Property Spotlight: Shelford Road/ Adam Road areas

By The Folks @PropTalk - December 14, 2011 No Comments
The Shelford Road neighbourhood has traditionally been popular with families because of its location within a 1-km radius of Nanyang Primary School, says Grace Ng, deputy managing director of Colliers International. "Some Singaporeans who live elsewhere are even willing to relocate to the neighbourhood, by first renting an apartment in the area to be within 1-km of the school, and subsequently buying a unit," she says.

The area is likely to see greater interest, with the upcoming Botanic Gardens MRT station, which is within walking distance, as well as the recently opened Farrer Road MRT station on the Circle Line, adds Ng.

Several new condominiums have sprung up in the area in recent years. As it is in a landed housing neighbourhood, the condos in the Shelford Road area are generally low-rise, with a height limit of five storeys. Newly completed freehold condos include the 33-unit Shelford 23 by Hoi Hup, and City Developments' 77-unit Shelford Suites. Next door to Shelford Suites is 18 Shelford by Popular Land, completed last year.

At Shelford 23, the most recent transaction was the sub-sale of an 829sqft two-bedroom unit that changed hands in June for $1.42 million ($1,713psf). Prices of secondary transactions done at Shelford Suites from September to early-November ranged from $1,606 to $1,800psf, according to URA Realis. Meanwhile, three units at 18 Shelford were sold in October at median price of $1,900psf, probably the highest price achieved in the area, say some property agents.

Construction is just starting at the 69-unit 10 Shelford by boutique developer DB2 Development, where units are one-bedroom and one-plus-study measuring 431 to 980sqft. Launched in May, the project is fully sold, with the latest transaction being the sale of a one-bedroom 431sqft third-floor unit for $806,900 ($1,874psf).

With new condos in the Shelford area trading at $1,600 to $1,900psf, homebuyers and investors are eyeing some of the older condos in the area, which have been transacted at $1,300 to $1,500psf. "Some people prefer the older condos because the pricing looks more attractive, given that these condos are freehold and located in prime district 11, compared with some of the leasehold condos in the suburbs, where shoebox apartments are trading for up to $1,500 to $1,600psf," says Colliers' Ng.

A recent transaction in the Shelford area was done at Nineteen Shelford, a 256-unit freehold condo by Bonvests Holdings and completed 15 years ago. It was for an 883sqft, two-bedroom unit on the second level, which was sold for $1.2 million ($1,399psf), according to a caveat lodged with URA on Nov 15. The development has a mix of studio units starting from 635sqft to three-bedroom apartments of 1,163sqft, as well as maisonette units of 1,281 to 1,572sqft.

Another condo that has seen buying interest is the 118-unit freehold Adam Park Condo, developed by Tuan Seng Holdings and completed in 2004. The project, designed with a tropical resort theme and a jungle spa, has two entrances - one on Shelford Road and the other on Adam Road. The condo comprises only two- to four-bedroom apartments, measuring 893 to 1,744sqft.

Based on the latest caveats lodged and downloaded from URA Realis as at Nov 30, there were two recent transactions at Adam Park Condo. Both transactions involved the sale of 958sqft two-bedroom units in different blocks. One was a third-level unit that was sold for $1.4 million ($1,467psf), the second time it has changed hands in the resale market. The unit last changed hands in February 2010 for $1.15 million ($1,200psf) and its price at launch in June 2002 was $895,510 ($935psf).

The other unit went for $1.3 million ($1,376psf). The seller had purchased it in June 2002 for $890,120 ($929psf), thus seeing a price appreciation of 48% in almost a decade.

Owners of older condos such as Adam Park Condo are asking for $1,300 to $1,400psf, says Kelly Ng, associate agency head at real-estate agency GPS Alliance. Meanwhile, in the Shelford area, owners of older condos such as Nineteen Shelford are asking for $1,400 to $1,600psf. "Newer condos in the area tend to feature smaller units, so there is still demand for older condos," she adds. "Western expatriates, in particular, prefer the older condos because they are bigger. Sale prices are still stable, as there's still demand for units in the Adam Road/Shelford area."

While rental rates in the area are still relatively stable, GPS Alliance's Ng says some expatriates who had previously chosen the Adam Road area for its tranquillity and convenience are now opting for units in the Newton and Novena area instead. She attributes this change in preference to the ongoing construction of the Circle Line, which has "disrupted the tranquillity and traffic in the Adam Road area". However, the area continues to be a draw for families that want to move there for the sake of their children's education. Besides Singapore residents, the area still attracts mainland Chinese and Indonesian investors, she adds.

The wife and I have a couple of observations/comments (what's new?) after reading the article:

1. The Botanic Gardens MRT Station is no longer an "upcoming" station, as it has been operating since October 8 (okay, at least on days when train services on the Circle Line are not disrupted). 

2. And speaking of MRT, the condos featured in the article are not exactly "within walking distances" from the nearest operating MRT Station (i.e. Botanic Gardens). The distances are probably walk-able but we reckon it is not an especially pleasant walk on a hot (or worse, rainy) day.

3. Although condos in the Shelford Road neighbourhood may be within 1-km of Nanyang Primary School, balloting is still very much the order of the day... if experience of the past few years is any indication.


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