Serangoon Ave 3 condos top $600 psf

The Serangoon Avenue 3 area came into focus last month when Hong Leong Holdings won a land parcel there in a government tender with a bid of $221 million, which works out to $529 psf per plot ratio. Property consultants expect the breakeven price for the future condominium project to be between $900 and $950 psf. Hong Leong says it intends to develop the site into a 400- unit condo, which is targeted for launch in 1H2010.

The proposed project has ignited the interest of some homebuyers and investors, and there was a flurry of activity in some of the condos along Serangoon Avenue 3 in the week of Oct 16 to 23. Five units changed hands in the resale market in Amaranda Gardens, Chiltern Park and The Sunnydale.

At the freehold condo Amaranda Gardens, developed by Keppel Land and completed in 2004, a 1,162 sq ft unit changed hands for $1.048 million, or $901 psf, according to a caveat lodged with URA Realis. The owner had purchased the unit when it was launched in 2001 for just $730,688 ($629 psf), which translates into a 43% capital gain for the seller.

The 500-unit Chiltern Park, located on Serangoon Avenue 3 and off Lorong Chuan, saw three units changing hands at prices ranging from $617 to $721 psf, and that has set the tone for the area. The 99-year leasehold project was developed by First Capital Corp (now GuocoLand) in 1995. It is located opposite Nanyang Junior College and near St Gabriel’s Primary School, the Australian International School in Lorong Chuan as well as the temporary campus of the Stamford American School.

The development is popular with families with schoolgoing children, says Knight Frank property agent Kenneth Yeo. He says Chiltern Park is also just a short drive to New Tech Park in Serangoon Gardens and one stop along the Circle line from the Serangoon MRT station and bus interchange, which will be integrated with the new shopping mall, nex, in Serangoon Central.

A 1,571 sq ft unit on the seventh floor of Chiltern Park was sold for $980,000 on Oct 21. The owner had purchased it in 2007 for $610,000, hence, reaping a gain of 60.6% in two short years. Prior to that, the unit had changed hands for $590,000 in 2002 and at the peak of the market in 1996, it was transacted for $1.08 million. Another 936 sq ft unit on the fifth floor went for $675,000, or $721 psf. The owner had purchased the unit in 2007 for $608,000, or $649 psf, hence seeing an 11% appreciation over the last two years. Most recently, a 1,572 sq ft unit on the fourth floor of one of the three towers was sold for $970,000, or $617 psf.

The Sunnydale, a 99-year leasehold condominium developed by MCL Land and completed in 2001, saw a sole transaction. A 1,345 sq ft third-floor unit sold for $900,000 ($669 psf). The previous owner purchased it in a resale for $620,000 ($461 psf) in 2003, hence making a gain of 45%.

Property agents like Yeo note that transactions have slowed this month, and it could be the effect of the recent measures taken by the government to cool the property market, such as the removal of the interest absorption scheme and interest-only home loans for new launches, and also the record number of land parcels released in the recent government land sales programme. This should be good news for genuine homebuyers.

Source : The Edge – 16 Nov 2009

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