Buying frenzy last week before cooling measures kicked in

Last Thursday evening was probably one of the busiest developers and agents have encountered for a while now.

More than 1,000 units sold in 1 night

In just a few hours, buyers snapped up more than 1,000 units in 3 residential projects, rushing to close in on deals before the stamp duty hikes kicked in. The 5 percentage point increments on stamp duties were levied on buyers and developers from last Friday onwards.

The show flat of Riverfront Residences, Park Colonial, and Stirling Residences were filled with buyers eager to beat the tax hikes. The launches for 3 properties were brought forward ahead of time by 1 to 2 weeks to allow buyers to purchase units before the changes.

Some buyers were, however, unable to complete the process in time and now have to re-evaluate their financing plans.

Developers of other projects such as Grandeur Park Residences, Affinity at Serangoon, The Garden Residences, The Tapestry, Marina One, Martin Modern and Wallich Residence also offered discounts and incentives to help take the edge off the new measures.

3 residential projects locked in at least 1,020 buyers

By midnight last Thursday, 510 units of the 1,472-unit Riverfront Residences in Hougang were sold at an average price of $1,200 psf. The prices were surprisingly not exorbitant, being just slightly above the break-even price. Were developers perhaps afraid that the tax-hikes might deter future buyers?

Park Colonial’s iconic architecture is inspired from quaint and stately colonial quarters. Picture: CEL Development

Over at Park Colonial in Woodleigh, developers CEL Development, Heeton Holdings and KSH Holdings sold 310 units of the 805-unit condominium project.

And at Stirling Residences in Queenstown, 200 out of 1,259 units were sold. The median selling prices at both developments stood at $1,730 psf and $1,800 psf respectively.

Analysts predict that developers will now have to re-align their strategies to the latest curbs. Prices of future launches may vary from those originally planned and some may even have to adjust their sales estimate for the year.

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