204, 500 properties to be completed by 2016

At 6,508 more units than the 197,566 units projected earlier this year, there will be 204,500 executive condominium and private apartment units built by 2016, according to data released by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA).

Completed condominium units are increasing in number as developers pour fresh new stock into the market mix. Despite having held back on some major launches as the year-end lull draws close, the number of properties available in the market continues to rise. Industry experts are however expecting developers to lower their launch prices in order to boost sales.

The CreekFrom the looks of the recent Inflora condominium launch, selling prices, of new properties at least, may indeed be on the slippery slope. But that perhaps might be good news for those looking to invest. Properties in the prime city centre spots are dropping by as much as 0.5 per cent whereas city fringe and suburban areas enjoy continued growth, however slight.

Over the next 3 years, 4, 884 more private homes will be built as National Development Minister, Mr. Khaw Boon Wan considers it “making good progress in our ramp-up of the home-building programme”. The number of HDB flats to be built will remain the same as projected. 1, 355 executive condominiums will be ready within the same time frame. What does this heightened supply mean for Singapore’s housing market and will the population growth be a reflection of a cause of this increased property growth?

Rising land prices pushing up home prices

The heftier cost of land exceeds the rise in home prices. And if general sentiments are that home prices are too high, then where should we even begin looking at the prices of land prices?

Are developers bidding up in the too aggressively and causing land prices to surpass home prices and household income rise? With the constant and almost unstoppable hunger for new properties and launches demanded by the market, and as competition becomes stiffer with the entry of new market players, developers are driven to purchase land to increase their profit margins.

Singapore real estateOver the past five years, land prices of plots sold under the Government Land Sales programme has more than doubled. In 2008, gross floor area prices were $310 psf and current prices are are $656 psf. According to market experts, if land prices continue its rise, home prices could be forced upwards and thus decrease the profit margins for developers.

Who then determines the prices of land? Developers. As long as foreign market players are willing to, and continue to see, invest in land in Singapore, prices may well continue on its upward trend. The entry of non-property players into the land bidding game could also push interest, and final sale prices up.

Previously, developers have passed on these high land prices onto the home buyers. But with the recent bout of property cooling measures and loan restrictions, they may find it increasingly harder to secure buyers, or quickly enough, to make their numbers look as good as before. Could market demand truly cause a turnaround in Singapore’s real estate prices? Or are the curbs a mere stopgap?

Home sales slow down

Possibly due to the recent stricter loan framework. Over the weekend, sales were considerably slower with only 80 out of 200 sold at The Glades and 45 out of 150 at The Skywoods. Executive Condominium (EC) Sea Horizon was the happy exception. There has been talk about buyers possibly jumping ship and going for ECs instead as they are not subjected to as strict a loan framework as private properties. Almost two-thirds of the 495 units have been snapped up.

Sea Horizon ECAt The Glades in Tanah Merah, where units were going at an average of $1,500 psf, and at The Skywoods with sale prices of $1,250 psf, buyers are finding it increasingly tougher to find banks which are able to loan them the huge amounts required for property purchases. Under the new  total debt servicing ratio (TSDR), loan amounts are capped at 60 per cent of the borrower’s gross monthly income.

And as the Hungry Ghost period draws to a close, developers may be rolling out more launches, which could mean stiffer competition for resellers. Buyers are also becoming aware of the choices they have, thus may be more willing to wait for a unit of choice rather than lock their cash up in property too soon. Developers have already been reviewing their pricing system. For example, The Skywoods have had a price adjustment downwards of $1, 300 to $1, 2500 psf. It may not be a sign that interest is waning, but merely that interested buyers may no longer be successful in borrowing enough to meet the selling price.

GladesWhich property sector is most likely to profit or be least likely to be affected by the new loan curbs? Buyers seem to be pooling in the Executive Condominiums for now. But when will the winds of change blow and in which direction?

New properties for everyone this Christmas

Property agents and developers certainly will not be having their holidays this festive season, just by the number of new property launches they will be working on this year end.

Gifts for all? Thousands in fact. The property market is expected both non-landed and landed residential projects to be rolling out thousands of units into the laps of property buyers. These include The Whitley Residences in Whitley Road, Liberte in Sarkies Road, Kingsford @ Hillview Peak, Village @ Pasir Panjang, Echelon near Redhill MRT Station, Michaels’ Residences in Chestnut Avenue, Trilinq in Clementi and Spottiswoode Suites in Spottiswoodes Park Road. In the Executive Condominium (EC) market, CityLife @ Tampines, Forestville in Woodlands and The Topiary in Sengkang will also be launched this month.

Echeleon near Redhill MRT Station.

These new properties encompass a wide range of units and selling prices to suit buyers of all budgets and lifestyle preferences. Prices are expected to start at $850 psf at The Whitley and The Topiary has two-bedroom units going for $580,000. With a penthouse at Citylife going for more than a million, will buyers go for ECs instead of new private mass market homes?
Will the developers be singing their way home this year end with a bountiful harvest?
But if you’re thinking of waiting till after the holidays, a few properties are holding out till then as well and you can expect The Sennett Residence in Potong Pasir to launch in the brand new year.

Roxy-Pacific Holdings’ reports an 8% Q2 net profit

Local property developer, Roxy-Pacific Holdings has reported an 8 percent rise in its Q2 net profit to S$17.7 million, which was driven by higher turnover from its property business.

The developer said that it is eyeing freehold sites to boost its land bank for future growth. From the period of April to July this year, it has been on an aggressive land acquisition trail with the purchase of Jade Towers at 2 and 4 Liew Lian Vale, Westvale Condominium in Pasir Panjang Road, Sophia Mansion at 14 Adis Road and Harbour View Gardens at 211 to 223A Pasir Panjang Road.
 According to its
CEO Teo Hong Lim, the group has started to acquire four enblocs, with the focus on freehold land.

Roxy-Pacific’s recent projects include Spottiswoode 18, Space@Kovan, Studios@Tembeling, Jupiter 18 and Nova 88.

It also owns Grand Mecure Roxy Hotel and The Roxy Square Shopping Centre.

The group’s market capitalisation has close to doubled since its listing, increasing from S$190.97 million to S$410.6 million as of July 31, 2012.