There was a significant jump in the number of secondary market transactions at projects near the CBD earlier this month. In the Thomson area, at Sky@eleven, three units were sold in the first week of June for between $1,140 psf and $1,200 psf. The most recent transaction was a 1,851 sq ft unit on the 24th floor, which changed hands at $2.2 million or $1,200 psf. The seller had purchased the unit from the developer for $1.7 million or $931 psf in 2007 when the project was launched. This represents a gain of over 28%.
On the 25th floor, a larger unit was sold for $2.59 million or $1,140 psf. It was the third time in two years that the property changed hands. It was sold for $2.5 million or $1,101 psf in April 2007 and $2.08 million or $917 psf in February 2007.
The project, by Singapore Press Holdings, is targeted for completion next year. Less than 1% of resale units were sold below launch price according to SPH’s 1H2009 results presentation slides dated April 13.
Over at the 545-unit RiverGate along Robertson Quay, a spike in transactions in the resale market is also evident. There were 16 transactions ranging from $1,270 psf to $1,582 psf from May 30 to June 5 according to caveats lodged with URA Realis. The largest unit sold during the period was a 3,842 sq ft apartment on the 38th floor that changed hands for $6.08 million or $1,582 psf.
Sentiment has improved in recent months. From January to March, the project saw only 11 transactions in the secondary market in the price range of $1,130 psf to $1,416 psf. Sales started to pick up thereafter, with 51 transactions for the period from April 1 to June 5 with prices trending higher, ranging from $1,146 psf to $1,582 psf.
As one of the few waterfront sites along the Singapore River, the 43-storey development was highly sought after by foreign and local buyers during its launch in 2005. RiverGate, a joint-venture project by CapitaLand and Hwa Hong Corp, received its TOP in March. In 2007, at the peak of the property market, prices of one of its units soared to as high as $2,701 psf.
Over at Orchard, a unit at Vida sold for more than $2,000 psf. The buyer of a 527 sq ft apartment on the 13th floor paid $1.07 million or $2,029 psf to the developer at the launch of this exclusive condominium. At Scotts Highpark, a 4,208 sq ft unit on the 17th floor changed hands at $8 million or $1,901 psf. The seller had purchased it for $8.05 million or $1,914 psf from the developer in 2006 during the launch.
About 10 minutes away from Orchard Road, along Leonie Hill Road, two leasehold apartments at Horizon Tower were sold at below $1,000 psf. On the 15th floor, a 2,486 sq ft unit changed hands for $2.03 million or $816 psf. On the 13th floor, a smaller unit was sold at $1.82 million or $751 psf. The seller had purchased the unit for $1.135 million or $439 psf in 2003.
While prices and sales volume have moved up, some market watchers warn that the upswing may not be sustainable given a weak rental market and oversupply.
Source: The Edge, 29 June 2009