Hougang project sold for $629m in collective sale

Florence-Regency

The owners of Florence Regency are expected to receive between $1.84 million and $1.89 million from the sale. (Photo: JLL)

The 336-unit Florence Regency development at Hougang Avenue 2 has been sold to Hong Kong-listed developer Logan Property for $629 million, marketing agent JLL said on Friday (20 October).

This is the first collective sale attempt by the owners of the privatised HUDC, and the price matches the valuation of the site by an independent valuer.

It translates to a land price of approximately $842 psf per plot ratio, after factoring in the differential premium of $288.6 million to top up the lease to a fresh 99 years, and to develop the site to a gross plot ratio of 2.8.

“At this sale price, the owners would expect to receive gross sale proceeds between $1.84 – $1.89 million per unit,” said Tan Hong Boon, regional director at JLL.

The 389,236 sq ft site is zoned residential under the 2014 Master Plan, and is one of the last few privatised HUDC estates in the North-East region.

The site is close to the Hougang and Kovan MRT stations, Hougang Mall, and eateries along Upper Serangoon Road. Several schools including Holy Innocents’ Primary School and the French School of Singapore are also nearby.

Logan Property marked its maiden foray into Singapore in May with a record $1.003 billion bid for a prime residential site at Stirling Road in Queenstown with Nanshan Group.

Earlier this month, JLL helped broker the sale of Amber Park in Katong to City Developments Limited for $906.7 million ($1,515 psf ppr), making it the largest freehold residential collective sale.

credits to propertyguru

Foreign developers warm up to en bloc sales

HDB flats in Ghim Moh

View of HDB flats in the Ghim Moh area.

Despite its cumbersome and protracted process, the en bloc fever has started to catch on among foreign developers – especially those from China – signalling a paradigm shift, reported Business Times.

JLL regional director of investments Tan Hong Boon noted that en bloc sites were hardly considered by developers before 2016 since more sites were available under the government land sales (GLS) programme than in the collective sale market.

But as more attractive en bloc sites are offered in the market on the back of the limited supply of GLS sites, more developers are now turning to the en bloc market. With this, increased enquiries regarding the collective sale process have since been observed among foreign players.

A corporate lawyer revealed that Chinese developers may have even surpassed a mental hurdle towards the collective sale concept, which is uncommon in China or Hong Kong.

This is evidenced by the fact that several Chinese firms have already snapped en bloc sites. Just this month, Kingsford Hurray Development acquired Normanton Park for $830.1 million, while SingHaiyi Properties and Huajiang International Corporation acquired freehold condominium Sun Rosier for $271 million. Qingjian Realty, on the other hand, purchased Shunfu Ville for $638 million in May last year.

A buyer said to be connected to the Zhao family from China also bought a freehold industrial complex Citimac in July.

Other Chinese firms believed to be scouring for deals include Hao Yuan Investment, China Construction and Nanshan Group. MCC Land has also expressed its interest for en bloc sites.

“We have been closely observing the recent wave of en-bloc activities and will be keen to participate in a tender if an opportunity arises,” said MCC Land CEO Tan Zhiyong.

However, he remains cautious of the developers’ over-exuberant bids.

“The current residential property market seems to be stabilising and recent new launches have also been well received. However, with a likely rise in the supply of new projects coming into the market in the next couple of years arising from these en-bloc activities, how the future market will react to home prices that may rise in tandem with tender prices remains to be seen.”

credits to propertyguru

3 upcoming precincts to yield about 18,500 homes

Kallang Riverside and Kampong Bugis

Artist’s impression of future development in Kallang Riverside and the Kampong Bugis area. (Photo: URA)

Minister for National Development Lawrence Wong has launched an exhibit on Monday (16 October) that showcases some preliminary ideas regarding three upcoming residential precincts that can potentially yield a total of 18,500 houses.

The exhibit entitled “Our Neighbourhoods: A Look into the Future” is being held at The URA Centre Atrium until 20 November 2017.

In particular, Wong said the 34ha Holland Plain in Holland Plain is expected to accommodate around 2,500 private homes, while about 4,000 private houses would be built in the 17ha Kampong Bugis along Kallang Road.

But the largest is the 60ha Bayshore next to the East Coast Park that can potentially yield a total of 12,000 HDB flats and private housing, he said, adding that all three will be within a 5- to 10-minute walk to one or more MRT stations.

In addition, he revealed that the government will improve the last-mile connection from these estates to MRT stations.

For instance, they will build a new underpass and footbridge directly linking Kampong Bugis with the nearby Kallang and Lavender MRT stations, while they are considering to construct new pedestrian walkways to connect Holland Plain with the nearby King Albert Park MRT Station. In Bayshore, the authorities will install sheltered walkways linking the housing estate to the upcoming Bayshore and Bedok South MRT stations.

“In the coming months, we will actively engage the communities around the three precincts to better refine our plans in the lead-up to their launches,” Wong noted.

Kampong Bugis is expected to be launched in the next one to two years, followed by Holland Plain by 2021, while Bayshore would take longer by 2024, as the government will have to wait for the completion of the MRT stations in the area.

credits to propertyguru

New home sales slow in Sept due to Ghost Month

Singapore residential area

View of private residential properties in Singapore.

Property developers sold 657 private housing units in September, down 47.3 percent from 1,246 units in the previous month, according to data released on Monday (16 October) by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA).

Analysts attributed the big drop in sales to the lack of major new launches during the Ghost Month, which is considered an inauspicious time to buy property.

Property consultancy JLL noted that the Place-8 strata landed development in Paya Lebar was the only new project to hit the market in September, selling one of its eight units at $904 psf.

The best-selling private condo was the previously launched Kingsford Waterbay in Upper Serangoon, which moved 45 units at a median price of $1,289 psf.

Other projects that also saw good sales last month included Symphony Suites (42 units at median price of $1,098 psf) and Principal Garden (40 units at median price of $1,761 psf).

“According to (URA) caveats, the majority of buyers were Singaporeans. Foreigners (non-permanent residents) were also active, buying 14 of the 40 units transacted at Principal Garden,” said Dr Lee Nai Jia, head of research at Edmund Tie & Co.

Meanwhile, 249 executive condominium (EC) units were sold last month, a 27 percent decline from 341 in August. Parc Life in Sembawang was the most popular EC project, selling 48 units at a median price of $795 psf.

Looking ahead, ERA Realty key executive officer Eugene Lim predicts that new private home sales will be boosted with the launch of Parc Botannia in Sengkang next month. Jointly developed by Sing Holdings and Wee Hur, the project will comprise 735 units.

credits to propertyguru

Canada home prices down after two interest rate hikes

Vancouver

While Vancouver prices declined after British Columbia implemented its own foreign buyers tax last year, they have since rebounded, Teranet said. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

Canada’s housing boom showed signs of slowing down, with resale home prices falling 0.8 percent month-on-month in September, making it the first monthly decline since last year and the biggest since 2010, showed the Teranet-National Bank Composite House Price Index.

National price gains also cooled on an annual basis, with prices climbing by only 11.4 percent from the previous year, compared to August’s year-on-year growth of 13.1 percent.

This comes after the Bank of Canada recently rolled out two interest rate hikes to rein in demand, reported Reuters.

Toronto saw price increases of over 30 percent early in the year, sparking fears of a housing bubble. To cool speculation, the provincial government introduced a 15 percent tax on foreign property buyers within the city.

Separately, data from Statistics Canada revealed that new home prices, excluding condominiums and apartments, increased by 0.1 percent nationally in August, lower than the forecasted gain of 0.3 percent.

Out of the 27 markets, 15, including Vancouver and Toronto, saw prices remain unchanged. This is the third straight month new home prices in Toronto stayed flat.

In fact, Toronto’s resale home market also led September’s price decline as Canada’s largest city posted a 2.7 percent monthly drop, said Teranet.

“Many might worry about the fact that the last time we saw a string of monthly (Toronto) declines of such magnitude was during the last economic recession. They should not … market conditions appear to have stabilized over the last four months,” said Marc Pinsonneault, economist at National Bank Financial, in a note to clients.

“If that is the case, a large part of the price correction to be seen in the Toronto home resale market might be behind us.”

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Lian Beng Group posts 47.5% revenue drop

Lian Beng Group

Lian Beng Group’s revenue slumped by 47.5 percent year-on-year to $37.18 million in the first quarter ended 31 August 2017 primarily because of lower contributions from its construction business, revealed an SGX filing on Thursday (12 October).

Consequently, gross profits and its earnings for the period fell by 33.1 percent and 29.4 percent to $12.41 million and $8.94 million respectively.

Nevertheless, the construction firm’s other operating income increased by more than three-fold to $10.46 million from $3.35 million previously mainly due to the sale of its investment property at 247 & 249 Collins Street in Melbourne, Australia.

“Our investments in property investment have helped us mitigate the cyclical nature of project-based segments such as construction and property development. The returns from property investment have enabled us to sustain our profit level despite the lower contribution from construction and property development segments,” said Lian Beng Executive Chairman Ong Pang Aik.

As of 31 August 2017, the company maintained healthy cash level of $146 million, while its net construction order book reached $661 million.

In addition, it acquired more land bank for future redevelopments. Last May, a 20-percent-owned associate firm successfully acquired Rio Casa via en bloc sale for $575 million. Another firm where it owns a similar amount of stake acquired Serangoon Ville for $499 million in July 2017.

Meanwhile, Lian Beng announced on Thursday that it is mulling to spin-off its property development business and list it on the Catalist board of the Singapore Exchange.

Pursuant to this, the construction company has appointed SAC Capital Private Limited as the financial advisor for the proposed spin-off as well as the sponsor and issue manager for the contemplated floatation.

The rationale for the move is to provide a transparent valuation for its property development business and to let the management focus on their assigned business segments. Another reason is to enable this subsidiary to be financially independent and raise its own funds.

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Braddell View forms en bloc sales committee

Braddell View

Braddell View is a 99-year leasehold development apartment completed in 1981 and has a total of 438 units.

Most residents of Braddell View voted to form a collective sales committee on Tuesday (10 October), with 493 people in favour, while 28 opposed it, reported the Straits Times.

“I think the general feeling is that there is no harm in exploring the possibility. Let’s wait and see what the committee can come up with,” said a homeowner in the 918-unit development.

As such, Braddell View is now among the former HUDC estates that kick-started the en bloc process such as Laguna Park, Pine Grove, Chancery Court and Florence Regency, while Ivory Heights has already been launched for sale.

This follows a recent increase in collective sales, with Normanton Park sold last week in one of Singapore’s largest en bloc deals. The privatised housing project constructed in 1977 for the military and their families was purchased for $830.1 million.

In comparison, the owners of Braddell View hope to get over $2 billion, said Alex Teo, chairman of its Management Corporation Strata Title.

“The site is large, which implies that the quantum will be high. Notwithstanding that, the sale of 488-unit Normanton Park suggests that there are developers with the appetite for larger sites, especially if there is scope to intensify the site,” said Edmund Tie & Company research head Dr Lee Nai Jia.

With an area of 1.124 million sq ft, Braddell View is the biggest former HUDC estate. It has 63 years remaining on its 99-year lease and is close to Caldecott MRT station as well as Bishan and Toa Payoh.

However, ZACD Group executive director Nicholas Mak thinks that the residents could struggle in finding a buyer as such huge sites require more capital. Despite the upturn in the market, developers are also expected to be prudent in their bids given the fixed deadline in selling the units and the existing property curbs.

“Normanton Park’s total quantum is about $1.3 billion, and its land area is about 661,000 sq ft. Braddell View’s quantum is much bigger, and its land area is almost double that of Normanton Park’s,” he said, adding that the owners could have better chance if they divide the site into three parcels which is extremely hard to do.

credits to propertyguru

Georgian-inspired homes launching in Singapore

CHISWICK GATE_VIEW 02-ELEVATED COURTYARD

Artist’s impression of Chiswick Gate and its courtyard gardens. 

Berkeley Homes is launching the final batch of units at its Chiswick Gate development in West London at a private launch event in Singapore on 11 and 12 October.

Marketing agent Knight Frank is arranging one-on-one meetings between the UK developer and prospective buyers by appointment only.

The project is over 75 percent sold, and is due to be completed by the end of the year.

A range of one- and two-bedroom apartments and three- to five-bedroom townhouses are available, with prices from £618,000 (S$1.1 million) for a one-bedroom apartment, and £1.957 million (S$3.5 million) for a three-bedroom townhouse.

The Georgian-inspired homes are surrounded by a lush garden square and courtyard gardens.

Chiswick Gate is within walking distance from the Turnham Green underground station on the District and Piccadilly lines. Several boutique shops, coffee bars and restaurants are also nearby.

“With the appeal of West London, its nearby amenities and the high calibre schools in the vicinity, Chiswick Gate is an attractive development for buyers looking to invest in a high-quality and well-located property,” said Linda Chern, director & head, international project management at Knight Frank Singapore.

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Tai Wah Building for sale at $81 million

Tai Wah Building

Built in the 1980s, Tai Wah Building comprises six apartments and two shops. (Photo: Edmund Tie & Company)

The freehold Tai Wah Building at Killiney Road has been launched for collective sale after obtaining consent from all the owners, marketing agent Edmund Tie & Co. said on Monday (9 October).

The asking price for the property is $81 million, or $2,035 psf per plot ratio of potential gross floor area (GFA). No development charge is payable.

Completed in the mid-1980s, the four-storey Tai Wah Building comprises two shops and six apartments.

The approximately 13,148 sq ft site is zoned residential with commercial at first storey under the 2014 Master Plan. It could be redeveloped up to its existing GFA of about 39,809 sq ft, exceeding the permissible plot ratio of 2.8.

The Orchard Road shopping belt and Somerset MRT station are within walking distance.

“Tai Wah Building can be redeveloped into a boutique residential development with valuable commercial space on street level enjoying prominent visibility onto Killiney Road,” said Swee Shou Fern, director of investment and advisory at Edmund Tie & Co.

“The property is also ideal as a serviced apartments development, subject to planning approval.”

The public tender exercise will close on 15 November 2017.

credits: proeprtyguru