New executive condos: still strong and in demand
In the world of real estate, condominiums have always been considered dream abodes by people from all walks of life. For starters, condominiums – or condos – are properties that give you the experience of an apartment and a home at the same time. It is considered an apartment because it is situated in a community building wherein you share different amenities with other residents of a building – for example, yards, garages, swimming pools, gyms, and community halls, and are situated within a gated community, etc.
Yet, it is also a home because unlike a typical apartment, you own it, which makes it equivalent to buying a home. These are usually considered luxury real estate properties and are often the preferred choice of many celebrities.
In Singapore, there is another unique type of condominium which is becoming increasingly popular among the masses. It is called executive condominium (EC), and it is slightly different from a private condominium found in the rest of the world because they are managed and subsidized by the government under the Housing and Development Board (HBD).
As a result, they make a perfect choice of home for those who can afford to purchase an HBD flat but do not have the means to invest in a conventional condominium. However, as against conventional condos, executive condos have some government-imposed rules and regulations that occupants have to follow.
For example, in order to own an executive condo, the buyer’s household income must be within $14,000, otherwise, they do not qualify to buy an executive condo. Previously, the limit was $12,000 which changed in 2015.
There are also other rules that EC owners have to abide by. If a buyer, for instances, purchases the EC directly from a developer, they are not allowed to rend or sold out the property for a minimum of five years. After the five-year period, the house can only be sold or rented out to citizens of Singapore, or those who have permanent residences to live in the country.
The executive condos can only be sold to foreigners after the owner has owned the property for a minimum of 10 years.
Despite all these rules and regulations, buying an executive condom is still a preferred choice among the masses in Singapore, and sales of new executive condominiums have continued to increase.
Here are some reasons as to why the property is still in high demand and why are sales still strong.
1. Pricing strategies of executive condominiums are strong and favourable
One of the main reasons why the sale of new ECs has remained in high demand in Singapore is because of the robust pricing strategies adopted by difference EC projects across the country. By introducing competitive prices, developers have attracted a lot of potential buyers and as a result, the sales of these properties remain a popular choice among the middle-class section of the society.
2. Likely price cuts
The idea of living in a beautiful executive condominium is a dream-come-true for many Singaporeans. This is because this type of property is affordable and comes with a variety of benefits for the owners, and now with the drops in prices, more and more homebuyers want to make the most out of this opportunity.
Although it doesn’t apply to all the ECs in the country, many developers have lowered the costs of these properties over the last two years. This is because of the increasing number of choices available to buyers in the real estate market which compels developers to cut prices in order to increase sales.
3. Revision in income ceiling
As of August 2016, there have been new regulations which have raised the average household monthly income of the homebuyer from $12,000 to $14,000 (as aforementioned) to become eligible as an EC buyer.
Predictions had shown that the increase in income will also lead to an increase in the demands of building new ECs, however, this has rather been a slow process. Nonetheless, because of the convenience in prices of ECs, they are still in high demand across the country.
4. 2018 turned out to be better for sales of ECs
As compared to 2016 and 2017, this year saw a greater increase in the sales of executive condos across the country. Strong buyer interest indicates that the properties are still very high in demand and people do not necessarily pay too much attention to the property market at the moment. Moreover, people still have the incentive to have their ECs privatized after a decade.
5. Amenities and luxuries
The most significant reason as to why executive condominiums remain so popular among potential home buyers is because of the advantages attached to these properties. Owning a conventional condo is very difficult and expensive in a country like Singapore where living costs are generally very high.
Alternatively, people who love to own condos can opt for executive condos because they come with exactly the same amenities, such as swimming pools, gyms, gated-community environment, security, and other perks and privileges that they would find in a conventional condo. And the best part is that the price is much less in the case of ECs.
Therefore, buying an EC fulfills people’s dream to own a condominium, all they have to do is to wait for a few years so that they don’t have to abide by the rules and regulations anymore.