December 29, 2012
Executive condomiums (“ECs”), in case you weren’t familiar with the term, are 99-year leasehold properties that are developed and sold by private developers within certain restrictions imposed by HDB. ECs have condo facilities such as pools, gym, etc.
To be eligible to purchase from the developer, buyers have to be Singaporean and the joint purchaser has to be Singaporean or PR, the buyers have to form a proper family nucleus, purchasers cannot own or dispose properties 30 months prior to application, buyers cannot earn more than $12,000 per month etc. Click here for the full requirements at the HDB website. Eligible direct buyers are able to obtain housing grants from HDB.
Additionally, purchasers of units have to be the principal occupiers of the property for the first 5 years starting from the TOP of the project, meaning that they cannot sell the place or rent out the whole unit. From the 6th year from TOP, Singaporeans and PRs can buy resale without restrictions. From the 11th year onwards, foreigners can buy without restrictions. Buyers of resale ECs are not eligible for HDB subsidies. From the 6th year onwards, the whole unit can be rented out.
In other words, ECs are condos that are meant for own-stay buyers who intend to stay there for at least 5 years. After that, they can pretty much sell it as a private condo (subject to citizenship restrictions).
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August 26, 2012
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!
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June 2, 2012
Skyrocketing housing prices keeping you up at night? Consider this – according to a report by Citi Private Bank in collaboration with realty firm Knight Frank, Singapore is still far from the most expensive property market in the world. That notorious title goes to Monaco, where the average per square foot is US$5,408. To put that in our local context, a shoebox apartment of 500 square foot will basically set you back US$2.7M, or about SGD$3.5M (and that ignoring the fact that smaller units usually go for higher than average psfs!). Trailing in 2nd spot would be the peninsular of Cap Ferrat in France, at more than US$4,800 psf. The reasons for the sky high prices sound familiar though – scarcity! Hongkong picks up the 10th spot for apartments at US$2,625, although it ranks 4th for landed houses, which trade for an average of US$4,406 psf.
Feel better yet?
Even Singapore priciest unit at The Marq, at SGD$6,840psf (approx USD$5,261) still falls shy of Monaco’s average selling price!