Pickup in sales of new luxury condos

By Tan Chee Yuen / The Edge Property | February 11, 2017 8:30 AM SGT
Sales of luxury condominiums in the prime districts have picked up over the past month, a continuation of a trend that started towards the second half of 2016. “Buyers perceive that prices have come off and that it’s the right time to buy,” says Benson Koh, managing partner of Singapore Realtors Inc (SRI).
A project that has spurred keen interest among both local and foreign homebuyers is City Developments’ (CDL) Gramercy Park. The 174-unit freehold development was completed last year and opened for preview. It sold more than 50 units then, with the majority being two-bedroom units from 1,184 sq ft and three-bedroom units of 2,207 sq ft on the low floors. Prices ranged from $2.98 million ($2,517 psf) to $5.9 million ($2,680 psf).
In January, the handful of units sold were three- and four-bedders on the mid floors. These ranged from $5.47 million ($2,516 psf) for a 2,174 sq ft, three-bedroom unit on the 10th floor to $7.27 million ($2,756 psf) for a 2,637 sq ft, four-bedroom unit on the 19th floor, according to caveats lodged with URA Realis.
Aerial view of the grounds and swimming pool of Gramercy Park on Grange Road
At GuocoLand’s mixed-use Tanjong Pagar Centre, a 646 sq ft, one-bedder on the 42nd floor of the soon-to-be-completed Wallich Residence was sold for close to $1.92 million ($2,970 psf) according to a caveat lodged on Jan 25. This brings the total number of units sold in the 181-unit development to 17. The project has yet to be launched. Prior to this January transaction, a 1,625 sq ft unit on the 51st floor was sold for $5.26 million ($3,238 psf) in March 2015.
More bulk sales ahead?
On the back of improved buyer sentiment and buoyed by continued sales, developers are more sanguine about prospects in the residential sector. Developers with projects facing Qualifying Certificate (QC) or Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) charges are therefore exploring more “non-price strategies” such as deferred payment schemes and bulk deals, says Credit Suisse in a report on Feb 7.
Credit Suisse estimates that QC and ABSD charges on...