By Michelle Tan
SINGAPORE - The price gap between new suburban homes and secondary prime property has been narrowing as buying euphoria escalates prices of the former.
For instance, one-bedroom units at CapitaLand's Sky Habitat in Bishan have achieved per square foot prices exceeding $1,700 despite its 99-year leasehold status and its location in a traditionally off-prime area.
In contrast, such prices could have easily gotten the buyer a freehold resale unit of a similar size located in Singapore's prime districts, comprising those in the core central region (CCR).
To illustrate, one can acquire a freehold one-bedder unit at completed developments such as Mulberry Tree - which is a short five-minute walk to Velocity@Novena Square and Novena MRT - or District 11's Nineteen Shelford Road - which is within a one-km radius from popular primary schools such as Nanyang Primary and Raffles Girls Primary - for an asking price of around $1,700 psf, according to property sales portal, stproperty.com.sg.
Other popular suburban developments such as Watertown (in Punggol) have also attained record prices for their areas, further narrowing the price gap between homes in suburban and prime regions.
Taking for example, a 1,356 sq ft unit at Watertown was advertised on stproperty.com.sg with an asking price of $1,685 psf which translates to a total of $2.28 million.
But for less than that amount, the same buyer can purchase a 1,324 sq ft unit at Olina Lodge (located at Holland), for an asking price of $1,359 psf or a gross quantum of $1.80 million.
Said Alan Cheong, head of research at Savills Singapore: "We believe May was the nascent start to a trend where those savvy enough to realise that the price gap between suburban and prime districts have been closing, start their due diligence to shop for a prime unit and may put pen to paper in either June or July."
Seconding the view, head of research of Jones Lang LaSalle Singapore, Chua Yang Liang also agreed that prime market homes could see renewed interest as the price gap between prime and non-prime markets converge.