Housing Looking up for Singapore after Multiyear Decline

Four years ago, developers wouldn’t think twice about choosing a Hong Kong property over one in Singapore. As the tables turn for the two cities, more and more investors are turning to Singapore over the world’s most unaffordable city for real estate shares.


What’s changed?

According to Bloomberg Intelligence indexes, the position of Singapore-based and Hong Kong-based developers has not changed all that much. Hong Kong and Singapore both have prime real estate, and both of them are still number one choices for venture capitalism in the region. Hong Kong rates are still lower and thus more affordable than Singapore’s, operating at more than double the discount to net asset value. However, according to analysts from Nomura Holdings, Hong Kong real estate now trades at lower valuations for larger holdings, making it not only a less profitable venture than Singapore, but also a riskier one. “Investors now see more of a downside with Hong Kong, which makes Singapore properties more attractive,” says Joyce Kwock, an analyst with Nomura Holdings.

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GFA – When Bigger isn’t Always Better

When floor space, is not floor space

When it comes to finding a property, it is easy to get obsessive about things that hadn’t crossed your mind beforehand. Location is an obvious attribute that differentiates one property from another. Price and facilities are two more. Gross floor area (GFA) is something that will, as time goes on, become a more and more important factor when choosing your dream home. In a country where space is at a premium – literally – every square inch of space that an apartment has is crucial, both for you as a perspective resident, and for the agent trying to sell it. It isn’t quite as easy though as simply comparing the quoted GFA from one apartment with another. You need to first understand what actually makes up GFA and how this relates to your particular needs and preferences.


So what makes up the GFA? The best way to answer this is by saying what isn’t included. The list is pretty short. Without getting into too much detail, and the intricacies of architectural designs, for all intents and purposes, the only piece of horizontal “floor” space that does not count towards the GFA for an apartment is the RC ledge. Even there it isn’t quite that straightforward however. The reinforced concrete ledge, as long as it’s function is purely for sun shading, and is located on an external façade and does not have any parapet wall or railing is exempt. But only if it does not exceed 2 metres in width. Anything over that is counted.

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Employment rate in Singapore

When it comes to the employment rate in Singapore, everyone hoped that 2017 will be better than the previous year. Unfortunately, by March, 2017, the situation was almost unchanged in comparison with the last year. In fact, unemployment in Singapore was even slightly higher at the start of this year, due to the fact that the trends started to go up in the last months of the year that just passed. Why did this happen? People in need of a job apparently needed more time than usual to get employed, mostly because in the construction and manufacturing domains the Work Permit Holders started to decline. Still, the new year did not bring just bad news. There were some improvements in the ratio between job vacancies and unemployed persons, which is hopeful considering that this ratio was in decline for seven quarters in a row.


Concerning the number of workers that were laid off in the first part of 2017, statistics show that their number is smaller than in the same period of 2016. More precisely, only 4000 people became jobless in the first quarter of 2017, in comparison with 2016, when 5440 people lost their jobs, and 2015, when 4710 went through the same though period. Still, we shouldn’t get our hopes too high because the improvement is not that significant. Tables can turn at any moment in current conditions, due to the small differences. Also, since the third quarter of 2014, the recruitment rate started to follow a downward spiral. There were slight improvements in the last quarter of 2016, when the trend in this sector went up a little, just to drop with 2.1% in the first quarter of 2017. What about resignation rate? There aren’t any changes that are worth mentioning here, as this rate kept a steady level, at 1.8%, since the start of 2016.


By March 2017, 74,400 of Singapore’s residents had no job. From this number, 67,100 were citizens of Singapore. If we are to look at these residents, taking into account their age and education groups, unemployment was higher in 2017 than in 2016 in all age and education groups. The age groups that had the biggest number of unemployed people, which also recorded the most significant increases this year, are the residents below 30 years old and 50 and over years old. Even the ones that gained diplomas and professional qualifications suffered from difficulties in finding a proper job or finding a job at all, as the unemployment rate increased in this particular group as well, from 2.3% to 3.5%.


Still, there are some sectors in which employment enjoyed a slight increase this year. Community, social, and personal services sector had 6,700 new employees. The financial and insurance services earned 3,300 more employees and the administrative and support services gained as well 1,500 more employees this year. Unfortunately, these increases where felt in a negative manner in other sectors, where a decline in employment was felt, such as the retail trade sector, which lost 2,700 employees in 2017. Things are far from being ideal when it comes to the employment rate of Singapore, so we can only hope that the future will bring some significant improvements.



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More resources are committed for Global aviation training and research

More resources are committed for Global aviation training and research

Singapore is a country which has always strived to contribute towards the enhancement of global aviation training and research, but they have begun to go further in providing that extra support than before towards a deeper commitment towards this sector. Singapore not only has come forward to provide more resources but also joined hands with the International civil aviation organisation (ICAO) in hosting and developing a course on civil security which is thereby target on the heads of civil aviation.


It is also great to know that within the year of 2018 to 2020 there would be seven runs of this programme being conducted all across the globe. Read more

ROS scheme

Good days came for over 1,300 HDB shops all over Singapore, as the government decided to allot funds that are destined to help these shops grow and improve, become more competitive, and provide better services to their customers. What is the total budget for this project? In the information made public by Mr. Desmond Lee, the Senior Minister of State for National Development, the government planned $29 million to be used in this direction, starting the ROS or Revitalization of Shops scheme. While the ROS scheme is not something new in Singapore, the latest one includes several enhancements to maximize its efficiency and provided results. How many shops will benefit from this new and improved scheme? 17 sites have been already selected, while another 8 applied for the Start-Up Funds that should help them out with their formation and adherence to the Merchant’s Association.


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A successful Start for Le Quest

A huge success on the first day of sales by selling 280 units on Saturday for the LE QUEST which is an urban development in Bukit Batok by Qingjian Realty. Though the initial amount was 200 which was marked as selling quantity, they were so interested which was beyond the demand of initial number and studio to three-bedroom units were more popular according to the developers. Qingjian Realty was able to cover up a large number of people and they were able to make it more than their demand of supply on its first day which was a huge success for them.

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The Singapore real estate market is constantly demanding new properties

According to the URA second quarter figures, it’s pretty clear that the demand for some new private residential homes has improved quite a bit in the first half of this year. At this time, it’s clear that the market is booming, and customers couldn’t be happier with this particular idea.


According to some of the sales figures, the sale of private residential units is up by 64% when compared to the first half of 2016, so it’s clear that the market is doing very well. The market saw a sale of 6039 units during the first half this year when compared to 3675 units sold in the past year.

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The Weakening US Dollar – Good News for Singapore

The future may be looking brighter for the Asian economies if the signs coming out of the US are anything to go by. Asia in general and Singapore especially is always going to be effected by what is going on in the economies of the world’s major players, and what happens in the US financial markets has a significant knock on effect on this side of the Pacific.


US Dollars

As far back as February of this year, President Trump suggested that he would be happier with a weak dollar, as that helps American companies to sell their products in foreign markets. Ironically, countries doing just this – or currency manipulation as Trump termed it – was one of his particular bug bears during his presidential campaign, citing China as the biggest offender at something that was deemed harmful to American and American companies’ interests.


Now Trump’s wishes seem to have come true, as analysts in the States are predicting steady but unexceptional growth rates for its economy over the next few years. What usually happens when that is the case is that the dollar subsequently weakens.


Bringing it back to Asia, and the weaker the American dollar (up to a point) is, the better it is for Asian economies and the Asian stock markets.  Added to that is the fact that those emerging economies are now in a better shape than just a few years ago, and are in a position to take full advantage of it. Trade is increasing in Asia with some experts expecting a 10% increase in trade over the coming 2 years.


There are the usual question marks over the state of the Chinese economy, especially the amount of debt it is carrying, but Ken Peng, an Asia-Pacific investment strategist, in a recent interview, stated that he thought that the question of China’s debt had been overstated, and that when taken hand in hand with the country’s assets it is no cause for concern and is actually no different from those of other developed countries.


Indonesia is another economy that was cited as being one to benefit, especially in light of its reform drives, however political instability ahead of its elections in 2019 may put a dampener on its ability to take full advantage.


Overall though, it looks like the region is in a good place to take advantage of these changes happening in the United States. In the same interview Mr Peng was confident that the state of the American economy could well turn into “a tailwind” for Asian markets.


One of the reasons for this is that investors will be looking to just such emerging markets to get better returns than those that they can get in developed markets.





Hot selling new launch condo in Singapore



Upcoming new launch

The ABC Waters Sites in Singapore

An ambitious project started in Singapore called ABC Waters, which is destined to keep the city safe from floods, improve its appearance by creating beautiful green gardens and clean water streams, and to bring inhabitants together. There are already palpable proofs that the project is working, as there are a few ABC Waters sites in Singapore everybody can enjoy. Let us take a look at each of them and see their features, trying to imagine at the same time how the entire area will look once the project will be completed.


  • MacRitchie Reservoir

The MacRitchie Reservoir is quite a reputable and popular reservoir in Singapore, due to the fact that it is one of the oldest around. Because it is also located in the proximity of nature reserves, Singapore’s inhabitants see it as a great opportunity to spend time out in nature, being a place much preferred for leisure activities, such as jogging, walking, cross country, tai chi, and even canoeing and kayaking. To protect the reservoir’s ecosystem while allowing inhabitants to enjoy it like they always did, the amenities of this park and its infrastructure were the ones that were improved right from the start. A modern car park and a newly improved pontoon for kayaks, together with F&B outlet and a building made to serve both kayaking and canoeing, were all added to attract people in the area and make their time spent here very pleasant.



  • Kallang River

For everybody that lived in the area or knows how the Kallang River looked before the ABC Waters program started, this river was just another concrete canal that was passing through Singapore. Due to the collaboration of PUB and NParks, this canal turned into a beautiful natural river that is today home for a number of birds, insect, and even water animal species, while providing a much-improved experience to all the people that wish to enjoy the Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park. To prevent soil erosion and give the river a natural look, a brand new technique was used in Singapore for the first time. The technique is called soil bio-engineering and it assumes the use of natural materials, such as rocks and plants. Once the transformation of the river was completed, wildlife was attracted into the area, which considered the new Kallang River a suitable home, populating the area and changing the entire atmosphere in the park.


  • Lower Seletar Reservoir

This is another great reservoir when families living in Singapore can enjoy a great time. It is more than perfect for walks and spending time in the outdoors, while children can have a blast at the water play area. Also, a variety of activities can be enjoyed here, such as jogging, kayaking, fishing, and others. Still, if you plan to go fishing in this reservoir, do know that there are special areas destined for such activity. You should also fish responsibly, using appropriate equipment and being careful not to hurt the passersby or the otters that found shelter in this reservoir. Other than this, the Lower Seletar Reservoir is another beautiful place in Singapore that enjoyed the attention of the ABC Waters program.




New Launch Condos that are closer to the above ABC water sites




Serangoon Ville is sold to an Oxley-led consortium for S$499 million in a collective sale


Recently, a consortium that’s led by Oxley Holdings has just purchased Serangoon Ville, which is a HUDC estate that you can find in the Serangoon North Avenue 1. The selling price for this is S$499 million, and the sale was a collective one. The initial expectation was to have around 430 million at most, but it seems that the results were more than interesting, to the point where everyone was more than happy with the way everything managed to pan out.


This is the seventh collective sale this year and the total amount of deals is more than 2.5 billion in worth, although only less than half of that value was actually sold in the end.

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Stormwater management for ABC Waters

Most of the land in Singapore, more precisely two thirds of its surface, represents water catchment areas. This means that each time there is a storm and there is significant rainfall, the accumulated water can reach clean reservoirs, risking compromising their balance. Thus, through the ABC Waters program, PUB wishes to seize storm water and clean it properly, before allowing it to run into any of Singapore’s reservoirs. Having in mind that there is an annual quantity of 2,400 mm of rainfall in Singapore, this type of water management is more than useful if we are to reach the status of City of Gardens and Water.

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What are ABC Waters?

Water is one of the elements we cannot live without. We should do our best to maintain all water surfaces around us clean, because they are the ones that fuel our planet and every life form that lives on it. The ABC Waters or Active, Beautiful, Clean Waters program, started in Singapore back in 2006 and initiated by PUB, has as main purpose to transform every type of water form in Singapore a beautiful body of water. Whether we are talking about lakes, rivers, or streams, each and every one of them is targeted by this program.


So, what if the water in Singapore will be crystal clear and safe enough for people to enjoy it for recreational purposes? This is the major intent of this particular program; one of the goals of this project is to improve the quality of water in every water surface of Singapore by treating rainwater runoff before it reaches before it even reaches the water catchment. But, besides just insuring clean water for the people in Singapore, PUB also wanted to motivate the inhabitants to keep waters clean and value Singapore’s water sources more than they did before. In fact, various learning trials are already unrolling, in order to educate the young generation about this goal, as part of the segment of this project that wishes to raise awareness and make people more responsible when it comes to water.

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The Importance of Proximity to Schools when choosing a Property for Investment


When deciding on a property to invest in, there are many aspects to both the property itself and the surrounding area that are taken into consideration. One that is talked about but is far too often given nowhere near enough importance is the property’s proximity to schools, and in particular, good schools. This is the case the world over, but is especially so in Singapore.


Studies show that the value of a property can increase by more than 12% when it is near a highly ranked school. That is on a par if not more of a difference than is seen with the proximity to an MRT, but it rarely receives as much consideration.

Thomson Impressions
Thomson Impressions is within 1km from Top school, Ai Tong Primary School.

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Hougang EC sells very fast, within a few hours after it was launched

The property market in Singapore is finally coming back on its feet after a very long time of struggle. Hougang EC is a very good example of an executive condominium that has managed to generate quite a lot of revenue very fast.


The cool thing about this Singapore Condo is it has around 531 units in total, and it’s astonishing to see how much things have evolved in the meantime.

Hundred Palms Residences Executive Condo
Hundred Palms Residences Executive Condo

The average price of a unit was around $836, and the price continues to astonish everyone since not a lot of people have been able to get a unit at this price in Singapore. But the nice thing to note is that even if the launch was during a Sunday, Hundred Palms Residences was sold within the first 7 hours. Yes, it was sold in its entirety.

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Meyer Road condo gets sold for $69.12 million

Singapore condo sales are on a roll, with a new development, the Albracca condominium, getting sold for the amazing sum of $69.12 million. It’s the fifth deal like this during the year, and it shows that the market is coming back.


An interesting thing to explore about this Meyer Road condo is that the price was $1409 per plot ratio per sq feet. However, it’s important to note that even the owners of the Albracca didn’t expect the sale to go so well. In fact, they expected to get somewhere between 60 and 65 million, not 6millions+. So, the development was a success for them.


Albracca is a freehold condo located near the Tanjong Rhu. It has multiple apartments that vary in size. The amazing thing to note here is that the zone is residential and the Meyer Road site has around 23400 square feet. Apparently, the owners will each get around $4-$7 million from this sale. It is an incredible opportunity, and it shows the outstanding type of results that you may be able to get from selling a development here.


The apartments in this Meyer Road condo range in size. The largest one is up to 3972 square feet, whereas the smaller ones have around 1658 square feet. So yes, you have some pretty large apartments here, which means that selling them won’t be a problem at all.
Up until this point, the collective sales transaction for this year in Singapore alone was around $1.58 billion. It already surpasses the $1 billion from last year, so it’s clear that there’s plenty of excitement to be had in here.


But how was the sales process? The Albracca received dozens of bids from developers, so it was indeed a very popular site that lots of people wanted. There was a fund manager that placed a bid, alongside contractors or even some boutique developers. It shows that you can get an extraordinary amount of money from this type of transactions.


According to the real estate professionals on the market, this Meyer Road establishment is set to further help Singapore’s real estate turn around and become very profitable once again. Thankfully, the sales from recent months show that the condos in here are extremely profitable and, with the right market knowledge, you can make a fortune.


The Meyer Road condo sale shows that Singapore is indeed profitable for real estate development. Yes, there was a market crash a few years ago, and that did last for quite some time. But it’s safe to say that the market problems won’t last for a very long time. That’s extraordinary, and it brings in some really good feelings in regards to the future of this market.


Since the market transactions are getting higher and higher, we expect the next condo complex sale to go well above expectations as well. One thing is certain; it has never been so profitable to invest in Singapore real estate. So yes, we are very excited to see what the future holds in this regard!







Nearby developments near Meyer Road




Looking for new launch condos in 2019? Below are a list of Singapore condo that you can consider,