Is Buying A New Freehold Prime District Property Just A Dream

Has anyone told you that as a middle-income household, you will just be limited to a buying a home that you can afford based on your income range, and prime area properties would just be a place where only the rich and famous can only afford to buy and live? Well, often times, most people would just acknowledge it and move on.

How about if you allow us to show you some sample of our data, and you decide whether those long-held myths about thinking of buying and living in prime properties that are unaffordable need to be dispelled.

The data

We gathered a sample of 44 new 3-bedroom development projects located in both the prime, and non-prime districts. By prime districts, we are referring to properties that are typically located in districts that are conveniently closest to the city centre and most of these developments are typically located near so-called ‘the best and top schools like Anglo Chinese School, and Nanyang Girls School, etc.’, and/or, it is the district where some of the richest and most famous personalities typically live in. They are also typically grouped under Districts 9,10,11, and parts of 1,2,4,6 and 7. Sentosa Island is also included.

Next, we further filtered these 3-bedders into freehold, and exclude the leasehold as we felt that most Singaporean households, if given a choice of between choosing freehold or leasehold property, they will typically pick the former, assuming all other things remain constant.

How do we define a middle-income household

There is no hard and fast rule as to which household income level is middle-income, or which household income level isn’t. For simplicity purposes, we have used the figure of S$8,220 which was the median household income level as indicated from the Singapore Census of Population 2021 by the Department of Statistics Singapore (Singstat).

According to Singstat, household income is the sum of the gross income of all the members of a household.

Lowest $ per square feet

Looking at the sample of freehold properties located in the prime, and non-prime districts, which in our case for the non-prime districts, we narrowed the freehold properties located in non-prime areas to District 15 (Marine Parade).

Moving on, you can see from the chart above, for 10 Evelyn and Peak Residences, which are located in District 11 (Newton area), we found three units that are somewhat comparable, if not lower as compared to the prices on a per square feet basis ($ per psf) to One Meyer which is located in District 15, and is priced at around S$2,400 – S$2,500 psf.

Largest 3-bedder Unit

Although, the above chart seems to suggest that if given a choice, one will typically go for the largest equivalent 3-bedroom unit, assuming all else equal. However, with a larger sized unit, the quantum (or the absolute dollar amount of the property) will also naturally be higher.

In our sample of data, if a buyer were to go for the largest 3-bedder, he/she will naturally pick properties like Meyer House, and Meyer Mansion which offer floor areas of around 1,400 sq ft to 1,800 sq ft, but at higher quantum dollar sizes of between S$3.5 million to $5.2 million. For example, the quantum dollar amount for Meyer House located at the first column of the above chart was at S$5.186 million, and for the second highest ranked property in terms of floor area, Meyer Mansion was priced at around S$2,526 psf, or S$3.779 million.

Meanwhile, at 10 Eveyln, one can also find an equivalent floor area unit at an average price per square feet of around S$2,300 psf, or around S$3.2 – S$3.3 million range. Moreover, the units located at 10 Evelyn are located at slightly higher floors, as compared to the Meyer Mansion unit illustrated earlier.

Highest Floor Level 3-bedder Unit

ProjectTenureDistrictSizePSF (S$/sq ft)QuantumFloor LevelRegion
Meyer MansionFH151,399$2,912$4,074,58020 – 25RCR
Perfect TenFH101,227$3,508$4,304,00020 – 25CCR
The AtelierFH91,184$2,882$3,412,40020 – 25CCR
The AvenirFH91,141$3,450$3,937,00035 – 40CCR

As a typical home buyer, we understand that there are some buyers who like to enjoy high floor views of the city centre and the surroundings. On top of the earlier attributes an ideal home might be for most Singaporean households, one will also want to buy a high-floor unit at a value-for-money amount.

But, if you want a value-for-money and high floor unit, is there anything to stop you from considering an equivalent apartment and/or condominium unit right in the heart of the city centre.

Guess what! You can also find a 3-bedder freehold condominium unit in the prime district and get the sweeping views of the city centre, and the above table shows the information.

If you have the mentality that as a middle-income household, you are only limited to the non-prime district that is located on a high floor level, and still be able to enjoy the city skyline views. Therefore, based on this approach that you might have, you will naturally choose Meyer Mansion which is located on a high floor and a unit was at around S$2,900 psf or S$4.07 million.

However, if you are willing to look deeper and further, one can also find a high floor unit, and based on the above table, this will be The Avenir which saw one of the units at a higher floor level range of 35th to 40th level, and was priced around S$3,400 – S$3,500 psf, but at a lower dollar quantum of around S$3.9 million to S$4.0 million.

So, what are we trying to get at

At this point, you might question if it is just statistical fluke and/or are we selectively picking data points in order to prove our points.

Our responses are neither of the two. As real estate professionals, we would like all consumers to be educated about the ins and outs of purchasing homes, which are often a once in a life time decision to consider, especially for those first-timer households thinking of upgrading their present lifestyles and homes.

Along with that, we would also hope to change your typically, or long-held misperceptions or perceptions that prime district properties are only limited to the high income earners, or the rich and famous individuals or households you typically read about or come across, and that it is almost impossible to attain that standard of living or lifestyle in any part of your lifetime unless your family background belongs to one of those high income classes, or that you are a successful ‘towkay’ or businessperson.

As real estate professionals, we would like to work with you, be your adviser, and provide value-added information so that you can sharpen your decision-making process, and ultimately make the right property choices. As typical property purchases require high capital commitments, and willingness to shift perceptions, you will be glad to know that as real estate professionals, we belong to a team who is equipped with various years of experiences, and knowledge to help you make better property investing decisions.

So, if you are looking to upgrade to a better standard of living, a better home, a better neighbourhood, and would like to seek for better advice, look no further that John and Hock Meng who will assist you in making your most value-added property investing choices.

We have plenty data or information to share with you if you are keen to know more. However, the most important thing that you need to do is to start making the move, take up the challenge, and take further steps to change, and you can do so now by contacting both John and Hock Meng for further advice and assistance on your next property buying journeys.

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