Rivercove Residences Showflat

29 July 2017


Executive condominiums (ECs), a hybrid of public and private housing, have also been swept up in the resurgent property market.

Demand for ECs was brisk in the second quarter as developers shifted 954 new units even though no fresh project went on sale.

And that was before Hundred Palms Residences in Hougang sold all 531 units in just seven hours on July 22 – meaning bumper third- quarter figures are also likely.

In the second quarter, home buyers picked up the units from previous launches, running down the unsold uncompleted EC stock to the lowest level in more than four years at 2,742 units, as at June 30.

Figures from the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) yesterday showed that a total of 2,026 new ECs were sold in the first half of the year, a hefty increase of 8.5 per cent over the 1,867 moved a year earlier.

Analysts told The Straits Times that EC buying interest will remain buoyant amid tight supply of such units, more affordable prices and improving market sentiment.

Ms Tricia Song, research head at Colliers International Singapore, said: “ECs tend to be priced 20 to 30 per cent lower than a comparable private condo and, hence, would be the more economical option for the middle-income young families.”

Rivercove Residences - Straits Times Report

However, demand for ECs is not uniform across the board. ” Looking at the sales of various projects, it seems demand for ECs in the northern region is not as strong as compared to other regions,” said OrangeTee head of research and consultancy Wong Xian Yang.

The other EC project launched this year – the 497-unit iNz Residence in Choa Chu Kang, which launched for sale in March – still had 233 unsold units at the end of June.

The success of Hundred Palms is not solely due to the lack of upcoming supply of ECs, but it is also attributed to its location, which is within a mature HDB estate and there is a lack of competition of ECs,” noted Dr Lee Nai Jia, head of research at Edmund Tie and Company.

New EC supply is set to be limited with only one site offered under the government land sales programme for this half of the year, in Sumang Walk – yielding up to 815 units.

Another factor that could support EC demand is the little changed resale prices of HDB flats, which will restrict the amount upgraders can pay for their next home, said Mr Nicholas Mak, head of research and consultancy at ZACD Group.

With HDB resale prices staying flat and prices of new condos possibly inching up, I don’t think HDB upgraders will pocket enough to pay $1.5 million or more for a condo… they may look at ECs, which are more affordable,” added Mr Mak.

Wong Siew Ying, The Straits Times (29th July 2017)

23 July 2017


Hundred Palms Residences Sold Out

There may be no roll-back of the property cooling measures but the reception for an executive condominium that began selling over the weekend was red hot.

All 531 units of Hundred Palms Residences at Yio Chu Kang Road were sold within seven hours of launch on July 22.

They fetched an average price of $836 per square foot (psf).

Marketing agents attribute the success of Hundred Palms Residences to several factors: its location in the mature estate of Hougang, a reasonable pricing as well as good product design.

More than 2,700 e-applications were received during a two-week window that ended on July 17.

This makes Hundred Palms Residences the most oversubscribed executive condominium in history, the marketing agent claimed.

Prices for typical units started from $715,000 for a three bedroom unit, $1.03 million for a four bedroom unit and $1.288 million for a five bedroom unit.

Hundred Palms Residences is the second EC to hit the market this year.

It follows the 497-unit iNZ Residence in Choa Chu Kang, which attracted more than 450 e-applications the weekend it opened in February.

Based on the latest data from the Urban Redevelopment Authority, the developer has sold 264 units including 24 units shifted last month at a median price of $786 psf.

Both ECs offer residents “smart home” technology, with doors and electronics that can be controlled by an app.

As executive condos are a public-private housing hybrid, some 70 per cent of the units are reserved for first-time home buyers. Non first-time buyers hit their 30 per cent quota

According to the marketing agent, the buyer addresses were diverse, with most of them being concentrated in the nearby housing estates of Hougang, Serangoon, Sengkang and Punggol.

Buyers were drawn to the well designed space and practical layout. All bedrooms are able to accommodate a queen sized bed, while the master bedroom is able to fit a king sized bed. All units also come with a yard and a choice of either a study or a utility room.

In the first half of 2017, developers moved 2,064 executive condo units, higher than the 1,867 units in the same period last year.

Dennis Chan, The Straits Times (23rd July 2017)

27 February 2018

CDL-TID joint venture’s top bid for Punggol site sets record for EC land

AMID a severe supply shortage in the executive condominium (EC) segment, an EC site in Sumang Walk in Punggol fetched a whopping 17 bids at a state tender that closed on Tuesday.

The top bid of S$509.37 million works out to a record to S$583 per square foot per plot ratio (psf ppr). It came from a joint venture between City Developments’ fully owned subsidiary CDL Constellation and TID Residential.

TID Residential is a fully-owned unit of TID Pte Ltd, which in turn is a joint venture between Hong Leong Holdings and Mitsui Fudosan Co.

The top bid was 4.8 per cent higher than the second highest bid of of S$486 million or S$556.26 psf ppr from Qingjiang Realty (Residential); followed by a tie-up between Yanlord Singapore Residential and Soilbuild Group Holdings, which offered S$450 million for the site. Hoi Hup Realty teamed up with Sunway Developments for a S$446.6 million bid.

Sing Development, FEC Properties and Changi Properties joined forces, placing a bid of S$431.69 million.

Evia Real Estate (8) teamed up with Gamuda (Singapore) for a S$426.37 million bid.

Also taking part in the tender was MCC Land (Singapore), which bid S$413.7 million.

The lowest bid, from Ho Bee Land unit HB Lombard, was S$373.81 million, which works out to S$427.85 psf ppr.

All 17 bids surpassed the previous record price for EC land, which was set in July 2013, for the Lake Life site in Tao Ching Road/Yuan Ching Road near Jurong Lake.

The Sumang Walk site’s tender was conducted by the Housing & Development Board, acting as land sales agent for the state.

A maximum of 820 residential units has been stipulated for the EC project on the Sumang Walk site. The 2.7 ha land parcel is adjacent to My Waterway @ Punggol.

ECs are a public-private hybrid form of housing with initial buyer eligibility and resale conditions that are completely lifted 10 years after an EC project has been completed.

Analysts noted that the strong turnout and bids at Tuesday’s tender are a reflection of the market being starved for new EC sites for some time. The Sumang Walk site was the only EC plot that was offered for sale in the Government Land Sales (GLS) Programme for the whole of last year.

JLL national director Ong Teck Hui commented that the top bid was “stunning”, “way above market expectations”. It was also 64 per cent higher than the top bid of S$355 psf ppr for the Anchorvale Lane site in August 2016, which was the last EC tender.

“The absence of EC land tender for one-and-a-half years, a severely undersupplied market with a paltry unsold stock of less than 1,000 EC units (including the upcoming 628-unit Rivercove Residences along Anchorvale Lane in Sengkang) and a rising private residential market are contributors to the bullish outlook for the EC market among bidders.”

Last year, developers sold 4,011 EC units.

Mr Ong estimated CDL and TID’s breakeven cost at close to S$1,000 psf – above recent new EC transactions in the area. “A few transactions at The Vales (in Sengkang) in recent months averaged S$860 psf. There seems to be an assumption that EC prices will rise by more than 20 per cent by the time the project on the subject site is launched.”

CDL is upbeat about prospects for the proposed project on the Sumang Walk site. Its group chief executive Sherman Kwek said: “We are confident of its success given its excellent location and desirable attributes. Punggol, slated to be Singapore’s first Digital District, has an exciting future and we believe this will make the site very compelling to home buyers.

“It is also very close to LRT and MRT stations as well as a bus interchange, which is hard to come by for an EC project. Being right next to My Waterway@Punggol, the site also offers the opportunity to create a landmark waterfront residence with pleasant views.”

If awarded the site, the CDL and TID joint venture will explore a project comprising 13 blocks of 10 to 17 storeys. “To maximise the scenic views, windows will be oriented towards Punggol Reservoir and My Waterway@Punggol. The sizable land area will also allow for generous landscaping,” CDL said in a release.

This will be CDL’s ninth EC project.

While Tuesday’s tender set a record unit land rate for an EC site, the 17 bids were shy of the 19 bids received in 1997 for a Boon Lay Way site, which was developed into the Summerdale EC project, said Huttons Asia head of research, Lee Sze Teck.

For the first-half 2018 GLS Programme, three EC sites will be on offer: a plot in Canberra Link in the Sembawang area through the confirmed list, and two land parcels through the reserve list: one along Tampines Avenue 10 and the other along Anchorvale Crescent in the Sengkang area.

KALPANA RASHIWALA, The Business Times (27 Feb 2018)