The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 8th, 9th and 10th April 2017

Top Story

Upgrading for 14 more neighbourhood centres
Estate upgrading plans are afoot in 14 neighbourhood centres (NCs) across Woodlands, Toa Payoh and Pasir Ris, potentially featuring new works such as playgrounds and shelters built under a Housing Board scheme in towns such as Bukit Batok.  The HDB yesterday revealed new plans for the three estates as it gave an update on upgrading works elsewhere under its Remaking Our Heartland scheme.

Singapore Economy

New SIAS chair aims to grow investor activism, education
Growing investor advocacy and board accountability, and dealing with the ongoing challenge of obtaining funding, will be at the top of the agenda for former Singapore Exchange (SGX) chief Magnus Bocker in his new role as honorary chairman of Singapore’s investor advocacy group, the Securities Investors Association (Singapore) or SIAS.

Revived manufacturing a sign of better times to come?
The outlook for Singapore’s economy is brightening on the back of export-led growth in the resurgent manufacturing sector.  Companies say sales have been picking up and some economists are optimistic that the uptick in activity will spill over to the rest of the economy and, eventually, the labour market.

Singapore Real Estate

Pent-up demand expected for Seaside Residences in Siglap
Market watchers are anticipating strong pent-up demand for the upcoming condominium project at Siglap Link by Singapore-listed Frasers Centrepoint Limited by virtue of its location and palatable price quantums for the smaller units.  The launch, scheduled on April 22 after a two-week preview starting this weekend, comes on the heels of strong sales in earlier launches this year.

Singapore office market improving as supply tapers off: BlackRock
Blackrock said the worst is over for Singapore’s office property market with supply tapering off, and that elsewhere in the Asia-Pacific, the world’s largest asset manager is looking to raise its real estate exposure in Japan and Australia.  Prime office rents in Singapore’s financial district dropped by more than 10 per cent in the past two years due to oversupply, making it one of the worst performing major Asian markets.

What happens to property at end of lease?
Land ownership in Singapore falls under two categories: freehold and leasehold.  Freehold owners will hold on to the land title in perpetuity. This means there is no expiry date.  While there are many different tenures for leasehold property, 999-year and 99-year leasehold are the most common. At the end of the leases, the rights of the leasehold owner are effectively nullified.

Companies’ Brief

YTL in expansion mode, eyes acquisitions
YTL Hotels, the hospitality arm of Malaysian conglomerate YTL Corporation Bhd (YTL group), is on the prowl to acquire more assets with the eventual goal of injecting them into the global hospitality Reit sponsored by the YTL group.  One of its existing properties that already looks ripe to be spun into the Reit is The Majestic Hotel Kuala Lumpur, a three-year-old property that derives 60 per cent of revenue from restaurants and banquet operations.

Tuan Sing buys Sime Darby Centre for S$365m
Property developer Tuan Sing Holdings has signed an agreement to buy Sime Darby Centre in Bukit Timah for S$365 million.  In a Singapore Exchange filing on Monday morning, the group said it had signed the deal on April 7 to purchase the property, which is located at 896 Dunearn Road and sits on commercial land of 13,088.8 square metres that is part-freehold and part-999 years leasehold.

Heeton consortium’s Leeds hotel to be run by Hilton
A consortium comprising Heeton Holdings, KSH Holdings, Lian Beng Group and Ryobi Kiso Holdings on Friday announced that it has signed a franchise agreement with international hotel chain operator Hilton for its 192-bedroom hotel in Leeds, United Kingdom.  The hotel will be operated under the brand Hampton by Hilton. It is part of the first phase of a new regeneration project, being developed by the consortium, that is currently under construction. Operations are expected to start in late 2019.

The Jardine enigma
Some of us get excited by startups; others, by slightly more mature firms.  But among the hoi polloi of listed companies here, the venerable Jardine behemoth deserves a special mention, even though no brokers cover them.  Jardine Matheson, the ultimate holding company for the Jardine empire and a Straits Times Index (STI) constituent, is powering to new highs amid a buoyant stock market. The firm has survived and prospered through the last two centuries of wars, revolutions, takeover attempts and political earthquakes.

Views, Reviews & Forum

Plans for Tuas port in keeping with status as global port city
There is nothing incongruous about fusing port operations with retail and lifestyle facilities, as long as this is conceptualised, integrated and executed with finesse – including taking into account key security considerations (Ports are dangerous places for public, by Ms Lynne Tan Sok Hiang; April 7; Tuas port’s focus should be on port-related work, by Ms Wee Kwee Keng; April 5, and Tuas mega port may have lively area for leisure; April 2).

Do more to cut down construction noise
When contractors post notices asking residents to bear with expected construction noise and dust, they seem to do little to mitigate noise pollution.  They ought to do more by engaging with those likely to be most affected, address their concerns, seek solutions and adopt good practices to minimise the impact.

Developers need to stick to time frame
Property developers need to adjust their prices and expectations to reflect prevailing market conditions if they wish to attract buyers and average their holding costs, instead of keeping to their originally projected prices and cash flow projections from several years ago (CapitaLand calls for more time to sell units; March 14).

History of land reclamation worth documenting
The Singapore Heritage Society supports the suggestion by Mr DeSouza Dennis Gordon in his letter (Show where S’pore shoreline was before reclamation; April 6).  The erection of heritage markers on public land is, however, beyond our ambit.

Overpaying for old flats
Having grown up in the good ol’ 1980s, I feel pangs of nostalgia now and then, gazing in wonderment at how much skylines and neighbourhoods here have changed: Old and once-familiar landmarks making way for gleaming skyscrapers or some other modern-day infrastructure.

At these times, as if on cue, rosy memories of youthful bliss would bubble up.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

Trump’s building promises boost prices of lumber

London finance chief upbeat after Brexit trigger

Britain plans to identify foreign owners of UK properties

China tightens collateral rules involving corporate bonds amid rising defaults

HNA offers just under S$1.4b to buy out CWT

Headcount at China’s four biggest banks shrinks as payments move online

New HK leader’s affordable homes plan runs up against wall of Chinese capital

Hong Kong Concerned About Some Property Developer Mortgage Risks

Hong Kong home prices near peak as risks mount, JPMorgan says

Sydney’s price of success: Sky-high housing costs, long commutes

Housing Costs Are Pushing People Further Out of Sydney 

Only 28% of Aussie millennials own a home: survey

Additional Articles of Interest – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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