STProperty, SPH's trusted online property portal, ran its first property event of the year over the weekend at Suntec Singapore Convention & Exhibition Centre.
About 1,000 property investors turned up at event. Not only was the response overwhelming, one of the featured developers closed the first deal worth more than RM1million (S$371,000) just within the first 3 hours of the event.
This adds to the proven success of events organised by STProperty since the past 4 years. Another three deals were sealed, bringing the sales figure close to RM$5 million.
Mr Kenneth Khoo, Senior Sales and Marketing Manager of MRCB Land, said, "We are happy to have closed a deal worth RM$1 million within the first 3 hours of the expo. This serves as a motivation for our sales people."
While general sentiment on the Malaysian market is not at its peak, Singaporean investors are still willing to enter if they find a product that suits their need.
With a slow property market, investors were especially anxious to find out what the outlook in 2015 for the property market is, both locally and overseas.
Investors were especially concerned about Malaysia, due to the current state of its economy.
Said Mr Alfred Chia, CEO of SingCapital Pte Ltd, "The crowd is very overwhelming and people are actually very active, looking around and asking many questions. I think because it is a different situation that evolved from global to local policies changes. By attending this seminar, investors can make a better well-informed decision to make their investment direction."
Bread and butter issues, such as the HDB resale market session by Mr Eugene Lim, Key Executive Director of ERA Realty Network, and the build-up of infrastructure in Iskandar Johor Bahru by Mr Ho Chin Soon, Chairman of Ho Chin Soon Sdn Bhd drove crowds in.
Ms Analynn Ooi, a capital markets analyst said: "The topic that interests me most is the HDB market. I tried many times for BTO and balloted twice but could not get it. Eugene mentioned that the resale market volume is going up, so I think that's where my focus will be. He also mentioned that government launched only 4 times a year and since I could not get the queue number, I believe I have to look into the resale market."
International property hotspots were another popular topic.
For Malaysia, especially in Iskandar, key infrastructure such as rapid transit systems and the build-up of the MRT and LRT in the Greater Kuala Lumpur region is key to long term capital appreciation, a point emphasised by not only Mr Ho, but Mr Siva Shanker, President of Malaysian Institute of Estate Agents.
Beyond Singapore's northern neighbour, other top international investment picks are London in UK, Tokyo in Japan, Sydney and Melbourne in Australia.
Mr Donald Han, Managing Director of Chesterton Singapore Pte Ltd, cautioned investors to purchase from developers with strong reputations, and preferably from estate agents that are able to service the investor from purchase to divestment.