Parc Emily hits $1,620 psf; Heritage View sees $960 psf

Existing condominiums located in neighbourhoods undergoing renewal and at the edge of the city are becoming increasingly popular with both investors and owneroccupiers. This can be seen from recent transactions at the 295-unit Parc Emily, located at the corner of Mount Emily and Niven Roads, which was developed by City Developments Ltd (CDL) and completed in 2008. Three transactions were recorded from July 27 to Aug 3, with prices ranging from $1,542 to $1,620 psf, according to caveats lodged with URA Realis.

Prices of Parc Emily have been climbing steadily since the condo’s launch in 2005 and hit a peak of $1,803 psf last month, when a 548 sq ft studio apartment on the eighth floor of one of the blocks was sold for $990,000.

The freehold development is located next to Mount Emily Park and is a 10-minute walk from the Dhoby Ghaut MRT station. It’s also a short distance from the National Library, Cathay Cineplex and Orchard Road shopping belt. The Mount Emily/ Selegie Road area has seen a rejuvenation, with the former Paradiz Centre repositioned and renamed PoMo, the Wilkie Edge mixed-use development by CapitaCommercial Trust and the new Citadines serviced apartment owned by Capita- Land’s Ascott, which is a redevelopment of the former Selegie Complex. Institutions like Singapore Management University (SMU) and School of the Arts have also added to the area’s vibrancy.

Parc Emily is popular with investors, given its proximity to the city, and therefore the attractive rental rates there. According to Brandon Ng, senior realty adviser with Knight Frank, a studio apartment could command a monthly rental rate of about $3,500. Currently, Ng is marketing a mid-floor studio apartment for sale at a negotiable price of $1,700 psf.

Of the three transactions from July 27 to Aug 3, a 979 sq ft, two-bedroom unit on the sixth floor was sold for $1.51 million ($1,542 psf), providing a 93% gain for the original owner, who bought the unit from CDL in 2006 for just $782,000 ($798 psf).

In another block, a 1,733 sq ft, four-bedroom unit on the sixth floor sold for $2.8 million ($1,620 psf), a 116% gain for the previous owner, who purchased the unit for $1.3 million ($750 psf) during the launch in 2005. Meanwhile, a 678 sq ft studio apartment on the first floor of another block went for $1.08 million ($1,593 psf).

Next to Parc Emily is boutique development Emily Residences. The 38-unit project was completed in 2006, and the latest transaction there was in May, when a 656 sq ft unit on the second floor went for $840,000 ($1,279 psf).

Moving to the city fringes, the Dover Road/ North Buona Vista area is also increasingly popular due to its proximity to reputable schools like Anglo-Chinese Junior College, Insead and Singapore Polytechnic and one-north, with its biomedical research cluster at Biopolis and infocomm and media cluster at Fusionopolis. A favourite among investors is the decade-old, 618-unit Heritage View, a 99-year leasehold condo by Far East Organization that is serviced by the Buona Vista MRT station.

Recent transactions at Heritage View were priced from $896 to $960 psf — which marketing agents say is still affordable, compared with the new developments at one-north.

For instance, at the 405-unit one-north Residences, developed jointly by UOL Group, Kheng Leong and Low Kheng Huat and completed last year, units changed hands at $1,250 to $1,452 psf last month. When the project, located a short walking distance from both the Buona Vista and the upcoming onenorth MRT stations, was launched in mid-2007, 80% of the units were sold out in three days at $850 to $950 psf. Meanwhile, The Rochester, launched a month later, saw all 366 units sold at $900 to $1,600 psf, or an average of $1,300 psf.

There were three transactions at Heritage View from July 27 to Aug 3. A 1,162 sq ft, two-bedroom unit on the 16th floor sold for $1.09 million ($938 psf). The previous owner had purchased the unit for $605,000 ($520 psf) at launch in 1998, thus making an 80% gain on the sale. In the same block, a 1,313 sq ft, three-bedroom unit on the 15th floor was sold for $1.26 million ($960 psf). That’s a 20% gain on the seller’s initial $1.05 million ($800 psf) purchase price in 2000. During the launch in 1997, the unit sold for $1.03 million ($786 psf).

In another block, a 1,205 sq ft, three-bedroom unit on the third floor went for $1.08 million ($896 psf) — a 46% gain for the seller, who acquired the unit for $738,250 ($612 psf) in 1998.

According to a marketing agent, a three-bedroom apartment at Heritage View was sold a fortnight ago at $980 psf, although the caveat has yet to be lodged. In terms of monthly rental rates, three-bedroom units there could fetch up to $4,000. “The condo is seeing strong rental demand, especially among foreigners who are at NUS, Singapore Polytechnic or Insead on project assignments,” the agent says.

Source : The Edge – 23 Aug 2010

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