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Comments on H1 2023 Government Land Sales Programme

Xian Yang Wong • 09/12/2022

The Government today announced the Government Land Sales (GLS) Programme for the first half of 2023, which comprises seven Confirmed List sites and nine Reserve List sites.

The sites on the Confirmed List are estimated to yield approximately 4,090 homes (including executive condominiums (EC)), the highest since 1H2014. This is around 17% or 585 units more than the 3,505 units released from the 2H2022 Confirmed List and the fifth semi-annual increase in private home supply. Previously, Confirmed List supply was increased by 26%. The slower increase in housing supply reflects resilient market demand amidst economic headwinds and the overhang of cooling measure. Developer demand has also slowed as development risks have risen amidst higher interest rates and construction costs. This is also reflected in slowing activities in the enbloc market. However, given that underlying housing demand remains resilient and continues to accumulate, pushing out new housing supply would mitigate a potential sharp recovery in prices when market conditions recover.

Interesting sites to watch in the Confirmed List include the Tampines Street 62 (Parcel B), Media Circle and Jurong Lake District site.

The EC site at Tampines Street 62 (Parcel B) can yield about 700 EC units and is likely to be in good demand boosted by healthy sales performance at the adjacent EC namely Tenet which managed to move around 72% of total units on its launch day amid limited new EC launches in the East. Given its lower prices, EC has become more attractive to homebuyers as rising interest rates have affected buyers’ affordability. Currently, EC unsold inventory remains relatively low, at around 1,280 units (excluding unsold sites on the Confirmed List), below historical high of about 6,000 units in March 2016.

The Media Circle land parcel can generate an estimated 355 residential units. Located within the knowledge hub of Singapore - one-north, future development on the subject site would be appealing to investors who wish to rent out their units to expats working in the vicinity. Latest sites sold in this area includes two residential-cum-commercial sites at Slim Barracks Rise which attracted keen interests from developers with 10 bids each in tender closings in September 2021.

Another interesting site to watch would be the Jurong lake District white site as it would provide opportunity for developers to participate in the development of Singapore’s 2nd CBD. The site is slated to provide about 600 new private residential units and about 1.1 million sf of commercial space, of which 0.8 million sf would be office space in Phase 1. We anticipate keen developer interest given a limited supply of private residential homes in Jurong East and an expected upward trajectory of Grade A office rents. The last private residential launch in the area was J Gateway back in 2013 which was almost sold out during its first month of launch. However, bids may be limited to big players / consortiums given the scale and high quantum of the development.

The Reserve list can potentially yield 3,625 units and around 1 million sf of commercial space. Within the Reserve List, the Pine Grove (Parcel B) site, the Clementi Avenue 1 site and Lorong 1 Toa Payoh would be sites to watch. The keenly contested Pine Grove (Parcel A) site saw a total of five bids with the top 2 bids being only $800 or 0.0001% apart. For Clementi Ave 1, developers would be encouraged by robust performance of new launches in the area. Interest for the Lorong 1 Toa Payoh site could be supported by limited supply of new launches in the area. The latest site there was sold in 2015 and developed to Gem Residences.



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