Big-ticket deals down in first 10 months of 2012

Only 33 luxury condos and apartments priced from S$10 million onwards changed hands in the first 10 months of the year, down from 57 units over the same period last year, reported The Business Times.

According to a URA data analysis by CBRE, the 33 units amounted to S$449.6 million, 44 percent less than S$797.5 million last year. Caveats lodged comprised both the primary and secondary markets and were downloaded on 7 November, with the most recent transaction dated 24 October.

The sharp decline in big-ticket flats sales is mainly due to the Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty (ABSD) introduced in December, said market watchers.

This year’s most expensive deal so far was for an 18th floor unit at The Marq on Paterson Hill, sold in July for S$30.4 million, or S$4,820 psf on its 6,308 sq ft area. Additionally, a 64th-storey single-level penthouse at Marina Bay Suites changed hands last month for S$19.3 million or S$3,409 psf based on its strata area of 5,662 sq ft. Both were reportedly bought by Singaporeans.

URA Realis data also has revealed an interesting mix of buyers for a range of properties from S$5 million and above.

Non-PR foreigners bought 26.6 percent of the 282 units sold for S$5 million and above, down from 38.8 percent last year, while companies accounted for only 4.3 percent during the 10-month period, against 15.8 percent last year.

On the other hand, Singaporeans’ share of the market jumped to 36.9 percent from last year’s 23 percent and PRs’ share rose from 22.3 to 32.3 percent.

Nonetheless, foreign purchases in the luxury condo segment are expected to rise again next year, said Joseph Tan, Executive Director (Residential) at CBRE.

“Foreigners will probably come to see ABSD to a certain extent as part of life, as a form of acquisition cost. In addition, the high-end segment has shown to be more resilient actually. Volumes have dropped, but prices have generally remained stable.”

“At the end of the day, the stock of big-ticket apartments and penthouses is limited. If you look at the profile of owners, they have deep pockets,” added Tan.

Source : PropertyGuru – 12 Nov 2012

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