The real test starts for mixed-use site Marina One as it releases the remaining half of the residential units that developers have been holding since 2014. It will be a great challenge for M+S Pte Ltd the joint venture that has Singapore’s Temasek Holdings and Khazanah Nasional from Malaysia
The developers had held back 521 units in the Garden Tower and plan to launch 30% of the units this month with the remaining ones slated to be released in the upcoming months.
The market had been taken by surprise back in 2014 when the developers had blocked half of the 1,042 residential units. The other residential tower, the Park Tower which also has similar number of units was launched in 2014.
M+S had decided to block sale of the Garden Tower till the TOP (temporary occupation permit) was obtained which it did in 2017.
The price for Garden Tower shall start from S$2,400 psf (per square foot) and shall average between S$2,700 psf and S$2,800 psf.
Kemmy Tan who is M+S Chief Executive said that the market has a healthy momentum and the 3.9% jump in private home price index as released by the Urban Redevelopment Authority in Q1 2018 is an indicator to this.
He added that investing in a property now would fetch healthy returns for the buyers especially when one is looking at it from pure investment point of view.
Ms Tan believes that with the launch of the Garden Tower, the Marina One Residences community will become more vibrant. The community already has 1.88 million sq ft of Grade A office space along with 140,000 sq ft in terms of retail space that also includes a cold storage.
He added that the community itself would serve as a huge attraction for the buyers to invest in this property.
In terms of amenities all the units are fitted with fittings and appliances from world’s leading brands that include Boch, Miele, Villeroy and Poggenpohl. Buyers would get residential units overlooking the sea, Gardens by the Bay and the Marina Bay Sands. With its own biodiversity garden called the ‘Green Heart’ with 160,000 plants and trees it is a nature’s abode.
Interestingly M+S wasn’t obliged legally to sell Marina One Residences’ remaining units within a fixed time frame as the property doesn’t fall under the QC (Qualifying Certificate) rules that make it mandatory for the developers to complete a residential project within 5 years and sell all the units within 2 years of completion.
Also, this property is excluded from ABSD (Additional Buyers’ Stamp Duty) as the site had been acquired prior to 2011.
In terms of the break-up of the units at Garden Towers, 77% are one-bedroom and two-bedroom units that are mainly targeted towards young couples, singles and investors.
The remaining units which comprise of three-bedrooms and four-bedrooms would attract owner-occupiers and high-flying individuals who occupy the property seasonally. Garden Towers also has four penthouses that are massive 8,000 sq ft in size each.
Mr Tan highlighted the fact that investors in Garden Tower can aim for a rental yield of 3%. Park Tower has seen enthusiasm among buyers and has averaged S$2,350 psf and only 41 units remain to be sold.
Nearly 50% of the Park Tower buyers are Permanent Residents and native Singaporeans with the rest being foreigners and mostly from different parts of Asia.
In other development M+S has been able to able to sell almost all its units in Duo an integrated development located in Ophir-Rochor area with only 10 units left to be sold out of 660 residential apartments.
The joint venture resulted from the momentous land swap deal between Malaysia and Singapore in 2010. In that deal three plots previously owned by Malayan Railway and another three in Bukit Timah had been exchanged for four land blocks in Marina South and two other in Ophir-Rochor which gave birth to two new developments.
ZACD Group’s Executive Director Nicholas Mak says that these units would attract investors as they would be able to rent them as soon as they get possession. He added that many buyers don’t like making investments seeing a sample flat and like to see the complete product before putting in their money.
According to realty watchers while there are no upcoming residential developments in Marina Bay in the last decade between Tanjong Pagar and Marina Bay.
They sound a word of caution though and state that Marina Bay Residences’ went at a median price of S$2,182 psf from January to June whereas the Marina Bay Suites fetched a median price of S$2,059 psf while V on Shenton which is located nearby saw its units sell for an average price of S$2,339 psf.
Chief Executive at International Property Advisor Ku Swee Yong said that most investors can also exercise options away from their vicinity in projects such as South Beach Residences being developed by City Developments Limited and also Wallich Residence developed by Guocoland.
Mr Mak added that Raffles Place as well as Marina is well connected by public transport but in case the prices of the units here are too steep, prospective customers and renters may explore cheaper alternatives.