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Downward pressure on condo rentals?

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Postby revhappy » Tue, 18 Sep 2012 5:15 pm

zzm9980 wrote:
nutnut wrote:If you want to live in Loyang area, Hillside, Woodlands, Yishun or somewhere else in the back of beyond then there are loads of properties under 3.5K! have a search on . In fact I found 571 across Singapore between $2K and $3.5K with 3 bed or more and over 1200 sqft!


I just did the same search (actually 2-3k) and I'm rather shocked. There are placed I'd consider here. I don't find Woodlands too terrible, but then I do work at YCK Road, so it's not a bad commute :P


YCK road is awesome. My wife used to work in NCS in YCK road and hence we used to rent a HDB in blk 602 AMK Ave 5 thats 2 bus stops away from her office, thats as close as we could get to her office. There are quite a few nice condos there, but I guess they are expensive. Bullion Park, Seasons Park cant remember the others.
Last edited by revhappy on Sun, 14 Oct 2012 11:29 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Postby zzm9980 » Tue, 18 Sep 2012 5:18 pm

revhappy wrote:
zzm9980 wrote:
nutnut wrote:If you want to live in Loyang area, Hillside, Woodlands, Yishun or somewhere else in the back of beyond then there are loads of properties under 3.5K! have a search on . In fact I found 571 across Singapore between $2K and $3.5K with 3 bed or more and over 1200 sqft!


I just did the same search (actually 2-3k) and I'm rather shocked. There are placed I'd consider here. I don't find Woodlands too terrible, but then I do work at YCK Road, so it's not a bad commute :P


YCK road is awesome. My wife used to work in NCS in YCK road and hence we used to rent a HDB in blk 602 AMK Ave 5 thats 2 bus stops away from her office, thats as close as we could get to her office. There are quite a few nice condos there, but I guess they are expensive. Bullion Park, Seasons Park cant remember the others.


Some of the condos are a bit pricey considering how little there is around here. I was looking in the Upper Thomson Rd, Marymount, and Toa Payoh areas. Those won't be cheap to rent condos in though :(

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Postby revhappy » Tue, 18 Sep 2012 5:20 pm

Brah wrote:The world we currently live in can't really be held to any previous cycles.

As I said in an earlier post, people I know who have been in business even longer than me, >25 years, all say this is the worst they've ever seen it, and that there is no indication that it will return to anything which any of us once knew.

I arrived in 2004 so I know what it was like then as well, and I'm of the opinion that this is no blip. Of course I could be wrong. I hope I am wrong.

Perhaps some of the finance guys like JR8, Aster or BillyB could chime in to yay or nay this view. I think they are finance guys....

Segue wrote:The cycles last about 10 years hear and we are in for another correction, its just a matter of when.

When I arrived in 2005, it was a buyer's market - prices were depressed relative to the years before and the LL was eager to negotiate a significant discount.


Exactly, just a case in point. Although I am myself very financially savvy, the best outperforming stock in my portfolio is my gold etfs. And it wasnt my decision to buy, it was my wife's :) She doesnt know anything about finance. But she somehow called it right last year that Gold will still keep moving up and I kept saying, no its at its peak already. Finally she told me to just buy it as a gift for her. Now I am so glad I listened to her :)

I dont trust any finance guys, because somehow they always try to be contrarion and try to call the top or the bottom too early.
Last edited by revhappy on Sun, 14 Oct 2012 11:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Segue » Thu, 20 Sep 2012 1:25 pm

revhappy wrote:
Brah wrote:The world we currently live in can't really be held to any previous cycles.

As I said in an earlier post, people I know who have been in business even longer than me, >25 years, all say this is the worst they've ever seen it, and that there is no indication that it will return to anything which any of us once knew.

I arrived in 2004 so I know what it was like then as well, and I'm of the opinion that this is no blip. Of course I could be wrong. I hope I am wrong.

Perhaps some of the finance guys like JR8, Aster or BillyB could chime in to yay or nay this view. I think they are finance guys....

Segue wrote:The cycles last about 10 years hear and we are in for another correction, its just a matter of when.

When I arrived in 2005, it was a buyer's market - prices were depressed relative to the years before and the LL was eager to negotiate a significant discount.


Exactly, just a case in point. Although I am myself very financially savvy, the best outperforming stock in my portfolio is my gold etfs. And it wasnt my decision to buy, it was my wife's :) She doesnt know anything about finance. But she somehow called it right last year that Gold will still keep moving up and I kept saying, no its at its peak already. Finally she told me to just buy it as a gift for her. Now I am so glad I listened to her :)

I dont trust any finance guys, because somehow they always try to be contrarion and try to call the top or the bottom too early.


When the bottom fell out of the US market, there was a lot of evidence (Case-Shiller index) that property prices were unsustainable. However, because most buyers look at the past and not the future, the assumption was that even with high prices property would still be a good investment. Even the smartest bankers and regulators were fooled. The problem with bubbles is that you never know when they will burst so investors stay in the market because they still think they can make money even knowing that the market fundamentals are irrational. There are a lot of rich people out there that prove it, unfortunately the ones who loose don't tend to be as visible.

Anyway, the point of this post is to not try to make any predictions of when or if it will burst (I do think it will, but I know I can't predict when). I've got a contract coming up at the end of 1Q2013 so I'm trying to anticipate any leverage I might have. In a downside market there is typically a lag in downward pricing as nobody wants to accept the reality. As a buyer, nobody will admit to you that the market is soft - the agents and landlord will still act like you need to hurry up and take the offer before the landlord raises the price or someone else tries to snap it up. In these situations, knowledge is power.

So if anybody else has some anecdotal evidence to share that either supports and contradicts my hypothesis that prices are starting to soften, please share with all.

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Postby Brah » Sun, 23 Sep 2012 12:05 pm

Now that was as unnecessary as it was stupid. And after a such a good response from BillyB.

I won't argue it with you past this but with things as tight as they have been in the States over the past 5 or so years, and with so many people out of work, they damn well do know how to be financially savvy out of necessity.

revhappy wrote:They are very financial savvy mind you compared to an average American.

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Postby Brah » Sun, 23 Sep 2012 12:15 pm

I can't claim to really know the market that well, but I will say two things having just spent a couple of months looking, seeing prices all over the map but being able to offer on better places for less money - that prices have stabilized and are already showing signs of coming down. And some are down.

One is that your timing is probably a very advantageous one for renewal or bargaining on a new place;

the second is, we just got our new place well below and contrary to what every agent (this time we used four, a practice somewhat and stupidly taboo in this country) was telling us, to what appeared to be the best of their knowledge.

People can only afford to loose money out of kiasu for so long, and the coming market glut is not far away. Take a walk from Mohammed Sultan, round St. Thomas Walk, down Killeny, and around Great World City to see just some of this unoccupied and soon-to-come-on-the-market glut.

What was concerning though, was to learn that there is still an active expat (= rent et al are paid by the company) market* here for some industries (not mine anymore!) and this perpetuates that false impression for many LLs that all foreigners are rich and "expats" .

But as long as the rest of us non-expats allow ourselves to pay up in an artificially-inflated market, the longer this will last.


*And I'd like to know which industries. One agent said she was placing a lot from Deutche Bank, odd given all their recent firings and the sick state of the industry; another mentioned there were many from P&G but now there are no more expats from there; I'm not sure but perhaps Oil & Gas is still strong.


Segue wrote:Anyway, the point of this post is to not try to make any predictions of when or if it will burst (I do think it will, but I know I can't predict when). I've got a contract coming up at the end of 1Q2013 so I'm trying to anticipate any leverage I might have. In a downside market there is typically a lag in downward pricing as nobody wants to accept the reality. As a buyer, nobody will admit to you that the market is soft - the agents and landlord will still act like you need to hurry up and take the offer before the landlord raises the price or someone else tries to snap it up. In these situations, knowledge is power.

So if anybody else has some anecdotal evidence to share that either supports and contradicts my hypothesis that prices are starting to soften, please share with all.

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Postby Segue » Sun, 30 Sep 2012 4:49 am

I've just spent some time doing online rental searches. I think the evidence is mounting that the softness is really starting to happen. It pays for all of us to know our leverage in a soft market.

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Postby offshoreoildude » Sun, 30 Sep 2012 7:43 am

Segue wrote:I've just spent some time doing online rental searches. I think the evidence is mounting that the softness is really starting to happen. It pays for all of us to know our leverage in a soft market.


There is definitely a glut in certain areas but Mr LKY has also said a huge no of imports are needed. Enjoy the glut will it lasts because it won't. (Caveat; I own, not rent).
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Postby movingtospore » Sun, 30 Sep 2012 10:06 pm

I dunno. He's making the assumption that there will still be a reason to come here and I'm not convinced there will be. Really, I don't know anything, just a casual observer. But my personal opinion is that SP is pretty much maxed out in terms of the benefit it can offer the world at large. There are better pickings elsewhere for MNCs. So why bother with SP anymore? Costs are too high, employees aren't great and tend to vastly overestimate their importance to the world, and the government keeps changing their rules every other day which makes doing business a challenge to say the least.

What I really think is that the gahmen knows they are in a pickle. After some admirable success they've got nowhere to go but down.

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Postby ScoobyDoes » Mon, 01 Oct 2012 11:48 am

movingtospore wrote:I dunno. He's making the assumption that there will still be a reason to come here and I'm not convinced there will be. Really, I don't know anything, just a casual observer. But my personal opinion is that SP is pretty much maxed out in terms of the benefit it can offer the world at large. There are better pickings elsewhere for MNCs. So why bother with SP anymore? Costs are too high, employees aren't great and tend to vastly overestimate their importance to the world, and the government keeps changing their rules every other day which makes doing business a challenge to say the least.

What I really think is that the gahmen knows they are in a pickle. After some admirable success they've got nowhere to go but down.



To a greater extent I agree but at this moment I don't think they have 'nowhere to go' but the importance of increasing productivity is finally beginning to hit home, do more (or same) work with less people.

There definitely are suitable alternatives to Singapore and I definitely agree that ever changing reactionary policies are becoming more of a burden. It used to be that policy was preemptive but I get the impression policy has become more populist and reacting only to forces.

I just signed up my new 2-bedder for $2600 and am looking forward to moving at the end of the month. The rent on my current place is $3000 and the LL is asking a whopping $3800-3900. Needless to say in the last 2wks that it has been advertised, nobody has come to see it. There are a) cheaper and nicer units in the same development ($3300-3500) and b) two brand new condos next door (meaning ~15yrs newer) that are around the same $psf.
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Postby revhappy » Mon, 01 Oct 2012 4:27 pm

Brah wrote:Now that was as unnecessary as it was stupid. And after a such a good response from BillyB.

I won't argue it with you past this but with things as tight as they have been in the States over the past 5 or so years, and with so many people out of work, they damn well do know how to be financially savvy out of necessity.

revhappy wrote:They are very financial savvy mind you compared to an average American.


I dont know why you got offended by my statement. I dont even know if BillyB is an American or not. But it is a fact that average Asians are more financially savvy than average Americans. Did you ever watch the Suze Orman show? You will know what I am talking about. You would never ever need a Suze Orman show in Asia. The last 5 years sure might have caused some deleveraging there, but its part of the culture and nothing can change that. Not being financially savvy isn't an insult and my statement was never meant to be, anyways.

I started my career in 2002 with a call center in India to which Capital One, USA had outsourced their Credit Cards customer service. I worked there for a year and know exactly how much credit cards mean to Americans. I had a stint with their unsecured cards division. People with screwed up credit ratings were given unsecured cards with paltry 200-300$ credit limit and its not like those people were not rich. Some of them wanted to spend more on the card and had the cash but they couldnt get a limit increase, so they would just pay off the card like every week to make make way for spending.
Last edited by revhappy on Sun, 14 Oct 2012 11:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby offshoreoildude » Mon, 01 Oct 2012 5:21 pm

revhappy wrote:
Brah wrote:Now that was as unnecessary as it was stupid. And after a such a good response from BillyB.

I won't argue it with you past this but with things as tight as they have been in the States over the past 5 or so years, and with so many people out of work, they damn well do know how to be financially savvy out of necessity.

revhappy wrote:They are very financial savvy mind you compared to an average American.


I dont know why you got offended by my statement. I dont even know if BillyB is an American or not. But it is a fact that average Asians are more financially savvy than average Americans. Did you ever watch the Suze Orman show? You will know what I am talking about. You would never ever need a Suze Orman show in Asia. The last 5 years sure might have caused some deleveraging there, but its part of the culture and nothing can change that. Not being financially savvy isn't an insult and my statement was never meant to be, anyways.

I started my career in 2002 with a call center in India to which Capital One, USA had outsourced their Credit Cards customer service. I worked there for a year and know exactly how much credit cards mean to Americans. I had a stint with their unsecured cards division. People with screwed up credit ratings were given unsecured cards with paltry 200-300$ credit limit and its not like those people were not rich. Some of them wanted to spend more on the card and had the cash but they couldnt get a limit increase, so they would just pay off the card like every week to make make way for spending.



To be fair, in the modern life and western countries there are a significant number of transactions that are impossible without a credit or debit card; hotel bookings, car rentals, online ticket for events, airline bookings much less the ticket,ebay anything etc.
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Postby JayCee » Mon, 01 Oct 2012 5:59 pm

Something doesn't add up for me. America has the largest economy in the world yet most people are not financially savvy, whilst most of Asia is nowhere near as developed but the people are financially savvy?

Wait until credit cards become more widespread and easily available in India, China etc... (it will happen), the same thing could easily happen there as it did in the West, people living month to month on credit, transferring credit card debts from card to card for 0% interest introductory offers etc... You can't say people are more financially savvy there because they've not yet had people throwing cards at them or sending them in mail, or generally had the opportunity to get themselves in trouble.

Look at how in-debt your average Singaporean is, once the property bubble bursts the party will be over for a lot of people here, the same as happened in the US and UK, the timing is different that's all.
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Postby Segue » Tue, 02 Oct 2012 7:50 pm

JayCee wrote:Something doesn't add up for me. America has the largest economy in the world yet most people are not financially savvy, whilst most of Asia is nowhere near as developed but the people are financially savvy?

Wait until credit cards become more widespread and easily available in India, China etc... (it will happen), the same thing could easily happen there as it did in the West, people living month to month on credit, transferring credit card debts from card to card for 0% interest introductory offers etc... You can't say people are more financially savvy there because they've not yet had people throwing cards at them or sending them in mail, or generally had the opportunity to get themselves in trouble.

Look at how in-debt your average Singaporean is, once the property bubble bursts the party will be over for a lot of people here, the same as happened in the US and UK, the timing is different that's all.


Agree with you - I see some of the most financially un-savvy people in Asia. Look at the China stock market. Nobody looks at the fundamentals, they just go after some tip or there was some lucky 8 number in the name and here is my money. Just like the property market here, nobody is looking at fundamentals just looking at the fact that it went up 12% last year so that means I better get mine.

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Postby offshoreoildude » Wed, 03 Oct 2012 9:52 am

I've always understood the rate of savings to be much higher in both China and Singapore than the USA. I also find the tone of the above two posts offensive and a little racist.
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