Unit at Maplewoods sells for $1,155 psf

Maplewoods may be 13 years old but the 697- unit freehold condominium located along Bukit Timah Road has seen a resurgence of interest from home buyers. Prices have seen strong support at the $1,000 psf level since the start of the year.

For the first time since January 2008, prices crossed the $1,200 psf level when a 1,410 sq ft unit on the fifth floor of one of the five blocks changed hands for $1.69 million, or $1,203 psf, in January, according to a caveat lodged with URA Realis. The peak of $1,295 psf was reached in November 2007 when a 2,895 sq ft unit on the sixth floor of another block was sold for $3.75 million.

Developed by Wing Tai Holdings, Maplewoods comprises two- to four bedroom units and penthouses, is low-rise and set amid lush greenery. It has a convenience store and a restaurant, besides the usual condo facilities such as swimming pool, tennis court, gymnasium and barbecue pits. There is also a shuttle-bus service from Maplewoods to the cafés and supermarkets at Holland Village and Coronation Plaza as well as to the Newton MRT station.

The condo is also sought-after by those with school-going children, as it is near good schools such as Methodist Girls’ School, Hwa Chong Institute and Ngee Ann Polytechnic. What has piqued the interest of homebuyers is its proximity to the upcoming King Albert Park MRT station on the future Bukit Timah Line.

The latest asking rents for apartments at Maplewoods range from $3,700 a month for a 1,335 sq ft three-bedroom apartment to $5,800 a month for a 1,500 sq ft, 3+1 bedroom unit, according to postings by property agents.

For the period of April 13 to 20, four units at Maplewoods were sold at price ranging from $1,052 to $1,155 psf, according to caveats lodged with URA Realis. A 2,917 sq ft penthouse on the sixth floor was sold for $3.368 million, or $1,155 psf — a 9% gain for the previous owner, who purchased it for $3.1 million, or $1,063 psf, in 2007.

On the eighth floor of another block, a 1,324 sq ft three-bedroom unit was sold for $1.52 million, or $1,148 psf, representing a 3% gain over the seller’s purchase price of $1.48 million, or $1,118 psf, in 2007. In a separate block, another seller managed a significant gain of 71% from the sale of his 1,786 sq ft four bedroom unit on the fifth floor for $1.88 million, or $1,052 psf. The unit was purchased in 2006 for $1.1 million, or $616 psf.

An 850 sq ft two-bedroom unit on the third floor changed hands for $975,000, or $1,147 psf, the fourth sold during the April 13 to 20 period.

Units at new projects launched in the vicinity — for instance, Floridian, which is jointly developed by Far East Organization and Wing Tai Holdings — have been sold at a median price of $1,400 psf, according to March new home sales figures by URA Realis. A 958 sq ft unit hit a high of $1,670 psf. On a psf basis, a record high of $1,750 psf was achieved at Floridian when a 1,862 sq ft unit on the ninth floor was sold for $3.2 million in June 2008. The 336-unit condominium with 11 blocks is due for completion in 2013. According to the developers’ sales representative, more than 65% of the units have been sold.

Another upcoming development, located next to Floridian, is the 536- unit The Cascadia, which will start private previews soon and is expected to be completed next year. In 2007, 187 units were sold to two private funds and a few individuals, according to developer Allgreen Properties’ 2009 annual report. Prices ranged from $1,038 to $1,855 psf, according to caveats lodged with URA Realis.

With upcoming launches in the vicinity, buyers who want a property that they can move into or rent out immediately will once again focus their attention on the likes of Maplewoods.

Source : The Edge – 10 May 2010

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