Stories By: Property Soul (152 Articles Found)

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How well are developers’ new projects selling?

Normanton Park is the biggest new condominium launch since the start of 2021. Before the end of the launch weekend on Jan 17 Sun 6 pm, ST and BT published unanimously a celebratory headline online that read “Normanton…

Why homebuyers do the wrong things

Once we were invited to a friend’s housewarming party. The young couple was pleased to show us around. Suddenly, the wife lamented that they were upset about the agent who sold them the flat and the contractor who…

Best deals in the market as of December 31

What is the biggest difference between an ordinary shopper and a bargain hunter, or an average homebuyer and a value investor? They are two distinctive types of people who have totally different definitions of value-for-money, what they consider…

Another unpublished letter to The Straits Times Forum

Last Tues, MAS has urged households to be prudent when taking up new debt or committing to property purchase. Coincidentally, I have written to the editor of ST on the same subject. Unfortunately, it ended up the same…

Ecohouse conman finally arrested

Ecohouse, a fake Brazilian public housing development, used to be the most popular overseas property project among Singapore investors back in 2012. Two years later, after it closed its office at Suntec City, more than 800 Singapore victims…

Always question what the media tells you

1) How neutral are the spokespersons? – Our media tends to interview industry stakeholders and quote their comments in catchy headlines. It is awkward to ask real estate executives what they think about the property market when their…

My love-hate relationship with CPF

I became a Singapore PR under the AIP scheme the year I relocated to Singapore in 1998. My Singapore citizenship was approved four years later. CPF was something new to me. Initially, I was not comfortable with it.…

Busting six property myths of the Ghost Month

1) You cannot go property viewing during the Ghost Month – Despite what others tell you, it is perfectly fine to arrange property viewings. Just remember that before you make your entry, say this aloud or in your…

How to save air travel, retail and Reit

How much bad news can we take in one week? Singapore’s unemployment rate hit 2.9 per cent in the second quarter. As if it is not bad enough, GIC reported its worst annualized return since 2009. July ends…

A never-published letter to the Straits Times forum

Below is a letter I wrote to the editor of ST three weeks ago. Unfortunately, it was not picked up and has never been published in the ST forum. Let me share the content of the letter in…

Coronavirus crisis will prove survival of the fittest

Survival of the fittest is a Darwinian evolutionary theory that believes during natural selection the weak die, leaving only the strongest to continue living and reproduction. With coronavirus lingering for over two months, we learn that this disease…

3 important lessons we learned from coronavirus

1) The big boys are playing the musical chair game again – See who ends up holding the hot potatoes when the music stops. Knowing the uncertainties ahead, developers and property agents are doing whatever they can to…

The courage to find the truth in new launches

Back in Nov 2018, I have been reporting the high number of returned units for new launch projects. Contrary to what was reported in the media, the impressive number of new units sold could never tally with URA…

Seeing the impact of coronavirus on retailers in one day

Singapore moved up coronavirus outbreak alert to orange in the late afternoon last Fri. The next day I went for my routine trip to the wet market after my morning jog. It was crowded with people stocking up…

How coronavirus may impact properties: Lessons from SARS

2020 Year of the Rat is not just another Lunar New Year. Everyone received far more updates on Wuhan coronavirus than auspicious greetings. SARS happened between Nov 2002 and July 2003, with 8,098 cases and a death toll…

Is home ownership irrelevant for Generation Z?

I notice there are more and more neighbours showing an orange colour triangle label on their car’s front screen. All the kids around have grown up and they are all driving their parents’ cars. My 14-year-old daughter wonders…

Will the cooling new sales market be frozen 2?

To divert public attention from the recent hot topic of supply glut in the property market, ST made use of Nov’s new sales to give developers a face-saving headline: “New private home sales rebound in Nov amid supply…

The naked truth of Singapore’s property porn

According to HSBC’s 2019 survey, Singaporeans spend an average of over three hours per week on property-related window shopping, reading real estate magazines, or browsing property online listings. They can do so even when they do not intend…

3 common lies property agents tell you

Here are the three common lies that agents often tell their clients. 1) I have ready buyers or tenants – The question is: How can they prove it before I engage their service? So, is there really “a…

Will buying a home make us happier?

This week the government announced higher CPF grants and a raised income ceiling for first-time HDB buyers. More citizens are now eligible to buy new BTO flats or resale HDB flats. A recent advertisement from CPF Board is…

Can this ‘CPF Key’ truly unlock the value for old flats?

In May 2019, the government relaxed rules for older people looking to buy old flats using more money from their CPF accounts. Market watchers were quick to highlight the benefits of the change of rules, pointing out that…

Will Hong Kong people buy Singapore homes?

Some readers ask me whether there will be more Hong Kong people buying Singapore homes and whether this will raise local property prices and sales volumes. Like many foreign countries, protests and strikes to Hong Kong people are…

What properties to buy in a recession

When Singapore missed its GDP target in Q2, Maybank said we are heading for a technical recession next quarter. A technical recession happens when there are two successive quarters of fall in GDP. I remember it was July…

3 property statements that don’t hold water

I always believe that there are things best leave it to the professionals, such as legal and taxation matters. On the other hand, there are things best to be managed on your own, especially when it comes to…

The wisdom of passing wealth and properties to the children

We all wish to leave something behind to our next generation. It is a gesture of love and goodwill, and how we want to be remembered. But very often, we don’t know what, when and how to give.…

Property investment tricks revealed

Recently, I received many messages from my blog followers asking me to comment on some social media ads promoting free property seminars and investment schemes. When the market is dead quiet, it is not surprising to see frequent…

To compromise for what?

There are two questions I often get from my blog readers and workshop participants. “You said you only buy an investment property if the yield is 5 percent after expenses. I have gone for many flat viewings but…

Developers have lowered prices. So what?

When everyone is busy with Christmas shopping and year-end travels, developers are trying one last shot to clear as many units as possible from their new launch projects before Christmas. Over the weekend, City Developments targeted young families…

New launch returned units and 3 mysterious cases

This week I browsed the website of Squarefoot to check the number of sold units versus returned units for the newly-launched condo projects. I was surprised to see the extraordinarily high percentage of sold units being returned back…

When developer’s new launch becomes emperor’s new clothes

In my latest youtube video “What Q3 Property Data Tell Us”, I mentioned that developers are not doing so well after the July cooling measures, even though they learn to face the reality that buyers are limited and…

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