Size Matters

Future homeowners can look forward to more liveable space, but developers' margins could be squeezed as bigger square footage means lower psf price

Having lived in a 377 sq ft shoebox apartment on Upper East Coast Road for 24 months, Ms Simon knows what it feels like to live in a cramped space. “I had to rent a self-storage space for my spare shoes and clothes, as there wasn’t enough wardrobe space,” she says. “I felt claustrophobic in the bedroom because I had to walk sideways to get my clothes from the wardrobe.”
Simon is relieved that she was just a tenant, and is now looking forward to moving into the newly renovated 980 sq ft, four-room HDB flat in Toa Payoh that she owns.
Having experienced living in a shoebox apartment for two years, Simon says the recent URA ruling on average unit size is timely. “It’s a good thing, as the space isn’t liveable,” she notes.
=======>>>>>>> 0097434a87f6329e5cebbffbcc39f5150d6102ec
From Jan 17, 2019, the average size of new private apartments outside the Central Area has to be 85 sq m, up from 70 sq m before. (Photo Credit: Samuel Isaac Chua/EdgeProp Singapore)
Upsizing units
The upsizing of units was announced on Oct 17 by URA through three circulars on building guidelines for non-landed residential developments. From Jan 17, 2019, the average size of new private apartments outside the Central Area has to be 85 sq m, up from 70 sq m before.
Nine areas in Singapore — up from four currently — will be subject to a more stringent requirement of an average unit size of 100 sq m. These nine areas are Marine Parade, Joo Chiat-Mountbatten, Telok Kurau-Jalan Eunos, Balestier, Stevens Road-Chancery, Pasir Panjang, Kovan-How Sun area, Shelford and Loyang.
With effect from Jan 17, 2019, the bonus gross floor area (GFA) cap for outdoor spaces — such as balconies, private enclosed spaces and private roof terraces —in private non-landed projects will be reduced from 10% to 7%. The total balcony area for each unit will be capped at 15% of the net internal area.
A new scheme that will take effect immediately will offer a bonus of up to 1% GFA to encourage developers to provide residents with more indoor recreational spaces such as gyms or function rooms.
Chart 1:
=======>>>>>>> 0097434a87f6329e5cebbffbcc39f5150d6102ec
Credit: Colliers International Research