Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Price cuts draw buyers to 3 condo relaunches

THREE prime condominium projects that struggled to generate interest last year saw a surge of buyer activity over the weekend after developers cut their prices.

The freehold 19-storey Parc Centennial in Kampong Java Road - where all 51 units are served by private lifts - sold 32 units at $1,115 per square foot (psf) to $1,233 psf, or from $1.27 million to $1.93 million. This price level is about 20 per cent lower than last year's $1,450 psf, and the interest absorption scheme is included.

Developer EL Development sold only six units in April and May last year when the project was originally released for sale. And at a private preview in March this year, it sold a 2,486 sq ft penthouse unit for $1,005 psf.

It held a preview this past weekend and has now sold all the two-bedroom units, which start from 1,098 sq ft. The three-bedders increase in size to 1,572 sq ft.

Managing director Lim Yew Soon said he had raised the prices of the remaining 12 three-bedroom units at Parc Centennial by 2 per cent.

Over at the 302-unit Martin Place Residences in River Valley, a soft launch over the weekend saw sales of 80 units at $1,450 psf on average, out of a total of 100 units launched.

Developer Frasers Centrepoint Homes said the 'attractive pricing' drew buyers. It released units priced from $1,260 psf to $1,700 psf, compared with the initial 28 units sold at $1,700 psf to $2,000 psf last year.

Singaporeans made up 62 per cent of the buyers at Martin Place Residences, with the rest being permanent residents and foreigners.

Earlier, CapitaLand had reported strong weekend sales at its 173-unit The Wharf Residence.
About 95 per cent of the buyers chose not to take up the stamp duty waiver and interest absorption, preferring a straight 8 per cent price cut, it said yesterday.

Prices started at just below $1,000 psf for units with private enclosed space and many of the weekend deals were done at less than $1,300 psf, industry sources said.

Attractive price cuts, coupled with the recent stock market rally and a fear of losing out, are some of the key factors spurring buyer interest, experts said.

Compared with the situation late last year, buyers are more confident and developers seem to be taking advantage of improving sentiment to relaunch projects at attractive prices, said PropNex chief executive Mohamed Ismail.

Source: Straits Times, 19 May 2009

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