Upcoming mega-project launch will set tone for other condos: Analysts

A show-flat of The Florence Residences, a 99-year leasehold condominium developed by Logan Property (Singapore). Between 400 and 500 units are expected to be released on March 2. The 1,410-unit project in Hougang Avenue 2 comprises nine 18-storey towers (above).ST PHOTOS: TIMOTHY DAVID

The upcoming launch of The Florence Residences – a mega project with more than 1,000 units – will likely set the tone for other developments heading to the market this year, some analysts say.

Between 400 and 500 units are expected to be released on March 2, depending on interest at the preview this weekend, said Mr Chng Chee Beow, executive director of Logan Property (Singapore), the developer. “We are targeting an average selling price of $1,450 per sq ft (psf).”

The 1,410-unit leasehold project in Hougang Avenue 2 comprises nine 18-storey towers. Units range from 474 sq ft one-bedders starting at below $700,000, to 1,668 sq ft five-bedders from $2.5 million. The two-bedroom units will likely be priced from under $900,000.

The project is being built on the site of the former Florence Regency and will have a “club condo” concept, including themed pavilions and facilities such as an 80m lagoon pool.

The development will be an eight-minute walk from Kovan MRT station and near the upcoming Hougang interchange station on the Cross Island Line.

Mr Chng said the project may appeal to investors who could rent to workers in Defu Industrial City, which is expected to be completed by 2021.

International Property Advisor chief executive Ku Swee Yong noted: “If they can sell 300 units in their first weekend of launch, that will be quite good.

“The question is whether demand for the Upper Serangoon area has been soaked up by neighbouring projects like Riverfront Residences, Affinity at Serangoon and The Garden Residences.”

Affinity at Serangoon has sold about 45 units at an average price of $1,475 psf since details of the new Cross Island Line were announced late last month. About 360 of the 650 units launched have been sold, according to developer Oxley Holdings.

Cumulative sales at the 1,472-unit Riverfront Residences in Hougang came to 837 as of last December, with 47 sold at the median price of $1,313 psf, official data shows.

Condos in the suburbs priced at above $2 million will likely face more challenges, said Mr Desmond Sim, head of research for Singapore and South-east Asia at CBRE. He added: “It will be interesting to see if the big units will move.

“This is the first of many launches to come. Buyers are still there, but may be spoilt for choice. Price and location are what they are looking out for. If they can’t get the units they want, there’s no rush to get in.”

Hong Kong-listed Logan Property opted to build 1,410 units instead of the maximum allowed 1,446, a company spokesman said.

Mr Chng said: “If it’s for owner-occupied (buyers), the unit size cannot be too small. Our smallest unit is around 480 sq ft, compared with the average shoebox unit, which can be as small as 400 sq ft.”

A Land Transport Authority (LTA) spokesman said that there was no pre-application feasibility study (Pafs) for The Florence Residences as Logan’s outline application was submitted prior to the Pafs requirement announced in November 2017.

“Nonetheless, LTA had required Logan to conduct a traffic impact assessment study. Localised road improvements will be implemented by the developer,” it said.

The Logan spokesman said it will build an additional slip road within its development.

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