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Old November 1st, 2006, 10:43 AM   #1
jacky lemon
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More launches of mass market projects expected

More launches of mass market projects expected
Developers' new releases before year-end could lift launch volume to highest level in nearly a decade
By Joyce Teo, Property Correspondent
Oct 29, 2006
The Straits Times
HOME BUYERS can look forward to a wider range of homes in the coming months, including affordable finds in low- to mid-end projects.
This comes as the boom in the luxury market is seen spilling over to these other market segments, industry watchers said.
'Given the sustainable pace seen in recent launches, coupled with optimism and great sentiment seen in the market, we can expect more launches from developers in the fourth quarter,' said property firm ERA Singapore's assistant vice-president, Mr Eugene Lim.
The firm said developers may release more than 1,000 units of mass market homes before the year is up, including those in fast-selling The Centris, Ferraria Park and YewTee Residences. 'Last year, there were no new mass market launches,' he said.
This year's launches are likely to exceed the 9,500-unit mark if developers put out an expected 2,200 to 2,500 units in the last quarter of the year, said Colliers International director Tay Huey Ying. 'This will not only be some 17 to 20 per cent more than last year's launch volume of 8,201 units, it will also be the highest launch volume seen in the last eight to nine years.'
In 1996 and 1997, developers launched about 11,520 and 9,869 units respectively.
City Developments plans to launch its 175-unit freehold condominium in Jiak Kim Street next month and possibly its 341-unit posh inner-city project at No. 1 Shenton Way towards the year-end.
Another inner-city condominium, the 428-unit Marina Bay Residences, will also be launched soon.
This weekend, Koh Brothers' two customisable bungalows in Andrew Road and Marlene Ville, comprising 17 cluster terrace units in Serangoon Gardens, are up for sale. The 472-unit Ferraria Park in Flora Drive, near Loyang Ave, is also being launched officially.
Next weekend, the 382-unit, 99-year leasehold The Metropolitan near Redhill MRT Station is expected to be released for sale. Eastern Mansion off Meyer Road will be launched in the first quarter of next year.
Mass market launches can also be expected soon. By year-end, NTUC Choice Homes should push out its 139-unit YewTee Residences next to Yew Tee MRT Station. The developer also plans to launch a 556-unit project near Tanah Merah MRT Station in February.
Until then, home buyers' main mass market choices are set to be the 625-unit The Quartz in Buangkok, Ferraria Park and The Centris, a 610-unit project located above an extension to Jurong Point and a bus interchange.
Since its release late last month, Prime Point said it has sold 380 units of The Centris at $525 per sq ft (psf) on average and expects to clear at least 400 units by the end of today.
Closer to town, The Regency at Tiong Bahru saw brisk sales since its launch less than a fortnight ago. The freehold 158-unit project is priced at $830 to $850 psf on average, and at least 95 units have been sold.
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Old November 13th, 2006, 03:50 AM   #2
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Published November 7, 2006

Mass market property picking up soon: Merrill
Report identifies CityDev as the preferred property play here


MERRILL Lynch reckons the strong recovery in higher-end property is about to spill over to the mass market as economic gains from services, logistic and manufacturing trickle through to the wider economy.

'The fact is that while high-end property is up 20 to 40 per cent in the past year, the rest of the sector has gone essentially nowhere for five years,' the investment bank said in a regional investment strategy report released yesterday. As 'ancillary businesses flourish and Singapore achieves full employment, the domestic economy and non-high end segments of the property market will move too', the report said. Investors have so far focused on the high-end of the property market, with many private bankers and hedge fund managers arriving in Singapore and in anticipation of the integrated resorts, Merrill Lynch said.

Because of this, prices at the top end have climbed and in some cases matched the highs of a decade ago. But prices of mid-tier property have essentially been flat - zero to 5 per cent in the past five years - and are still 30-35 per cent below their peak 10 years ago.

Merrill Lynch said the outlook for the mass market has been bleak for two reasons: fears that jobs being created in the service sector will be contained to the high-end, and the fact that the gap between prices of HDB flats and private housing is still wide, making it difficult for people to 'upgrade'.

Merrill Lynch believes the economic trickle-down effect will offset the first factor, and points out that the gap between public and private housing was much wider back in the 1990s but that did not stop private housing doing well.

The report identifies City Developments as the preferred property play among listed developers here. Merrill Lynch's regional property analyst Sean Monaghan has a 'buy' call on the stock.

The report said: 'It (CityDev) has the largest land bank in Singapore - over six million sq ft of land, double that of CapitaLand or Keppel Land, which have focused more on China. Over the next six to 18 months, CityDev will be in the best position to launch new projects.' Merrill Lynch estimates that more than half of CityDev's land bank is mass market.

The investment bank also has a 'buy' call on CapitaLand, but rates Keppel Land 'neutral'. The report said some of the credit for the expected mass market revival is due to the two integrated resorts being built at a total cost of US$6.8 billion - about a quarter of Singapore's US$45 billion in fixed capital expenditure, which itself generates a third of domestic demand.

'Our best guess for a multiplier is around three times, or a 15 per cent boost to the island's US$133 billion economy,' Merrill Lynch said.

'We estimate jobs created at the resorts of around 30,000 to 50,000, with another 15,000 to 20,000 generated elsewhere.'
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Old November 14th, 2006, 06:08 AM   #3
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02 October 06 The Strait Times
by Fiona Chan

Cheaper condo s seeing brisk preview sales

HOME buyers are snapping up units in some new condominiums even before they are officially launched.
And, in a twist, these brisk 'preview' sales are now being seen at mid-tier and entry-level condos - not just the luxury developments that have so far been leading the property market recovery.

This may signal that the sluggish mass-market segment, which makes up the backbone of the property market, is finally taking its first step back to the days of the property boom in the 1990s.

At that time, many homes, including cheaper, 'entry-level' ones, sold quickly in pre-launch previews.

At The Centris at Jurong West, all 107 units released in a preview starting last Friday were sold out within 24 hours, leading the developers of the 99-year leasehold condo to offer another 100 units on Saturday.

And despite a slight increase in price, about half of this second batch had been snapped up by the time sales closed yesterday, said Guthrie GTS, one of the developers of the condo to be officially launched this Saturday.

Average prices at 610-unit The Centris are $500 to $550 per sq ft (psf), with a typical three-bedder going for a relatively affordable $500,000 to $600,000.

The Centris is only the second major condo this year targeted at the mass market - mainly first-time home buyers and HDB flat-dwellers upgrading to private housing.

It was the same happy story in Serangoon Road, where about 40per cent of the 89 units released at the freehold One St Michael's condo were sold at an average price of $600 psf.

Most of these were taken up within the first weekend of the 131-unit project's preview, which started on Sept 23.

At nearby City Regency in St Michael's Road, about half the condo's 56 units have been sold since they were released two weeks ago, priced at about $600psf.

These strong take-up rates may be due to pent-up demand for entry-level condos, consultants said.

Over the last two years, only two other mass-market projects on the scale of The Centris have been launched, and neither is in a long-established residential area like Jurong.1

They are GuocoLand's 625-unit Quartz at Buangkok, which sold about 70 units within a week of its preview in May, and Wing Tai's Kovan Melody, which sold more than 125 of its 778 homes in the first weekend of its 'soft launch' in August 2004.

The good response to The Centris 'looks like a start' to what is commonly seen as the long-overdue pick-up of the mass market, said Mr Nicholas Mak, director of research and consultancy at Knight Frank.

'It is a positive sign that could lead to an improvement in buying sentiment.'

But he cautioned that 'it is still a bit too early to say that the whole mass market is starting to move based on this one project', as too few entry-level condos have been launched recently to draw a trend.

Mr Mak also noted that The Centris has an edge over competitors: It is on top of Jurong Point mall, in one of the busiest suburban centres in Singapore, and can draw from the large pool of HDB upgraders in Jurong, where many HDB estates are over 10 years old.

The mass market has been languishing following the property downturn, with the phenomenon of crowds thronging condo previews recently limited to high-end homes such as The Sail @ Marina Bay.

At The Sail's invitation-only soft launch last October, the first batch of 100 units was snapped up in half an hour and another 150 apartments had been sold at average prices of $1,080 psf by the end of the day.

More recently, at Wheelock Properties' Ardmore II at Ardmore Park, 65 per cent of the 118 units available had been sold as of Friday.

The project, which was soft-launched on Tuesday, is selling at between $4.2 million and $5.5 million per unit, or about $2,300 psf.

And at nearby Tate Residences in Claymore Road, developer Hong Leong Holdings has sold more than 90 per cent of the project's 85 units in the last month without an official launch. Average prices have crept up from $2,200 psf to $2,250 psf, Hong Leong said.

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Old January 9th, 2007, 07:44 AM   #4
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mass market launches - akan datang

ST : Launches lined up for mass market

Jan 7, 2007
Launches lined up for mass market
At least three are lined up for this month, but no sharp price rises are expected given flat HDB resale values

By Property Correspondent, Joyce Teo

WHILE high-end property launches continue to hog the limelight, developers have also lined up a few mass market projects aimed at heartlanders.

At least three such launches are on the cards for this month alone.

Preview sales for registered buyers started yesterday at Frasers Centrepoint' s 240-unit, 99-year leasehold ClementiWoods Condominium on West Coast Road.

The condo is priced at $525 per sq ft (psf) and will be officially launched on Saturday. It has one- to five-bedroom units, ranging from 560 sq ft to 3,197 sq ft in size.

Allgreen Properties has also put on sale 150 units of its freehold Blossoms @ Woodleigh.

The 240-unit project - in Woodleigh Close, near Potong Pasir MRT Station - is priced at $650 psf.

This coming weekend, NTUC Choice Homes might push out its 139-unit, 99-year leasehold Yew Tee Residences on Yew Tee Close.

Bigger mass market projects could be launched during the first half of the year. These include the 405-unit One North Residences in one-north and a 556-unit condo in Tanah Merah Kechil, according to Savills Singapore.

Other such launches could include the 168-unit Eastern Mansion in Jalan Kechil and a 129-unit freehold project on St Patrick's Road, it said.

But consultants believe prices of mass market homes might not climb significantly this year given the steady nature of Housing Board resale prices.

While the upgrading trend is expected to continue with the optimism seen in the economy and the job market, HDB resale prices are expected to stay 'relatively flat', ERA Singapore said recently.

'HDB upgraders are still very price-sensitive. Price growth will be capped,' said Ms Tay Huey Ying, the director of research and consultancy at Colliers International.

She expects prices in the mass market segment to remain relatively stable, with marginal rises of up to 5 per cent.

However, well-located mass market projects - those in established housing estates or near MRT stations - could see increases of up to 10 per cent, she said.

Generally, more attention could be on mid-tier projects, which are better-located than mass market ones, she added.

Fragrance Properties, which held a sneak preview of Imperial Heights in late December, has already sold about 40 per cent of the 100-unit project. Located at Ipoh Lane in the Tanjong Katong area, it is priced at an average of $850 psf.

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Old January 17th, 2007, 04:40 AM   #5
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Steady sales at mass market condo launches

Steady sales at mass market condo launches
January 11th, 2007
Sales of units in two mass market condominiums launched recently - Frasers Centrepoint’s ClementiWoods on West Coast Road and Allgreen Properties’ Blossoms @ Woodleigh in Potong Pasir - are moving along at a good pace.

At the 240-unit, 99-year leasehold ClementiWoods, about 120 units were taken up during last weekend’s soft launch, said Cheang Kok Keong, general manager of Frasers Centrepoint Homes. Apartments are going for ’slightly above’ $525 per square foot (psf).

More units will be sold when ClementiWoods is officially launched this weekend. The condo, which is being marketed as an ‘eco-development’, will face the 12-hectare Clementi Woods Park, and will feature private spa pools in two out of three ground floor units, said Frasers Centrepoint. The project consists of one to five-bedroom apartments, ranging from 560 sq ft to 3,197 sq ft.

Over at Potong Pasir, about 110 apartments in the 240-unit freehold Blossoms @ Woodleigh have been sold at an average of $650 psf since the project’s soft launch in December, said Knight Frank, which is marketing the project. About 150 units have been released so far, and the remaining units will be released ‘as and when there is demand’, said Knight Frank executive director Peter Ow.

Market watchers said the two projects show that buyer demand for mass market projects, while not exactly overwhelming unlike that of luxury developments like the newly launched One Shenton, is nonetheless ’satisfactory’.

The improved sentiment means that more mass-market launches are being planned for the coming months. This Saturday, NTUC Choice Homes launches its 139-unit, 99-year leasehold Yew Tee Residences on Yew Tee Close. Market observers expect the project, marketed by CB Richard Ellis (CBRE), to fetch around $500 psf.

Developers are also expected to launch more mid-tier projects in the coming months, including the 405-unit One North Residences in one-north, developed by a joint venture between UOL and privately held Kheng Leong; and the 180-unit Pavilion 11 by UOL.

However, developers are still cautious about flooding the market with too much supply, as shown by how they choose to release units in phases.

‘At the end of the day, it (the pace of units released) really depends on the take-up rate,’ said Knight Frank’s Mr Ow. ‘If the take-up rate is very strong, as with One Shenton, developers will launch the project all at one go.’

Source: The Business Times, 10 January 2007
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