S’pore 7th most popular property destination for world’s richest

Singapore is still one of the top cities for the world’s super rich to buy luxury residential property, revealed the recent Wealth-X and Sotheby’s International Realty Global Luxury Residential Real Estate Report 2015.

The city-state was ranked 7th on the list but was only one of three cities in Asia Pacific to place in the top 10. The other two are Hong Kong (3rd) and Mumbai (9th). The number one hub for ultra high net worth individuals (UHNWIs) to own prime real estate is New York followed by London.

The report stated that there are a total of 211,275 UHNWIs globally as of end-2014, up 6.0 percent from the year before, who have US$30 million or above in assets and are investing in property worth more than US$1 million.

In Singapore, the average age of an ultra-wealthy home buyer is 59-years-old. Around 25 percent of them work in finance, banking & investment, and know six others who have amassed US$4 billion in wealth.

Moreover, 58 percent are self-made wealth creators with a median net worth of US$105 million, and their top hobby is real estate investment.

According to Wealth-X, Singapore is a preferred location for property buying, especially among Indonesian, Chinese and Indian nationals who are the top foreign owners due to:

–    Low interest rates, stable political, social and economic climate;

–    Good education and a safe environment;

–    Singapore is rivalling Hong Kong as Asia’s financial hub.

“Singapore is a very attractive luxury real estate market with a thriving economy and international marketplace. We completed one of the largest residential transactions in Singapore in 2014. In addition to this robust local market, we manage referrals of Singapore buyers for many of our affiliates around the globe,” said Philip White, President and Chief Executive Officer, Sotheby’s International Realty.

But the report added that the high-end residential market has been affected by government cooling measures and new regulations on relocation to the city-state.

“Cutbacks in housing allowance have resulted in fewer foreign UHNWIs being granted permanent residency, contributing to the disappointing performance of the luxury prime property market in Singapore – as shown by decreasing property prices in Sentosa.”

Despite this, Wealth-X remains confident that Singapore’s prime property market will return to growth over the next year with the expected re-election of the PAP in the coming elections and the government’s promise that no other measures will be implemented.


Romesh Navaratnarajah, Singapore Editor of PropertyGuru Group, wrote this story. To contact him about this or other stories email romesh@propertyguru.com.sg