Completion of DTL2 boosts home prices

The completion of the Downtown Line 2 (DTL2) late last month has bolstered prices of homes near the new stations, bumped up rents and increased sale volumes.

The MRT effect is a well-recognised one. Once a station is completed and starts operations, price adjustments are likely, said Knight Frank research head Alice Tan.

Knight Frank’s analysis of caveats lodged for private apartments along major roads near the DTL2 – Upper Bukit Timah, Bukit Timah, Rochor Canal and Sungei roads – bears this out. Average prices rose 4.5 per cent from the third quarter last year to $1,592 psf in the fourth. Ms Tan noted: “In this post-Total Debt Servicing Ratio period, these average prices have held up well compared with islandwide price trends.”

Average prices of private apartments along these major roads rose 3.58 per cent in the two years to Dec 31 last year, while the Urban Redevelopment Authority’s property price index weakened by about 7.6 per cent. Ms Tan said the presence of the DTL2 likely supported prices of homes near the stations.

There was also heightened buying interest as the DTL2 neared completion. Eco Sanctuary in Chestnut Avenue was 82 per cent sold in December 2014. This rose to 91 per cent sold last November, said Mr Ong Kah Seng, R’ST Research director.

Over the same period, Kingsford Hillview Peak in Hillview Rise went from 33 per cent to 46 per cent sold, while The Skywoods in Dairy Farm Heights rose from 43 per cent to 85 per cent sold, he added.

In the core central region (CCR), new sale prices also appeared to hold up at Robin Residences near Stevens MRT station, said Mr Nicholas Mak, SLP International executive director.

Median prices at the project rose 0.3 per cent year-on-year to $2,378 psf in the second half of last year, compared with a 2.6 per cent fall in the overall CCR price index over the same time. The project had 29 sales in the second half of last year, up from 15 in the first half.

Leasing activity and rents seem to have improved near these stations as well. For example, the number of leases signed in the King Albert Park station area rose 38 per cent from the second quarter of last year to 358 in the third quarter, said Mr Ong. Median rents rose from $3.15 psf per month in the first quarter to $3.23 psf per month in the second and third quarters.

A number of commercial developments near the DTL2 should benefit as well, noted Mr Mak.

Apart from developments around Beauty World station, there is Guthrie House near Sixth Avenue Station, Sim Lim Square, Burlington Square, OG Albert Complex and The Verge near Rochor Station, among others.

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