Sentosa Cove home sales up as prices fall

Eight bungalows in Sentosa Cove that were sold in the first six months of this year went for an average $1,541 psf, according to a report released by CBRE. By comparison, popular mass market project Commonwealth Towers sold 47 units in June at a medi
Eight bungalows in Sentosa Cove that were sold in the first six months of this year went for an average $1,541 psf, according to a report released by CBRE. By comparison, popular mass market project Commonwealth Towers sold 47 units in June at a median selling price of $1,899 psf. Seaside Residences moved 10 units at a median selling price of $1,731 psf.PHOTO: REUTERS

Bungalow price declines of nearly 20% from a year earlier reflect slide in luxury segment

Recent sale prices for bungalows in Sentosa Cove - one of the poshest addresses here - have fallen to levels similar to those of mass market condos on a per sq foot (psf) basis.

The declines, of nearly 20 per cent from a year earlier, reflect the slide in the broader luxury segment.

Eight Sentosa Cove bungalows sold in the first six months of this year went for an average of $1,541 psf, said a report released by property consultancy CBRE yesterday.

That was an 18.1 per cent fall from the average selling price of $1,881 psf in the second half of last year.

By comparison, popular mass- market project Commonwealth Towers sold 47 units in June at a median selling price of $1,899 psf. Seaside Residences moved 10 units at a median selling price of $1,731 psf.

CBRE said lower asking prices likely prompted a rise in sales in Sentosa Cove as only four were sold in the second half of last year, and none in the first half of 2016.

Colliers International's head of research Tricia Song said Sentosa Cove property prices have fallen about 40 per cent from their peak, and are very attractive to buyers.

LUXURY MARKET UPTURN

Singapore luxury homes appear increasingly attractive after falling (prices) for four straight years, compared to other markets such as Hong Kong, London and key cities in Australia, where prices are peaking or have peaked. ''

MS TRICIA SONG, Colliers International's head of research, who said she expected robust sales for luxury homes for the rest of the year.

Another segment which drew buyers was apartments in the core central region, including districts like Orchard and Bukit Timah. A total of 170 caveats were lodged for units sold in the region in the first half of this year, up nearly 40 per cent from the 123 caveats lodged in the second half of last year.

The average selling price of luxury apartments above $5 million was $2,446 psf, about 2 per cent higher than the $2,396 psf for the second half of 2016.

However, it was 2.9 per cent lower than the average price of $2,519 recorded in the same period last year.

Mr Desmond Sim, CBRE's head of research for Singapore and South- east Asia, said the 2.9 per cent decline was due to skewing caused by some projects with very strong sales.

In the first half of this year, the best-selling luxury project was Leedon Residence, which sold 44 units above the price of $5 million, translating to an average price of $1,993 psf. However, in the first half of last year, the top-selling luxury project was Ardmore Three, which had 35 caveats lodged at an average price of $3,217 psf.

Dr Lee Nai Jia, head of research at Edmund Tie & Company, said the number of luxury homes sold this year will likely surpass that of last year, but prices will remain stable.

"Luxurious apartments are likely to benefit most from the luxury market upturn, as seen from the good take-up rates of new projects like Martin Modern, which also increase inquiries in the area."

Sales of good class bungalows (GCBs), seen as the most prestigious properties here, were stable for the first half of this year.

A total of 22 properties were sold for $463.91 million, compared with 23 sold in the second half of last year for $490.17 million.

Average GCB prices fell 6.9 per cent from the second half of 2016 to $1,242 psf, based on land area in the first half of 2017.

Ms Song said she expected robust sales for luxury homes for the rest of the year, as economic growth becomes more broad-based.

"Singapore luxury homes appear increasingly attractive after falling (prices) for four straight years, compared to other markets such as Hong Kong, London and key cities in Australia, where prices are peaking or have peaked."

More foreigners were buying non-landed super penthouses, and she expects that to continue.

"We think the freehold luxury apartments in the core central region could be the most attractive to buyers, given the scarcity and limited supply in the pipeline."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 15, 2017, with the headline 'Sentosa Cove home sales up as prices fall'. Print Edition | Subscribe