Bungalow with a view to smash price records

Bungalow with a view to smash price records

SINGAPORE - A privately-held investment vehicle controlled by Wing Tai chairman Cheng Wai Keung and his wife Helen has put its Nassim Road bungalow on a sprawling 84,839 sq ft freehold site on the market.

Jones Lang LaSalle - the sole marketing agent appointed to handle the sale of the property by tender - said the owners, whom it did not identify, are aiming to receive offers in the region of $250-300 million. This would work out to $2,947-3,536 per square foot (psf) on the land area.

Even the lower ends of the absolute and psf price ranges, if achieved, would set record prices for Good Class Bungalows.

In terms of absolute quantum, the highest transaction in a GCB Area was for $87.5 million in 2001 involving a 291,000 sq ft parcel in Swettenham Road in an asset swop deal between Singapore Press Holdings and Lum Chang, according to JLL's head of investments and residential Karamjit Singh.

On psf of land area basis, the record price for a transaction in a GCB Area was set in October last year when bungalow investor George Lim sold a Leedon Park property for $2,110 psf on its 15,640 sq ft land area. On Nassim Road itself, the highest psf price achieved was $2,000 psf in February last year when motoring tycoon Peter Kwee sold a 23,922 sq ft vacant plot a stone's throw from the Chengs' property.

Mr Cheng is understood to have held the property, at No 33 Nassim Road, since the mid-1980s. The family used to live in the bungalow.

Bungalow agents say the property has been informally on the market since last year with an asking price of at least $3,000 psf.

On site is an old bungalow whose tenant is moving away soon. The plot can be redeveloped into five GCBs. The rectangular shaped plot has a nearly 100-metre road frontage.

JLL said that the seller is prepared to receive offers for the entire 84,839 sq ft plot, or for either of two smaller parcels - 31,647 sq ft and 53,192 sq ft. The buyer of the former parcel may further subdivide the land into two GCB plots, while the latter parcel can be subdivided into three houses, notes Mr Singh.

Despite big-ticket bungalow deals drying up following the January cooling measures - which increased additional buyer's stamp duty rates and lowered loan-to-value limits for those with outstanding residential mortgages and seeking subsequent loans - Mr Singh is upbeat about interest in the latest plot on the market, citing its rarity value.

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