It’s tough for developers to sell condos in this saturated market, especially if the project faces competing developments in the same location. The joint-developers of The Woodleigh Residences, Singapore Press Holdings (SPH) and Kajima Development, have certainly felt the heat. In its first year of launch, only 26 buyers chose to exercise their options for the 667-unit condo.
What happened was that, despite being the first to launch, The Woodleigh Residences was outmuscled by projects that launched later in the year, namely Park Colonial and The Tre Ver. The main reason? Although buyers knew that The Woodleigh Residences had the distinct advantage of being a mixed-use development atop Woodleigh MRT station, they did not agree with the launch price of $2,000 per square foot (psf).
A breakthrough in sales for the condo only came in May 2019, when the developer slashed psf prices from $2,026 to $1,844. In that month, 56 units were snapped up as The Woodleigh Residences outperformed its rivals in monthly sales for the first time. For the rest of 2019, an additional 104 units were snapped up at prices averaging $1,865.
There was also a key push factor: Prices of Park Colonial (located right across the road from The Woodleigh Residences) went the opposite direction, gradually increasing from a launch price of $1,751 to $1,857 by the end of 2019 as more of its units got taken up.
A Top 10 best selling new launch condo in July 2020
Today, on an average psf price basis, The Woodleigh Residences is no longer the most expensive new launch condo in the area, despite arguably having the biggest locational advantage.
Buyers are taking the plunge, in droves. In July 2020, 34 units of The Woodleigh Residences were sold at an average of $1,905 psf, compared to 4 units sold at an average of $1,944 psf for neighbouring Park Colonial.
Perhaps far more important was the fact that units at The Woodleigh Residences now have the lowest quantums. The cheapest unit transacted was $1.026 million for a 570 square feet (sq ft) two-bedder, single-bath unit that’s highly compact in size. In total, 15 units were sold for under $1.3 million—all 2-bedroom units with either one or two bathrooms ranging up to 667 sq ft.
In comparison, the cheapest units for Park Colonial and The Tre Ver that were sold in July 2020 cost $1.343 million (678 sq ft, 2-bed, 2-bath) and $1.28 million (743 sq ft, 2-bed, 2-bath) respectively.
The sales numbers for The Woodleigh Residences in July have put it in the Top 10 best selling condos for the month. In August 2020, we project 40 to 45 units sold—a further improvement on July’s figures.
Our take on the pricing for The Woodleigh Residences
Private residential buyers have long favoured residential-commercial developments with direct MRT access for the convenience they offer. Already, the launch of Sengkang Grand Residences in November 2019 gave these buyers plenty of food for thought, even though The Woodleigh Residences remains the only such development in the Rest of Central Region (RCR).
Located four MRT stops further away from the city at Buangkok, the 680-unit Sengkang Grand Residences was launched at around $120 psf cheaper than The Woodleigh Residences, reflecting its Outside Central Region (OCR) location.
Buyers went absolutely nuts for Sengkang Grand Residences upon its launch, snapping up 225 units. At time of writing, 37% of the units of the development have been sold, compared to 38% for The Woodleigh Residences.
We think that units at The Woodleigh Residences will remain at a highly competitive pricing (around $1,900 psf) going into September and October 2020, and it isn’t a coincidence. We feel that the developer is currently motivated to sell as many units as possible before another formidable mixed-use, integrated-with-MRT development shows up on the market later this year as competition, this time in Pasir Ris.
For now, The Woodleigh Residences has definitely hit the buyer sweet spot, judging by sales alone.
Buyers who are hunting for the lowest quantum, but desire the convenience of MRT-integrated developments, will have to decide between whether a RCR premium is justified. To do so, they’ll need to look beyond price and location, and scrutinise every aspect of the development—from the facilities and layout to potential capital appreciation—to arrive at a decision they can be comfortable with, long after Covid-19 is over.
Which MRT-integrated condo would you pick? Let us know in the comments below!
If you liked this article, 99.co recommends OPINION: Living through COVID-19 has taught me how important amenities are and Woodleigh Residences Sees High Interest During Launch
Looking for a