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
3 Nov 2018 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 463 1,773,000 3,831 Central River Valley
3 Nov 2018 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 463 1,728,000 3,733 Central River Valley
5 Nov 2018 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 452 1,605,000 3,550 Central River Valley
3 Nov 2018 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 463 1,638,000 3,539 Central River Valley
9 Dec 2018 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 463 1,618,000 3,496 Central River Valley
1 Dec 2018 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 452 1,545,000 3,417 Central River Valley
19 Nov 2018 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 463 1,578,000 3,409 Central River Valley
8 Dec 2018 3 CUSCADEN Freehold 452 1,540,000 3,406 Central River Valley
23 Dec 2010 ROBINSON SUITES Freehold 495 1,683,000 3,399 Central Downtown Core

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 SHELFORD Freehold 833,000 1,843 1 Central Region Bukit Timah
16 @ AMBER Freehold 740,000 1,763 1 Central Region Marine Parade
3 CUSCADEN Freehold 1,621,889 3,531 9 Central Region River Valley
38 I SUITES Freehold 740,000 1,637 1 Central Region Geylang
[email protected] 999 Yrs FROM 1886 590,000 1,246 1 North East Region Hougang
8 BASSEIN Freehold 828,000 1,832 1 Central Region Novena
8 SAINT THOMAS Freehold 1,436,125 3,254 8 Central Region River Valley
[email protected] 99 Yrs FROM 2008 634,500 1,593 4 Central Region Toa Payoh
AFFINITY AT SERANGOON 99 Years Leasehold 712,103 1,501 58 North East Region Serangoon
ALEXIS Freehold 706,944 1,800 2 Central Region Queenstown
ASPEN LINQ 999 Yrs FROM 1841 828,000 1,972 1 Central Region River Valley
ATTITUDE AT KIM YAM 999 Yrs FROM 1841 745,000 1,970 5 Central Region River Valley
AURALIS Freehold 722,000 1,560 1 East Region Bedok
AVANT RESIDENCES 99 Yrs FROM 2012 719,356 1,631 9 Central Region Geylang
BARTLEY RESIDENCES 99 Yrs FROM 2011 718,333 1,552 3 North East Region Serangoon
BARTLEY RIDGE 99 Yrs FROM 2012 721,000 1,531 9 Central Region Toa Payoh
CARDIFF RESIDENCE 99 Yrs FROM 2011 582,500 1,388 2 North East Region Serangoon
CASA AERATA Freehold 592,500 1,312 2 Central Region Geylang
CASA AL MARE Freehold 781,500 1,632 4 East Region Pasir Ris
CASA CAMBIO Freehold 684,178 1,493 5 North East Region Serangoon
CASPIAN 99 Yrs FROM 2008 652,500 1,410 2 West Region Jurong West
CAVAN SUITES Freehold 595,000 1,626 1 Central Region Kallang
CENTRA HEIGHTS Freehold 672,796 1,551 3 Central Region Geylang
CENTRA RESIDENCE Freehold 592,500 1,398 2 Central Region Geylang
CENTRA SUITES Freehold 645,000 1,427 1 Central Region Geylang
CITIGATE RESIDENCE Freehold 612,000 1,387 1 Central Region Kallang
CITY REGENCY Freehold 653,000 1,348 1 Central Region Kallang
COCO PALMS 99 Yrs FROM 2008 642,375 1,388 8 East Region Pasir Ris
COMMONWEALTH TOWERS 99 Yrs FROM 2013 930,000 2,011 2 Central Region Queenstown
CORALIS Freehold 880,000 1,777 1 Central Region Marine Parade
COSMO Freehold 640,000 1,607 1 Central Region Geylang
CRADELS Freehold 700,444 1,587 2 Central Region Novena
D'WEAVE Freehold 660,000 1,495 1 Central Region Geylang
DEVONSHIRE 12 Freehold 970,000 2,146 2 Central Region River Valley
EASTWOOD REGENCY Freehold 637,500 1,302 2 East Region Bedok
EDENZ LOFT Freehold 570,000 1,324 1 Central Region Geylang
EDENZ SUITES Freehold 606,500 1,281 2 Central Region Geylang
EIGHT RIVERSUITES 99 Yrs FROM 2011 739,778 1,676 5 Central Region Kallang
ESPADA Freehold 1,010,000 2,686 6 Central Region River Valley
EVERITT EDGE Freehold 615,000 1,394 1 Central Region Geylang
FORTE SUITES Freehold 800,000 1,813 1 Central Region Kallang
GUILLEMARD EDGE Freehold 607,500 1,485 2 Central Region Geylang
GUILLEMARD SUITES Freehold 640,000 1,565 1 Central Region Geylang
HAIG 162 Freehold 548,000 1,543 1 Central Region Marine Parade
HEDGES PARK CONDOMINIUM 99 Yrs FROM 2010 525,000 1,084 1 East Region Pasir Ris
HIGH PARK RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 533,125 1,286 8 North East Region Sengkang
HUNDRED TREES 956 Yrs FROM 1928 788,000 1,627 1 West Region Clementi
IDYLLIC SUITES Freehold 620,000 1,405 1 Central Region Geylang
ILLUMINAIRE ON DEVONSHIRE Freehold 939,000 2,128 1 Central Region River Valley
ISUITES @ PALM 999 Yrs FROM 1878 595,000 1,286 1 North East Region Hougang
J GATEWAY 99 Yrs FROM 2012 886,600 1,845 3 West Region Jurong East
JEWEL @ BUANGKOK 99 Yrs FROM 2012 682,500 1,378 2 North East Region Sengkang
JOOL SUITES Freehold 645,000 1,620 1 Central Region Kallang
JUBILEE RESIDENCE Freehold 690,000 1,394 1 Central Region Queenstown
JUI RESIDENCES Freehold 741,954 1,684 19 Central Region Kallang
JUPITER 18 Freehold 600,000 1,394 2 Central Region Geylang
KENT RIDGE HILL RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 807,118 1,703 34 Central Region Queenstown
KOVAN GRANDEUR 99 Yrs FROM 2010 538,000 1,388 1 North East Region Hougang
LA BRISA Freehold 700,000 1,414 1 Central Region Geylang
LA FIESTA 99 Yrs FROM 2012 647,500 1,432 1 North East Region Sengkang
LAVERNE'S LOFT Freehold 638,000 1,446 1 East Region Bedok
LE QUEST 99 Years Leasehold 712,000 1,438 1 West Region Bukit Batok
LEICESTER SUITES Freehold 750,000 1,548 1 Central Region Toa Payoh
LEVENUE Freehold 620,000 1,340 1 East Region Bedok
LIIV RESIDENCES Freehold 750,000 1,883 1 Central Region Queenstown
LINCOLN SUITES Freehold 1,170,000 2,470 1 Central Region Novena
LOFT @ NATHAN Freehold 815,000 1,867 2 Central Region Tanglin
[email protected] Freehold 871,000 2,235 3 Central Region Bukit Timah
M5 99 Yrs FROM 1995 1,089,500 2,301 2 Central Region Tanglin
MARGARET VILLE 99 Years Leasehold 895,767 1,936 6 Central Region Queenstown
MAYFAIR GARDENS 99 Yrs FROM 1983 1,006,333 2,032 3 Central Region Bukit Timah
MIDTOWN RESIDENCES 99 Yrs FROM 2013 680,000 1,504 1 North East Region Hougang
MILLAGE Freehold 700,000 1,586 1 Central Region Geylang
MY MANHATTAN 99 Yrs FROM 2010 670,000 1,518 1 East Region Tampines
[email protected] 999 Yrs FROM 1885 630,000 1,394 1 West Region Bukit Batok
NESS Freehold 618,444 1,402 2 Central Region Geylang
NIN RESIDENCE 99 Yrs FROM 2010 741,500 1,602 2 Central Region Toa Payoh
NOTTINGHILL SUITES Freehold 638,000 1,602 1 Central Region Bukit Timah
OKIO Freehold 710,000 1,649 1 Central Region Novena
ONE @ PULASAN Freehold 620,000 1,280 1 Central Region Marine Parade
ONE DUSUN RESIDENCES Freehold 790,000 1,668 3 Central Region Novena
OPAL SUITES Freehold 585,000 1,294 1 Central Region Kallang
OPTIMA @ TANAH MERAH 99 Yrs FROM 2008 740,000 1,528 1 East Region Bedok
PALM GALLERIA Freehold 638,000 1,289 1 East Region Bedok
PARC CENTROS 99 Yrs FROM 2012 631,500 1,344 6 North East Region Punggol
PARC ELEGANCE Freehold 649,000 1,403 2 East Region Bedok
PARC ESTA 99 Years Leasehold 772,627 1,765 83 Central Region Geylang
PARC IMPERIAL Freehold 696,600 1,626 5 Central Region Queenstown
PARC OLYMPIA 99 Yrs FROM 2012 565,000 1,141 1 East Region Pasir Ris
PARC ROSEWOOD 99 Yrs FROM 2011 526,250 1,222 6 North Region Woodlands
PARC SOPHIA Freehold 922,500 1,948 2 Central Region Rochor
PARK COLONIAL 99 Years Leasehold 828,633 1,790 120 Central Region Toa Payoh
PRESTIGE HEIGHTS Freehold 587,000 1,668 5 Central Region Novena
PRESTIGE LOFT Freehold 571,054 1,418 2 East Region Bedok
PRIMO RESIDENCES Freehold 600,000 1,212 1 North East Region Hougang
REGENT RESIDENCES Freehold 675,333 1,651 3 Central Region Kallang
REZI 26 Freehold 665,000 1,343 1 Central Region Geylang
RIPPLE BAY 99 Yrs FROM 2011 582,000 1,202 2 East Region Pasir Ris
RIVERBANK @ FERNVALE 99 Yrs FROM 2013 591,000 1,194 6 North East Region Sengkang
RIVERBAY 999 Yrs FROM 1882 605,667 1,563 3 Central Region Kallang
RIVERFRONT RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 619,302 1,338 184 North East Region Hougang
RIVIERA 38 999 Yrs FROM 1882 650,000 1,438 1 Central Region Kallang
ROBERTSON EDGE 999 Yrs FROM 1841 910,000 2,114 1 Central Region River Valley
ROBIN SUITES Freehold 1,200,000 2,593 1 Central Region Tanglin
RV EDGE Freehold 881,500 2,057 2 Central Region Tanglin
RV RESIDENCES 999 Yrs FROM 1877 1,050,000 2,323 1 Central Region Tanglin
SEAHILL 99 Yrs FROM 2011 726,900 1,469 2 West Region Clementi
SIGLAP V Freehold 630,000 1,272 1 East Region Bedok
SILVERSCAPE Freehold 570,000 1,394 1 Central Region Geylang
SIMS EDGE Freehold 672,000 1,560 3 Central Region Geylang
SIMS URBAN OASIS 99 Yrs FROM 2014 780,000 1,647 1 Central Region Geylang
SKY VUE 99 Yrs FROM 2013 830,933 1,703 3 Central Region Bishan
SKYSUITES17 Freehold 635,000 1,735 1 Central Region Novena
[email protected] 99 Yrs FROM 2008 958,333 2,541 3 Central Region Downtown Core
SPOTTISWOODE 18 Freehold 870,000 2,246 2 Central Region Bukit Merah
SPRING @ LANGSAT Freehold 620,000 1,309 1 Central Region Geylang
STELLAR RV Freehold 868,000 1,920 1 Central Region Tanglin
STIRLING RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 825,871 1,871 56 Central Region Queenstown
STRATUM 99 Yrs FROM 2012 585,000 1,359 1 East Region Pasir Ris
SUITES 123 Freehold 668,000 1,349 1 Central Region Kallang
SUITES @ KOVAN Freehold 550,000 1,503 1 North East Region Hougang
SUITES @ PAYA LEBAR Freehold 547,500 1,443 4 North East Region Hougang
SUITES @ TOPAZ Freehold 574,000 1,502 2 Central Region Kallang
SUITES AT BUKIT TIMAH Freehold 573,333 1,584 3 Central Region Bukit Timah
[email protected] Freehold 560,888 1,371 1 Central Region Geylang
THE AXIS Freehold 583,000 1,464 1 Central Region Novena
THE COTZ Freehold 552,667 1,343 3 East Region Bedok
THE EBONY Freehold 520,000 1,464 1 East Region Bedok
THE ENCLAVE . HOLLAND Freehold 1,114,000 2,642 6 Central Region Bukit Timah
THE GARDEN RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 714,000 1,580 4 North East Region Serangoon
THE GLADES 99 Yrs FROM 2013 677,444 1,499 2 East Region Bedok
THE HILLFORD 60 Yrs FROM 2013 483,600 1,214 13 Central Region Bukit Timah
THE INFLORA 99 Yrs FROM 2012 532,988 1,149 9 East Region Pasir Ris
THE INTERWEAVE Freehold 605,000 1,658 2 Central Region Novena
THE JOVELL 99 Years Leasehold 608,250 1,359 12 East Region Pasir Ris
THE NAUTICAL 99 Yrs FROM 2011 557,500 1,264 2 North Region Sembawang
THE PANORAMA 99 Yrs FROM 2013 723,750 1,642 4 North East Region Ang Mo Kio
THE POIZ RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 666,300 1,510 2 Central Region Toa Payoh
THE [email protected] Freehold 595,000 1,228 1 North East Region Hougang
THE SCALA 99 Yrs FROM 2010 790,000 1,668 1 North East Region Serangoon
THE SORRENTO 755,000 1,631 1
THE TAPESTRY 99 Years Leasehold 672,273 1,465 37 East Region Tampines
THE TRE VER 99 Years Leasehold 761,813 1,547 16 Central Region Toa Payoh
THE URBANITE Freehold 770,000 1,590 1 Central Region Kallang
THE VERVE Freehold 638,500 1,447 2 Central Region Novena
THE VUE Freehold 630,000 1,349 3 North East Region Serangoon
THOMSON V TWO Freehold 698,750 1,568 4 Central Region Bishan
TREASURES @ G20 Freehold 512,500 1,221 2 Central Region Geylang
TROPIKA EAST Freehold 650,000 1,473 1 East Region Bedok
TYRWHITT 139 Freehold 618,000 1,689 1 Central Region Kallang
URBAN VISTA 99 Yrs FROM 2012 600,000 1,360 1 East Region Bedok
V ON SHENTON 99 Yrs FROM 2011 1,321,333 2,744 3 Central Region Downtown Core
VETRO 999 Yrs FROM 1882 585,000 1,235 1 Central Region Kallang
[email protected] SERANGOON Freehold 613,000 1,389 1 North East Region Serangoon
VIVA VISTA Freehold 642,500 1,637 2 Central Region Queenstown
VIVACE 999 Yrs FROM 1841 848,000 2,020 1 Central Region River Valley
WATERBANK AT DAKOTA 99 Yrs FROM 2009 825,000 1,703 1 Central Region Geylang
WHISTLER GRAND 99 Years Leasehold 639,147 1,448 30 West Region Clementi
WILKIE 80 Freehold 821,000 2,007 1 Central Region Rochor

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