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Residential Real Estate in Singapore

Dec 23, 2007
Occupying an area of about 650 square kilometers, Singapore is a tropical island destination, located at the southern tip of Malaysian Peninsula, in South-east Asia, between Indonesia and Malaysia.

Singapore is a well-established city with superb infrastructure, disciplined society, and excellent transportation facilities. Singapore's airport has been consistently rated among the world's best airports. Apart from being one of the world's safest as well as cleanest cities, Singapore is also a leader in such arenas as oil refining and distribution and shipbuilding and repairing.

The city is also a major center for electronics, finance, and communication. Al though a highly sophisticated modern city, Singapore still preserves it charm, and presents a multicultural heritage, which is an elegant mix of Indian, Chinese, Eurasian, and Malaysian cultures. In short, Singapore is a highly favored destination brimming with tourist spots as well as business opportunities. No wonder why real estate properties, both residential and commercial property, in Singapore are booming and of great demand.

Understanding the potentials and opportunities that are available here, many foreigners including retired people and business people have now started investing in residential property market in Singapore. It is estimated that an ordinary townhouse or apartment of about 1000 sq ft cost approximately $1 million. Many buyers invest in residential properties in order to rent it while some invest in it to sell it after a period of one or two years when prices rise. According to records, renting of residential properties in the city can fetch you $36,000 to $80,000 per annum. However, the location of the real estate property determines its value and rent.

For example, residential properties located on such strategic locations as the Nissam Road, Orchard Road, and Nathan Road are the all-time favorites of expats. Likewise, residential properties based in East Coast, Clementi, and Pasir Panjang, are also much sought after among the foreigners since it is close to many shopping as well as recreation amenities and international schools.

Nowadays, inner city areas are also becoming popular. Apart from location, some expats prefer to reside with their fellow country people. For instance, Europeans mostly prefer to reside in properties placed in areas like Orchard Boulevard, Taman Nakhoda, and Gallop Road. There are also some areas within the city dominated by Japanese and Koreans.

Housing options in Singapore cover everything from apartments, bungalows and condominiums to shophouse, townhouses, and flats. Residential Real Estate in Singapore has been classified into: landed and non-landed. Included in the landed properties are semi-detached houses, terraces, and bungalows. Non-landed real estate consists of condominiums, executive condos, and private apartments.

Majority of the people in Singapore reside in public houses or flats developed by the Housing Development Board (HDB.) These homes are mostly within housing estates, of which majority of them are developed neighborhoods containing supermarkets, hospitals, dining options, schools, and recreational facilities. A myriad of private property developers are also in the scenario to provide high-end accommodation.

The residential property law in Singapore prohibits foreigners to purchase or acquire a residential real estate or property here. However, overseas investors can buy a flat within a building consisting of six or more levels or any unit in a condominium. Other properties can be acquired by a foreigner, provided the Singapore Land Authority has granted permission. Likewise, for a foreign company to invest in residential property in Singapore, it is required to apply to the Residential Property Advisory Committee in order to get approval for owning residential property.

No matter it is to buy townhouse, apartment, or a single detached as well as terraced home, a plethora of realtors and property builders are now in the scenario to fetch your dream real estate property in Singapore. There are certain real estate firms providing services of professional attorneys to check the legal documents in connection with the real estate property.

Many realtors even offer superb services to deal with the laws and procedures in connection with the acquisition of property in the city. Some realtors even arrange mortgages for the acquisition of residential real estate in the city. However, it is important to carry out a thorough research with regard to their professionalism and the way they render the services, prior to approaching them.
About the Author
Wantanee Khamkongkaew is an independent author evaluating and commenting on leading International Property Consultants in Asia and Greater China , especially CB Richard Ellis.
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