Hot city fringe areas

By Michael Lim
/ The Edge Property |
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New home sales in August may have been relatively lacklustre with just 495 units sold. However, things seem to be picking up. Setting the trend is Keppel Land, which open edits Highline Residences showflat for one day on Sept 5. According to its spokesman, the “private, by-invitation-only event” was held for those who had registered their interest in the condominium. The developer absorbed the 3% stamp duty for buyers during the event, and 20 units were snapped up at an average price of$1,927 psf.
Highline Residences saw 20 units snapped up over the one-day sale on Sept 5, with developer Keppel Land offering to absorb the 3% stamp duty
Prior to that day, Keppel Land had closed the Highline Residences sales gallery and showflat since January. The 500-unit high-end condo was launched in September last year, and as at end-August, 149 units had been sold, according to URA data. This excludes the 20 units sold on Sept 5.
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Despite its 99-year leasehold tenure, Highline Residences is the priciest condo in the Tiong Bahru area, based on caveats lodged. In April 2013, Keppel Land paid $550.28million or a record $1,163 psf per plot ratio for the site in a government land tender, which saw a total of 11 bids.
The developers’ enthusiasm for the site at Tiong Bahru is understandable. The area has transformed into a hip neighbourhood with cafés, niche boutiques and retail shops. It has also become a popular residential enclave with young professionals. The last private condo launch in Tiong Bahru was in 2006, namely the 158-unit The Regency at Tiong Bahru by UOL Group. It was also the developer of two other private condos in the same neighbourhood, namely the 234-unit Twin Regency, which was launched in 2004, and the104-unit Regency Suites, which was launched in 2005. All three private condo projects are freehold as they were the redevelopment of former collective sale sites of private apartment blocks.
The most recent transaction at Twin Regency, which was completed in 2007, was for a 2,121 sq ft penthouse on the 36th floor that changed hands for $2.95 million ($1,391 psf) in May this year. The highest price psf achieved at the condo was in June last year when a 980 sq ft unit on the third floor was sold for $1.79 million($1,827 psf), according to a caveat lodged then.
Elsewhere in the city fringe is the Marine Parade area in the east. Cote D’Azur, a private condo project located adjacent to Parkway Parade shopping centre, saw several transactions recently. The612-unit 99-year leasehold condo by Frasers Centrepoint was completed in 2004. According to a caveat lodged on Aug 31, a 1,367 sq ft unit on the 10th floor changed hands for $1.81 million ($1,324psf). The unit was last sold in May2011 for $1.75 million ($1,280 psf).Prior to that, it changed hands in a sub-sale in March 2004 for just$890,000 ($651 psf).
The 612-unit Cote D’Azur has been seeing transactions in the $1,300 to $1,400 psf range as value hunters zoom in
Some buyers consider Cote D’Azur at $1,300 to $1,400 psf as value buys, according to property agents marketing property in the area. Located next to it is the 383-unit Silversea by Far East Organization, which has a 99-year leasehold tenure and was completed in2014. Transactions at the high-end condo in July and August ranged from $1.58 million ($1,613 psf) fora 980 sq ft unit on the 9th floor of one of the four 21-storey towers to $4.94 million ($2,003 psf) fora 2,465 sq ft four-bedroom unit on the 18th floor.
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Marine Blue, a new freehold private condo located along Marine Parade Road, was launched by CapitaLand at the start of the year. A 635 sq ft unit was recently sold for $1.17 million ($1,847 psf), according to a caveat lodged in early August. As at end-August, 20 of a total of 124 units in the private condo had been sold, based on URA data. The Seaview, a 546-unit freehold private condo by Wheelock Properties that was completed in 2008, saw two transactions in August. Both units comprise three bedrooms and a study each. The 1,518 sq ft unit was sold for $2.3 million ($1,613 psf), while the 1,216 sq ft unit was sold for $1.96 million ($1,611 psf).
More signs are showing that buyers are returning to both the prime districts as well as popular city fringe neighbourhoods, such as Marine Parade and Tiong Bahru. “I think this is the right time for bargain hunters to cherry-pick,” says Donald Han, managing director of Chesterton Singapore.
List of private condominium projects at Tiong Bahru and Marine Parade area with rental yield above 4%
Project Name
Tenure
Completion year
Avg Price ($ psf)
Avg Rent ($ psf pm)
Rental Yield (%)
Freehold
2007
1,414
4.8
4.1
99 years
2007
1,391
4.7
4.1
99 years
2006
1,367
5.1
4.5
THE CARPMAELINA
Freehold
2005
1,063
3.7
4.2
LEGENDA AT JOO CHIAT
99 years
2004
997
3.6
4.3
99 years
2001
1,178
3.9
4

Source: URA, The Edge Property

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This article appeared in the City & Country of Issue 695 (Sep 21, 2015) of The Edge Singapore.

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