Straits Times: Tue, May 15
A LUXURY bungalow in Sentosa Cove with a staggering $108 million price tag. A huge, swanky condo unit in Cuscaden Walk on sale for a cool $68 million.
Homes are being tagged with a level of prices never seen before here.
Online asking prices of $50 million or more are now not uncommon. For instance, there are more than a dozen listings of good-class bungalows, mainly in the traditional upscale areas of Leedon Road and Victoria Park Road, with price tags at this level.
But with asking prices significantly higher than market prices, some experts say these could be more of a marketing tactic to generate publicity for the particular home.
So far, there have been only a handful of homes sold that have managed to cross the $50 million mark, and none has exceeded the $100 million threshold.
But it is also important to look not just at overall prices but also at the unit per sq ft (psf) price when comparing these homes, experts add.
For instance, the most expensive landed home sold here was a 41,850 sq ft good-class bungalow in Leedon Park that changed hands for $61.4 million, or $1,467 psf, in December 2010. The record psf price is held by a bungalow in Chatsworth Road that went for $2,081 psf, or $22 million, in July last year.
In the non-landed homes market, it was a 8,050 sq ft Boulevard Vue unit that smashed records with a transaction of $33.4 million in November 2009. But it was The Marq on Paterson Hill that caused jaws to drop with a 3,003 sq ft unit snapped up at about $6,850 psf - or $20.5 million.
International Property Advisor chief executive Ku Swee Yong said that when a home is sold at 50 per cent above the price of a similar home in the vicinity, alarm bells should ring and buyers should look closely at the specific attributes of the property to see if it is worth the premium.
'It must have good attributes to justify why its price is so much higher than its neighbours'... But if it is truly a good quality property, then buyers might still pay,' he added.
Credo Real Estate executive director Ong Teck Hui said that in a rising market, a valuer may be able to support a valuation above the prices of past sales, taking into account how much the market has risen.
But the valuer will not be able to justify a value beyond that, he added. However, there could still be demand for homes with high quantums as long as their values are at market rates.
This is because the supply of some of these posh homes is limited, experts add.
For instance, there are only about 2,400 good-class bungalows in 39 gazetted areas islandwide. They typically occupy at least 15,000 sq ft of land.
Good-class bungalow developer George Lim said he typically markets his high-end homes discreetly through word of mouth, friends' recommendations or through a specialised agent.
'When you reach that kind of price category, there are few people who can afford (such homes) and they are usually discerning and discreet.
'They don't go online to look for homes as that is more for the mass market... So you need to find a reputable agent who is known in the market and has the right connections,' he added.
Among the online listings, the 99-year leasehold Sentosa Cove bungalow in Ocean Drive is the one with the highest asking price of $108 million.
At a whopping $5,436 psf of land area, the bungalow comes with six en-suite bedrooms and sits on a double plot with a sea view.
Its price is almost three times the overall price record of $39 million for a bungalow sold in the exclusive estate in March, and more than 80 per cent higher than the record unit price of $2,989 psf achieved in October 2010.
Other expensive homes listed include a 40,500 sq ft good-class bungalow in Queen Astrid Park with a price of $64 million, while another 26,500 sq ft bungalow in Belmont Road would require a buyer to fork out about $50 million.
Even condos are nudging well above $50 million asking prices.
A six-bedroom 11,200 sq ft unit at Boulevard Vue in Cuscaden Walk is listed with a guide price of $68 million. Another 9,000 sq ft five-bedder unit at Skyline@Orchard Boulevard is asking for $55 million.
'It must have good attributes to justify why its price is so much higher than its neighbours'... But if it is truly a good quality property, then buyers might still pay.'
International Property Advisor chief executive Ku Swee Yong, who noted that buyers should look closely at the specific attributes of properties to see if they are worth the premiumSource: The Straits Times