Sold for $1.4m: Sellers of Singapore’s most expensive HDB flat may be walking away with a cool $650k profit

ERA realtor Gwen Ong (pictured) introducing the unit at City Vue @ Henderson.
PHOTO: Screengrab from YouTube/GwenYourRealtorFren

Records are always made to be broken, especially when it comes to home prices in Singapore.

Back in March, the Pinnacle@Duxton made headlines with the most expensive HDB flat sold at a record $1,388,888.

That accolade turned out to be a pretty short-lived one as a five-room HDB flat at City Vue @ Henderson just changed hands for an eye-popping $1.4 million this month — making it currently the most expensive HDB flat sold.

At least for now. 

This HDB flat, located on the 41st floor of a 48-storey block, has panoramic views of Singapore's city skyline and the surrounding area. 

The big question is: How much profit did the lucky seller of this unit walk away with? 

This Henderson project is a Selective En bloc Redevelopment Scheme (Sers) replacement site in Bukit Merah and was designated for the Redhill Close Sers project in 2011.

Back in 2016, a Home & Decor report said that based on figures from the Sale of Balance Flats exercise in May 2015, the five-room flats in this project were priced from $660,000 to $750,000.

This means that the recent sellers could have netted for themselves a jaw-dropping $650,000 in gross profit from the sale, if they had bought the flat at $750,000.

So, why would buyers be willing to fork out such a princely sum for this particular HDB unit?

ERA Singapore head of research and consultancy Nicholas Mak said in a Shin Min Daily News report that one of the reasons for the high price fetched would be the exclusivity of such projects.

"You can only buy (such units) on the HDB resale market," he added. "There is not much supply (out there)."

Another reason could be the attractive location, which is near to amenities such as food centres and MRT stations.

And since the area upon which the project is built is slightly elevated, it would offer exceptional views of the surroundings, especially on higher floors, he said. 

This 1,216 sq ft unit, with 96 years remaining lease, was jointly sold by ERA agents Gwen Ong and Clarence Long.

A video walkthrough of the unit posted on YouTube by Ong in Dec 2021 — around the time the flat was put on the market — showed the interior of the unit as well as its "million-dollar view".

View from the Henderson unit that was sold. PHOTO: Screengrab from YouTube/GwenYourRealtorFren

With its sleek and darker-toned finishings that look almost brand new, Ong described the design of the unit as "contemporary" and "luxe-themed" in that seven-minute clip.

Sharing that the previous owners had spent more than $200,000 on the renovations, Ong added that buyers simply had to "bring your luggage and shift in".

Layout of the Henderson unit. PHOTO: PropertyGuru/Gwen Ong

What made the unit highly attractive to the buyer was the small number of five-room flats in the project, Long added.

He told The Straits Times today (May 19) that the unit was listed at $1.45 million at the start of the year and saw keen interest from the get-go.

The agents received more than five offers for the unit before it was eventually closed at $1.4 million.

City Vue @ Henderson. PHOTO: The Straits Times file

Sers is a scheme by which the government acquires HDB flats in mature estates and provides the homeowner with a compensation package and alternative housing with a 99-year lease, often at subsidised rates.

The flats chosen can then be sold after a minimum occupation period of five years, or seven years from the date of selection, whichever is earlier.

The Henderson unit is just one of 15 flats that have been sold for over $1 million this month alone. 

In April, a similar-sized unit on the same block was sold for $1.38 million, in a deal closed by Jeremy Yong & Christina Tan from Property Lim Brothers of Propnex. 

Yong told AsiaOne that those who came to view the unit, located above the 45th floor, were a mixture of private property downgraders and HDB upgraders.  

"These people like the location and the units because of the views of Orchard Road, CBD and pocket views of Marine Bay Sands and even Sentosa," he said, adding that the sellers of this unit are currently looking to buy a replacement HDB flat in another location.

On that same block, a

nother five-room flat is currently on the market for $1.5 million.

Which just means, the current $1.4 million record may not stand for long. 

candicecai@asiaone.com