Hot spots for foreign buyers in Singapore’s residential market

By Ong Teck Hui / JLL | April 28, 2017 11:00 AM SGT
Foreigners are expected to make a comeback in Singapore’s residential property market after shying away from it since 2012 following the imposition of the additional buyer’s stamp duty (ABSD).
In the first three months of 2017, the proportion of foreign buyers in the private residential market increased slightly to 6.9% from 6.7% in 2016 (see Chart 1). Although this is a far cry from the 17.5% seen in 2011, it is nevertheless an encouraging level of transaction among foreigners.
The recent easing of cooling measures is seen as a signal that the unwinding of measures has begun and should continue to stoke confidence as well as boost sentiment. Coupled with the likely bottoming of prices, more foreign investors are expected to return to the Singapore residential sector to capitalise on the potential price upside.
Hot spots for foreigners in 2016
We hope to shed light on hot spots favoured by foreigners by looking at where they have been buying in 2016 (see Chart 2).
Of the 1,078 purchases made by foreigners in 2016, about 61% were located in the Core Central Region (CCR), with transactions concentrated in Districts 9 and 10. Other hot spots include projects located along the Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) lines, particularly the North-East Line, and the Jurong Lake District.
Hotspot #1: Prime residential districts
The projects with the most foreign buyers in this area in 2016 were:
• Cairnhill Nine (77 foreign purchases);
• OUE Twin Peaks (48 foreign purchases);
• Sophia Hills (23 foreign purchases);
• Ardmore Three (17 foreign purchases);
• D’Leedon (14 foreign purchases); and
• Gramercy Park (14 foreign purchases)
The prime Districts 9 and 10 have traditionally been popular with well-heeled foreign buyers, owing to their exclusivity and prestige. In terms of location, Districts 9 and 10 are also close...