more precisely on the 6th of February, the Housing Board started its first sale program of 2018, putting out for sale no less than 3,664 BTO apartments in four different towns. But this is only the tip of the iceberg, as it is expected for a total of 17,000 BTO apartments to be released throughout the entire year. Also, the batch that is going to inaugurate this large project will include flats will be constructed in a way that will offer them the open-kitchen feature, but only where this detail is possible from an architectural point of view. And, according to the Housing Board, or HDB, the type of the units will start from two-room flats and go up to five-room flats, so that they will answer to the requirements of every home buyer.
Singapore stocks started declining on February 20th after taxes were raised on home purchases over $1 million. This was just after the housing market began to recover from a 4-year low.
During early trading, the City Developments and the UOL Group fell more than 2%. They were the largest declines on the Straits Times Index. CapitaLand, the largest developer in Singapore, dropped for the first time in one week.