Last month’s top-selling project was the 99-year leasehold JadeScape, which is on the former Shunfu Ville site near the Marymount MRT station, with 327 units sold at a median price of $1,669 per sq ft (psf). Selangor Dredging’s freehold Jui Residences in Serangoon Road - 31 units were transacted at a median price of $1,704 psf. Oxley Holdings sold 82 units at Mayfair Gardens in Rifle Range Road near King Albert Park MRT station had a median price of $1,945 psf. At The Jovell along Flora Drive in the Loyang area, Tripartite Developers moved 41 units at a median price of $1,259 psf last month.
The September sales numbers shows that buyers' knee jerk reaction from the recent ABSD hike in July may have been over since this year's September sales are the highest September new home sales since 2013 and given that the Hungry Ghost Festival continued into the early part of September this year because some buyers avoid entering into property transactions during the festival.
Market confidence seems to have improved with seven new private residential projects launched in September. Previously launched projects such as Stirling Residences, Park Colonial and Riverfront Residences are selling reasonably well at current price levels. September’s number brings total new private homes sales for the first three quarters of the year to a good figure of 7,220 units.
While demand exuberance is restrained by existing measures, developers are also observed to be phasing out their launches, drip-feeding the market with supply so as to react to market movements accordingly as the tighter financing rules and higher additional buyers’ stamp duty (ABSD) of up to 20 per cent for foreign buyers have clipped foreign buying interest further.
Singapore issued on Wednesday (17 Oct 2018) stricter guidelines raising the average size of private flats to 85 sq metres from 70 sq metres. Singapore puts Hong Kong to shame with average home sizes in the private market that are three times larger, or 915 sq ft, compared with the 300 sq ft stipulated by Hong Kong’s Urban Renewal Authority.
Hong Kong desperately needs a restriction on the minimum size of flats according to Hong Kong's citizens. Hong Kong’s tiniest flats start at 123 sq ft – less than the size of a parking space – prompting some to call on Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor to stop the practice.
In Hong Kong, many developers in recent years have started building tiny flats, often less than 200 sq ft, as home prices rose. Some experts feel that “such small spaces do not match the government’s intention to create a liveable city of high density. It also raises the question whether we have made good use of our land resources”. Developers in Hong Kong, the world’s most expensive property market, are building smaller flats as home prices rose to an average HK$13,561 a square foot, compared to a median monthly income of HK$16,800.