SINGAPORE: Apartments at One Pearl Bank condominium will go on sale from Jul 20, with prices starting at S$970,000 for studio units.
Built on the site of the former Pearl Bank Apartments, which was one of Singapore’s architectural icons, the 99-year leasehold development is expected to be completed by 2023.
It comprises 774 units, ranging from studio apartments to penthouses of between 431 sq ft and 2,788 sq ft.
According to developer CapitaLand in a news release on Thursday (Jul 11), indicative prices start from S$970,000 for a studio unit, S$1.5 million for a two-bedroom apartment, S$2.5 million for a three-bedder and from S$3.5 million for a four-bedder.
This works out to a price of above S$2,000 psf for most of the apartments.
With 39 floors, One Pearl Bank is set to be the tallest residential development in the prime Outram district, said CapitaLand.
It is close to the business district, various dining and entertainment options, and also offers panoramic views of the city.
Given these attributes, property analyst Ong Kah Seng said the pricing for One Pearl Bank can be “well supported”.
He noted that the project is priced at about 15 per cent higher than other “fairly new properties” in the area, and about 20 to 25 per cent higher than “aged resale properties” in the area.
WILL S$2,000 PSF APARTMENTS BE THE NEW NORM?
One Pearl Bank is among several new developments with units hovering above S$2,000 psf.
In May, for instance, Amber Park in East Coast sold 115 units at an average price of S$2,425 psf.
Analysts remain divided over whether such prices could become a norm for private residential properties.
Propnex CEO Ismail Gafoor noted that apartments priced at above S$2,000 psf are already common for residential properties in core central locations.
“(This is) because land costs of these developments have already been high,” he said.
He added that developers tend to pay about S$1,500 psf to purchase land, and hence the need to price apartment units well above S$2,000 psf.
OrangeTee & Tie’s head of research and consultancy Christine Sun cited data from the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA), which showed a rise in the number of units sold at above S$2,000 psf.
For non-landed homes in the rest of central region, 178 units were sold above S$2,000 psf in June, up from 37 units in April and seven units in January, URA data showed.
“Demand for properties in Singapore is likely to remain robust,” she said.
Mr Ong, however, felt that property cooling measures introduced last July have dampened sentiments.
“(Apartments priced above S$2,000 psf) may not be a norm going forward as property sentiments remain cool, and buyers are highly selective,” he said.
“Only selected projects like One Pearl Bank, with unique selling points ... can command such pricing and deliver the best value proposition to buyers.”
ADDITIONAL COOLING MEASURES?
Analysts do not believe that such highly-priced apartments would prompt more cooling measures by the Government.
This is because high-end homes and city fringe homes are not within the policy concerns of the government, said Mr Ong.
READ; Property market 'more sober' after cooling measures; no need to shift gears significantly: MAS
He pointed out that the primary purpose of cooling measures are to ensure affordable homes for the average Singaporean, rather than controlling the prices of the most expensive homes.
“The breaching of price points of branded residences, upper mid-end properties to over S$2,000 psf will not be of major policy concern and necessitate new cooling measures, Mr Ong said.
Ms Sun said that the market has already slowed in response to the latest cooling measures.
“It is not likely to have more cooling measures as price increases have already slowed down substantially,” she added.
“The government may observe the market for a while more before taking further actions.”