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30 July 2012

30th July, Monday




'Good value' Loyang draws home buyers

Source: The Straits Times

Despite being in the far-flung area of Loyang and not close to an MRT station or other amenities, home buyers are turning to the area for its value for money.

New launches around Flora Drive, including Palm Isles and Parc Olympia, for instance, are averaging between $820 per sq ft (psf) and $880 psf.

That is markedly cheaper than homes in nearby Pasir Ris, which has more amenities, experts said. Pasir Ris' Ripple Bay and The Palette - both also 99-year leasehold projects - were both sold at an average of $900 psf.

In all, more than 2,570 new units are set to be built in the Flora Drive area in the next few years, bringing the total tally of homes there to more than 5,000, said Mr Lee Sze Teck, Dennis Wee Group's senior manager of research and consultancy.

He said the area is dominated by Tripartite Developers, which has launched projects every few years from 1993, starting with Azalea Park.

Besides lower launch prices, resale prices in the area also appear to be more attractive than those of Pasir Ris and Tampines, Mr Lee said.

The freehold Azalea Park, on Flora Drive, achieved a median resale price of $704 psf, while freehold Ris Grandeur in Pasir Ris fetched $898 psf as of this year's second quarter.

In Tampines, 99-year leasehold The Tropica returned a median resale price of $832 psf.

But Flora Drive projects lose out in terms of rental yields, which hover from 3.8 per cent to 4.1 per cent, said another analyst. 'This is slightly lower than the other nearby areas... because the condos are generally older, and face competition from others in the cluster. There is also no MRT station near Flora Drive,' he said.

Ms Betsy Chng, head of sales and marketing at Hong Leong Holdings, said that Flora Drive's appeal is in being a 'quiet estate that allows residents to be away from the hustle and bustle of the city, while still being conveniently connected to comforts of city living'.


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Investment Sales


Developers thinking twice ...

Source: Today

The total transaction value of residential en-bloc properties for the first half of this year has plunged 80 per cent compared to the same period last year, with fewer en-bloc property transactions taking place, according to data from the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA).

And real estate analysts Channel NewsAsia spoke to believe that this is due to the global economic slowdown and the cooling measures introduced by the government late last year.

In the first half of last year, 28 en-bloc residential properties were successfully transacted but this fell to just eight in the same period this year.

Between January and June this year, the total transaction value of residential en-bloc properties fell to about S$250 million, from almost S$1.6 billion in the same period last year.

Analysts said the additional buyer's stamp duty introduced by the Government in December last year has curbed speculative demand for properties. In addition, developers who buy en-bloc projects are now required to build and sell all units on the residential site within five years of acquiring the land, or pay an additional 10 per cent in stamp duty.

The value of en-bloc deals for the first half of this year is 9 per cent of the total transaction value for the whole of 2011. Analysts feel the market is unlikely to top last year's numbers, but developers would still be keen if the price for en-bloc projects in mature estates is not too high.


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