Saturday, 24 November 2012

My Property Journey Rewind - 2011 & 2012

I will quickly summarize my property investment journey in the last 2 years and that will bring me up till today. It was a case of doing nothing but moving into the house which I bought in 2010.

The house offered more space for everyone and the desire to go out on weekends actually diminished. Everyone has their favorite corner to hide, including the maid who also got her own room finally.

If you have green fingers, you will definitely enjoy having your own little garden but unfortunately, the green genes from my dad didn't pass down to me. Maintenance is higher due to the higher utilities bills but you don't have to pay the maintenance fee charged by condo and enjoy "free parking". Downside is no swimming facilities unless you build your own lap pool which will then increase the maintenance bills.

As mentioned in my earlier post, the prices of landed housing shot up significantly only in the last 2 years, much better than the condos and apartments. A house in original condition near my street recently transacted at more than $980 psf, indicating a healthy increase from my initial purchase price. This incident taught me a lesson that being a "value" investor is rewarding. I have shared with you previously that I bought a landed because I couldn't find value in condos back then.  I think it is similar to all investments in stocks and shares as well except that property is a highly levered play and it is more rewarding if you managed to catch the right cycle.

I had originally wanted to do an "interest arbitrage" purchase of another property by taking out the "equity value" in 2012, but decided not to proceed even though the bank has granted in principle approval to disburse money to my account to "refinance my loan". I couldn't bring myself to buy at current sky high prices even though the monthly rental income is able to cover the mortgage loans.

I recently went to take a look at Heron Bay (which Minister Khaw blogged about) and Riversails. Under the current market context, both offered good value if you can get it below $860 psf. Personally I prefer Heron Bay's location and designs but it is an executive condo which I wouldn't have qualified anyway.  Riversails is a tad too cluttered for me. (Not that I am seriously considering).

It was pretty funny because at one glance of the brochure, I pointed out the blocks that I want to buy. (3 different stacks). The agent at Riversails told me that those stacks were not released by the developer yet.  It is always the case where developer only release the choice blocks after they managed to sell the "poorer facing" blocks at attractive prices. They will then release the choice blocks at a premium pricing.

I have shared with you previously the things to look out for in selecting a unit within a condo. The same rules apply. Select a unit that faces the pool or garden or one with an unblocked view facing out but make sure it is not facing the evening sun. I prefer higher floors as well.

Happy property hunting and that brings an "end" to the various installments of my property journey. The various installments are below for your ease of reference.

Part 1.
Part 2.
Part 3.
Part 4.
Part 5.
Part 6.
Part 7.
Part 8.

I will continue to share my property journey and my thoughts as it progress. Hope you have find these experiences useful for your own use. 

Oh yes, i promise to share with you the support level to look out for. I think the strong support zone is between 160-180 but there should be plenty of buying interest if price starts to hit the 180-200 zone. I would "visualize" that if prices fall to 180-200 will be a good time to start hunting for a landed property and 160-180 for a condominium. "Unfortunately" for prices to crash to that level, you will need another global financial crisis and i don't see that coming in the next 4 quarters.


financialray said...

When things go down hill, they go down unexpectedly and may go down and down for years.....
when market is up and up, it looks like the rainbow is going to last forever no matter how people knew all along there is day and night.
Singapore has a BIG problem in abt 5-8 years time. Population is greying and YET the young and able working group is shrinking. Major institutions like CPF, SAF, insurance companies like NTUC will face a crunch time. Buyers for your landed properties would have shrunk considerably by then, if they have not already migrated (they usu being the higher income group and more savvy people). I doubt MM would be around to save Singapore as after the IR, I wonder if the younger leaders can think out of the box before it is too late. Import more foreigners? Smells like trouble is brewing.

financialray said...

They say no problem?
They also say your CPF is enough for retirement. Take a hard look at the standard of living. Sustainable? Maybe can go higher before it is not sustainable.
We have already seen the problem of importing too many foreigners.
There will come a day when we have NO choice but to import more foreigners.
Will Singaporeans then be happy to sacrifice? Serve NS while foreigners do not have to, esp if they are the rich foreigners.
There will be more socio-economic problems surfacing before solutions are even found.
Will there be an increase in CPF minimum sum? Will people be asked not to retire at all but to continue to work and contribute to CPF till they drop?
If MM says the shrinking population problem is going to be tough and pose tremendous problems, I believe him. I only fear nobody, including MM, knows how BIG the problem is going to be. We will get a better picture in 5 to 8 years.

financialray said...

actually the clues are always reported in the Straits Times...
Its whether you see it coming or not....

Read The Straits Times today 29 Nov 2012 page A8 and B13. I am not a journalist or working for the press. I am not even working for the government.

The strike by foreign Chinese workers recently is just an early reminder of our dependence on foreign labour, and for "essential public services" at that.

Are you worried for Singapore now?

HcoRealEstate said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mr. IPO said...

Hi financial ray.... Thks for the comments and dropping by :)

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