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 Years Leasehold 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, https://www.squarefoot.com.sg

Breakdown by Buyer Profile

Source: URA, https://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 777,000 1,719 1 Central Region Bukit Timah
16 @ AMBER Freehold 730,000 1,739 1 Central Region Marine Parade
3 CUSCADEN Freehold 1,647,346 3,580 22 Central Region River Valley
35 GILSTEAD Freehold 1,312,000 2,709 2 Central Region Novena
8 BASSEIN Freehold 810,000 1,881 1 Central Region Novena
8 SAINT THOMAS Freehold 1,560,000 3,535 1 Central Region River Valley
91 MARSHALL Freehold 630,000 1,672 1 Central Region Marine Parade
AFFINITY AT SERANGOON 99 Years Leasehold 741,763 1,563 10 North East Region Serangoon
ALEXIS Freehold 702,000 1,763 1 Central Region Queenstown
AMBER PARK Freehold 1,191,045 2,526 49 Central Region Marine Parade
AVENUE SOUTH RESIDENCE 99 Years Leasehold 895,222 1,848 36 Central Region Bukit Merah
BARTLEY RESIDENCES 99 Yrs FROM 2011 695,000 1,502 2 North East Region Serangoon
BARTLEY RIDGE 99 Yrs FROM 2012 710,000 1,534 4 Central Region Toa Payoh
BOTANIQUE AT BARTLEY 99 Yrs FROM 2014 756,543 1,528 7 North East Region Serangoon
CARDIFF RESIDENCE 99 Yrs FROM 2011 581,000 1,384 2 North East Region Serangoon
CASA AL MARE Freehold 768,000 1,622 1 East Region Pasir Ris
CASA CAMBIO Freehold 694,667 1,488 3 North East Region Serangoon
CENTRA LOFT Freehold 598,000 1,389 1 Central Region Geylang
CENTRA RESIDENCE Freehold 557,500 1,363 2 Central Region Geylang
COASTLINE RESIDENCES Freehold 1,143,250 2,529 8 Central Region Marine Parade
COCO PALMS 99 Yrs FROM 2008 631,000 1,363 3 East Region Pasir Ris
CRADELS Freehold 666,500 1,510 2 Central Region Novena
D'NEST 99 Yrs FROM 2010 616,667 1,273 3 East Region Pasir Ris
D'ZIRE 999 Yrs FROM 1875 565,000 1,221 1 North East Region Hougang
DEVONSHIRE 12 Freehold 985,000 2,034 1 Central Region River Valley
DUNEARN 386 Freehold 1,143,667 2,530 3 Central Region Bukit Timah
EASTWOOD REGENCY Freehold 582,500 1,442 2 East Region Bedok
EDENZ LOFT Freehold 566,667 1,307 3 Central Region Geylang
EDENZ SUITES Freehold 568,500 1,148 1 Central Region Geylang
EIGHT RIVERSUITES 99 Yrs FROM 2011 707,500 1,603 4 Central Region Kallang
ESPADA Freehold 1,003,333 2,578 3 Central Region River Valley
FORESQUE RESIDENCES 99 Yrs FROM 2011 630,000 1,361 1 West Region Bukit Panjang
FOURTH AVENUE RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 1,118,000 2,308 5 Central Region Bukit Timah
GUILLEMARD SUITES Freehold 580,000 1,418 1 Central Region Geylang
HAIG 162 Freehold 576,400 1,585 5 Central Region Marine Parade
HAUS ON HANDY 99 Years Leasehold 1,311,055 2,864 19 Central Region Museum
HEDGES PARK CONDOMINIUM 99 Yrs FROM 2010 565,000 1,166 1 East Region Pasir Ris
HERITAGE EAST Freehold 615,000 1,428 1 East Region Bedok
HIGH PARK RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 586,467 1,292 15 North East Region Sengkang
HILLION RESIDENCES N.A. 720,000 1,556 1 West Region Bukit Panjang
J GATEWAY 99 Yrs FROM 2012 871,296 1,812 3 West Region Jurong East
JC RESIDENCE Freehold 568,000 1,227 1 Central Region Geylang
JEWEL @ BUANGKOK 99 Yrs FROM 2012 680,000 1,469 1 North East Region Sengkang
JUI RESIDENCES Freehold 834,000 1,827 5 Central Region Kallang
JUPITER 18 Freehold 500,000 1,290 1 Central Region Geylang
KENT RIDGE HILL RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 823,141 1,736 36 Central Region Queenstown
KINGSFORD WATERBAY 99 Yrs FROM 2014 629,333 1,319 3 North East Region Hougang
KOVAN GRANDEUR 99 Yrs FROM 2010 500,000 1,290 1 North East Region Hougang
LA FIESTA 99 Yrs FROM 2012 628,000 1,459 1 North East Region Sengkang
LA FLEUR Freehold 680,000 1,373 1 Central Region Geylang
LE REGAL Freehold 495,000 1,353 1 Central Region Geylang
LINCOLN SUITES Freehold 1,050,000 2,269 1 Central Region Novena
LOFT @ STEVENS Freehold 760,000 2,079 2 Central Region Tanglin
LOFT@HOLLAND Freehold 840,000 2,109 1 Central Region Bukit Timah
MACKENZIE 88 Freehold 744,000 1,709 2 Central Region Rochor
MARGARET VILLE 99 Years Leasehold 948,237 2,049 9 Central Region Queenstown
MEYER MANSION Grant In Fee Simple 1,460,975 3,016 8 Central Region Marine Parade
MIDTOWN BAY 99 Years Leasehold 1,391,250 2,984 28 Central Region Downtown Core
MY MANHATTAN 99 Yrs FROM 2010 670,000 1,383 1 East Region Tampines
NATURA@HILLVIEW 999 Yrs FROM 1885 596,500 1,320 2 West Region Bukit Batok
NEEM TREE Freehold 690,000 1,644 1 Central Region Novena
NESS Freehold 560,000 1,301 1 Central Region Geylang
NORTH PARK RESIDENCES N.A. 690,000 1,526 1 North Region Yishun
NOTTINGHILL SUITES Freehold 644,000 1,617 2 Central Region Bukit Timah
NV RESIDENCES 99 Yrs FROM 2008 590,000 1,192 1 East Region Pasir Ris
NYON Freehold 1,063,902 2,196 12 Central Region Marine Parade
OKIO Freehold 698,800 1,623 1 Central Region Novena
ONE PEARL BANK 99 Years Leasehold 1,035,021 2,404 47 Central Region Outram
OPTIMA @ TANAH MERAH 99 Yrs FROM 2008 698,000 1,441 1 East Region Bedok
OXLEY EDGE Freehold 870,000 2,184 1 Central Region River Valley
PARC BLEU Freehold 630,000 1,361 1 East Region Bedok
PARC CENTROS 99 Yrs FROM 2012 624,667 1,340 3 North East Region Punggol
PARC CLEMATIS 99 Years Leasehold 733,731 1,623 130 West Region Clementi
PARC ELEGANCE Freehold 585,000 1,394 1 East Region Bedok
PARC ESTA 99 Years Leasehold 779,800 1,802 35 Central Region Geylang
PARC IMPERIAL Freehold 660,000 1,657 1 Central Region Queenstown
PARC KOMO Freehold 712,433 1,511 30 East Region Pasir Ris
PARC OLYMPIA 99 Yrs FROM 2012 530,000 1,070 1 East Region Pasir Ris
PARC ROSEWOOD 99 Yrs FROM 2011 519,000 1,206 8 North Region Woodlands
PARC SOMME 99 Yrs FROM 2008 580,000 1,497 1 Central Region Kallang
PARK COLONIAL 99 Years Leasehold 883,909 1,910 11 Central Region Toa Payoh
PEOPLE'S PARK COMPLEX 99 Yrs FROM 1968 532,500 1,223 2 Central Region Outram
PRESTIGE HEIGHTS Freehold 556,833 1,520 3 Central Region Novena
PRESTIGE LOFT Freehold 500,000 1,290 1 East Region Bedok
PRESTO@UPPER SERANGOON Freehold 630,000 1,428 2 North East Region Serangoon
PRIMO RESIDENCES Freehold 590,000 1,192 1 North East Region Hougang
QUESTA @ DUNMAN Freehold 684,000 1,589 2 Central Region Geylang
RANGOON 88 Freehold 680,000 1,541 1 Central Region Kallang
REGENT RESIDENCES Freehold 628,000 1,535 1 Central Region Kallang
REZI 24 Freehold 718,167 1,541 3 Central Region Geylang
RIPPLE BAY 99 Yrs FROM 2011 590,000 1,218 1 East Region Pasir Ris
RIVERBANK @ FERNVALE 99 Yrs FROM 2013 588,000 1,188 1 North East Region Sengkang
RIVERBAY 999 Yrs FROM 1882 590,000 1,523 1 Central Region Kallang
RIVERFRONT RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 646,547 1,397 23 North East Region Hougang
RIVERSOUND RESIDENCE 99 Yrs FROM 2011 568,000 1,199 1 North East Region Sengkang
RIVIERA 38 999 Yrs FROM 1882 600,000 1,327 1 Central Region Kallang
ROBERTSON EDGE 999 Yrs FROM 1841 1,000,000 2,111 1 Central Region River Valley
ROBIN SUITES Freehold 1,150,000 2,606 1 Central Region Tanglin
ROBINSON SUITES Freehold 1,237,500 2,499 1 Central Region Downtown Core
ROOTS @ TRANSIT 99 Years Leasehold 540,000 1,224 1 North Region Yishun
ROYCE RESIDENCES Freehold 540,000 1,287 2 Central Region Geylang
RV ALTITUDE Freehold 1,367,000 3,098 6 Central Region River Valley
RV EDGE Freehold 790,972 2,021 4 Central Region Tanglin
RV RESIDENCES 999 Yrs FROM 1877 955,000 2,275 2 Central Region Tanglin
SEAHILL 99 Yrs FROM 2011 725,000 1,464 1 West Region Clementi
SIMS EDGE Freehold 630,888 1,542 1 Central Region Geylang
SIMS URBAN OASIS 99 Yrs FROM 2014 736,000 1,688 6 Central Region Geylang
SKIES MILTONIA 99 Yrs FROM 2012 565,000 1,166 3 North Region Yishun
SKY EVERTON Freehold 1,187,021 2,565 24 Central Region Bukit Merah
SMART SUITES Freehold 645,000 1,427 1 Central Region Geylang
SPOTTISWOODE 18 Freehold 850,000 2,194 1 Central Region Bukit Merah
STIRLING RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 899,524 2,038 21 Central Region Queenstown
SUITES @ EASTCOAST Freehold 540,000 1,476 1 East Region Bedok
SUITES @ GUILLEMARD Freehold 625,000 1,613 1 Central Region Geylang
SUITES @ NEWTON Freehold 900,000 1,858 1 Central Region Novena
SUITES @ OWEN Freehold 575,000 1,571 1 Central Region Kallang
SUITES @ PAYA LEBAR Freehold 585,000 1,449 2 North East Region Hougang
SUITES @ SHREWSBURY Freehold 552,500 1,582 2 Central Region Novena
SUITES @ SIMS Freehold 550,000 1,597 1 Central Region Geylang
SUITES@ KATONG Freehold 610,000 1,417 1 Central Region Marine Parade
SUITES@BRADDELL Freehold 550,444 1,346 2 North East Region Serangoon
SUNNY LODGE Freehold 598,000 1,502 1 East Region Bedok
THE ANTARES 99 Years Leasehold 819,571 1,813 7 Central Region Geylang
THE CLIFT 99 Yrs FROM 2004 1,070,000 2,161 1 Central Region Downtown Core
THE COTZ Freehold 580,000 1,418 1 East Region Bedok
THE FLORENCE RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 708,367 1,469 49 North East Region Hougang
THE FORESTA @ MOUNT FABER Freehold 848,000 1,970 1 Central Region Bukit Merah
THE GARDEN RESIDENCES 99 Years Leasehold 703,309 1,549 11 North East Region Serangoon
THE GAZANIA Freehold 1,011,357 2,237 2 North East Region Serangoon
THE GLADES 99 Yrs FROM 2013 800,000 1,652 1 East Region Bedok
THE HILLFORD 60 Yrs FROM 2013 485,875 1,220 8 Central Region Bukit Timah
THE HYDE Freehold 1,387,000 2,801 1 Central Region Tanglin
THE INFLORA 99 Yrs FROM 2012 517,000 1,105 8 East Region Pasir Ris
THE INTERWEAVE Freehold 604,000 1,497 2 Central Region Novena
THE JOVELL 99 Years Leasehold 608,057 1,354 7 East Region Pasir Ris
THE LAKEFRONT RESIDENCES 99 Yrs FROM 2010 705,000 1,424 2 West Region Jurong West
THE LUXURIE 99 Yrs FROM 2011 630,000 1,394 1 North East Region Sengkang
THE NAUTICAL 99 Yrs FROM 2011 536,500 1,278 2 North Region Sembawang
THE PANORAMA 99 Yrs FROM 2013 696,250 1,542 4 North East Region Ang Mo Kio
THE SANTORINI 99 Yrs FROM 2013 575,000 1,242 1 East Region Tampines
THE SCALA 99 Yrs FROM 2010 743,000 1,569 1 North East Region Serangoon
THE TAPESTRY 99 Years Leasehold 704,300 1,539 4 East Region Tampines
THE TEMBUSU Freehold 848,000 1,790 1 North East Region Hougang
THE TRE VER 99 Years Leasehold 824,850 1,666 20 Central Region Toa Payoh
THE VERVE Freehold 630,000 1,428 1 Central Region Novena
THE WATER EDGE Freehold 650,000 1,510 1 Central Region Geylang
THOMSON THREE 99 Yrs FROM 2012 765,500 1,546 2 Central Region Bishan
THOMSON V TWO Freehold 550,000 1,214 2 Central Region Bishan
TREASURE AT TAMPINES 99 Years Leasehold 655,683 1,395 82 East Region Tampines
TREASURES@G19 Freehold 620,000 1,371 1 Central Region Geylang
TREVISTA 99 Yrs FROM 2008 660,000 1,426 1 Central Region Toa Payoh
URBAN LOFTS Freehold 640,000 1,525 1 Central Region Kallang
URBAN VISTA 99 Yrs FROM 2012 591,000 1,373 2 East Region Bedok
VACANZA @ EAST Freehold 635,000 1,311 1 East Region Bedok
VETRO 999 Yrs FROM 1882 585,000 1,235 1 Central Region Kallang
VIBES @ EAST COAST Freehold 692,500 1,777 2 East Region Bedok
VIBES @ KOVAN Freehold 538,888 1,430 1 North East Region Hougang
VIENTO Freehold 570,000 1,232 2 Central Region Geylang
VIVA VISTA Freehold 578,333 1,591 6 Central Region Queenstown
VIVACE 999 Yrs FROM 1841 803,000 2,017 2 Central Region River Valley
WHISTLER GRAND 99 Years Leasehold 691,835 1,568 4 West Region Clementi
WILKIE 80 Freehold 837,000 1,944 1 Central Region Rochor
WILSHIRE RESIDENCES Freehold 1,221,080 2,638 1 Central Region Tanglin

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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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