Real estate brokerage sets up regional HQ in S'pore

Luxury residential real estate brokerage List Sotheby's International Realty has set up its South-east Asian headquarters here to tap the growing number of affluent clients in the region.

The firm said yesterday the move is "timely and strategic" amid keen interest in high-end properties here among foreign investors.

"Luxury properties in Singapore remain a very attractive option for savvy investors. (Their) prices having fallen some 10 per cent since the peak of the market in the first quarter of 2013," said Mr Leong Boon Hoe, chief operating officer of List Sotheby's International Realty, Singapore.

Values of luxury homes here have slid following a raft of cooling measures - including the additional buyer's stamp duty (ABSD) - in the past years, successfully dampening interest in such properties.

The firm noted, however, that the pace of price decline slowed last year in relation to other property segments, "potentially signalling a bottoming-out effect".

Responding to a Straits Times query, Mr Leong said that despite the ABSD of 15 per cent imposed on foreigners for buying residential properties here, savvy investors - overseas and local buyers alike - see more value in luxury properties. He added: "Singapore's luxury residential sector is primed for recovery when such interests return. We are well positioned to ride on this new wave of growth."

The firm said List Sotheby's International Realty in Japan sold a 6,620 sq ft semi-detached house at Bishopsgate Residences in prime District 10 for $25.8 million in 2014.

The new Singapore office has five employees, with plans to boost the headcount to 30 by the end of the year - more than half of whom will specialise in advisory and brokerage, the firm said.

The group intends to set up an office in Bangkok by next year.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 30, 2017, with the headline Real estate brokerage sets up regional HQ in S'pore. Subscribe