Real News‎ > ‎2012‎ > ‎November 2012‎ > ‎

24 November 2012

24th November, Saturday




EC developers should heed policy's spirit: Khaw

Source: Business Times

National Development Minister Khaw Boon Wan has said that developers of executive condominiums (ECs) exercising the flexibility in pricing and design that they have been given should stay within the spirit of the concept of this class of housing.

He also wrote that the government zones and tenders out plots specifically for ECs, enabling developers to acquire these plots for less than land meant for private condominiums, to build ECs for those who can afford to buy more than an HDB flat, but still find private property unaffordable. Some in the industry read his blog comments as being a precursor to some government measures to rein in EC prices.

An analyst said that if the minister blogged about the issue, it meant the government was concerned, and probably monitoring the EC market. "If developers continue to develop big units with a large price tag that's not in alignment with the intention of ECs, then there is a high possibility of some measures being introduced."

That being said, the bulk of units are still within the price range of EC buyers, said another analyst. "According to caveats lodged this year to date for new EC sales, 91 per cent of units sold were below $1 million. At this juncture, high-quantum EC sales are still a minority, but the authorities are trying to nip the issue in the bud."


Links to the story:,-Khaw-tells-developers



New-style ECs proving a hit with buyers

Source: The Straits Times

Executive condominiums (ECs) have emerged as one of the clear winners this year with strong buyer demand on the back of a string of new launches with high-end features.

About 7,100 EC units have been sold since ECs were re-introduced in 2010 with 10 of the 15 projects released either selling out or having fewer than 10 units left.

The big winners include Prive in Punggol, Belysa in Pasir Ris and Esparina Residences in Buangkok. The other five projects, including Watercolours in Pasir Ris and 1 Canberra in Yishun, had about 780 units left at the end of last month.

But buyers keen on ECs need not worry about their range of choices being whittled down.

There are at least seven EC projects either being built or in the planning stages that have yet to be launched, including in Punggol, Pasir Ris and Woodlands. Forestville in Woodlands, CityLife @ Tampines and The Topiary in Sengkang are expected to be pushed out before Christmas.

There are also ongoing tenders for two EC sites - in Sembawang and Punggol - on the government land sales programme, which will bring to nine the number of upcoming launches.

ECs combine elements of private and public housing and often have premium furnishings and facilities. But they are subject to HDB rules that specify a monthly household income cap of $12,000.

They are also subject to a minimum occupation period of five years. They can then be sold only to Singaporeans and permanent residents. They become private property after 10 years and can then be sold to foreigners.


Link to the story:





Tai Seng industrial area hots up with MRT's arrival

Source: The Straits Times

Property investors are paying close attention to Tai Seng, an industrial area whose appeal has grown markedly since the arrival of an MRT station in 2010.

It is one of the few industrial areas with easy MRT access and the prices of strata factories, for instance, have jumped accordingly.

The area may be familiar to consumers needing to get electronics products serviced as several well- known retailers have set up headquarters there.

An authorised Apple service centre for iPhone repairs is next to Tai Seng MRT station, and laptop maker Asus has a service centre nearby. Musical instrument maker Yamaha has a technical service centre at Tai Seng Drive. Several home-grown brands also call Tai Seng home, including shoe retailer Charles and Keith, Japanese food chain Sakae Sushi, and DIY store Home-Fix. Bakery chain BreadTalk is building its international headquarters in Paya Lebar iPark, at the doorstep of Tai Seng MRT station.

Analysts said the accessibility of the area and presence of relatively established businesses made the area's outlook promising. Average selling prices for strata factories in Tai Seng have jumped 40 per cent to 70 per cent over the past two years.

Asking rents for spaces in Tai Seng's newer completed developments are $2.50 to $3.50 psf. For the area's older industrial buildings, which house a mix of businesses, rents range from $1 to $1.50 psf.

These rental levels translate to a gross yield of 3.5 per cent to 4 per cent for existing freehold units, and 5 per cent to 5.5 per cent for 60-year leasehold units, depending on the type of industrial space.


Link to the story: