Strong early sales at Redhill condominium reflect robust demand, say analysts

SINGAPORE - Artra, a new condominium launched at the weekend has moved a robust 130 units, in the latest sign the local property market may be gaining strength.

Artra, a 400-unit condominium project next to Redhill MRT station, sold the units at an average price of $1,700 per sq ft - which was above expectations.

The 99-year leasehold project, which does not have any one-bedders, sold 85 two-bedders and 45 three-bedders.

It has been developed by FEC Skyline, a joint venture firm between Far East Consortium and New World Development.

Dr Tan Tee Khoon, a spokesman for FEC Skyline, said on Monday that sales were "off to a very encouraging start".

"We believe that the momentum will continue in the days ahead," he added.

Dr Lee Nai Jia, head of South-east Asia research at Edmund Tie and Company, said that Artra had enjoyed a "a good showing," indicating there is now demand for larger units.

"These are buyers who want to stay in their units, or buy for investment, not just the kind of speculation which we saw in the past. It does look quite optimistic for the overall real estate sector," he added.

Mr Alan Cheong, head of research at Savills, noted that the good response to Artra came in spite of other developments in the area such as Alex Residences, The Crest, and Principal Garden.

"I'm quite surprised. There are a few developments in the area, and yet there is still good takeup. This means that buyers may be coming from further afield, as typically, buyers had tended to stay in the same area."

He added that the pricing was above expectation, and that demand in the market may be "deeper than what many people may think."

Artra is the fifth condominium project launched this year, following that of Seaside Residences in Siglap, Park Place Residences at PLQ in Paya Lebar, Grandeur Park Residences in Tanah Merah and the Clement Canopy in Clementi.

Analysts noted that the most recent projects have achieved relatively high selling prices and good sales. For instance, Seaside Residences in Siglap moved 392 units in its first weekend of sales in the last week of April, with an average sale price achieved of about $1,700 psf. Park Place Residences at PLQ sold 215 units at the end of its first day of sales in late March, achieving an average sale price of about $1,800 psf.