More foreigners drawn to properties here

If you have put your money down for a newly launched private property in the first quarter of this year, there is a pretty good chance that your future neighbour may not be Singaporean.

Singapore’s attractiveness to foreign talent has seen an increase in the number of foreigners putting their money down for properties here, according to a report by real estate specialists DTZ Debenham Tie Leung.

An analysis of the Urban Redevelopment Authority’s Realis caveat data revealed that foreigners and permanent residents bought 1,938 private homes in the first quarter of this year.

This is the highest number of foreign purchases recorded by the Realis system. In the fourth quarter of last year, foreigners lodged 1,934 caveats.

Buyers from neighbouring countries like Indonesia and Malaysia continue to make their presence felt in the foreign homebuyer market, leading the field at 21 and 19 per cent respectively in total transactions involving foreigners.

Buyers from India make up the third largest group, purchasing a total of 275 properties, thereby making up 14 per cent of total foreign purchases this year.

DTZ attributes this to Singapore’s attractiveness to Indian professionals and their families.

Buyers from the United Kingdom and China make up the top five nationalities with 9 and 7 per cent respectively.

The top five nationalities make up only 68 per cent of the total foreign purchases in the first quarter of this year, reflecting buyer interest from other countries.

With 96 transactions in the year’s first quarter, Koreans stepped up their purchases; reflecting 30 per cent quarter-on-quarter and 308 per cent year-on-year increases.

There were a total of 100 transactions involving Australians, reflecting a 13 per cent increase quarter-on-quarter, and a 144 per cent year-on-year increase.

The prime areas of Orchard, Holland and Bukit Timah, as well as Katong and East Coast, seem to attract these foreigners.

In the primary market, projects like the Tribeca, St Regis Residences and Marina Bay Residences received a lot of foreign interest.

While over in the secondary market, projects like Costa del Sol, Pebble Bay and the Caribbean at Keppel Bay caught their eye.

Source: Weekend Today, 09 June 2007

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