BTO flat grant extensions for lower and middle-income households

The government will be extending a variety of grants for lower and middle-income households to allow them to pay off their flats in 25 instead of 30 years. The Special CPF Housing Grant (SHG) for lower and lower-middle-income first-timers will be extended from two-room and three-room flats to include four-room flats. In his annual National Day Rally speech, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said that middle-income households will also benefit, while a middle-income household can get up to $20,000 more if they buy a new flat. Currently, the SHG is given on top of the Additional CPF Housing Grant for eligible first-timer families applying to buy a two-room or three-room standard flat in a non-mature estate. After the enhancements, homebuyers using their CPF funds to pay their loans should be able to pay off their flats in 25 years instead of 30. Hence, their income in later years can be used as their retirement savings. It was reported that although the grants would probably have no impact on the private housing market, a small percentage of people could be drawn away from the resale market given that they can now get a grant if they get a BTO flat instead. Another type of grant, the Step-Up Housing Grants will be extended to families who can afford to buy only two-room flats to help them upgrade to three-room flats later, which is to ensure that every Singaporean family who is working can afford a home. PM Lee said that we could maintain the value of HDB flats over the years, with flats kept affordable for future flat buyers so that every Singaporean family who is working can afford an HDB flat.

(Source: Business Times)

800 ha of land freed up for new homes

An 880 ha area will be freed up for new homes, offices, factories and parks after Paya Lebar Air Base relocates to a Changi site. The land area, which is larger than Bishan or Ang Mo Kio, will provide breathing space for Singaporeans and rejuvenate a bigger area of eastern Singapore, going all the way down to Marina and Marina South.

(Source: Business Times)

Luxury homes market still under pressure

The luxury homes market is reported to be under pressure on rental and price fronts. Specifically, Singapore was the only market out of nine featured in the Asia-Pacific to witness a decline in capital values. According to the latest Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) Residential Index, values of Singapore luxury homes fell 0.6 percent quarter-on-quarter for the third consecutive quarter, and 2.1 per cent year-on-year, as the rounds of cooling measures continued to affect investor sentiment. Although price dips have been slowing in the last few quarters, the introduction of the total debt servicing ratio (TDSR) in June has brought in a degree of downside risk, according to Dr Chua Yang Liang, head of research for Singapore and South-east Asia at JLL. Dr Chua said he expected capital values for luxury homes to correct a further 3-5 per cent in the second half of 2013.

(Source: Business Times)

OSIM founder’s GCB could set new psf price record

OSIM founder Ron Sim is looking to sell his Bin Tong Park home for $117 million. If successful, he could set a new record price on a psf basis for a property in a Good Class Bungalow (GCB) area. The property is made up of two plots of freehold land together measured at 46,842 sq ft. The built-up area of Mr Sim’s home is about 22,000 sq ft. Mr Sim’s asking price is about $2,500 psf, while the record price for a property in a GCB area currently stands at $2,110 psf, and was set last October when bungalow investor George Lim sold one in Leedon Park for $33 million.

(Source: Business Times)

Allgreen Properties to start River Valley condo sales

Allgreen Properties is releasing its RV Residences, a seven-storey 999-year leasehold project on River Valley Road in front of Valley Park, near the proposed Great World MRT Station on the Thomson Line. After early-bird discounts, the average price is expected to be below $2,000 psf for the initial batch of units, which are expected to number 50-80. The development is expected to receive Temporary Occupation Permit in the second quarter of 2014. With 248 units, RV Residences have one-bedroom apartments to five-bedroom penthouses. Absolute prices will range from $833,000 for a 419 sq ft one-bedder on the second floor. The most expensive unit, a 1,539 sq ft penthouse, will cost about $2.8 million. The duplex unit will have five bedrooms and a study corner. The project also includes a gym, swimming pool and garden. DTZ is the project’s marketing agent. Meanwhile, in Sengkang West, City Developments Ltd (CDL) had sold 289 units or 76 per cent of its 380-unit EC project Lush Acres with an average price of $785 psf. Absolute prices range from $704,000 to $1.275 million. The development includes three to five-bedroom units. Unit sizes are from 915 sq ft for a three-bedroom apartment to 1,722 sq ft for a five-bedroom apartment.

(Source: Business Times)


CapitaLand could have strata sales at Westgate Tower

Contrary to its announcement a year ago that it will be moving to Westgate Tower in Jurong East, CapitaLand announced that it will retain its corporate headquarters at Capital Tower in CBD. However, CapitaLand was silent on its plan for Westgate Tower, the 20-storey office block which is part of a retail-office project on a 99-year leasehold site near Jurong East MRT Station set to be completed in late 2014. CapitaLand could have occupied half of Westgate Tower. But all 320,000 sf NLA in the tower is now available.

(Source: Business Times)

CAG in new partnership with CapitaMalls Asia for Project Jewel

Changi Airport Group (CAG) has decided to embark on a partnership with CapitaMalls Asia (CMA) for Project Jewel, after it considered bids from six local and international real estate firms. Project Jewel is the development of a multi-use complex that will link Terminals 1, 2 and 3 when it is built by 2018. Its request for proposal (RFP) had started in July last year. The process closed this January, and participants were notified of the outcome on April 16. The finalisation of plans and the exploration of a joint-venture partnership is expected to be completed by the end of 2013.

(Source: Business Times)

Sabana Reit to buy Chai Chee property

Sobana Reit is planning to buy a seven-storey light industrial building with two basement storeys in Chai Chee from Advanced Micro Devices for $59.5 million. The property is located at 508 Chai Chee Lane off Bedok North Road and Bedok North Avenue 1. It had been completed on Dec 2, 2002, with a built-up gross floor area of about 327,574.70 sf, and is a JTC Corp leasehold estate of 30+29 years’ tenure starting from April 16, 2001.

(Source: Business Times)

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