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Surge of project launches expected

The Straits Times | Melissa Tan | Monday, Apr 21, 2014

A hotly anticipated project in the city centre is Marina One (left), an integrated development with 1,042 homes; An artist's impression of The Sorrento, for which sales opened yesterday.

SINGAPORE - Home seekers had lean pickings in the first quarter with few launches to whet appetites, but there could be a surge of sorts over the next three months.

As many as 11 new projects are expected to begin previews or go on sale between now and the end of June, market watchers said.

That is in stark contrast to the first quarter, when only about seven major launches were held, with sales suffering as a result.

But the greater supply coming on stream means private home sales this month and next could be much higher than March's dismal showing, consultants noted.

However, they pointed out that developers will likely watch each other's launches like hawks to ensure there is enough demand. "The demand pool has shrunk. Developers will time their launches such that they don't cannibalise each other," said CBRE research head Desmond Sim. "They also don't want to flood the market."

The most immediate new launch is Allgreen's freehold condominium project The Sorrento, which began sales yesterday.

The project, which sits on the site of the former Regent Gardens in West Coast Road, is expected to be sold at $1,380 to $1,600 per sq ft (psf). Its 131 units range from 441 sq ft one-bedders to 1,808 sq ft three-bedders.

Next up will likely be Hong Leong Holdings' 845-unit Commonwealth Towers, which opened for preview last weekend and goes on sale on May 1.

The 99-year leasehold project in Commonwealth Avenue drew more than 1,500 visitors at its showflat in Margaret Drive last Sunday, according to Hong Leong. Prices have not been released yet but they are expected to be in the region of $1,600 to $1,800 psf on average.

Unit prices could range from $734,000 for a one-bedder to $2.45 million for a four-bedder, according to marketing agents.

About nine other upcoming projects are tipped to go on the market over the next two months.

Nearly half of these are in the city fringe - the 469-unit The Crest in Prince Charles Crescent, the 500-unit Highline Residences in Kim Tian Road, the 109-unit Amber Skye in Amber Road, and the 212-unit Kallang Riverside condominium in Kampong Bugis.

Consultants said the Kallang Riverside project will likely be cheapest of the four at $1,500 to $1,700 psf, since the Kampong Bugis area is a relatively untested residential area. They expect The Crest to sell at $1,600 to $1,800 psf and both Highline and Amber to go from $1,700 to $1,900 psf.

The city centre has the 106-unit Pollen & Bleu in Farrer Drive, tipped to go on the market at $1,900 to $2,100 psf.

Another hotly anticipated project in the city centre is Marina One, an integrated development in Marina Way with 1,042 homes. These could go for around $2,800 to $3,000 psf.

Previews expected next month include Waterfront@Faber in Faber Walk, which will have around 210 units, and a new City Developments project, Coco Palms, in Pasir Ris Grove, which could feature 944 units. Far East Organisation may also launch its freehold Bijou project next to Pasir Panjang MRT next month. However, there is a chance the Bijou's launch may occur in the second half of this year, said Chesterton Singapore research head Elaine Chow.

Experts expect 500 to 800 new private homes to be sold this month, up from 480 in March.

melissat@sph.com.sg

This article was published on April 19 in The Straits Times.

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