Foreigners still snapping up luxury property

December 18th, 2011 at 6:24 pm

Foreign buyers continue to purchase high-end homes in Singapore’s prime central districts. In the first 11 months of 2011, they contributed to 28.7 percent of home transactions in the Core Central Region (CCR).

A CBRE analysis of caveats data by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) also indicated that foreigners accounted for 20.2 percent of home purchases in the Rest of Central Region (RCR) and 14.4 percent in the Outside Central Region (OCR).

Joseph Tan, CBRE’s Executive Director for Residential, said: “These numbers show that foreign buyers are more active in the CCR and RCR where the luxury and prime properties are located.”

For example, of the 39 caveats lodged for Rivergate condo in Robertson Quay, 22 caveats (56.4 percent) were lodged by foreigners. Similarly, foreign buyers showed strong interest in CapitaLand’s d’Leedon condo development in District 10. Of the 209 caveats lodged in 2011, 64 (30.6 percent) were attributed to them.

Meanwhile, CBRE expects the recent cooling measures to have a significant impact on foreign buying activity. “The ABSD measures are introduced to reduce the excessive inflow of foreign liquidity. Therefore, any foreigner intending to buy a home here is likely to reconsider their buying decision in view of the additional 10 percent stamp duty.”

In addition, the consultancy predicts that Singapore’s luxury home prices will drop by 10 to 15 percent in 2012.

Going forward, Tan believes that the new measures are unlikely to be a permanent feature because of the nature of Singapore’s highly open economy.