Condo Review: Is The Woodleigh Residences A Good Buy?

Why I Chose To Review The Woodleigh Residences

Following my review of Kent Ridge Hill Residences, I have decided to continue writing on the same topic. To find a property in densely populated Singapore with a greenery view right in your living room. While previously a rare commodity, the recent increase in the supply of housing units(due to the enbloc fever) has suddenly made them more available in today’s market. This post will be part 2 in a series that explores new launches with parks right beside them. Links to the other post in this series will be made available at the bottom of this page.

Location Of The Woodleigh Residences

The Woodleigh Residences is located at Bidadari Park Drive. Tucked in between the busy arterial Upper Serangoon Road that brings you directly into the city centre as well as Bidadari Park, a tranquil urban oasis that will act as a green lung for the Bidadari estate in 2020.

The project is also an integrated development that houses three levels of commercial shops, including a supermarket, community centre, childcare, banks, medical facilities and a police post. With everything directly below the residences, residents staying there will have everything they need under one roof. Being an integrated development, it is also directly connected to Woodleigh MRT station, the underground bus interchange and Bidadari Park.

The Single Most Important Attribute Of The Woodleigh Residences

Conveniences aside, integrated developments are also a scarce commodity in Singapore. Currently, there are only six such other projects that offer the same features. These include Watertown, Bedok Residences, Centris, Compass Heights, Hillion Residences and North Park Residences. And of these 6, only Watertown and North Park Residences have minimal greenery facing units. Since both are sold out, the only way to acquire them is to wait for them to appear in the resale market. And even if they do, it may not be the unit type you are looking at nor prices you expected them to sell.

In most condos, the focus is always to create a centrepiece at the heart of the development. These centrepieces can be common facilities such as the swimming pool, clubhouse or in some cases, just a vast green lawn. Units facing these facilities will always command a higher premium compared to those facing the road or elsewhere. In the case of The Woodleigh Residences, the facilities are not the main highlight. The architect understands this and has designed the entire condo into a horseshoe layout facing Alkaff Lake. With this arrangement, more than 50% of the units can get a view of either Alkaff Lake or Bidadari Park. Either directly or diagonally from their living room.

Facilities At The Woodleigh Residences

While you may think having a greenery view right in your living room at an integrated development is impressive enough, what takes the cake is the indoor onsen. The indoor onsen, in essence, is an extension of The Woodleigh Residences via a link bridge across Bidadari Park Drive. This elevated teardrop structure puts you directly in front of Alkaff Lake, so you can relax in an indoor “hot spring” while facing the lake. An experience that you can never replicate anywhere else. So even if you do not own a unit directly facing the greenery, this experience is available to all residents, be it rain or shine. This ideal getaway to relax is right at home. If you are not a resident, a restaurant directly below the onsen also offers the same view, albeit not the same experience.

thewoodleighresidencesindooronsen

The Indoor Onsen(For Residents) With The Restaurant At The Lower Level

 

thewoodleighresidencesmodel

Location Of The Onsen At The Woodleigh Residences

In addition to the Onsen, The Woodleigh Residences also feature several facilities in the heart of the development. These include your standard swimming pools, clubhouse, kid’s pool, playground and BBQ area. What’s missing is the tennis court. I believe that in the design process of ensuring most units get the lake view, the horseshoe layout takes precedence. Since tennis courts are always never centrepieces, there is simply no right place to put them. Perhaps that is the reason why there are no tennis courts in this development.

What’s So Special About Bidadari Park?

The word Bidadari is a Malay term for “fairy”. The origins from the name of the estate came from a Danish woman Zubaidah Binti Abdullah who was the 2nd wife of Abu Bakar, the first Sultan of modern Johor. The estate was a gift to her, and I presume it was her beauty that inspired this name. However, the Sultan moved to Johor in 1885, and so did her. The palace in the estate was then demolished and gave way for a cemetery. Since 1996, the government has decided to redevelop the entire area (much like Bishan, Changi, Novena).

There are three main features of this park. The first is Alkaff Lake. The inspiration for Alkaff Lake was taken from the previous Alkaff Lake Garden(or Happy Garden). A Japanese inspired garden, popular with dating couples and families back in the 1930s with the main feature that included an artificial lake. In this new version, Alkaff Lake not only has the same tranquillity but also a rain tree on an island right in the middle of the lake!

For the kids, there is a 5-meter tall tree house called the “nest”. Likely inspired by the wood trails nearby and giving children a similar experience of playing “in the woods” but yet with all the safety features thrown in.

Lastly, there is a heritage walk to give visitors a perspective of what Bidadari used to be back in the good old days.

Image result for bidadari pak hdb

Overview of Bidadari Park. Source: The Straits Times

The Woodleigh Residences Layout and Floor Plans

Since its relaunch, The Woodleigh Residences showflat has undergone a bit of transformation. I will be showing you some of the latest updated showflat photos and some of the more remarkable features for each unit type.

3 Bedroom Layout

Record land prices also mean higher PSFs, which directly translates to a higher selling price. Most of the time, to keep units affordable, some developers have resorted to reducing the sizes of the common bedrooms to fit in just a single bed. In the case of The Woodleigh Residences, except for a few stacks, most of the three bedroom unit types can fit in a queen bed. I believe that the developer places comfort and practicality above costs.

thewoodleighresidences3bedroomshowflatlayout

3 Bedroom Showflat Layout

 

thewoodleighresidences3bedroomshowflatlivingroom

3 Bedroom Living Room

 

thewoodleighresidencesshowflat3bedroomcommonbedroom

Common Bedroom Large Enough For A Queen Bed

 

thewoodleighresidencesshowflat3bedroommasterbedroom

Master bedroom

Developed jointly by Singapore Press Holdings and Japanese partner Kajima, it is inevitable that there will be Japanese elements within the development. What better way to showcase it with one of the most technologically advanced toilets in the world right at The Woodleigh Residences. Although, it is a scaled down version of some of the Japanese models, having this feature would mean that you will never need ever to buy a single roll of toilet paper ever again. Well, maybe still occasionally since only the master bathroom will have this feature installed. The rest of the common bathrooms are shall we say, are still common.

thewoodleighresidencestototoilet

Toto Toilet Bowl. You Will Never Need Toilet Paper Ever Again

 

thewoodleighresidencestoiletbowlcontroller

Yes. The Toilet Bowl Comes With A Control.

The three bedroom layout also features several kitchen configurations. They range from the conventional enclosed ones to a verandah styled version right beside the balcony. Depending on your usage, there is always some unit type to cater to your needs.

The Woodleigh Residences 3 Bedroom Floor Plans Type D3, D3-P

4 Bedroom Layout

More commonly found in district 9, 10, 11 and the core central regions of Singapore, the private lift is a hallmark of luxury. With a land costs of already $1181psf ppr for The Woodleigh Residences, what’s adding a little more construction costs to elevate the four-bedroom units to a more luxurious status.

thewoodleighresidencesshowflat4bedroomlayout

4 Bedroom Showflat Layout

 

thewoodleighresidencesprivateliftlobby

Private Lift Lobby For The 4 Bedroom Units.

Another feature that is seldom seen in other developments is the provision of a two door fridge. For a family household which requires four bedrooms, there is an absolute need for a refrigerator of this size. Even though the supermarket is right downstairs.

thewoodleighresidences4bedroomlivingroom

4 Bedroom Living Room

 

thewoodleighresidences4bedroomkitchenwithfridge

Kitchen Layout With 2 Door Fridge

 

thewoodleighresidenceskitchenwithappliances

Kitchen With Appliances Equipped From De Dietrich

Location To Public Transporation And Distance To City Centre

With the Woodleigh MRT station directly below, it is meaningless to state the distance to the MRT station. Instead, I will indicate the walking distance to the Stamford American International School. This international school provides education for expats with kids ranging from 18 months to 18 years. Potential tenants can come from either the teaching staff or families who send their kids there. Especially ideal for those with younger kids since they can walk to school. You don’t have to be reliant on school buses, which sometimes have a rather long travelling time. Or being held ransom by bus operators who sometimes charge ridiculously expensive fees.

One of the other benchmarks I use is the distance and time taken to One Raffles Quay, Singapore’s only financial district. It is also one of the significant sources of tenants in Singapore. As seen from the map, there are various options to get there. I believe the best one is via the North-East line before changing to the downtown line. That way, you can get to work in all weather conditions without using an umbrella.

Is The Woodleigh Residences A Good Buy From An Investment Angle?

Some people say that The Woodleigh Residences is a terrible buy because of the ridiculously high psf in that vicinity. Secondly, the development didn’t do well when it first launched back in 2018. However, to understand if something is a good buy, I always use rental yields as one of the benchmarks for measurement. Numbers do not lie. They also do not have any sentiments or hidden agenda, either good or bad.

That said, yields are not the only factor that can affects prices. In some instances, a drop in rental yield does not mean a reduction in capital prices. Interestingly enough, in some projects, prices continue to rise despite a 10% drop in rentals. I might write about this phenomenon one day, but for now, I will focus on the rental yields for The Woodleigh Residences.

Calculation Of The Rental Yield At The Woodleigh Residences 

The Woodleigh Residences is an integrated development; the best alternative is to use another integrated development for reference. However, due to the scarcity of these products, a direct comparison is not possible. The closest option is The Poiz Residences, which was just completed recently in 2018. The Poiz Residences is a mixed development with retail stores on the ground floor and residences on top. What’s more, it is also next to Potong Pasir Station. Using this will be the best product for comparison purposes. Data extracted is based on the most recent transactions dated 12th July 2019. Due to varying sizes and varying transacted psf prices. I will tabulate and calculate average psf and use this to calculate the expected yields for The Woodleigh Residences.

The Poiz Residences Rental Prices

Average PricesSizePricePSFDate Rented
1109 sqft$4500$4.06 psf4 May 2019
Average Rental PSF$4.06 psf
829 sqft$3350$4.04 psf26 June 2019
840 sqft$3550$4.23 psf20 June 2019
839 sqft$3500$4.17 psf16 June 2019
Average Rental PSF$4.14 psf
527 sqft$2500$4.74 psf11 Jun 2019
441 sqft$2300$5.22 psf10 Jun 2019
441 sqft$2400$5.44 psf1 Jun 2019
581 sqft$2600 $4.48 psf22 May 2019
538 sqft$2300$4.28 psf15 May 2019
538 sqft$2600$4.83 psf11 May 2019
420 sqft$2150$5.12 psf10 May 2019
527 sqft$2700$5.12 psf8 May 2019
441 sqft$2300$5.22 psf6 May 2019
Average Rental PSF$4.93 psf

Although I do have the full price list for The Woodleigh Residences, there are a significant number of units that are unreleased. Calculating average psf of the entire development will be meaningless. Instead, I have decided to use the lowest price units or starbuy prices as references. Do take note that since these are starbuy units, they might not be available by the time I write this article.

The Woodleigh Residences Rental Yield Analysis (2 Bedroom)

Unit TypeUnit Size Use For Rental ComparisonExpected Rental Price
($4.93 psf x sqft)
Property PriceGross Annual YieldInitial Investment (25% + Stamp Duty)Gross Annual Yield On Initial Investment
2 Bedroom570 sqft$2810$1,038,0003.25%$285,62011.80%
2 Bedroom 2 Bath667 sqft$3288$1,161,000 3.39%$321,290
12.28%

The Woodleigh Residences Rental Yield Analysis (3 Bedroom)

Unit TypeUnit Size Use For Rental ComparisonExpected Rental Price
($4.14 psf x sqft)
Property PriceGross Annual YieldInitial Investment (25% + Stamp Duty)Gross Annual Yield On Initial Investment
3 Bedroom850 sqft$3519$1,745,0002.42%$490,6508.60%

The Woodleigh Residences Rental Yield Analysis (3 Bedroom Deluxe)

Unit TypeUNIT SIZE USE FOR RENTAL COMPARISONExpected Rental Price
($4.06 psf x sqft)
Property PriceGross Annual YieldInitial Investment
(25% + Stamp Duty)
Gross Annual Yield On Initial Investment
3 Bedroom Deluxe1076 sqft$4368$2,249,0002.33%$636,8108.23%
Summary

With the assumption that The Woodleigh Residences will fetch the same rental prices as The Poiz Residences.¬† It does seem that the smaller units make more financial sense compared to the bigger units from the investment angle. How about the potential upside or the risk involved in The Woodleigh Residences? Well, in all my reviews, I always feature this disclaimer that nobody can predict the future or time the Singapore’s property market. The only thing you can predict with a great degree of accuracy is what is going to happen in the neighbourhood and how it affects prices. For further analysis and a more in-depth study of The Woodleigh Residences, contact us, and we will get back to you shortly.

On the other hand, if you are looking for a home which includes the MRT at your doorstep, conveniences of shops and restaurants right downstairs and the incredible life experience of getting into an onsen facing Alkaff lake. The Woodleigh Residences is the only one of a kind development out there.

For information on The Woodleigh Residences such as prices, balance units, floor plans or e-brochures, visit our microsite at https://www.thewoodleighresidences.cos.sg.

Other reviews of condos that are right next to a park!

-Is Kent Ridge Hill Residences A Good Buy?

-Is The Woodleigh Residences A Good Buy?

-The Timeless Masterpiece That Is Nouvel 18

Article contributed by Jerry Wong

Jerry Wong is a realtor with Huttons Asia Pte Ltd. He loves coffee, cookies and condos. Most importantly, he loves connecting people to properties and gets enormous satisfaction when they acquire their dream home or make that capital upside in just a matter of months. Buy Jerry a coffee, and he will meet up with you on a 1 to 1 session to share the following

  1. How certain factors affect real estate prices. (Using historical transactions as references)
  2. Applying lessons from history to determine if a condo has the potential for upside or not. These condos can be those under construction, resale or the very one you are staying in right now.
  3. Or prepare the toughest question you have on your mind! If it is interesting enough, the answer will be in a blog post and shared with everyone!

You can also subscribe to our Facebook page and receive the latest real estate updates in Singapore!

Other Property Reviews

By Jerry Wong

The Reason Why I Write Property Reviews

The Reason Why I Wrote An Article About Why I Write Property Reviews A few days ago, I received a...
Read More
By Jerry Wong

Condo Review: Under The Shelter Of The Clement Canopy

Why I Chose To Review The Clement Canopy One of the best things about being a realtor is that we...
Read More
By Jerry Wong

Review: Meet 111 Emerald Hill, The Orchard Road Condo With The Permanent Unblocked View

Introduction Of 111 Emerald Hill One of the best things about real estate is that I get to travel to...
Read More

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *