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03 October 2012

3rd October, Wednesday




Frasers pushes dual-key homes

Source: The Straits Times

Developer Frasers Centrepoint has created a new brand for its collection of dual-key units, on the back of strong demand.

These homes have several uses, such as allowing grandparents to live in the same dwelling as the rest of the family but with a separate key and entrance.

Called Trio by Frasers, the brand, launched Tuesday, will focus on developing and marketing the dual-key concept.

Trio refers to three options the units can be used for: multi-generational living, leasing out the space or using it as a home office.

They have been on offer since 2009, when it launched Caspian at Lakeside and 8@Woodleigh.

Several recent launches, such as River Isles and executive condo (EC) 1 Canberra, also boast the units. Analysts say they can cost about 5 per cent more than ordinary units. Typically, studio apartments are attached to one, two, three, four or five-bedders.

Analysts said the concept is still being tested by developers.

“It is also not easy to find typical HDB upgraders with sufficient affordability to purchase large units in course of overall run-up in prices, hence developers are cautious in providing substantiallarge units like dual-keys," one analyst said while another analyst pointed out that developers are still cautious and introducing (the units) in small quantities because not everyone wants them... Some have even asked for the wall to be knocked down.


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Prices of resale strata offices surge

Source: The Straits Times

Prices of resale strata offices surged in the third quarter, as a shortage of new space led buyers to look at older developments, said a report.

There was a similar trend in the number of transactions, with new-office sales falling as a share of completed deals.

New strata-titled offices made up 72 per cent of the 686 transactions in the first six months of the year, but that fell to just 21 per cent in the three months to 30 September, when total sales of 97 offices were recorded.

This was largely due to the limited supply of new office space following the initial high sales activity of new projects in the first six months.

International Plaza and The Central had the highest number of recorded transactions in the resale market, with both notching up healthy price gains in the third quarter.

Average prices rose by 12.4 per cent to $2,440 psf from the second to the third quarter, and again, when the sales of similarly sized units were compared, the average price increase moderated to 4.2 per cent.

The interest generated from new developments has led to a spillover effect that has pulled up resale prices.

This, combined with persistently low interest rates, might lead to increased interest in real estate from cash-rich investors, particularly for commercial property as a hedge against inflation.

"However, actual demand for office space is waning, with the rental market staying relatively flat in the third quarter. Achievable yields will start to decline as prices continue to increase," the report said.

"We foresee prices of strata offices to moderate towards end-2012, with sustained interest for resale office spaces at prime locations," the report said. "Overall average prices for strata offices in the resale market could increase by 4 to 5 per cent in the fourth quarter, which would translate to a 14 to 15 per cent increase for the whole of 2012."


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