The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 10th, 11th and 12th June 2017

Top Story

Singapore property prices expected to move up, fuelled by en bloc market
Property prices are expected to move up in the coming months and now may be a good time to start looking if you have not bought your property, said Carmen Lee, head of research for OCBC Investment Research, during a briefing on the mid-year market outlook on Friday.  The rosier outlook for the Singapore property market could be fuelled by the collective sale market, which has seen three major en bloc sales within a week, which would take about 800 to 900 units off the market.

Singapore Economy

Fintechs must dig deeper to solve structural problems: MAS
Singapore wants to drive greater focus on fintech solutions that tackle structural and institutional problems in the financial system at home and in Asean, the chief fintech officer of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), Sopnendu Mohanty, said on Friday.  Speaking as a panellist at a global fintech-pitching session held by Citi by Singapore, he noted that in the last few years, the focus for fintechs has been on platforms that draw throngs of users, such as crowdfunding platforms.

Singapore firms urged to make the most of India’s biggest tax reform
Singapore businesses should make the most of India’s biggest tax reform as the country rolls out its Goods and Services Tax (GST) in July, urged International Enterprise Singapore.  The reform means that the current indirect tax landscape and multiple existing indirect taxes, both state and federal, will be streamlined and Singapore investors will benefit from that, said Tay Lian Chew, IE Singapore regional director of South Asia.

Muted fallout of UK-linked stocks in Singapore
The fallout of Singapore stocks exposed to the UK market was muted on Friday, even as the pound took a beating from an unexpected elections outcome of a hung Parliament.  Singapore’s stock market shrugged off most of its morning weakness, with the benchmark Straits Times Index closing at 3,254.19, up 17.14 points or 0.53 per cent from Thursday. Most UK-linked counters also held up.

Stronger economic outlook boosts pension funds, SWFs
A stronger world economy boosted public pension fund, sovereign fund and central bank assets to US$33.5 trillion at end-2016, up 1.4 per cent from a year ago, according to a think tank that tracks the performance of these large public investors.  And amid uncertainty over the extent of reflation after a period of “extraordinarily loose” monetary policies, pension funds and sovereign wealth funds are still on the prowl for yield through “real assets” that have now extended beyond property into green financing, said OMFIF, a London and Singapore-based think tank.

Sustainable businesses proving lucrative
More companies here are jumping on the lucrative sustainability bandwagon amid booming demand and opportunities for businesses that are both profitable and eco-friendly.  The attraction is all the greater as Asia, which has seen economic transformation in recent decades, is poised for further growth.  One such player is home-grown start-up Smart Animal Husbandry Care (SmartAHC). The agri-tech firm, set up in 2014 out of Nanyang Technological University, designs sensors and equipment that can collect and use data for “smart farming”, or what it calls precision agriculture.

Singapore Real Estate

Hind Group sells Keong Saik Road hotel amid buzz in shophouse market
Hind Group is selling Naumi Liora, a 79-room boutique hotel housed in 10 adjoining freehold conservation shophouses in Chinatown.  The price is understood to be S$75-S$76 million, which works out to about S$2,800 per square foot on a gross floor area (GFA) of just over 27,000 sq ft.  The shophouses, which are along Keong Saik Road, span two storeys and an attic.

BCA warning after spate of lift breakdowns
Singapore’s building regulator said last night that it takes “a serious view on safety”, following four lift breakdowns that took place in HDB blocks over two days this week.  The Building and Construction Authority (BCA) reminded lift owners and contractors last night that they are responsible for the required maintenance of their lifts.

Three renewal projects in Woodlands to finish by 2019
More than 4,700 households in Woodlands are expected to benefit from three neighbourhood renewal programmes slated for completion progressively by 2019. In total, 66 blocks, as well as common areas, will undergo upgrading, and some new facilities will also be built.

Braddell flyover finally opens
After more than four years of construction and repeated delays, the Braddell flyover was finally opened to traffic yesterday at
6am.  Residents and motorists who ply the route hope the new flyover will ease traffic along Braddell Road, which can slow to a crawl during peak hours.  “In the mornings and evenings, everything moves slowly,” said show provider Albert Mei, 63, who travels from Toa Payoh towards Bartley several times a week. “The traffic can be very heavy but with the flyover, it should be better.”

Geylang Serai Bazaar rental soars to record high of $17,000
With crowds thronging the fairgrounds nightly, it looks like business is booming for hawkers at the ongoing Geylang Serai Bazaar.  But many say rentals have soared to an all-time high, and they are concerned about the sustainability of the festive event, held in conjunction with the month of Ramadan.

Companies’ Brief

Logan Property eyeing more after winning Stirling Rd project
Hong Kong-listed Chinese developer Logan Property, which recently jointly placed a record bid of over S$1 billion for a Stirling Road residential plot, is eyeing more commercial and residential projects in Singapore amid tightening measures against developers in the mainland.  Logan Property, together with Chinese conglomerate Nanshan Group, was last month awarded the tender for the large 99-year-leasehold Stirling Road site after putting in a joint bid of S$1,050.7 per square foot per plot ratio on gross floor area.

Ire over sale of Sydney icon to Singapore property developers
A deal to sell one of Sydney’s most famous buildings – the 19th-century General Post Office building – to Singaporean property developers has caused a backlash and prompted appeals to the federal government to block the move.  The 1874 building in Sydney’s Martin Place has been sold by Australia Post, a state-owned company, to Singapore’s Far East Organization and its affiliate, Hong Kong-based developer Sino Group. The firms are owned by Singapore’s Ng family and together comprise one of Asia’s largest property groups.

Views, Reviews & Forum

Rental law is key to Airbnb home-sharing
It was a win for home-sharing firm Airbnb when Japan passed a law last Friday allowing owners to rent out properties on a short-term basis.  In Singapore, the firm is “very optimistic” that short-term rentals will also be legalised, said its country manager for South-east Asia, Hong Kong and Taiwan, Ms Robin Kwok.

Keep foreign bidders out of housing
Consumers in Singapore have raised a ruckus over paying high prices for milk powder, a situation attributed to an imperfect market dominated by a small number of suppliers.  Milk powder is a necessity and parents have called on the authorities to step in and not just allow market forces to prevail to determine prices since buyers and sellers are not on the same level playing field.

Why some home owners agree to collective sales
While I respect Mr Tan Yew Hock’s views on the collective sales of properties (Collective sales destroying communities; June 9), I disagree with him.  Inflation has been rising faster than salaries. Retirement requires funds in order for us to be self-reliant. Medical costs are escalating and we cannot expect free healthcare services or even Central Provident Fund savings to provide for everything.

Collective sales stem from pragmatism
The reasons why Mr Tan Yew Hock feels collective sales should not be encouraged are understandable (Collective sales destroying communities; June 9).  However, there are many other considerations.  One must note that many of the estates that have been sold en-bloc sit on 99-year leasehold land.

An opportunity to rejuvenate old estates
Mr Tan Yew Hock’s argument that collective sales destroys communities obscures the multi-fold benefits of such sales (Collective sales destroying communities; June 9).  The obvious one is the maximising of site usage in our land-scarce island.  Older estates are rejuvenated when new facilities are developed in their place.  While it is true that there are residents who have built strong relationships within the community, the reality is that they are in the minority.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

San Francisco icon to be sold, closing chapter on giant property buyout

The tyranny of tiny living

China’s easing factory gate prices hint at broader economic slowdown

Hong Kong remains a vital business link to China

IHH Healthcare eyes China expansion

Airbnb gets green light in Japan

Tokyo city officials on a mission to sniff out foul-smelling zones

Plan to relocate 1.6m Muscovites turns middle-class into protesters

Architect Frank Lloyd Wright’s house gets new lease of life

Quality Care seeks funding to buy nursing home chain

Additional Articles of Interest – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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