St Thomas Ville, a freehold collective sale site at 38 St Thomas Walk in the prime district 9, has just been launched for sale by tender by sole marketing agent, JLL.
St Thomas Ville was launched for tender in August last year at the minimum price of S$58 million and the tender was called off due to delays in verification of technical details, stretching late into the year-end holiday season.
The Collective Sale Committee has now decided on the launch on the back of more than 80 per cent owners’ consent to the collective sale agreement.
The twelve-storey development comprising 23 apartments is located on the highest point of St Thomas Walk and has a regular shaped plot. Under the 2014 Master Plan, the 11,407 sq ft site is zoned ‘Residential’ with a gross plot ratio of 2.8 and an allowable height of up to 36 storeys. Based on reply from the Land Transport Authority, the site is not subject to Pre-Application Feasibility Study and as it is also located within the Central Area, the guidelines on minimum average size of 85 sqm is not applicable.
The plot is within a short stroll to both the Great World City and the famed Orchard Road shopping district – a vibrant 2.2km shopping belt with over 800,000 sqm of retail, entertainment and dining options, civic and cultural amenities, as well as regionally renowned private medical facilities. It will also enjoy excellent accessibility with the upcoming Great World MRT Station (on the Thomson-East Coast line) being a mere 600m walk away.
Within a short 5 to 10 minutes’ drive, residents from St Thomas Ville can reach many other amenities with ease, including Robertson Quay, Boat Quay, Liang Court, Chinatown, as well as Raffles Place and Marina Bay.
In addition, the site is in close proximity to established primary and international schools. The popular River Valley Primary School is within one kilometre of the site, while reputable educational institutions such as the ISS International School and Chatsworth International School are in the vicinity.
The owners of St Thomas Ville set a reasonable minimum price and are expecting bids in excess of $58 million, which reflects about $1,816 per sq ft per plot ratio (psf/pr) before factoring in bonus balcony.
There is no development charge payable for the intensification of the site even for bonus gross floor area up to 10 per cent, due to a high development baseline.
“Units at nearby 8 St Thomas and newly-launched RV Altitude have averaged prices of about $3,220 and $2,890 psf respectively, signifying the continued interest and demand in private residential units located in prime district 9”, said Mr. Tan Hong Boon, Executive Director of Capital Markets at JLL, Singapore.
“With the recent market cooling measures introduced since July last year, large residential sites have been weighted down by the higher risks to the developers, due to the hefty 25 per cent Additional Buyer’s Stamp Duty if they fail to fulfill the remission conditions. St Thomas Ville’s excellent locational attributes would appeal to small and mid-sized developers looking for smaller development plots in prime areas with much lower risk with its palatable price quantum”, he added.
The tender for St Thomas Ville closes on Wednesday, 27 March 2019, at 3.00 p.m.
Chief mortgage consultant of iCompareLoan, Paul Ho, pointed out that the rules for en bloc sale are quite onerous and stringent and is governed by the Land Titles (Strata) Act – section 84A. Over the years, additions and amendments by the Ministry of Law to the en bloc law have made the collective sale rules even tighter.
He said that many of the home owners who refinanced their home loans to fixed rate home loans or those with 2 years locked-in or 3 years locked-in period will incur full home loan redemption penalty. This penalty is usually 1.5% of the loan amount. This tends to affect those who have bought their properties in recent years as their loan size tends to be bigger and their corresponding home loan redemption penalty higher.
Mr Ho suggested that if one’s home is at risk of en bloc, the owner could consider a home loan where there is no locked-in penalty, but instead entails a higher housing interest rate cost. The next best option is to look for packages with a waiver of locked-in penalty due to sale of property. Such owners may contact a mortgage broker to assist them to find such packages with waiver of locked-in penalty.
In order to understand how and whether to go into an En Bloc sales and sign on the Collective Sales Agreement (CSA), the owners will need to know how long it will take you to complete the En Bloc sales in case it is successful.The maximum and minimum duration of the en bloc sales process as indicated in the cumulative timeline in the table is roughly between 18.5 months to 38.5 months. The earliest any home owners can receive any en bloc sales proceeds could be around 13.5 months and the latest will be 32.5 months.
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