The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry

The Leading Professional and Representative Body for the Real Estate Industry



Daily News – 17th May 2016

Top Stories

April new private home sales down 11.6%
After surging to an eight-month high in March, developers’ sales of private homes eased last month. What piqued most analysts, however, is the broad-based demand for existing projects rather than the take-up for new launches in April.  Some saw this as a case of the glass being half full. Others were cautious.  Urban Redevelopment Authority data released on Monday showed that developers found buyers for 745 private homes last month, down 11.6 per cent from 843 units in March this year and a 36.2 per cent drop from 1,167 units in April last year. The March figure had sparked talk of an improvement in sentiment.

Parkway Parade retail mall closed ‘until further notice’ after fire
The Parkway Parade shopping mall will be closed until further notice after a fire broke out in a shop on Sunday (May 15).  In a Facebook post on Monday night, Parkway Parade said that the development’s mall will be closed “till further notice” as it continues checks and rectification work. The office tower, as well as HSBC, DBS, UOB and Citibank located on Level 1 will remain open, it added.  The fire broke out late Sunday night in the store room of a unit on the second floor of the mall, the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) said. No injuries were reported, they added.  The mall was closed on Monday for staff to clean up and check the site, Parkway Parade’s General Manager Jenny Khoo said.

Singapore Economy

Iswaran to ensure work goes on in Future Economy committee
Mr S. Iswaran, Minister for Trade and Industry (Industry), has been appointed co-chairman of the committee on the Future Economy because of Finance Minister Heng Swee Keat’s illness.  He was its deputy chairman, a position that will now be held by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) Chan Chun Sing.  Both appointments will take effect immediately, the PMO said in a statement last night.  Mr Heng, the committee’s chairman, suffered a stroke last Thursday and is now in a stable condition at Tan Tock Seng Hospital.

Singapore Real Estate

Lum Chang in JV for mixed-use M’sia project
Construction company Lum Chang Holdings (LCH) has tied up with Bursa-listed Tien Wah Press Holdings Berhad (TWPH) through a joint venture to undertake a mixed-use development in Malaysia.  This JV, in turn, has agreed to acquire a piece of land from a TWPH unit for RM63.75 million (S$21.68 million).  In a filing on Monday, LCH said it had on May 16, through its wholly owned unit Kemensah Holdings Pte Ltd, inked a shareholders’ agreement with TWPH’s unit Tien Wah Properties Sdn Bhd (TWPSB) to form a joint venture.

All quiet at foodcourts in two Kallang malls
The Sports Hub often hosts fast-paced sports competitions, but when it comes to business at foodcourts in the nearby Kallang Wave Mall and Leisure Park Kallang, things are decidedly sluggish.  A Straits Times check found that many of the stalls in the foodcourts are now unoccupied.  NTUC Foodfare, which operates the foodcourt at Kallang Wave Mall, said it will “resize” to have fewer stalls. An NTUC Foodfare spokesman said: “Over the past 11/2 years, we have gained a better understanding of the footfall and customer preference in this location, and have decided to resize the foodcourt to better utilise our resources and to provide a better dining experience for our patrons.

Consortium launches privatisation bid for Eu Yan Sang
A Consortium led by a UOB-backed fund, a Temasek Holdings unit and Eu Yan Sang International’s group chief executive officer Richard Eu has launched a takeover bid for the well known traditional Chinese medicine retailer, potentially spelling an end to its 16 years on the mainboard.

Views, Reviews & Forum

HDB can help shops in virtual world too
The HDB has introduced the Revitalisation of Shops scheme to help owners of HDB shops facing challenges (“Struggling, surviving”; last Thursday).  However, it should not focus only on traditional brick-and-mortar enhancements, such as shop upgrading.  Instead, it should also assist shop owners online, such as in social media promotions and creating apps.  As today’s shoppers become more Internet-savvy, the HDB should not simply take only the traditional approach to assistance.

Brexit will not make Britain the Singapore of Europe
The strong consensus view from the International Monetary Fund, Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, United Kingdom Treasury and Bank of England is that “Brexit” would impose significant costs on the UK economy.  But some of the outwardly oriented proponents of Brexit argue that it would enable the UK to become a more dynamic economy that develops stronger relationships with countries beyond Europe.  Singapore is often cited as an example: a successful, open country, with a strong financial service sector, a hub for international companies, and which has a global network of trading relationships.

Global Economy & Global Real Estate

Brexit could lead to downgrades for other EU countries: Fitch

China’s April economic activity data disappoints

Chinese top foreign buyers of US homes in 2015

Hines offering real estate portfolio for sale: report

Housing scheme history repeats itself

Squatters see new haven in Las Vegas

Five Midcentury Modern Mansions on the Market Now

Additional Articles of Interest – Local & Overseas Real Estate

Are strata houses a good investment? (The Edge Property dated : 16 May 2016)
Strata landed homes offer buyers the experience of living in a landed property and the benefits of sharing communal facilities such as a swimming pool. These units are typically built as cluster housing or landed homes within a condominium or apartment project.  Strata landed homes have stayed beneath buyers’ radar with the proliferation of high-profile condos on the market. They have also suffered from the impact of the total debt servicing ratio, which came into effect in June 2013. The number of resale caveats lodged have tumbled from 318 in 2012 to 106 last year, while the average resale price has fallen more than 10% between 2013 and 2015.

Marina Bay condo selling at 2007 prices (The Edge Property dated : 13 May 2016)
Buyers looking for a condo with a sea view might be interested in this listing. A 1,130 sq ft unit at Marina Bay Residences has been listed on at $2.65 million, or $2,345 psf. The unit is located above the 50th floor.  The latest transaction in Marina Bay Residences was in March this year, when a 2,368 sq ft four-bedroom unit on the 25th floor was sold for $2,821 psf.

Local & Overseas Real Estate – Full Article

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