Thursday, February 5, 2009

Marked jump in HDB resale prices in Jurong West

HOUSING Board flats in Jurong West saw significant price rises last year.

A study by property firm ERA has found resale prices of Housing Board flats there appreciated faster than those in other suburban towns such as Tampines and Woodlands.

More home seekers have flocked to Jurong West because of the Government’s Jurong Lake District masterplan which involves a major upgrade to the area.

The ERA study compared the median prices of resale flats in the first quarter and the fourth quarter of last year.

It showed that the median three-room resale flat prices in Jurong West rose by 19.4 per cent or $34,000 last year, compared with 12.3 per cent in Tampines and 15.7 per cent in Woodlands.

Four-room flat prices rose by 14.1 per cent, above the 8.6 per cent rise in Tampines and 12 per cent rise in Woodlands.

Prices of five-room flats rose the least, at 9.4 per cent, similar to Woodlands but still way above the modest 1.3 per cent rise in Tampines.

The bigger executive flats may be less popular these days, but in Jurong West last year, resale prices rose by 16 per cent, compared with 4.9 per cent in Tampines and 6.2 per cent in Woodlands.

The town, which used to conjure up unappealing images of sprawling factories and sleepy suburbia, is to be transformed into a vibrant place to live, work and play over the next 10 to 15 years.

The plan for Jurong Lake District includes turning the area around Jurong East MRT station into a commercial hub.

Prices of resale flats in Jurong East are generally higher than in Jurong West.

In a separate statement yesterday, property developer Frasers Centrepoint Homes said that it was launching a 712-unit condo near Lakeside MRT station called Caspian.

ERA and another property agency PropNex are marketing the 99-year leasehold condo, which is targeted at HDB upgraders.

It is located within the Jurong Lake District and will be the largest launch so far this year.

Developers generally did not want to launch their projects ahead of the Jan 22 Budget and the Chinese New Year celebrations, given the already poor sentiment.

Still, Frasers Centrepoint had been aiming to launch Caspian after Chinese New Year.

Sales start today with a staff preview. The public preview starts on Saturday, with 250 units available at an average price of $580 per sq ft.

A typical two- to four-bedroom plus study unit can cost between $540 psf and $640 psf.

The chief operating officer of Frasers Centrepoint Homes, Mr Cheang Kok Kheong, said in the statement that feedback and analysis of their pre-sales surveys had confirmed pent-up demand.

‘We have received strong interest from prospective owner-occupiers and even investors, who are now more keen to invest in brick-and-mortar property than risky financial instruments, especially if the property has a great potential upside to it.’

Another mass-market condo near Lakeside MRT station is The Lakeshore, which had seen the values of its units rise substantially since its 2003 launch and is reportedly selling at around $750 psf.

Source: Straits Times - 5 Feb 2009

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