Where will property prices be in the next few years? Will property prices plunge 30 – 50% as per the doomsday prophets? Will property prices trundle along sideways, moving up and down within a 10% band? Or will property prices continue its steady climb upwards? Unfortunately, I don’t know, so I can’t tell you. If I knew for sure, I wouldn’t tell you either. So, since I don’t know for sure, I will lay down how I think the different scenarios may play out so you can make your own educated guess. But before we go into the heavy stuff, let’s have some fun with a poll!
In a recent Bloomberg article on Asian Millionaires taking charge of their own wealth, Akbar Shah, Head of Southeast Asia and Australia for Citigroup’s private-banking unit, describes real estate markets as hands-on markets that require a feel. I respectfully agree with her opinion. As I’ve mentioned on several occasions, both verbally and in writing, property analysis is more than just dollar-per-square-foot.
I’m struck by the number of times I’ve heard comments from clients like, “It’s pretty old, kinda rundown even… but somehow I just have a good feel about this place!” or “It’s a pleasant-enough place, but somehow it just doesn’t feel quite right?”
Obviously, when it comes to choosing a place to stay, there’s a wide spectrum of lifestyle needs, tastes and preferences. But one trait that almost all home-seekers unanimously favour in a home is the “bright and airy” factor. I believe this is something that contributes greatly to whether a home conjures up a feeling of spaciousness or not, perhaps even more so than whether a home is 1,200 square foot or 1,400 square foot. In a sense, this also echoes some of the principles of Fengshui – “qi” flows easily in a place that enjoys a good breeze and ample natural light, and in theory makes for a more auspicious home.
Westgate targets to meet BCA Green Mark Platinum and Universal Design standards
Singapore, 14 August 2012 – CapitaLand Limited today announced that the CapitaLand Group will relocate to Westgate Tower progressively from early 2015. The Group will occupy 11 floors, a total of about 160,000 square feet (sq ft) of the new 20-storey prime office tower. The relocation will further enhance staff interaction and sense of belonging and provide for a holistic sustainable workplace so that it becomes more productive for all. This centralised destination for “work, live and play” will strongly motivate and integrate the Group as one united family-like organisation.
According to the NUS SRPI, the property market continued to stabilise in June, with no change in the overall index. Breaking the index into its components, the market is supported by transactions in the non-central region with a month-on-month increase of 0.7% while the central region and small units decreased by 0.9% and 1.4% respectively.
About 2 weeks ago, UOB announced that they were able to give loans of up to 50 year tenures. Since then, Minister Khaw Boon Wan has come out to criticise it as a gimmick and urged home buyers and owners not to fall for it. So, is it a gimmick as Minister Khaw says, or is there a case for it?
Before we go there, let’s take a look at the conditions for the loan. Besides the usual income/net worth requirements, borrowers have to be below 80 years old at the end of the loan tenure. If the property is leasehold, it must have at least 35 years left on the lease at the end of the loan tenure.