Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Condos Draw Buyers

Source : The Straits Times, July 28, 2009

They could be paying prices seen in prime areas due to current euphoria

IN THE latest sign of the buoyant suburban property market, home hunters in Ang Mo Kio have been submitting cheques to buy homes at prices rarely seen outside
Singapore's prime central areas.

IN TANAH MERAH: More than 40 people, some of them property agents, lined up yesterday afternoon to stake claims even before the opening of Optima's showflat on Friday. They dispersed on being told that the queue would not be recognised. -- ST PHOTO: LAU FOOK KONG

Buyers are said to be paying prices starting from $1,150 per sq ft (psf) for the upcoming 329-unit Centro Residences by Far East Organization.

This means two-bedroom units cost more than $800,000, while three-bedroom apartments will cost $1.1 million and above.

Consultants said the Centro Residences is one of the few 99-year leasehold projects in the suburban areas that has crossed this level.

Jones Lang LaSalle's head of South-east Asia research, Dr Chua Yang Liang, said he was 'a bit shocked' by the pricing. 'I'm afraid at this moment there's a lot of euphoria, so there will be demand for this project even at this price,' he said.

IN ANG MO KIO: Prices for Centro Residences are said to start from $1,150 per sq ft. -- PHOTO: FAR EAST ORGANIZATION

Plus points for the project include its location in a popular mature estate right next to the Ang Mo Kio MRT station, as well as its proximity to international schools. But Dr Chua voiced concern over the 'long-term sustainability of this pricing', saying that upgraders may not be able to afford it.

At another suburban condo, Optima, located next to the Tanah Merah MRT station, more than 40 people lined up on Monday afternoon to stake claim on the 297 units for sale, even before the showflat opens on Friday.

Many of those in the Optima queue were property agents holding places for their clients with blank cheques in hand. However, some in the queue were possibly property agents lining up with a view to buying properties for their own investment purposes.

Pricing for the 99-year leasehold project has not even been finalised, according to developer TID, a tie-up between Hong Leong Group and Japan's Mitsui Fudosan.

They say buyers are so keen on the units that they have submitted blank cheques for them to fill in the amounts once the price list is available - a fairly common tactic in a boom market, and one that has resurfaced in recent weeks.

Read the full story in Tuesday's edition of The Straits Times.

No comments: