Your Property Agent Says: Should investors look beyond residential real estate in light of the cooling measures?

The latest round of cooling measures caught many homebuyers by surprise. Although the move did not affect the majority of prospective homeowners, it has prompted some buyers to widen their investment horizons.
Hansen Ng’s buyers, for example, have been asking him to look for commercial and/or industrial units, as well as overseas residential properties. In Cambodia, freehold units start at US$60,000 ($82,000), says the Senior Associate Director of OrangeTee.
“For investors who have been waiting to buy a second property before and (are now) affected by this ruling, at least half have asked if they should shift their attention to commercial/industrial instead,” says Ng.
Commercial/industrial properties are a different ball game, and some investors are hesitant about dabbling in asset classes that they are not familiar with. But at the same time, they are keeping their options open, Ng adds.
According to Hiroshi Oh, Senior Marketing Director of Huttons Asia Pte Ltd, commercial/industrial properties are appealing because there is no Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD).
“There is a Seller’s Stamp Duty (SSD) for industrial units, but that is never the reason for investors not to consider,” says Oh, who adds that foreign properties also look attractive as their entry prices are low.
For Darryl Tan, who heads Knight Frank’s Realty Insight Team, the adage ‘Don’t put all your eggs in one basket’ rings true.
“A balanced portfolio spanning multiple property types and countries adds some colour to your portfolio, and helps you develop a well-rounded growth and understanding of global real estate markets,” he says.
If you are thinking of venturing beyond local residential properties, or balancing out your portfolio with non-residential properties, foreign residential properties or Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs), here are some pointers.
These are courtesy of OrangeTee’s Ng, Huttons’ Oh and Knight Frank’s Tan.
1) Commercial/Industrial Real Estate
Commercial/industrial properties are appealing because there is no Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD).