Square Foot Research Singapore

Shoebox Units - Everybody's Watching 'Em

GuillemardEdge

In our very first Market Watch, we chose to look at none other than the shoebox phenomenon. A new set of cooling measures has been announced to cap the number of units in new developments located outside of the central area.

Shoebox units need no introduction. They have gotten much spotlight lately. In short, these are units less than 500 sq ft. They began to appear in bigger numbers in 2007/2008 but used to stay confined within the City and City Fringe districts. They have since made their way to the various mass market districts, where the rental market for such units is new, untested, and faces competition from HDB flats.

In fact, mass market dominates the shoebox market now. Based on caveats received so far in 2012 for shoebox units, approximately two-thirds are located in the mass market districts, nearly a two-fold increase from the previous year. Buyers with HDB addresses contribute more than half of the total purchases, from 55.7% last year to over 60% this year. However, there is no dominance of any price region by any particular addressee group, although one might be inclined to think that HDB dwellers are scooping up the lower priced units.

MND has announced that, effective from 4 November 2012, new developments located outside of the central area will be restricted in terms of the maximum number of units allowed to be built. The figure is based on the maximum allowable gross floor area (excluding any bonus) divided by an assumed unit size of 70 sqm.

Shoebox units are sold at 20-30% premium compared to larger units. The most expensive shoebox ever sold was a unit at Robinson Suites that was sold for $1.68m, or $3,399psf. The smallest shoebox ever sold was a mere 258 sq ft (the size of two and a half carpark lots) at Suites @ Guillemard.

We do see why shoebox units are well-liked. For owners of private properties, since they can no longer buy resale HDB flats without having to dispose their existing private properties, shoebox units become their only option given a budget of about $500,000. For HDB dwellers, it is a first step towards the private market. Given market prices are feeling very peak'ish, investors might want to limit any additional exposure to the property market, keeping investment sizes small.

Distribution of Shoebox Units

Note: Mouseover to see the property's name.
Source: URA, squarefoot.com.sg
Launched before 2008
Launched after 2008

Transaction Prices and Sales

Extreme Cases

Shoebox units less than 30 sqm

Source: URA,
Contract Date Project Name Tenure Area
(sqft)
Purchase Price
($)
Purchase Price
($psf)
Region Planning Area
14 Mar 2018 SUITES @ GUILLEMARD Freehold 258 445,000 1,723 Central Geylang
29 Dec 2017 N.A. 999 YRS FR 01/01/1954 0 3,900,000 0
29 Nov 2017 CITY SUITES Freehold 0 852,800 0 Central Novena
21 Nov 2017 FRANKEL ESTATE Freehold 0 3,330,000 0 East Bedok
16 Nov 2017 FRANKEL ESTATE Freehold 0 5,860,000 0 East Bedok
13 Oct 2017 TAI HWAN GARDEN Freehold 0 7,250,000 0 North East Serangoon
9 Oct 2017 N.A. GT 75 0 6,750,000 0
27 Sep 2017 TAI HWAN GARDEN Freehold 0 5,630,000 0 North East Serangoon
26 Sep 2017 N.A. GT 61 0 16,800,000 0
6 Sep 2017 FRANKEL ESTATE Freehold 0 3,800,000 0 East Bedok
18 Aug 2017 ST ANNE'S WOOD 999 Yrs FROM 1875 0 2,381,000 0 North East Sengkang
7 Aug 2017 N.A. GT 10 0 2,000,000 0
18 Jul 2017 N.A. GT 368 0 2,800,000 0
17 Jul 2017 N.A. GT 42 0 21,000,000 0
19 Jun 2017 N.A. - 0 1,238,888 0
9 Jun 2017 N.A. GT 66 & 78 0 3,500,000 0
8 May 2017 TAI YUAN GARDEN Freehold 0 3,400,000 0 North East Serangoon
3 May 2017 FRANKEL ESTATE Freehold 0 4,200,000 0 East Bedok
27 Apr 2017 VILLAS AT KEW 99 Yrs FROM 1994 0 1,860,000 0 East Bedok
10 Apr 2017 TAI KENG GARDENS Freehold 0 2,800,000 0 North East Hougang
7 Apr 2017 6 DERBYSHIRE Freehold 0 1,977,950 0 Central Novena
6 Apr 2017 TRE RESIDENCES 99 Yrs FROM 2014 0 1,287,000 0 Central Geylang
30 Mar 2017 N.A. GT 21 0 1,100,000 0
3 Mar 2017 6 DERBYSHIRE Freehold 0 1,905,138 0 Central Novena
16 Feb 2017 TAI YUAN GARDEN Freehold 0 3,350,000 0 North East Serangoon
24 Jan 2017 OPERA ESTATE Freehold 0 4,350,000 0 East Bedok
1 Oct 2013 SUITES @ GUILLEMARD Freehold 258 508,000 1,966 Central Geylang
3 Apr 2013 SUITES @ GUILLEMARD Freehold 258 495,000 1,916 Central Geylang
15 Jun 2012 SUITES @ GUILLEMARD Freehold 258 495,000 1,916 Central Geylang
13 May 2011 KENT RESIDENCES Freehold 312 550,000 1,762 Central Kallang
28 Jan 2011 SUITES @ GUILLEMARD Freehold 258 423,000 1,637 Central Geylang
11 Nov 2009 SUITES @ GUILLEMARD Freehold 258 386,000 1,494 Central Geylang
9 Nov 2009 SUITES @ GUILLEMARD Freehold 258 381,000 1,475 Central Geylang
9 Nov 2009 SUITES @ GUILLEMARD Freehold 258 391,000 1,514 Central Geylang
9 Nov 2009 SUITES @ GUILLEMARD Freehold 258 375,000 1,452 Central Geylang
25 Apr 2008 KENT RESIDENCES Freehold 312 398,000 1,275 Central Kallang
18 Jan 2008 BAN GUAN PARK Freehold 0 2,200,000 0 Central Bukit Timah
1 Feb 2005 SELETARIS Freehold 280 130,000 465 North Sembawang
1 Apr 1999 MOUNTBATTEN LODGE Freehold 280 235,000 840 Central Marine Parade

Top 10 most expensive shoebox units

Source: URA,
Contract Date Project Name Tenure Area
(sqft)
Purchase Price
($)
Purchase Price
($psf)
Region Planning Area
14 Aug 2017 26 NEWTON Freehold 473 12,222,705 25,840 Central Novena
13 Aug 2019 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 420 1,747,151 4,162 Central River Valley
13 Mar 2019 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 452 1,793,814 3,968 Central River Valley
9 Sep 2019 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 452 1,778,351 3,934 Central River Valley
6 Aug 2019 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 420 1,632,990 3,890 Central River Valley
30 May 2019 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 463 1,790,000 3,867 Central River Valley
3 Nov 2018 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 463 1,773,000 3,831 Central River Valley
17 May 2019 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 452 1,729,948 3,827 Central River Valley
10 Oct 2019 MIDTOWN BAY 99 Yrs FROM 2018 484 1,878,700 3,804 Central Downtown Core
8 May 2019 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 452 1,710,000 3,782 Central River Valley

Breakdown of Shoebox Purchases

Breakdown by Region

Source: URA, http://www.squarefoot.com.sg

Breakdown by Buyer Profile

Source: URA, http://www.squarefoot.com.sg

Recent shoebox transactions

Note: Based on purchases in the past 6 months excluding bulk purchases
Source: URA,
Project Name Tenure Average Price*
($)
Average Price*
($psf)
No. of
Transactions*
Region Planning Area
10 EVELYN Freehold 1,390,000 2,807 1 Central Region Novena
18 WOODSVILLE Freehold 788,000 1,591 1 Central Region Toa Payoh
28 IMPERIAL RESIDENCES Freehold 630,000 1,428 1 Central Region Geylang
3 CUSCADEN Freehold 1,631,960 3,446 1 Central Region River Valley
35 GILSTEAD Freehold 1,351,000 2,789 1 Central Region Novena
38 I SUITES Freehold 743,000 1,501 1 Central Region Geylang
77 @ EAST COAST Freehold 738,000 1,804 1 East Region Bedok
AFFINITY AT SERANGOON 99 Years Leasehold 752,762 1,586 21 North East Region Serangoon
AIRSTREAM Freehold 650,000 1,313 1 Central Region Kallang
ALEXIS Freehold 710,000 1,783 1 Central Region Queenstown
AMBER PARK Freehold 1,235,858 2,670 4 Central Region Marine Parade
BARTLEY RESIDENCES 99 Yrs FROM 2011 706,000 1,525 3 North East Region Serangoon
BARTLEY RIDGE 99 Yrs FROM 2012 743,000 1,501 1 Central Region Toa Payoh
BOTANIQUE AT BARTLEY 99 Yrs FROM 2014 750,000 1,515 1 North East Region Serangoon
CARDIFF RESIDENCE 99 Yrs FROM 2011 561,000 1,337 2 North East Region Serangoon
CASA AERATA Freehold 563,000 1,308 1 Central Region Geylang
CASA AL MARE Freehold 768,000 1,622 1 East Region Pasir Ris
CASPIAN 99 Yrs FROM 2008 600,000 1,296 1 West Region Jurong West
CENTRA HEIGHTS Freehold 644,888 1,498 1 Central Region Geylang
CENTRA LOFT Freehold 597,944 1,324 2 Central Region Geylang
CITY LOFT Freehold 570,000 1,557 1 Central Region Kallang
COASTLINE RESIDENCES Freehold 1,079,000 2,387 2 Central Region Marine Parade
COCO PALMS 99 Yrs FROM 2008 628,000 1,357 2 East Region Pasir Ris
COMMONWEALTH TOWERS 99 Yrs FROM 2013 820,800 1,783 5 Central Region Queenstown
D'NEST 99 Yrs FROM 2010 597,667 1,234 3 East Region Pasir Ris
D'ZIRE 999 Yrs FROM 1875 500,000 1,290 1 North East Region Hougang
DORSETT RESIDENCES 99 Yrs FROM 2009 915,000 1,889 1 Central Region Outram
DUNEARN 386 Freehold 1,160,496 2,567 2 Central Region Bukit Timah
EIGHT RIVERSUITES 99 Yrs FROM 2011 741,500 1,680 2 Central Region Kallang
FORESQUE RESIDENCES 99 Yrs FROM 2011 615,000 1,329 1 West Region Bukit Panjang
FOURTH AVENUE RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 1,061,692 2,181 13 Central Region Bukit Timah
GUILLEMARD EDGE Freehold 602,629 1,473 3 Central Region Geylang
HAUS ON HANDY 99 Years Leasehold 1,348,000 2,879 2 Central Region Museum
HEDGES PARK CONDOMINIUM 99 Yrs FROM 2010 530,000 1,094 1 East Region Pasir Ris
HERITAGE EAST Freehold 620,000 1,340 1 East Region Bedok
HIGH PARK RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 558,625 1,311 8 North East Region Sengkang
HILLION RESIDENCES N.A. 700,000 1,512 1 West Region Bukit Panjang
IDYLLIC SUITES Freehold 560,000 1,301 1 Central Region Geylang
JEWEL @ BUANGKOK 99 Yrs FROM 2012 651,667 1,386 3 North East Region Sengkang
KENT RIDGE HILL RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 862,797 1,807 22 Central Region Queenstown
KINGSFORD WATERBAY 99 Yrs FROM 2014 591,000 1,230 3 North East Region Hougang
LA BRISA Freehold 580,000 1,253 1 Central Region Geylang
LA FLEUR Freehold 510,000 1,215 2 Central Region Geylang
LE REGAL Freehold 498,800 1,363 1 Central Region Geylang
LEEDON GREEN Freehold 1,208,000 2,551 1 Central Region Bukit Timah
MARGARET VILLE 99 Years Leasehold 1,000,915 2,163 4 Central Region Queenstown
MELOSA Freehold 545,000 1,266 1 Central Region Geylang
MEYER MANSION Grant In Fee Simple 1,512,100 3,122 1 Central Region Marine Parade
MIDTOWN BAY 99 Years Leasehold 1,388,286 2,980 7 Central Region Downtown Core
MIDTOWN RESIDENCES 99 Yrs FROM 2013 650,000 1,473 1 North East Region Hougang
MIDWOOD 99 Years Leasehold 743,600 1,535 1 West Region Bukit Batok
MOUNT SOPHIA SUITES Freehold 766,500 1,704 2 Central Region Rochor
NOTTINGHILL SUITES Freehold 593,333 1,490 3 Central Region Bukit Timah
OCEAN FRONT SUITES 946 Yrs FROM 1937 528,000 1,326 1 East Region Pasir Ris
ONE HOLLAND VILLAGE RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 1,399,165 2,861 7 Central Region Queenstown
ONE PEARL BANK 99 Years Leasehold 1,156,250 2,686 8 Central Region Outram
PALMERA EAST Freehold 600,000 1,394 1 East Region Bedok
PARC BLEU Freehold 610,000 1,318 1 East Region Bedok
PARC CENTROS 99 Yrs FROM 2012 621,667 1,323 3 North East Region Punggol
PARC CLEMATIS 99 Years Leasehold 726,500 1,607 2 West Region Clementi
PARC ELEGANCE Freehold 540,000 1,356 1 East Region Bedok
PARC ESTA 99 Years Leasehold 829,857 1,907 21 Central Region Geylang
PARC HAVEN Freehold 660,000 1,460 1 Central Region Novena
PARC OLYMPIA 99 Yrs FROM 2012 540,000 1,091 1 East Region Pasir Ris
PARC RIVIERA 99 Years Leasehold 653,750 1,413 2 West Region Clementi
PARC ROSEWOOD 99 Yrs FROM 2011 500,000 1,162 2 North Region Woodlands
PARC SOMME 99 Yrs FROM 2008 544,000 1,555 2 Central Region Kallang
PARK COLONIAL 99 Years Leasehold 976,000 2,109 2 Central Region Toa Payoh
PAVILION SQUARE Freehold 550,000 1,381 1 Central Region Geylang
PEOPLE'S PARK COMPLEX 99 Yrs FROM 1968 480,000 1,174 1 Central Region Outram
PRESTIGE HEIGHTS Freehold 570,000 1,708 1 Central Region Novena
PULLMAN RESIDENCES NEWTON Freehold 1,231,333 2,660 3 Central Region Novena
REZI 24 Freehold 765,588 1,636 8 Central Region Geylang
RIVERBANK @ FERNVALE 99 Yrs FROM 2013 580,000 1,171 1 North East Region Sengkang
RIVERFRONT RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 679,000 1,467 2 North East Region Hougang
ROBINSON SUITES Freehold 1,238,000 2,500 1 Central Region Downtown Core
RV ALTITUDE Freehold 1,371,000 3,107 1 Central Region River Valley
RV EDGE Freehold 829,333 1,857 3 Central Region Tanglin
RV SUITES Freehold 896,800 1,811 1 Central Region Tanglin
SENGKANG GRAND RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 839,467 1,773 6 North East Region Sengkang
SIMS EDGE Freehold 735,000 1,552 1 Central Region Geylang
SIMS URBAN OASIS 99 Yrs FROM 2014 669,000 1,566 3 Central Region Geylang
SKY EVERTON Freehold 1,226,000 2,649 2 Central Region Bukit Merah
SKY GREEN Freehold 700,000 1,586 1 Central Region Geylang
SKY VUE 99 Yrs FROM 2013 810,000 1,636 1 Central Region Bishan
SKYSUITES@ANSON 99 Yrs FROM 2008 900,000 2,459 1 Central Region Downtown Core
SPACE @ KOVAN Freehold 580,000 1,347 1 North East Region Serangoon
SPOTTISWOODE 18 Freehold 795,000 2,052 2 Central Region Bukit Merah
STIRLING RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 966,000 2,189 5 Central Region Queenstown
STUDIOS@TEMBELING Freehold 730,000 1,577 1 Central Region Marine Parade
SUITES 28 Freehold 570,000 1,261 1 Central Region Geylang
SUITES @ GUILLEMARD Freehold 575,000 1,484 1 Central Region Geylang
SUITES @ SIMS Freehold 470,000 1,248 1 Central Region Geylang
THE ANTARES 99 Years Leasehold 813,806 1,800 4 Central Region Geylang
THE CLIFT 99 Yrs FROM 2004 950,000 1,919 1 Central Region Downtown Core
THE FLORENCE RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 737,672 1,527 61 North East Region Hougang
THE GARDEN RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 731,419 1,613 16 North East Region Serangoon
THE GLADES 99 Yrs FROM 2013 678,000 1,500 1 East Region Bedok
THE HILLFORD 60 Yrs FROM 2013 470,500 1,182 4 Central Region Bukit Timah
THE INFLORA 99 Yrs FROM 2012 515,625 1,108 8 East Region Pasir Ris
THE INTERWEAVE Freehold 644,000 1,517 2 Central Region Novena
THE JOVELL 99 Years Leasehold 632,000 1,398 1 East Region Pasir Ris
THE M 99 Years Leasehold 1,110,696 2,532 133 Central Region Downtown Core
THE OCTET Freehold 500,000 1,161 1 Central Region Geylang
THE PANORAMA 99 Yrs FROM 2013 680,000 1,579 1 North East Region Ang Mo Kio
THE TAPESTRY 99 Years Leasehold 695,585 1,554 15 East Region Tampines
THE TRE VER 99 Years Leasehold 853,222 1,723 5 Central Region Toa Payoh
THE VERVE Freehold 615,000 1,394 1 Central Region Novena
THOMSON IMPRESSIONS 99 Years Leasehold 765,000 1,653 1 Central Region Bishan
THOMSON THREE 99 Yrs FROM 2012 780,000 1,575 1 Central Region Bishan
TREASURE AT TAMPINES 99 Years Leasehold 693,864 1,499 36 East Region Tampines
TROPIKA EAST Freehold 625,000 1,350 1 East Region Bedok
TYRWHITT 139 Freehold 580,000 1,456 1 Central Region Kallang
UBER 388 Freehold 715,000 1,582 1 East Region Bedok
VAN HOLLAND Freehold 1,480,335 2,990 2 Central Region Bukit Timah
VERTICUS Freehold 903,000 2,046 6 Central Region Novena
VIBES @ EAST COAST Freehold 585,000 1,394 1 East Region Bedok
VIBES@UPPER SERANGOON Freehold 546,667 1,294 3 North East Region Serangoon
VIZ AT HOLLAND Freehold 800,000 1,616 1 Central Region Queenstown
WHISTLER GRAND 99 Years Leasehold 705,036 1,597 5 West Region Clementi

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This report provides information as reference resource for your personal consumption only. It is not intended to be and does not constitute financial advice, investment advice or any other advice. This report has been generated without regard to the individual financial circumstances, needs or objectives of persons who view it. Users should not rely on any of the information herein as authoritative or substitute for the exercise of their own skill and judgment in making any investment or other decision. By the use of our services, you agree that any and all use of this report which you make, is solely at your own risk and without any recourse whatsoever to Square Foot Research Pte. Ltd., its related and affiliate companies and/or their employees. Square Foot Research Pte. Ltd. makes reasonable effort to use reliable and comprehensive information to generate this report, but we make no representation that it is accurate or complete.

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