Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Property deals pick up

THINGS are looking up in the property investment sector, according to DTZ Research.

It reports a hike in both the number and size of property investment deals with a value of at least $5 million over the past year. DTZ noted that in the fourth quarter alone, the number of transactions across residential, government and private sales jumped to 38 from 14 for the same period last year.

Its data excludes transactions involving residential property which cannot be redeveloped into more than one unit.

Larger deals dominated investments in the last quarter.

Transactions valued above $100 million - of which there were eight in the fourth quarter - accounted for 77 per cent of total transaction value. This marked a 48 per cent improvement on the third quarter, and a sharp turnaround from the first half of the year when no such deals were registered.

DTZ's Head of South-east Asia Research Chua Chor Hoon puts the rally down to a return of developers to the property market.

'We now see a change in the profile of buyers - from smaller to bigger... Developers have been actively bidding in the Government's land sales programme,' she said.

The residential sector took 56 per cent of investment sales in the October to December period. This accounted for $14.6 billion worth of deals, representing half of the year's total transaction value.

The retail sector followed closely behind, taking 16 per cent of the year's transaction value.

DTZ said that activity in the office market remained muted.

'Sellers don't want to sell low, and buyers don't want to buy high... Also, many foreigners still are not looking at our market,' Ms Chua said. She expects the residential sector to continue to dominate the investment scene.

'Much activity will come from the government land sales programme, which has eight sites on the confirmed list to be released for tender,' she added.

Source, Straits Times 29 December 2009

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