[UPDATE] Bukit Sembawang steps up landed offering with Pollen Collection

/ EdgeProp Singapore |
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SINGAPORE (EDGEPROP) - In the fourth quarter of 2022, Singapore-listed property developer Bukit Sembawang Estates quietly released 20 units at Pollen Collection for sale. A landed housing development with 132 units, Pollen Collection at Pollen View is Bukit Sembawang’s latest project in the established landed residential enclave of Seletar Hills. It features two pairs of semi-detached houses, 22 corner terraced houses and 106 intermediate terraced houses across a 417,417 sq ft plot with a 99-year lease from December 2019.
Of the 20 units released in the first phase of Pollen Collection, four have been sold to date. The first two units — snapped up in the third week of October — are both corner terraced houses. The bigger of the two sits on a land area of 2,971 sq ft, with a built-up area of 4,542 sq ft. It fetched $4.179 million ($1,407 psf), based on a caveat lodged with URA Realis on Oct 20 last year. The other corner terraced house sits on a smaller plot of 2,154 sq ft, with a built-up area of 4,144 sq ft. It was sold for $4.076 million ($1,893 psf), according to an Oct 24 caveat lodged on URA Realis. The following sale was of an intermediate terraced house for $3.538 million ($2,191 psf) on Dec 6. The property sits on a 1,615 sq ft lot with a floor area of 4,101 sq ft. Next came the sale of a semi-detached house for $4.088 million ($1,826 psf) on Dec 10. Sitting on a 2,239 sq ft lot, the house has a floor area of 4,381 sq ft.
Artist’s impression of Pollen Collection - EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
Artist’s impression of Pollen Collection, which is designed by award-winning architect Mok Wei Wei of W Architects, who also designed Phase 1 and 2 of Nim Collection (Photo: Bukit Sembawang Estates)
Many of the interested home buyers are said to be HDB upgraders from the neighbouring estates of Ang Mo Kio and Serangoon. “These buyers are the early birds who had contacted us directly after seeing our sales gallery being constructed,” says Chng Kiong Huat, CEO of Bukit Sembawang since Oct 1. (Find HDB flats for rent or sale with our Singapore HDB directory)
“We have not held an official preview or launch, but had opened the sales gallery for viewing by visitors who showed interest and contacted us directly,” adds Chng. “For the sale of Pollen Collection, we have not appointed any marketing agencies as we plan to market and sell the units using our in-house sales team.”

Luxury of space

Intermediate terraced houses at Pollen Collection sit on lots of 1,615 sq ft, with floor areas of around 4,100 sq ft. The biggest corner terraced house sits on a land area of 3,105.4 sq ft, with a built-up area of 4,865 sq ft. Meanwhile, the remaining semi-detached house has a built-up area of 4,381 sq ft, with a land area of 2,474 sq ft.
According to Bukit Sembawang, the houses are priced from $3.67 million to $4.5 million. The developer is offering an “early bird discount”, with prices starting from $3.588 million to $4.4 million.
Pollen Collection Photo of Showhouse Living Room - EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
Living room with a 6m double-volume ceiling height (Photo: Bukit Sembawang Estates)
The houses have a variety of configurations, with corner terraced houses and semi-detached houses having larger land plots and built-up areas. However, all the houses, including the intermediate terraced houses, share similar attributes. They span five levels, including a mezzanine level and an attic. The living and dining areas have a 6m double-volume ceiling. The dry and wet kitchen comes with a separate helper’s room and utility area and an open terrace. Each house has five en suite bedrooms, a home lift and a car porch that can fit up to three cars.
With the houses oriented in a north-south direction, they all enjoy cross-ventilation. Solar panels mounted on rooftops ensure that at least half the household appliances in the houses, such as the refrigerator and washing machine, are powered by solar energy. “We want to build more sustainable homes in the future, with enough solar panels to power most of the household’s needs, including air-conditioning and lighting,” Chng adds.
Homeowners of Pollen Collection will be able to age in place as the houses are designed with flexible space to accommodate changes in lifestyle over the years, according to the developer. For instance, the roof terrace on the attic level can be covered to create an additional bedroom. However, the homeowner would need to seek approval from the Building and Construction Authority. Some of the bedrooms come with an open terrace, where space can be carved out to create more wardrobe space.
Pollen Collection Photo of Showhouse Dining and Living Room- EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
Dining and living area looking out to the carporch that can park up to three cars (Photo: Bukit Sembawang Estates)
Bukit Sembawang has been a property developer of landed homes in Seletar Hills and Sembawang since the 1950s. To date, it has developed over 4,600 houses in Seletar Hills, Sembawang and Luxus Hills.

Third and latest phase

Pollen Collection is the third and latest phase following the launch of Nim Collection Phases 1 and 2 in 2018. Located on Nim Road, off Ang Mo Kio Avenue 5, Nim Collection has 98 five-bedroom terraced houses completed in 2019. They occupy a land area of 317,097 sq ft, with a 99-year lease from October 2016. Nim Collection and Pollen Collection are designed by award-winning architect Mok Wei Wei of W Architects.
At Nim Collection, an intermediate terraced house sitting on a land area of 1,914 sq ft with a floor area of 4,478 sq ft, changed hands for $3.56 million ($1,860 psf) in October 2022. The house was purchased from the developer in April 2018 for $2.762 million ($1,443 psf), according to a caveat lodged. Hence, the buyer made a capital gain of 29% in just over four years.
Located on Nim Road, off Ang Mo Kio Avenue 5, Nim Collection has 98 five-bedroom terraced houses completed in 2019 (Photo: Samuel Isaac Chua/EdgeProp Singapore)
Another intermediate terraced house at Nim Collection, sitting on a land area of 1,615 sq ft with a floor area of 4,252 sq ft, was purchased from the developer for $2.808 million ($1,739 psf) in May 2019. The house changed hands for $3.48 million ($2,155 psf), or 24% higher, in August 2022.
Even after the sale of Pollen Collection, Bukit Sembawang still has a vacant landbank of 525,897 sq ft bounded by the Central Expressway, Nim Road and Ang Mo Kio Avenue 5. The landbank is still zoned as agricultural land, with a 999-year lease from 1879.
To develop the vacant land into future residential developments, Bukit Sembawang will need approval from the Singapore Land Authority to reissue a fresh 99-year lease and will be subject to a differential premium (now known as land betterment charge), according to the developer in its FY2022 (ended March 31, 2022) annual report. Bukit Sembawang is no stranger to this, having successfully applied for and obtained the new 99-year leases for the development at Nim Collection and Pollen Collection.
Pollen Collection Artists Impression of Car Porch Terrace - EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
Artist's impression of roof terrae above carporch (Picture: Bukit Sembawang Estates)
Bukit Sembawang has another 205,528 sq ft vacant site in the Nim Road area, which it currently holds as rural, non-residential vacant land. It has already obtained a statutory grant for future residential development.

Banking on future price growth

Further down Ang Mo Kio Avenue 5, Bukit Sembawang has another landed housing estate, Luxus Hills, which sits on a 999-year lease from 1879. With the first phase launched in July 2009, Luxus Hills has completed and fully sold 10 phases (1 to 9 and 16) comprising a total of 437 houses. The latest phase (Phase 16) was launched in February 2020, with all 39 houses taken up within a fortnight.
The latest transaction at Luxus Hills was for an intermediate terraced house sitting on a 1,615 sq ft site, which changed hands for $3.92 million ($2,428 psf) in September 2022. Locat- ed along Seletar Green Walk, the terraced house was completed in 2011 and is part of Phase 1 of Luxus Hills.

Landed and non-landed resale transaction volumes

Source: List Sotheby's International Realty, URA Realis downloaded as at Jan 17, 2023 (Infographics: EdgeProp Singapore)
At Luxus Hill Drive, a corner terraced house sitting on a site area of 2,207 sq ft was sold for $4.48 million ($2,030 psf) in August 2022. The seller had purchased the unit from the developer in April 2020 for $3.738 million ($1,694 psf), which reflects a price increase of 18.5% over the past two years.
There are still three remaining phases (Phases 10, 11 and 12) at Luxus Hills across a 1.26 million sq ft, 999-year leasehold land parcel. The vacant parcel is held in Bukit Sembawang’s landbank. The Seletar Hills Estate, Luxus Hills, Nim Collection and Pollen Collection are located in District 28. It is one of six districts that record- ed the highest number of landed home transactions in 2022, according to List Sotheby’s International Realty.
Price growth in the landed homes segment has been strong over the past five years, with the overall median resale price up 41.6% from 2017 to 2H2022, according to List Sotheby’s director of research, Han Huan Mei. In District 28, median resale price for landed homes increased 35.2% from $1,027 psf in 2017 to $1,389 psf in 2022

Landed and non-landed resale price trends ($ psf)

Source: List Sotheby's International Realty, URA Realis downloaded as at Jan 17, 2023 (Infographics: EdgeProp Singapore)
According to List Sotheby's, from 2H2021 to 2H2022 alone, overall landed resale home prices were up 14.5% y-o-y, compared to 10% for non-landed homes.
While prices of both landed and non-landed homes continued upward, URA data showed a reduction in sales volume for both categories in 2022 compared to 2021 (see charts above). “This was partly due to higher asking prices by sellers and fewer properties put on the market for sale,” says Han. “More recently, market sentiment turned cautious as major economies were impacted by the fallout of the prolonged war in Ukraine and persistent rise in consumer inflation, which led to hikes in interest rates.”

Contrarian housing market

Credit Suisse economists anticipate that the global housing slump that started last year will deepen in 2023, with house prices in major economies having peaked. “Yet we expect the converse in Singapore with a modest appreciation of 3%–5%,” says Credit Suisse in its 2023 Outlook report dated Jan 13.
Bukit Sembawang Estates' sales gallery clubhouse - EDGEPROP SINGAPORE
Bukit Sembawang Estates' sales gallery clubhouse (Photo: Bukit Sembawang Estates)
In addition to stability in the residential market, Credit Suisse expects “a sustained rise in property prices”, consistent across the “three Cs” of affluence in Singapore, with appreciation in cars and country club memberships outpacing that of housing (the third ‘C’ being condos). This underscores “the wealth creation and net inflows of global talent and wealth in Singapore in recent years”.
Despite broadly higher interest rates, Credit Suisse’s scenario analysis suggests that “affordability continues to be healthy” for the average household, given the momentum of wage growth amidst a tight labour market today. This is consistent with the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s findings that “most households, in fact, should be able to continue servicing their debt under stress assumptions of even a 400 basis-point increase in interest rate and a 10% re- duction in income”.
Bukit Sembawang’s Chng, therefore, expects the upgraders’ aspirations of owning a private home — especially a landed property — to remain intact. “Our prospective buyers are mostly in their 40s to 50s — families with children or multi-generational families,” he says. “They are currently staying in HDB units or private residences in Ang Mo Kio and Serangoon and are looking to upgrade into a landed home that offers much larger living spaces and privacy to cater to the growing needs of their families."
Check out the latest listings near Pollen Collection, Nim Collection, Luxus Hills, Seletar Hills

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